This is another self-portrait demo for one of the portrait classes I teach. I always emphasize the eyes. They’re what makes the whole picture come alive. Sometimes artists are too conservative with their paint — they want to spread it out to save money, but I feel the liberal application of it gives energy to the picture.
One of my passions is wildflowers. They are beautiful from above, but there’s a magic from the view below them. This picture shows depth because of “atmospheric perspective.” The flowers portrayed closer are painted larger than the ones further back.
This is another England painting. I love boats. I love fishing. I really like the sound of seagulls and enjoy watching the boats float up and down as the waves come in to shore. This painting has a little bit different viewpoint than many I’ve done — it’s from above, looking at the harbor from the side.
A few years ago my wife told me she wanted me to be like Rembrandt or Frida Kahlo who did annual self-portraits. This is the fourth one. Each time I’ve used different techniques. This time I went for a more impressionistic method and each stroke can be viewed in the picture.
Tonight I presented a portrait I did of Mayor Mark W. Myers to the city of Greenwood, Indiana. I moved to Greenwood in 1998 and have absolutely loved it. I’ve wondered how I could ever pay the city back for the wonderful life I’ve had here. After considerable thought, I decided to paint a portrait of the mayor and donate it to the city.
This portrait was done more with emotion than anything. Instead of trying to do her eyes, nose, mouth, etc. correctly, I would catch myself portraying feelings, then realize I wasn’t concentrating on specifics. I’d try to get back to that, but would slip back to the emotional involvement. I just let my brushstrokes flow. She is a strong and caring influence on so many people — she’s a diving coach who encourages her divers to greatness. She is very loyal and considerate to her friends and she absolutely loves her family. I’ve wanted to portray that feeling more than anything.