Six months in Baltimore sounds like a long time, but it feels like a short few weeks to me. Many have told me that one doesn't get used to a new city or place until about the six-month mark, and for me, that has been true: things are getting better. However, the improvement in my spirits might also be due to a confluence of recent events: the weather getting better, the help of new (and old) friends, and, probably most significantly, the congregation of a new painting group under the aegis of my friend Palden Hamilton. He recently moved into a house with a studio graced with north light, and his powerfully cool personality is enough to bring people from all around the Baltimore-area to paint with him several times a week. Now that the weather is getting better some of us from this group have gone out painting, in surrounding areas such as Moncton, or Hampden in Baltimore City. Here is a 3-hour portrait I did of Jenny, a student of Palden's.
Tomorrow I'll post some of the landscape studies I've done. The titanium white is still pretty wet (had to slather that stuff on because it just snowed the other day!).
I've been getting more inquiries about commissions lately, so my husband has been bugging me about getting better information on the website. Now I know why I have been putting off improving my site: I'm no computer programmer and I suck at Photoshop. I know I don't have information about my process on there yet, but hopefully by the beginning of next week-- getting the stuff I do have there now took me the whole day. In other news: we've done the move to Baltimore, my resting heart speed is much lower than it was in New York, and all my stuff is in storage. I go to Pigtown (West Baltimore) at some point soon to see a studio. No luck on the studio front near MICA, which would have been ideal: I could have walked to work!
The last couple of Fridays I've been painting these three-hour short portraits with my friend Kristin at Rob Zeller's school in Bushwick, Brooklyn, The Teaching Studios of Art (she is a teacher there). They have a nice set up there with a lot of bounced light, so it feels really airy and certainly very different from my dark, cramped studio. This painting looks anime to me - the model, Anna, is an actor, and had this startling red hair (dyed, but no less charming for non-naturalness) and beautiful big eyes that were made even bigger by her dramatic eye-make up. Thankfully, Rob had some cadmium orange lying around...
I haven't been posting this month too much because of some family things that have been keeping me busy, but last week I did get to paint my friend, the art historian Ross Finocchio. Ross is working on a dissertation of Henry Clay Frick and his collection.
This is a four-hour short portrait I did of Maya Rock, a writer based in New York. Maya is currently working on a novel, and is a freelance essayist who has written articles about her mixed heritage (click here for an article).
Renee is almost 13. It was wonderful painting a beautiful young girl for four hours. I have a pretty nice life.
The woman in this portrait has an uncanny resemblance to Megan Fox!
My good friend, Wilmot Kidd, artist, philosopher, photographer, screenwriter, cinematographer, nature enthusiast and all around angelic human being, sat for a 3.5 hour-ish portrait right before Thanksgiving. He has shown the iPhoto picture to friends, who have responded: "Russian, writer, poet, aristocratic dissident, Confederate general." I couldn't find my trusty "beard" brush (a beat-up old bristle brush), but it was fun to paint the fuzz all the same!
This is a portrait I did this week of my friend Kristin, who is a doctor. I heightened the highlights on her chin and forehead after she left and they dried a little more chromatic than I would have liked. Oh well. This happens every time I use maroger in the painting and then forget to use the medium when I go into touch it up. Anyway, here's the painting:
Kristin's mother, Joyce, generously posed for us the other week.
Every week I do a quick portrait sketch with a friend of mine, Kristin Kunc, who also graduated from the Water Street Atelier. Last week we painted the classical actress Eva Morosco. We get a new model every week for four hours and paint at her place or mine. It's a great way to keep our chops up. Here is my sketch of Eva.