The past six months have been consumed with real estate - selling, buying, renting, renting back - and my painting time has been divided between classes and new, experimental projects. But now...it is crunch time! My new studio in Sonoma is empty and waiting for me to make it my own. But first, I have a lot of packing to do.
I've had a successful studio sale this week, so there is slightly less to pack. If you have ever moved, you know how surprising it is to see how much room your "stuff" really takes up once it is transferred into boxes. Too much!
Planning a garage sale to lighten the load further - and when the studio is done I will post new pictures!
Tahoe Trail Painting Auction
Start off the new year with art!
I'm organizing my studio for the new year in anticipation of a move from Marin to a new studio in Sonoma.
I have several boxes of studies, prints, studio paintings and landscapes that need new homes - and I'm making several of them available by auction over the next few months. First up is Tahoe Trail, an 8 x 10 oil on stretched canvas, unframed. Opening bid is $100 - and can be made in the comments or on a posting on my Facebook page.
BIG practice. BIG bargain.
"When are you going to do some BIG landscape paintings?" she asked. And he asked. And they asked.
Well, the truth is anything much above 16 x 20 sets my mind in a whirl. So, this summer, I am facing my fears, taking out my bigger brushes and giving it a go. Facing a big white canvas is daunting. To get myself in gear I prepared the surfaces of a few older paintings and I am painting over them. The Old Masters did this all the time, so who I am to argue with the practice?
This painting of lavender at Sonoma's Matanzas Creek winery is painted over a painting done in a class a few years ago. It measures 24" x 30" which is a great size for a guest room, or over a couch or table or on an entry wall if you need decorating ideas. If it were a "new" painting, this size would sell for $2150.
However, I consider this one of my BIG studies and I am getting ready to break out and buy some brand new large canvasses. So, if you would like to have it for your collection at a BIG price break - make an offer. Anything over 1/4 price (that's $430) will be entertained. Not exactly an auction - but the best offer this week takes it. I can use the money for more paint and larger canvasses! Send me an email if you are interested.
UPDATE: Thank you for all the offers! This went to a new home on Monday, August 4th.
Vacation Memories and Shopping
Vacationers often wander into shops to pick up a souvenir from their holiday. A T-shirt, a jar of local berry jam, a Christmas tree ornament…or even a painting. Here are some paintings from vacation spots - an ocean beach, a country farm, a mountain trail. I think having a piece of art that reminds you of a special place can trigger lots of positive feelings. So if you see something that tugs at your heart while you are traveling this summer - buy it! You will be supporting a local artist in doing what they love and you will have a memory to take home.
On the subject of shopping, I have linked up with Fine Art America to offer print-on-demand copies of original paintings. These prints are created from photographs of the paintings and are available as stretched canvas, framed paper prints and more. You can choose the size and format that works best for your space, and you have control over pricing based on your choices. While I earn a small royalty from the sale, the transaction is with this well-established company. From what I have seen, the quality of their materials is first-rate, and they offer a money-back guarantee.
I will continue to offer signed giclee prints and photographic prints directly through the studio, using photographers and printers that I have hand-picked to create reproductions of my work.
Original paintings are available directly through the studio, at shows and at select retailers. Currently, there is work hanging at the Marin Society of Artists Gallery in Ross, CA, and at Weathered Nest in Mill Valley, CA.
I had fun painting these 12" x 12" squares of people enjoying the beach - and they drew a lot of smiles at Open Studios. Unframed, they are a bit of a diversion from my usual scenes. So….time for a summer silent auction! Grab one, two or all three by leaving the painting name and your bid in the comments. Opening Bid for each is $50, with raises in $5 increments. The auction starts Wednesday, June 25 and ends Thursday, June 26 at 5 p.m. (If applicable, shipping and/or tax will be extra.) Get your day at the beach starting now….
This week I am experimenting with water-soluble oil paints, which are "real" oil paints but can be cleaned up with soap and water as opposed to solvents.
I put a set in my travel easel which I keep in the car for spur of the moment landscape stops. The colors are not quite as vibrant as my usual paints, but I think they proved successful for this small (6"x8") morning painting at Pacheco Pond.
It will be interesting to see how it goes in different light and weather conditions, and to see what kind of colors I can mix up with this new recipe.
A half-acre property on Miller Avenue welcomes people to downtown Mill Valley with redwood groves and a creek running by rustic wooden buildings. Its original purpose was as a lumber yard that supplied the surrounding community for 120 years. When new owners Matt and Jan Mathews purchased the landmark property in 2012, they hoped to attract a building and hardware tenant, but those efforts were hampered, likely by competition from "big box" stores in the county. They began the task of renovating and retrofitting buildings for a mix of tenant uses, with a goal to preserve the buildings and keep the spirit of the property alive, even keeping the name - Mill Valley Lumber Yard.
I've enjoyed walking, riding and driving by these great old buildings since I first moved to Mill Valley in 1987. In more recent years, I have also enjoyed painting them - so it is really a treat to participate with a group of six artists as we transform some of the vacant space and outdoor area at 129 Miller Avenue into studios for Marin Open Studios, the weekend of May 10 & 11.
I'll be there from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day - with my easel and paints - and a display of framed and unframed paintings, drawings and prints for sale. If you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, come by and have a look. Directions are on my website.
Spring Break Field Trip
I am off to the Sierra Mountains of California, near Lake Tahoe for a weeklong painting trip with 3 painting friends. The snow on the ground was nearly melted when I was there last month, so I have been expecting a week filled with budding trees, blue skies and closed ski resorts. But now the weather report says "CHANCE OF SNOW!" In preparation for this trip, I've inventoried all my paint colors, given my brushes a good clean, and stocked up on wet panel carriers. I've learned lots of interesting tips for cold weather painting, including standing on a dark blue yoga mat in the snow. The reason? To keep feet dry and to cut down on the snow's reflection under the easel. That's a great idea, and one more item to add to the packing list.
An artist is an editor. When faced with a vast scene, choices must be made about composition and where to focus attention. When I was walking on the beach in St. Augustine, Florida, my visual senses were assaulted with sun, ocean, sand, and people. My emotional senses were tapped, too. This was a beach where I spent time with my late parents and brother, and I had not been back to Florida in many years. I was in a contemplative mood when I made my sketches and when I started to paint I knew I wanted to reflect an intimate connection to the location. Though I usually paint from life, this painting was made from my reference sketches and the remembrances of the shadows, the warmth of the sunlight on the sand, the haze of the spring sky, the sound of the waves and the scent of the ocean in the air.
This 8" x 10" painting will be available at Open Studios in May.
Geraniums in the Garden
Over the past several years, I have enjoyed being invited to be an "artist in the garden" on the annual garden tour for Mill Valley's Outdoor Art Club.
This year, the organizers asked to use my Geraniums painting for the promotional poster and invitation, which is an honor - and good exposure.
This painting has certainly made the rounds -- it's been featured in Marin Magazine and in the Marin Open Studios gallery. The original painting is now back in the studio and it is for sale.
I've had requests for prints of this painting - which is an affordable and attractive option for people who like to have their art under glass - so I have decided to make it available as a matted photo print, for $50.
Geraniums will be printed half-size (11 x 14 inches) and matted to fit into a standard 16 x 20 inch frame. You can order it here.
About the artist
Linda Rosso is a California artist who delights in the colors she sees out of the corners of her eyes. Read more...
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