Monday, January 31, 2011

Pear Therapy

Pear Therapy, 9 x 12

This is one I found that I did recently that I hadn't posted. Initially, it was because I was having trouble photographing the darks--the reflections on them were impossible. I mostly solved that, then just forgot to post it. The pears reminded me of a bunch of girls talking, sharing, leaning on each other's shoulders as girlfriends do....
-here' a shout-out to all my girlfriends, near and far. You are all so supportive and amazing, and for you I am so very grateful!!

-julie davis

Saturday, January 29, 2011

River Valley Elms - study

River Valley Elms - study, 6 x 8

When I began really studying trees about two years ago, I had no idea how much influence they, as subject matter, would have on me as an artist. When I try to force them to the background in my compositions, it's almost painful to do so. So, yesterday I resolved to let go of that struggle for a while and just have fun with them again. And I had entirely too much fun doing this little study.

-julie davis

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Chapel Dulcinea

Chapel Dulcinea, 6 x 8

Today was the most gorgeous day in Austin, and as if that wasn't enough, I got out and painted with my Plein Air Austin friends. We met at a place a few miles outside of Austin called the Wizard Academy (no Harry Potter--but a marketing school--good name, right?) Anyway, Chapel Dulcinea is a small, open-air wedding chapel on the property that overlooks a beautiful part of the area, back toward Austin. It was a lovely subject to paint, and in this weather, made for quite the perfect morning.

-julie davis

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sketch 2

Sketch 2, 6 x 8

This is the second of four painted "sketches" on a board. I've used them to help me plan some paintings that I'm doing in larger formats. I find that when I'm working in the studio to make a larger painting from a study I've done outdoors I often want to tweak the composition, and doing this really helped me -- almost more than working in a sketchbook with pencil, which surprised me.

-julie davis

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Sketch 1

Sketch 1, 6 x 8

Haven't posted for several days, but that doesn't mean I haven't been hard at work! This is the first of several "sketches" I did on a board (this the tape to divide it) to plan my next four paintings. This is the first time I've ever done four underdrawings or sketches on one board, and in one "sitting." I found that ideas just flowed when I worked that way, and not taking the time to finish each one really freed me up to brainstorm, if you will. I was quite a lot of fun, and just as importantly for me right now, productive.

-julie davis

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Lookout

The Lookout, 6 x 8

This is a blatant attempt to study the bovine form. A very small form. :) Sketching and drawing cattle (like anything) is a fantastic exercise, but conveying animals convincingly with as few brushstrokes as possible is something one can practice only with a brush. This bull seemed to be looking off in the distance as if he heard something he might want to warn the others about. Not that cattle ever seem to care that much....

And I must mention some very exciting work will officially be part of a three-person show at the Davis Gallery (no relation) here in Austin in April! The opening reception is April 9. I'm very excited about the opportunity and will be hard at work, so forgive me if I don't post quite as regularly for a bit...I'll be laser-focused.

-julie davis

Monday, January 17, 2011

Over Your Shoulder

Over Your Shoulder, 6 x 6

Apples are a favorite of so many painters as a subject--in addition to their nice shape and the many varieties out there, they carry much symbolism....everything from "bad" or "poison" apple, to the all-American apple pie, Johnny Appleseed, and William Tell. These were a product of my seven-hour studio day recently--a day I am hoping to recreate soon. :)

-julie davis

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Late Spring Fields

Late Spring Fields, 12 x 16

This is a piece I've painted based on a 6 x 8 of the same scene--a field / creek in the Hill Country. When it's rained enough, the creeks in Texas actually fill like this and everything is content....too often they're not quite full, or even dry. This one is going to the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center Gala Art Auction this spring.

-julie davis

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Going the Distance

Going the Distance, 6 x 8

Another Hill Country road painting--this one was kind of a warm up for me. I can spend a few days doing still life and feel rusty on landscapes.

-julie davis

Monday, January 10, 2011

Gathered Together

Gathered Together-study, 6 x 8

I thought I'd post a little bit of the process today, primarily because I prefer the middle version here. I was experimenting with the foreground in the final product, and it just isn't what I'd envisioned. I did manage to take a few photos while I painted, however, and since I always find it interesting when others post "process" photos, I thought I'd share these.

-julie davis

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Old Ranch Road

Old Ranch Road, 6 x 8

Another from my day of many paintings. I was working primarily on still lifes that day, but really had to do at least one landscape.

-julie davis

Friday, January 7, 2011

Peared Up

Peared Up - study, 6 x 8

This is the last of the six I painted on Wednesday, and I made myself "finish" in 30 minutes, good or bad. Sometimes that builds in looseness and is successful, sometimes it's just disastrous. I definitely could've created a better painting, but playing with the gold tones and keeping it loose were my two goals, and I did accomplish that.

-julie davis

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Among the Liliputians

Among the Liliputians, 6 x 8 - study

This arrangement at first seemed as if the cherries had a crush on the pear, then I thought it more looked like the pear was Gulliver and the cherries were the the citizens of Liliput.

Regardless, my apologies for the reflection on this photo--the darks never fail to give me issues. I take the photos outside in a spot I wouldn't think gets much reflection, but the darks almost always find it. Anyone have any tricks or suggestions, besides creating a photography studio in which to photograph?

-julie davis

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Cherry On Top

Cherry On Top, 6 x 8 - study

I had the most exciting day today. For the first time in three weeks, I was able to spend nearly seven hours in the studio! (Read: the girls are back in school) I completed 6 small paintings--five still lifes and a landscape (couldn't not do one). Those of you who paint, know what a giddy feeling that can be.

I feel rusty at still lifes--this was the third one I did and the second I won't post at all, but it truly helps to repeat, repeat repeat in succession. Painting one after the other quickly really felt good and I made some progress and cleared some cobwebs.

-julie davis