Monday, December 13, 2010

Purchase Award from Coppini Academy

My painting "Dead Fish 1" (pastel 5x5) earned a Legendary Keystones Purchase Award last Sunday at the Coppini Academy of Fine Art annual Miniature Show!

www.coppiniacademy.com

Monday, November 1, 2010

Award from PSNM


"The Birthday Locket" (pastel 8x6) has won 6th Place (The Colleen Howe Award) in the Pastel Society of New Mexico National Exhibition, at the Hispanic Arts Center, Albuquerque NM. Exhibit open through Nov 28.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Award from Sierra Pastel Society


My painting "Juliet" (pastel 8x6) has won a Merit Award (Honorable Mention) from the Sierra Pastel Society, and is also one of the images selected for their poster!


















The show continues through October 23, 2010, at the Hang it Up Gallery in El Dorado Hills, CA.

Friday, October 1, 2010

"Leader of the Pack" Finally Really Finished!

Remember an earlier post about my newest cow painting, "Leader of the Pack"? Well, I've finally gotten it back on the easel, and the results are in! As in Finished! Complete! I will be scanning for the prints, and framing by monday.

(To catch up on the original progress see this blog post)
Here's what I decided:
I had left it as you see here. Didn't like the tree after all, or the yellow grass on the left distance. An artist friend also commented that the shadows on the calves should have more contrast on the front calf than on the distant calves. I had known that, intellectually, but was too lazy to fix it at the time.
So I wiped out the entire sky and the ugly yellow grass, and some of the calves' shadowed sides.
Put the fresh sky in with careful layers of a subtle variety of blue violets to the right and blue greens to the left, and some darker grass on the left. Thought maybe it was done here (again!) but my eye kept going to the calf on the far left. I realized it was because he had slightly darker ears (my annoying habit of clinging to the photo reference,) and his face contrasted with the dark grass at the edge of his mouth.

SO, my VERY LAST edits were to move the sky down on the left, which I like very much, the left-flowing angle back there. Lightened up his ears, and also deepened the intensity of color on the front 'Leader's' ears to help strengthen his importance.

It's still a very soft, high-key sort of painting. And the points I've mentioned throughout are all very subtle. But I feel that it all works now, so I'm happy.

Whew! That was a long one!

"Leader of the Pack" will be in the American Society of Bovine Artists Second Ever Show and Sale at Cactus Jack's in Gruene, TX, Oct. 23-24, 2010.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

"The Birthday Locket" in PSNM Show


"The Birthday Locket" has been accepted to the Pastel Society of New Mexico National Exhibition, Nov 5-28 at the Hispanic Arts Center in Albuquerque. I'll be shipping her out next month!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

"Art, Magnified"


A Showing of Large Work by 9 Artists from the New Braunfels Art League.
Friday September 10 is our reception for the "Art, Magnified" show at the Richter Building in New Braunfels, Texas!
Live music, good food and great art, 6-8pm, come and join us!
I have 4 of my large cow giclees included.

The Richter Building
168 W. San Antonio Street
New Braunfels, TX 78130

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Art vs. Oil Spill - Art With a Cause

Recently in my online wanderings I came across the blog of watercolor artist Paul Jackson, who has created the site "Art vs. Oil Spill", an online store featuring a collection of
artwork donated by more than 100 artists around the the world specifically to benefit wildlife rescue operations along the Gulf Coast after the BP oil spill disaster.

I was so taken with this idea, and the opportunity to help, that I sent in the images of my 6 new 'beach scenes' (birds and dead fish), and I'm thrilled with how they look on all the Zazzle store products!
Check them out! Proceeds from purchases will benefit the Wildlife Rehabilitation and Nature Preservation Society, an all volunteer registered non-profit organization.

There are dozens of products per image! See all of mine here.

(The Dead Fish Tie is my favorite!)

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Newest Cow Painting Progression Photos

As some of you know, I work best with a purpose. Therefore, with the American Society of Bovine Artist's Second Ever Show coming up next month, and no new cows to show, I decided to get crankin'!

So I searched my old cow compositions from my 'longhorn' files, and this one was the first that caught my eye. I had put it together from 4 photos a while back.
But with a fresh look at it, I thought it needed some work.

Some repositioning of the calves, and a bit of strategic cropping, and I liked it much better!

Here is my underpainting of the pastel primer on Gatorboard (my favorite surface!) I use Art Spectrum Pastel Primer in terra cotta, with a bit of burnt umber mixed in, for my 'default' base color. For this image, I also used some sand and some white for the lightest areas of the calves. I thought this looked so cool I almost didn't want to paint on it!

Here are the first underlying colors. I like to work all around the painting and get the basic values in so I can see how each area affects the others as the painting progresses.

I decided at this point that the background was too dark, and contrasted too much with the line of white cow backs. I wiped off most of the tree line and put a sky (or water) line at a slight left diagonal to offset the strong right diagonal of the cow group. At the same time working on shadow tones, grasses, etc.

Now, I liked the dark grass at the top right, but felt it didn't have a reason, so I added a tree. I liked how that added an anchor at the top and turned the composition into something like a lower case 't'.

While working through the shadows on the white calves, I wanted to keep them from appearing too dark for reality, also my frame for this is a pale yellow-gold, so I've imagined this finished piece as being fairly high-key.

Here the shadows are coming along...
And decided to fatten the tree.






A close-up of the 'Leader.' Isn't he cute! (Looks like a troublemaker for sure!)

The background always gives me the most trouble...





I thought I was done at this point, until I saw it on-screen... (amazing how photographing a work can help with critique!) The tree was too dark for the distance, and I didn't like the yellow grass to the side of the right calf's face.

...And here it is! "Leader of the Pack"!

(...OK, I thought I was done with this, until I saw it on-screen... lol!)

I might do away with the tree after all, and the yellow grass in the upper left... But it's too late tonight to deal with it. I'll leave it a few days and take another look.

Thanks for reading! Hope you enjoyed the process!
(Ignore the slight color changes between photos. Most were taken at various times of the day.)

Monday, August 9, 2010

Chosen as Juror for IAPS!

Opportunity has been knocking loudly to me lately! Prominent pastelist and popular workshop instructor Maggie Price just invited me to be a juror for the pastel show that will be held in conjunction with the Ninth Biennial IAPS (International Association of Pastel Societies) Convention in Albuquerque, NM, June 1-5, 2011. The other two jurors will be Anne Hevener, editor of the Pastel Journal, and artist Desmond O'Hagan. It's been thrilling to see my name mentioned in the same paragraph as these two! I feel like I'm moving up in the world!

2 Portraits in Prestigious Exhibitions


"Bride's Maid" has been accepted into the Pastel Society of America National Exhibition which will be at the National Arts Club in NYC, Sept 7-Oct 2, 2010.

http://www.pastelsocietyofamerica.org/


"Cowgirl" will be a part of the 25th Annual Bosque Art Classic at the Bosque Arts Center in Cliffton, Tx, Sept 11-26. http://www.bosqueartscenter.org/

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Photo Gallery added to Website

Hi Y'all! I added a gallery of a few of my exhibited photographs to my website.

Many of you know my camera goes with me everywhere, because I hate to miss out on any opportunity to increase my reference files. Well, occasionally I'll get lucky (ok, or maybe sometimes it's skill!) to catch a moment which stands on it's own as a photographic work of art.

I've finally started collecting some of these images in a new website gallery; see it HERE!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

New Paintings for Rockport - Dead Fish and Waves

I don't do politics, really. I just like painting almost everything.

I saw this poor fish on a beach near Galveston last month and I thought it was cute (Ok, I'm weird. But it IS cute, isn't it?)
I was painting these 2 views of the poor thing, at the NB Art League last Saturday, and several artist friends assumed this was my response to the oil spill.

OK, that works for me.

I just like to paint, and leave the interpretation to my viewers. (Besides, when I look at these, my judgment is clouded by the memory of how difficult those bubbles were!)

These next 4 paintings are my response to several artists telling me that "...beach scenes sell well in Rockport."

I am NOT inspired by beach scenes!
I do, however, tend to become totally and completely hypnotized by the flow of waves upon a beach. I can waste several hundred megabytes of storage space and 2 sets of batteries photographing what seems to be the same wave approaching over and over again. Except that it's NOT the same wave, it's different! ALL of them are different and I still believe I'll be able to capture that most perfect of waves if I just wait and see what the NEXT one will look like.

And so it continues... while the nape of my neck turns red and the clams nibble on my toes.


I threw this one in here to show what my first layer of color looks like (and because I just didn't have time to finish this one yet!) I thought it looked kind of interesting at this point.



These six new paintings (all about 5x5) will be with me next month at the Rockport (TX) Art Fest, July 3 & 4. They are, in order, "Dead Fish 1", "Dead Fish 2", "Wave 1", "Wave 2", "Wave 3" and "Wave 4" (unfinished).
I know, real imaginative titles. But like I say, the viewer can re-name them in their mind...

Sunday, June 6, 2010

2 new awards!

Each year, the Texas Arts & Crafts Educational Foundation recognizes the best in each category at it's annual Texas State Arts & Crafts Fair. This year I was honored to receive the Best in Painting award. Here is my impressive booth! (The jeweler in the adjacent booth was accidentally assigned a double space, which she shared with her neighbors on either side... the extra 5 feet of space really improved my display! Thanks Karen!)

The Texas Pastel Society held the reception for their 2cd Annual nation Juried Competition in my home town of New Braunfels on Friday. I received Second Place in the Portrait/Animal category with "Juliet", one of the latest in my Renaissance Portrait series. Here I am with "Juliet" (8x6) and "Number Three" (24x20)

The show continues through June 29 at the New Braunfels Art League Gallery in historic downtown New Braunfels. Check it out!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Marble Falls "Paint The Town" Plein Air event

The 5th Annual "Paint The Town" Plein Air Event in Marble Falls, TX, took place earlier this month, April 16-18. (I'm a little late posting my photos!)
I had planned again to paint a panoramic of Main Street, which seems to be settling in as my tradition, by my 3rd year now. Back at the north end of the street, where I was in 2008, I decided that the vantage point I needed as a change was from the tailgate of my truck!
It worked rather well actually.

Here's the painting after about the first hour.


It threatened a downpour all morning, but luckily all we got was some scattered drizzle.





Here it is almost finished.



"A Rainy Day on Main" (7x17 pastel.) This one didn't win anything this year, but it did go for a good amount in the silent auction, and helped pay for my new V...Vaughan landscape!

"Backbone Creek" (9x9 pastel) I painted on friday afternoon. The actual creek was quite overgrown, with branches sticking out everywhere! I didn't even think of photographing it.
This viewpoint caught me because of the hint of a bright field around the bend. Ms. Vaughan liked it too - she gave it 4th place!


Here was Virginia Vaughan's wall of paintings from her "Last Year on the Farm." It was advertised as 50 paintings, but I counted close to 70!
You can see her paintings in this series here:
http://v-vaughan.com/art/lastyearfarm.htm




Here's V...Vaughan's "July 7, 2006" and the newest gem in MY collection! Isn't it gorgeous? (oil, 6x8)

Thursday, April 8, 2010

New Page with InfinityArtGallery

My page at InfinityArtGallery is up! I have some new works that no one has seen yet -- take a look!
www.infinityartgallery.com/portfolios/kirkmanr

Giclees at Grape Juice in Kerrville, TX





4 of my famous cow series giclees will be displayed in a new, hip wine bar called Grape Juice, in downtown Kerrville, Texas.

These will be part of a special "Art of Texas Preview Show" April 14 - May 5 for a few specially juried artists will will be displaying at the Texas Sate Arts & Crafts Fair later in May.

If you happen to be near Kerrville, stop in, sample their great wine, unique beer and simple food, and see the show. All the art will be for sale!

See the grape Juice website HERE! See their Facebook Page HERE!

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