Sunday, April 16, 2017

papa's hat

Between our vacation to Frankfort last year and the recent trip to Myrtle Beach, I've been very inspired by the beach. When we returned from Frankfort, I added white linen window treatments and made new slip covers for the furniture .... the color of the ocean.

Now it was time to think about new art. 

This was a picture I took of Matthew at Myrtle Beach in South Carolina. He was intimidated by the ocean waves and wouldn't go near the water, but he had fun with the sun, sand and water from the bucket.

After I got back from the Myrtle Beach trip, I finished this almost done painting for the art portion of my beach theme for the living room.

Then I began my second painting, inspired by this picture of Matthew.

I printed off the picture on this great little photo printer.

OK, it's a little blurry, but it's a Canon Selphy CP900. I absolutely love this thing! It's wireless and uses a heat to transfer the ink to the paper, so no more ink drying out before you can use it. The color is amazing and the photos turn out spectacular. I printed out the photo so I can use it as reference during the painting process.

I transferred the photo to this little projector I bought Holly a few years ago for her birthday. She never uses it and I snatched it up for painting. It's great for projecting photos onto my canvases. There's more about this product during my blog post here.

I wait until night so the picture is very clear without the sunlight washing parts of it out. I adjust the projector so it fills the canvas. Using my pencil, I draw the outline.

The next morning I got set on blocking in the canvas with mostly neutral colors. I used a piece of masking tape to paint the distinction between the water and sand and then blended it a bit.

The sand and water, I went ahead and used the right color values.

The body and buckets I used light, medium and dark neutral tones just to get the color values in place. I let it set for about a week before I could find time to return to it.

Bringing out my arsenal of supplies, I got to work.

And finished up with the right color values.

I really love how well it came out. It'll have a prime spot in my living room. What I really appreciated about this painting is just how well it came together. Quick too. There was less time thinking about values and composition. Within a week, and I'm done. Sometimes when I paint, I'm not always sure when I'm done. I agonize and criticize over the composition and my skills. This time .... I knew I was done.

The memory of this moment brings me happiness.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

myrtle beach, south carolina

This year for Christmas instead of buying gifts that will be lost, damaged, or just irrelevant over time - I offered the kids an opportunity to join us on vacation in Myrtle Beach. All but one took us up on the offer, so I booked us a three bedroom condo on the north end of Myrtle Beach and some airline tickets. It was one of my favorite vacations, and here are some of my favorite moments.

We'll start with my favorite sunrise photo during the week.

We left Detroit on this guy's 16th birthday. I'm not exactly sure how he got to be 16 already. Who allowed that? Happy birthday to an awesome grandson!

Our hotel room faced the east, so we got the beautiful sunrises coming through our condo windows.

I actually slept through this one, but Burke grabbed my camera and took some amazing shots.

I booked us on a ocean tour, dolphin watching boat ride through Express Watersports. We were all super excited to go.

The waves were a little rough and motion sickness set in pretty quickly.

It became hard to enjoy the ride - but we did see some dolphins. The crew was very nice and really tried to help with our motion sickness. The boat was very nice too - plenty of room to move around.

This picture was taken right before he went out like a light. Slept through most of the trip, which was probably to combat his motion sickness.

The next day was much nicer and we spent the day at the beach, collecting shells and enjoying the sun.

I got my camera out and started shooting some pictures.

Looking for inspiration for my next painting.

This guy walked up and down the beach for miles.

Looking specifically at the shape and flow water makes for my painting research.

This was the condo where we stayed. It was very lovely, 3 bedrooms and 3 baths. Every room had a perfect view of the ocean. The owners, Diane and Jim made our trip really comfortable and we enjoyed staying here. If you're interested, you can find the rental info here.  Matthew kept calling this place, "The Tower", so ..... forever named.

Burke found a dead jelly fish on the beach. All the tentacles were torn off, but the body was so interesting.

I got out my macro lens and took some close ups. 

This really was just a clump on sand along the shoreline. Cool right?

I booked the kids to go to an Escape Room where you find clues to get out of the room. They had a great time. While they were gone, me and this guy went on our own adventure. We set out for a walk along the beach and boardwalk with my camera.

We came across this singing bird.

And some sandcastles.

There were wind advisories out and the wind kept trying to take his hat. He kept yelling, "my hat Nana!"

I finally got up in time one morning for the sunrise and I wasn't disappointed. This was taken from the balcony off the condo. The weather was rainy and stormy most of the week. We saw several severe storms and even had a tornado warning.

On our last day, we checked out of the condo and had several hours to kill before heading to the airport. We ended up going to Vereen Memorial Historical GardensFranklin G Burroughs, we played putt putt golf, and walked around the Market Common. Laney insisted I take his photo here at Putt Putt even though the sign clearly said to not stick your hands inside the sharks mouth. But ... it didn't say anything about heads, soooo.....

Then we headed back home to more wind, snow, sleet, and cold.

Relaxing at home, I was able to finish my painting adding the little research touches I found during my trip.

Time to start my next beach painting.