Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Saying Goodbye and Happy New Year to Font Favorites

As we review 2014 and plan for the new year 2015 I'm having fun while saying goodbye to a long used print font. I have put off the parting of the ways for some time.

I so admire the art of typographers, especially their popular uses of print lettering today. Yes, I passed a course in calligraphy many years ago, but it definitely is not my art form. For me I think it is a question of patience rather than hand and finger coordination.

On a computer back a few systems ago I found a perfect font, Cezanne, which spared my making a gif file of my personal signature. I liked the font. It kind of went with my admiration of Cezanne, the painter. 

Here are a few samples of banners I used with my treasured font. I even loaded the font onto new computers as I acquired them. Some have called it a funky font. Ignore the intense yellow screaming at you, please.

This year I've transitioned to yet another new computer system. In creating new banners for my websites yesterday guess what I couldn't find? My Cezanne font! It is on the old computer! I don't really want to go through working on that system and transferring files.

So it's time to move on. It's a new year. Time to simplify, maybe even go back to tried and true arial. 

What do you think of the new banner for this blog?

Happy New Year, everyone!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Test Painting Watercolors on Canvas, Daily Painting Fun

Today's painting fun challenged me with a re-visit to painting watercolors on canvas.
Recently I used my jar of Golden Acrylic Absorbent Ground to prepare two canvases. In the picture's top portion I used a palette knife to spread a layer of ground on raw canvas. In the lower portion I spread a layer of ground on a previously double gessoed canvas panel.

With a #8 watercolor brush and fresh paints I played with colors on the two areas of ground. What amazed me the most was the lack of uncontrolled watercolor over the surfaces as I've previously found in using commercially prepared "watercolor canvases". I acknowledge "operator error" could have contributed to my previous frustration.

The paint seemed to "grab" on to the raw canvas ground without going through to the reverse side of the canvas. The ground on the canvas panel has a somewhat smooth surface but the paint didn't run uncontrollably. 

I tried adding colors to wet areas of paint, and I also tried  "lifting" paint in places. Additionally, I tried some "negative" painting areas and was very pleased with the results.

Later when the initial paints had dried I added more strokes of paint and also tried to re-wet areas for further work with surprising success

In conclusion, I'm excited to try more watercolors on canvas. I am so accustomed to traditional watercolors that they are a natural medium for me in contrast to using acrylics as watercolors. 

In recent years I've been painting oils and acrylics to get away from the framing challenges of watercolors on paper. Maybe I've found the best of both worlds for me. There's a freshness in the watercolor on the canvas panel ground that I like. 


Monday, December 8, 2014

Mountain River in Summer Original Oil Painting | Small Art | Wall Decor

"Mountain River - Summer"
5 x 7" Oil
Today's small oil painting reminds me of warm summers in the mountains of Oregon. This painting will give you a smile on a rainy gray day as we are experiencing today. The sun came and went today, but the dry warmth of high mountain streams made my day.
The contrasts of summer shoreline rocks exposed by the low stream add a different note to the usual contrasts of cool greens and blues. Hopefully, the low river water created some pools for the fish to escape the heat of summer.
Visit my other small paintings for recent landscapes. Small art make perfect gifts and can be easily framed in standard size frames. Treat yourself, too.
Have you considered planning your decorating from the colors of a painting? Start with your wall decor rather than your sofa color for a change!  

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

High Tide Surf Oil Painting | Small Seascape | Daily Art

"High Tide Surf"
5 x 7" oil painting

As Thanksgiving Day approaches I am grateful to have challenging work that never leaves me bored. Each painting is a learning experience. 

Most days paintings can be improved, but I have to accept that my learning is where it is today and move on to improvement hopefully tomorrow. A few paintings turn out awesome, an over the top "ah hah" learning experience. 

And then there are those which just don't "cut it". Can they be improved or must they be sent to the garbage or recycle bin?

Today's painting is a "rescue". I posted in August a daily painting created with a quick palette knife application in a very impressionistic style. Even though a genuine deep sea fisherman related to the painting immediately, I still wasn't satisfied with the art. Today that painting improved.

I've added it to my website for purchase. Later I'll add it to my other shop/venues.

Yes, there are more daily paintings being added to my kjoannrussell.com

Please bookmark this blog to receive updates. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Landscape Colorful Original Oil Painting Mountain Stream Runoff 5 x 7 Canvas Daily Small Art

"Mountain Runoff"
5 x 7" oil 
"Mountain Runoff", a small colorful original oil painting, shows an impressionistic view of a mountain meadow where a stream of runoff water finds its path to lower elevations. The grasses and occasional wildflowers add bits of color to the warming landscape.

"Mountain Runoff" is an oil painting on canvas panel ready to place in a standard size 5 x 7" frame. It comes to you unframed.
Slowly I'm getting to the task of uploading files for recent small paintings. I've added this colorful original art to my Etsy shop KJoannRussellArt
Remember that you can find more small colorful paintings at KJoannRussell.com to make a display of today's original art with other small landscape paintings. 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Mountain River Landscape Colorful Original Oil Painting Summer Art

"Mountain River Summer"
5 x 7" oil
It's late summer. The mountain run off is evaporating faster in the hot sun. The rocks and boulders are exposed from the lowered water levels of the river. However, it is still cooler in the mountains than in the triple digit heat of the valley. 
This small colorful painting depicts a similar scene in southern Oregon. This oil painting is the popular size for group displays of art or for the special wall locations for your favorite scenes.

I haven't uploaded this painting to my website or Etsy shop yet. Be the first to contact me if you want to purchase it for your art collection. It comes to you unframed.

Monday, October 13, 2014

"Iris Study #2"
5 x 7" oil
Several of my floral watercolors were painted from the iris fields of a fellow painter near Salem, Oregon. One painting more recently is an oil on a large canvas nearly 4 ft. in size. However, that oil painting looks rather abstract because it is not completed as I planned.
I've debated what to do with the painting, whether to destroy it or paint another image. So, I needed to get back into painting irises to make a decision about this incomplete painting.  Hence, a couple of small individual irises as studies.
The iris pictured here and its companion piece are oil on canvas panels. I've listed both of them today in my Etsy shop KJoannRussellArt. They'll make a perfect pair when framed. 
Yes, I'll complete the large painting, but not today. More small paintings are being added weekly on KJoannRussell.com 

Monday, October 6, 2014

Small Colorful Landscape Oil Painting of Valley in Oregon Daily Art by K. Joann Russell

"Valley View #2"
5 x 7" oil

Time flies when you're having fun, right? Summer flew by while I was painting some small oil paintings in the warm weather. We're still enjoying warm weather, but it's time to focus on acrylics and watercolors that dry faster in the soggy days of fall and winter. 
This small colorful painting with lots of green tones in it is the second of this location in the Williamette Valley of Oregon. They could be a great pair when framed.
Look for the Valley View #1 among the many small paintings on my website.
In addition to painting this summer I've been working on my website and other venues after installing a new computer system. If you've missed any of my paintings, you can order prints on canvas or paper with custom framing optional. The color swatches are a big help in your decorating decisions. 

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Paintings of Sunflowers from One Sunflower Sketch Over 13 Year Time Period

Sunflower painting by K Joann Russell.
"Unfolding Sunflower"
7 x 5" acrylic on canvas panel

Recently I found a sketch of a sunflower I drew with pencil and watercolors in the year 2001.  I still liked the imagery of the unfolding petals from a seed head so I decided to do a small painting from the sketch.

Sketch of a sunflower by K. Joann Russell.
As I was painting the new unfolding sunflower I recalled I had painted from this sketch previously. I was intrigued to look back at my earlier painting. 

I dug into my inventory list of completed work and the files and photos of the paintings. Lo and behold, I painted three not just one interpretation of the sketch! The earlier paintings were completed in late 2001 and sold in 2002.

Oil painting of sunflower by K. Joann Russell.
12 x 16" oil

Oil painting of unfolding sunflower by K.Joann Russell.
20 x 16" oil
Colorful oil painting of sunflowers by K.Joann Russell.
22 x 14" oil

All of these paintings were larger sizes and painted in oils. Which one do you like the best?

Monday, August 25, 2014

High Tide Surf Original Painting Colorful Limited Colors Palette Knife Daily Painting

Seascape daily painting of hide tide surf by K. Joann Russell
"High Tide Surf"
5 x 7" acrylic on canvas panel 

Ocean beaches on my mind here! Have I been eating too much of the fresh tuna my neighbor catches and shares with me? Nevertheless, the other day I wanted to start a new seascape painting, so I pulled out a newly gessoed canvas panel and grabbed a palette knife to dig into some leftover acrylic paints, two yellows, two blues and a bit of burnt sienna.

I did not intend to do a palette knife painting, but when I indicated the horizon I went with the fun of seeing what I could develop with the few paints and one palette knife. I had no idea what the final result might be; I was just having fun "emoting" over beaches I've been around all my life.

The fun continued and suddenly a picture was developing. I exclaimed, "that's just like the surf coming in at high tide, rolling and churning." So, I finished with a few dark colors to give more contrast and quit, before I ruined the painting with overworking which can be my downfall.

Later that day I showed the small painting to the fisherman and his wife without giving any explanations because I wasn't sure of its merits as a seascape. He immediately said, "Boy, do I know that!! The surf rolling and crashing around. Can I have it?"

 What has been your fun today?

Monday, July 28, 2014

Versatile Artist Palette for Acrylics

Palette for Acrylics
15 x 18 inches
An artist's palette speaks volumes about the artist, haven't you noticed? The former scientist (chemist) in me keeps an eye out for new techniques and supplies. I'm always "experimenting" to make my art processes better. Palettes are one of them. 

One of my daughters shared with me a nifty palette she learned about in working with Ali Edwards for creative memory keeping, an art form beyond the popular photo scrapbook.

In the photo above the dark brown under the paints and palette knife is the 15 x 18" sheet of heat resistant, slick work surface that is reusable and non-stick. What artist wouldn't like to have that for a palette instead of breakable glass?
So, I had to find out if it would work for me, possibly replacing my freezer paper inserts in John Pike boxes. Acrylic paints on this palette, called Ranger, turned out an artist's dream especially for clean up! 
Next I wanted to try water miscible oils with this palette. I used Cobra brand oils. They worked well even with clean up but not as easily as the acrylics did. 
Then I tried traditional oils. The results were unsatisfactory even using solvents for oils. Also the palette was easily scratched with repeated use of the palette knife. Clean up was so much more labor intensive than scraping a glass palette or disposing of freezer wrap.
Maybe this palette would work for you. It is sold at RangerInk.com  or places such as Amazon, Hobby Lobby, and JoAnn's and usually packaged with two sheets of 15 x 18" each.  
Because of the warm summer weather I'm painting in oils with my usual palette. And I've even set up my pastels again.
Maybe when Seattle gray and rain return I'll use Ranger when I work more in acrylics for faster drying. I'm a little reluctant to cut down this new palette to fit my boxes. 
Maybe the curious scientist will show up this fall! Meanwhile, I'm soaking up the sun, which can be my excuse for not keeping up with my blog posts. Oh, I also have been revising my website as completion of the transition to my new computer system.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Valley View Rural Landscape Colorful Oil Painting-Daily Small Art

"Valley View"
5 x 7" oil on canvas panel

"Valley View", a small colorful original oil painting, shows an impressionistic view of the farm lands from the foothills of the Willamette Valley in Oregon. The distant coastal range of mountains is barely visible. 

The evergreen trees mingle with the other trees and shrubs on this hillside. Isn't it fun to look at the wide expanse of land as though you're an eagle at the top of one of those trees pondering your next dinner site?

"Valley View" is an oil painting on canvas panel ready to place in a standard size  5 x 7" frame.

More small colorful paintings are available for that special color spot in your decor.  

Monday, March 3, 2014

Harvest Fields Colorful Rural Landscape Oil Painting Daily Small Art

Harvest Fields colorful original daily painting rural landscape by K. Joann Russell
"Harvest Fields"
5 x 7" oil

Today's small painting is one from the recently completed series of daily paintings on gessoed mat board.  I repurposed my stash of mat board for watercolors after I stopped doing shows of framed art. I found these 5 x 7" archivally gessoed boards so versatile for studies and en plein air work. They are real art gems when framed. Standard size frames are so cost efficient, too. And no glass needed as I had to use with my watercolors!

"Harvest Fields", a colorful original rural landscape oil painting, shows an impressionistic view of fields of grain and recently plowed soil after harvest on a bright summer day. Time for the combines to thresh the oats!

Dark evergreen trees on the hillsides contrast with the light colors of the grain. Distant mountains add a touch of cool color to the scene.

This oil painting on archivally prepared mat board is varnished and ready to place in a standard size frame. 

Join the fun of bidding for one of these paintings or view the many in this series at my website's small paintings.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Puget Sound Morning Small Colorful Marine Landscape

"Puget Sound Morning" 
5 x 7" oil

One of my favorite spots in the Seattle area is the Des Moines, WA beach park. When I lived near this location I often visited this lovely area in all kinds of weather. There was always so much to see with the long pier, the moorage, the rock strewn beach, the sea birds, and the people. 
"Puget Sound Morning", a small colorful original marine oil painting, shows an impressionistic view of somewhat still waters one morning at this beach in Washington State. The water reflected the hillside of dense evergreens and other trees. Vashon Island is in view across the Sound where ships and boats sail between Seattle and Tacoma. All was quiet in the morning sunlight. Can you smell my hot cup of coffee?

"Puget Sound Morning" is an oil painting on canvas panel, ready for a standard size  5 x 7" frame. 
Select from my small daily paintings for your decorating project.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Creek Bend Landscape Colorful Painting Daily Art by K. Joann Russell

Creek Bend, colorful small oil painting by K. Joann Russell
"Creek Bend"
5 x 7" oil painting

Even though it has been awhile since I've posted on this blog, I did complete my series of small paintings on gessoed mat board. This colorful oil painting marks the last of the series.

Creek Bend", a small colorful original landscape oil painting, shows an impressionistic view of a mountain stream changing direction as it flows through evergreen trees into touches of spring light on bushes. This is typical of fresh water streams in southern Oregon where boulders force the current to change direction creating rapids and more still waters in pools. 

The contrast of cool greens and blues with warm golds and browns gives a freshness to go with the cold waters of mountain runoff. This creek is typical of the many in the mountains of southern Oregon.  

 Lots of surface texture on this small daily painting makes the scene seem so real.  You might find a trout resting resting from the rapids in the calmer waters of the shady pool. This painting can be your special memory piece of your favorite fishing hole.

"Creek Bend", an oil painting on archivally prepared mat board, is varnished and ready to place in a standard size frame. It is 5 x 7".

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Creek Waters Colorful Original Oil Painting Oregon Landscape Daily Art K. Joann Russell

Little Butte Creek colorful original oil painting by K.Joann Russell
"Little Butte Creek"
5 x 7" oil

Today's painting I'm sharing with you adds the refreshment of cool waters and lush grasses to a cold, foggy winter day. I'm thinking "August"! Are you?

"Little Butte Creek", a colorful original landscape oil painting shows an impressionistic view of a fishing stream flowing from the dark shade of evergreen trees into bright light on marsh grasses. Enjoy the contrast of the cool blue colors with the yellow greens of the grasses and the sage greens of the evergreens in bright sunlight. This creek is a popular spot in Southern Oregon, north of Medford.

Lots of surface texture on this small daily painting makes the scene seem so real. This painting can be your special memory piece of your favorite fishing hole.

"Little Butte Creek" is an oil painting on archivally prepared mat board, is varnished and ready to place in a standard size frame. It is 5 x 7".

This post is the first since November. Has it been that long? I'm sorry to keep you waiting. Besides the Christmas and New Year's celebrations I have been painting. The series of small paintings on mat board is completed. They are so easy to ship and offer a variety of framing options. I'll be painting more on canvas panels. And I have been working on larger paintings of landscapes and sunflowers when I'm not in the details of website HTML revisions. 

Stay up to date with my art by bookmarking my website KJoannRussell.com and subscribing to this blog mailing list. 


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