Meeting Notes, August 8, 2019

Topic: How have you "changed it up"(as it pertains to your work)....add some details!

Celeste: I am a former graphic designer.  When I first painted I used bright colors and a graphic style. This worked well for things like the Chris Haberman show where each painting was very affordable. People liked them, I did them expressly to sell them. I have a couple of examples here. Over time I sought to paint with more realistic colors (but sometimes still colorful). I am showing some recent works.

Stephanie: I started in acrylic. I thought it would be easier. I took a workshop with Za, however, and we used the Zorn palette. I switched to oil. I am showing an older acrylic. I am looking to unifying colors. I painted this tree with the "emergency tree response team" (advocating saving trees in Portland). I vowed to not use any brown for the trunks. I mixed colors directly onto the canvas., red and look...the tree trunks came out looking...... brown! (Laughter)!

Leslie: I've changed it up in that I used to be a watercolorist. I now work in oils. I am showing a black and white study I did recently from a life model session. We painted gestures. I did this in 20 minutes.

Dotty: I changed it up with how I frame things! I am a pastelist. I changed to plein air frames and spacers. Another huge change for me is that I moved from California to here. The colors are so different from what I was used to. I was invited to paint recently at a vineyard...this is my resulting painting.

Lisa: I used to paint in a photo real type way. There was a 20 year gap too, because I had to do the whole career thing. Over time I wanted to paint looser and impressionistically. I am showing an older painting. Now I'm painting looser and it suits me better. I will be painting at Villa Catalana this coming weekend, so I painted this practice piece (and I think it does show that I currently lean in more in a painterly direction). 

Chris: I was a graphic designer (for a long time). When I wanted to learn painting I took classes at PNCA. I learned from Jerry Sumpter and others. I used to do a lot of things for children. I would paint commercial illustrations and even children's furniture. I got paid for these things, unlike now. (Laughter)! Here is one of the things I did with a young audience in mind (Laughter)! Here are two (not completed) paintings from Villa Catalana...I'll be painting there on Saturday too.  

Wendy: My big change is that I started painting in watercolor! It is a big change for me because I have been working in dry media. I am learning a lot. This is my most recent watercolor. 

Renita: I have been doing some color charts while my studio has been being remodeled. (I now have air conditioning)! (Applause)! I used to always wing it, but how I've changed it up is that now I'm thinking ahead about color and planning it. I am showing a recent painting (and I planned it). 

Joanne T: I did watercolor for about 5 years. I threw most of them out! (Laughter)! Watercolor is not might work on something, invest a lot of time in it only to mess up then background and then the whole thing is messed up. Back then I'd ruin a painting and then cry all night! (Laughter)! I am showing a watercolor that was done with glazes. I probably only have 10 watercolor paintings after 5 years! I am showing an early oil that I did. I hate this! (Laughter)! Currently, when I feel frustrated, I paint a chicken. (Laughter)! In my online class I am learning about moving elements all around to improve the composition. This painting is one I did for class.

Elo: I seem to change a lot all the time. The medium, my mood, the conditions, the amount of time I have to spend, all of these things are factors. You might remember that I used to paint birds onto maps. A lot of people liked those, but I won't go back to painting those. I am showing a photo on my phone of this painting I did a long time ago (of flamingos). My uncle has this and he told me that he is keeping it until I become famous and then he'll sell it! (Laughter)! I have done a fair amount of "urban sketching". I taught a class in it. I wanted to show you my (accordian) sketchbook. It is nice for quick gouache/watercolor studies.

Joanne K: When I was an illustrator I had to plan the components of each piece (with thumbnails). Now that I am a fine artist.. I do the same thing. I paint a small version of what my idea is. This is helpful because you'll see something that you thought was a good idea when it's not! Best to make those errors in the small version than in the larger one. I am showing some of my painted thumbnails and also two paintings of my son Tony. He's "changed"(younger to older). I am showing this older painting I did in a plein air event in Eugene. There are differences between then and now with my paint application. 

Yong: I have not been here for two months! I am glad to be back. I didn't realize so many of you were graphic artists. When I was younger I liked photo-real. As a matter of fact, when I saw expressionist work or abstract work I'd think "Well, that person doesn't know how to draw"! (Laughter)!  Somewhere along the line I got interested in the California Impressionists. Then I moved up here and somehow got interested in watercolor. Raising kids is like can't always predict, you can't always control! "Happy accidents" are more interesting to me and lately I am looking more at the abstract side. I am always interested in getting the feeling across (without rendering). I am realizing more and more how everything is connected. Instagram is really good because if you post your work often enough you'll be able to see a progression of your work. I am showing a recent painting that I did. These lilies are a complex subject..but I simplified! 

Dianna: When I was in 1st grade we got an "assignment" to draw a tree. I drew a dogwood. I used the colors I saw and I made the trunk silver. The teacher was actually angry with me. She ripped up my drawing and stated: "Trees don't look like this"! Now, you might think this would upset me, but what I remember was feeling sorry for HER! She had never seen *my* tree. My parents were not interested in art, but I did watercolor for a long time (with too much control). I tried oil but moved to acrylic for health reasons. I had a teacher who made me work with just black and white for a very long time. I learned about limited palette too. Do you all know Jennifer Diehl? I used to paint with her Mother (and Jennifer would come with us and wait for us to be done). This is Jennifer back then ...when she was a kid! (Laughter)!

Finn: Hello, I am Finn! I love the Simpsons, so I painted this. (Applause)!

Becky: (Finn is my nephew, visiting today). I am showing a painting I did in Aimee Erickson's workshop. This was a very effective exercise. We had to paint colors/values with just one stroke (either vertical or horizontal). The objective was to not blend on the canvas. It was a perfect exercise for me, because I do have that tendency (to overblend/to not know when to quit). I am also showing a painting from the lavender festival that I painted in what I considered "boring" light! What I am working on right now is big shapes and putting down paint and leaving it alone.

Donna: I am a former graphic designer/art director/illustrator. I am currently a pastelist. I did this painting a long time ago because I like penguins and Eric Clapton (Laughter)! During the time I was an illustrator I got very accustomed to correcting things in Photoshop. I can show you this progression. Here are some colored pencil studies and then here is the final result (on a package). Photoshop was used extensively. There is no Photoshop out there in nature! (Laughter)! Here is a plein air pastel that I painted (without benefit of Photoshop)! (Laughter)! 

Ken: I am *not* a former graphic designer! (Laughter)! My big change up is that I used to paint in water soluble oil paint and recently I moved to regular oil. I so much more enjoy the application of regular oil...I love the smoothness of it. I am showing a water soluble oil painting and a regular oil painting.  

Mark: When I first started (a long while back) I used colored pencils. I got some feedback..the person said: "Everything has the same level of focus" and I thought "well, YEAH!" I really wanted that. I had exceptional eyesight and I thought, what could be better than putting in everything that I could see!? (Laughter)! It took me awhile to realize that I was the only one who cared about one else cared! (Laughter)! I started to consider mystery and atmosphere. I lived for 8 years in Taiwan and my work there was dark. Then I moved here and everything livened up! Because of weight restrictions (for travel) I had just 72 pastels. This has been good, because I have to make better decisions. I am showing two pastels that I did on Strathmore Artagain black paper. 

Geri: I didn't do any art for a long time. When I started painting again this is an example of what I did. I got interested in the daily painting movement and during that time I just fell in love with people as subjects. I don't know exactly why or how that happened. I would just notice someone sniffling or someone with a bump on their head. I thought..why don't I just put these things in? Who would care? I started using humor..I thought in that way we can be "in on the joke" this! (Laughter)!

Jim: This has been an interesting question! I went to a school of Architecture. Back then they all taught only about Cubism and Expressionism. It was confusing and not inspiring. I served in Viet Nam and then I didn't paint for 35 years. We all want a measure of freedom in our paintings. Recently, I have been working in 3 color gouache studies. I took my paints outdoors. These are the results.

Tim: Every painting I do is a "change up"...because I am always curious about if I do this what will happen? I experiment! I painted this on an unusual surface. I painted this large painting recently.


Thanks again to Jim Syfert and Tim Young for moderating the meeting last Thursday

Many of our Alla Prima Portland friends participated in the Pacific NW Plein Air 2019 Competition and Exhibition. You can see the show up until August 23.

Next Paint Out: "Peaceful Sunday Painting" with Host Joanne Radmilovich Kollman, Sunday August 11 9am.  Meet Joanne at the Cracker Barrel Store at 9am. (Purchase a parking permit at the store then Joanne will lead the way to the spot in the Steelman area) Joanne will do a demo and provide encouragement and advice to anyone who is new to outdoor painting and/or anyone interested! (see graphic below)

Friday Figure Session Friday August 9 at OSA 1:15-4:00  Joanne Radmilovich Kollman 
The model is Sean McGonigal $20

Portraits in Oil classes with Joanne Radmilovich Kollman starting Sept 28 (every Saturday) Elizabeth Jones Gallery:

Congratulations to Yong Hong Zhong (First Place, Best Water and Museum Purchase Award) Za Vue (2nd Place), Aimee Erickson, Anton Pavlenko, Cathleen Rehfeld,  Erik Sandgren (Honorable Mention), Best Mountain Bhavani Krishnan, Friends of the Columbia Gorge Sponsor Award, Elo Wobig --To see all the winning paintings go here:

Alla Prima Portland Artists / OSA Plein Air: Best of Show: Dick Eaton, 1st Place: Don Lonsbrough, 2nd Place: Susan Kuznitsky, Honorable Mention: Tedd Chilless, Artistic Merit: Stephanie Cissna, People's Choice Award: Jeanne Chamberlain.

Also, Carol Hansen's Paint out (Oregon City) is re-scheduled for Tuesday August 20, 9am. (details will be posted on this blog and our facebook page).

Susan Kuznitsky was on the calendar...but her paint out is postponed.

Do you want to paint in the Villa Catalana event (this Saturday) ? Email Burl:

Call to Artists from Multnomah Arts Center

Tedd Chilless Stoller Vineyard (The show is up until Sept 9)

Upcoming demonstrations and events at OSA:

Dianna Shyne introduction to acrylics 9-12 in her Portland studio on Saturdays (ongoing) and Camino Island in July:

Classes at OSA:

Check our Facebook page for other resources and opportunities:

The Hiatus Drawing Club:

Next Meeting: Thursday, August 8 Topic: Painting "formulas" Although painting formulas are generally frowned upon..will you share one of your go-to things with us? (examples: "I often add a small amount of black to the color for water" "I often use a touch of yellow in white to warm it" "I use a combination of ultra blue and sienna for many of my grays" Etc....Let's discuss!

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