Wednesday, December 29, 2010

"The Wood Nymph" (nude), Work in Progress - Graphite and Mixed Media on Film

This latest work is a new stretch for me. It's been quite awhile since I have done any life drawing. Normally, I don't have the human figure in any of my work, exceptions are the Buddha paintings and the Gnome with beets painting. This new work is for a local, annual, juried show I want to submit to called, Unclad. I went to see the show last year and the ideas started to brew! I knew if I did something for this competition it would have to be in a landscape and trees would have to be involved, of course. I had the perfect tree that I wanted to use. All I needed to do was find a way to get a nude figure in it as the central focus. The "unclad" figure is after all, the whole point of the exhibit.

The figures are from an artist's book of model poses that I used as a guide. I played around with different positions in my sketchbook and had several studies worked out to see which would be best suited.

I drew the outline for my tree with some guides for the forest trees and border area on larger paper. The outline of the figure I transferred to a piece of film so I could place it on the tree and move it around for the best placement. The little blobs are sticky putty to hold things in place.

When I had the composition worked out, I put a sheet of film over my drawings, then drew them in with light pencil marks. I only use a basic outline of my composition because I create the drawing as I go.

You can see where I started to create some of the trees and foliage.

The forest is further developed.

I'm still not sure at this point if this is going to work and am anxious about the figure so I started to work on the area around her head. Normally I like to work from the top left and work my way across and down. It's very easy to smudge the graphite with your arm. I always try to protect what I have done with having a barrier between my hand or arm and the work, I use a fold of soft cloth. You also want to protect the film from indentations or scratches. I had to be very careful since I was working in an area that would be in the path of my arm when I did the area above!

Here you can see further work on the forest and foliage. I've also started drawing the upper branches on the central tree. I do use my reference photo, I have it up on my computer screen. It is mostly a guide for light and shape. Much of it will be changed to form my visual idea. This is many, many hours of work and at this point, I'm happy to say, I decided that the figure appeared to be progressing in the right direction. I will continue on!

Thank you for taking the time to read about my work. I hope you will return to see the progress continued in the next post, coming soon.

**When using film, the product is Dura-lar Matte film by Grafix.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Miniature Masterpieces and More! Kaewyn Gallery Holiday Show - Two New Works

Small Work, Acrylic on Gessobord, 5 1/2" x 5 1/2"

Early Autumn © Barbara A. Freeman
Fine Art Miniature, Acrylic on Polymin, 2 1/4" x 3 1/4"

Kaewyn Gallery's annual Holiday Show, Miniature Masterpieces and More! is opening this weekend. The artists showing in this exhibit are by invitation only and I am happy once again to be among them. This year I have a total of six works in the exhibit, four fine art miniatures (under 25 inches square) and two small works.

My four miniature works in this exhibit are from top left, cock-wise, Bright-eyed and Bushy-tailed, Always Illuminated, Early Autumn, and Through the Portal. I have matted and re-framed the silverpoint drawing, Bright-eyed and Bushy-tailed to give it a new look that I am much happier with. Always Illuminated has been featured as a work in process on this blog post here. Early Autumn is a new acrylic painting done on polymin, the ivorine/ivory substitute, and Through the Portal, is a new graphite, mixed media on film, fantasy drawing which was also featured in a blog post here.

My two Small Works are, $2.00/bunch and Garden Gnome, Contemplating His Latest Work.

Kaewyn Gallery will be celebrating the opening night of the Miniature Masterpieces and More! Exhibit by participating in Vintage Bothell, a winter wine walk. Both take place Friday, December 3rd from 5:30 to 8:30 PM. Tickets for the wine walk can be purchased by following the link, ($15 with your own glass, glasses available at event for $5) Now there are TWO reasons to go, great affordable art and if you choose, a wine tasting!

Kaewyn gallery is located at 10101 Main Street in downtown Bothell, WA. The Exhibit runs from December 3th through January 25th, 2011. Gallery hours are Tuesday-Thursday, 10-6, Friday, 10-5, and Saturday from 10-4. I'm planning to be there on Friday for the opening, hope to see you there! My friend Janie Olsen will be participating this year with her magical works as well! Remember, original art is a lasting treasure and makes the perfect holiday gift! Thanks for taking the time to read this. Best of Wishes for the Holidays and Support your local artist!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Work Juried in Miniature Art Society of Florida's 2011 Exhibit

Once again I am happy to report that I have had all five of my miniatures juried into the Miniature Art Society of Florida's, 36th Annual International Miniature Art Show. They are, starting at the top and going clockwise, Late Bloomer, Gold and Glory, The Silent Ones, "Peek A Boo", and in the center, Traveling the Slow Road.

2011 Miniature Art Society of Florida (MASF) Entries
© Barbara A. Freeman

The 36th Annual International Miniature Art Show runs from January 9th, through January 30th, 2011 at the Dunedin Fine Art Center, 1143 Michigan Blvd., Dunedin, FL. For more information on exhibition dates, and times, please visit the Miniature Art Society of Florida's website, click on "Annual Exhibition", then scroll down for the 2011 schedule which includes a listing of places to stay. This exhibit is the largest showing of fine art miniatures in the USA and is always well attended. I'll have more to say on this fine exhibit as the dates get closer. Meanwhile, I'll be announcing soon, the work that I'll have in this year's Miniature Masterpieces and More Show in Bothell, WA. Check back soon and thanks for taking the time to read this. Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Small Works, Big Presents - Auburn WA

The City of Auburn and the White River Valley Museum have partnered to present the 3rd Annual Small Works Big Presents: The Gift of Art. This exhibition was juried by three arts professionals and I'm happy to say that two of my works, A Meditation on the Pacific Northwest, (a small work) and Chuckanut at Lunch, (a fine art miniature), will be included in the show. This exhibition and art sale celebrates the diversity of the Pacific Northwest visual art community. The purpose of the show is to offer an opportunity to purchase fine artworks at affordable prices during the holiday shopping season. The artwork will be on display from November 17th through December 19th, 2010, at the White River Valley Museum, located in the Auburn Community Campus at Les Grove Park, 918 H Street South East, Auburn WA. The preview opening and awards ceremony will take place on Tuesday, November 16th from 5 - 7 pm and is open to the public. Refreshments will be provided. I am planning on attending and hope to see you there too! My friends Janie Olsen, Storybook Studio and Sue Jackson-André, aka Clovie Boy, will both have work in the show. Do stop by to Support Your Local Artist!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

First Place in Drawing - Miniature Painters, Sculptors, & Gravers Society in Washington DC

A Flash of Blue © Barbara A. Freeman
Graphite and Mixed Media on Acid-free Film, 2 3/4" x 3 3/4"

I received a great surprise in the mail yesterday from the Miniature Painters, Sculptors & Gravers Society in Washington D.C. (MPSGS). I am thrilled to have been given the First Place Award in Drawing for my work, A Flash of Blue!

I had already gotten the acceptance notice that all three of my works above, A Flash of Blue, Innocence and A Touch of Autumn were accepted into the Exhibition. This is the 4th year of having all my work accepted into this prestigious miniature art society. There are over 800 works in the exhibition this year. This is such a great honor and means so much to me.

The 77th Annual International Exhibition of Fine Art in Miniature opens with the Artists' Luncheon, Awards Ceremony and Opening Reception on November 21st. The Exhibition is held at The Mansion at the Strathmore, beautifully set on a hilltop at 10701 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20852. The Exhibit opens to the public on November 22nd through December 30th, 2010. The Mansion hours are Weekdays, 10 - 4 PM and Wednesday till 9 PM. Saturday it is open from 10 - 3 PM.

I sure wish I could be there, it's so far away! Sigh...

Also, a big Congratulations to all my online miniature artist friends who's work has also been awarded! As always, thank you for taking the time to read this.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Through the Portal...New Fine Art Miniature in Graphite

Through the Portal ©Barbara A. Freeman
Graphite and Mixed Media on Film 2 3/4"x 3 5/8"

This is a new miniature work on film using graphite and mixed media. It's another of my fantasy trees, this one with an opening to tempt the viewer to follow the path inside. I used the photo as a basic reference, for shape and light source. Next to that, is a copy of a colored pencil drawing I did many years ago thinking I would use a similar opening in the new work. However, once working I decided on a different pathway. I started this drawing in my studio with the intention of taking it along with me to work on while visiting family in Indiana. I figured graphite would be easy to carry and work on in short spurts of time. Rather than buy a hand held magnifier and have to pack it, I decided to buy one after I got there. I did some research and found most of the large office supply and art supply store chains have magnifiers and lighting. I googled the location of several in the areas we were passing through and stopped on the way. (I found a decent enough one with a good balanced light AND it was on sale! It worked out great and I left it there for our next visit.)

Once I had the outline worked out and the drawing started, I then focused on doing the inside of the portal. The castle idea came from the work that I did in the miniature, Always Illuminated. I was able to complete enough of the acrylic painting before leaving so would only have to concentrate on the graphite work while away.

The inside work was so tiny, measuring 1/2" x 3/8" !!!

I love doing the texture of trees and bark, so the rest of the work flowed and was a calming mediation for me. I managed to finish all the graphite work while away. However, I'm sorry I don't have more photos of the work in progress. I only have the beginning as above. In fact, I even forgot to photograph it before I put it in a mat and frame under glass! Luckily, I do have the official scans for my website which I hope to have up soon.

Once back home in my studio, I was able to look at the work as a whole and decided that some changes needed to be made. I did a bit more work on the inside acrylic, smoothing out some of the color and added some colored pencil on the underside of the film between the two sets of stairways. I also added a touch of blue on the right side to balance out the color. Below are the photos with the work framed under glass, so there is a bit of glare. I'll be submitting this to a local holiday show. I'll say more about that show as the time draws near. Meanwhile, thanks for taking the time to read about my work.

Through the Portal ©Barbara A. Freeman
Graphite and Mixed Media on Film 2 3/4"x 3 5/8"

**When using film, the product is Dura-lar Matte film by Grafix.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Two Shows Opening This Week!

Opening today, September 27th: My graphite and mixed media work, The Vernal Arrival of the Green Darner, makes it's debut in the color-themed, juried art exhibit, "It’s Not Easy Being Green". The exhibit is sponsored by the Lynnwood Arts Commission and takes place at the Lynnwood Library Gallery. Only thirty eight artists were chosen to have their work in this exhibit. Two of my artist friends, Janie Olsen and Susan Jones also have work in this exibit! The show runs from September 27th thru November 18th at the Lynnwood Library Gallery, 19200 44th Ave W, Lynnwood. The Artists' Reception is on Saturday, October 2nd from 11am - 12pm. Three works will be chosen for awards by the juror. It is sure to be an interesting group of work, with many different interpretations on the theme of being green. The reception is lots of fun, so do come if you can!

Another show happening this weekend is the 32nd Annual Juried Arts Show at 2010 Arts of the Terrace, in Mountlake Terrace. I have four miniatures and my larger metalpoint drawing juried in this exhibit. The work can be seen in this blog post. The exhibit takes place at the Mountlake Terrace Library Complex, 23300 58th Avenue W., Mountlake Terrace. The Awards Reception for Sponsors, Artists and Guests, is this Friday evening, October 1st, from 6:30 to 9 pm. There will be entertainment by Edmonds Woodway High School Chamber Group. The exhibit will continue throughout the weekend with Artist Demos and Workshops all Free! Saturday, October 2nd, from 11am to 9 pm and Sunday, October 3rd, from 11am to 5 pm. Come enjoy paintings, prints, calligraphy, drawings, miniatures, photography and 3-dimensional work. Both shows are free and open to the public. Artwork work is for sale in both shows. Support your local artist!!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Married 70 YEARS!!

Mary Louise and Herbert E. Freeman Celebrate 70 Years of Love!
September 13th, 1940 - September 13th, 2010

Last week my husband and I made a visit to see his folks in northern Indiana and to help them celebrate their 70th Wedding Anniversary! We, along with Wayne's three cousins and their partners, (from Montana, Michigan and Indiana) threw an open house at a local restaurant (closed for regular business on Sunday). His Mom and Dad have lived in and near this small town, almost all their lives. Needless to say, a lot of people know them. Wayne put an announcement in the local paper and worked with the restaurant via phone and emails to set things up. The folks at the restaurant did a fantastic job of taking care of everything.

Because it was an open house, it was difficult getting a count of everyone who came. We did have a guest book, but not everyone signed it. Some folks stayed awhile, some stopped in just to say hello, some came with their whole family. There were a couple of old friends who came from as far as Ft. Wayne, IN. All in all, it was thought around 80 to 100 may have attended.

The Freeman family.
The four of us.

Whether from a great distance or from right across the street, it was wonderful meeting all these friends, former business associates and customers, neighbors and family all together celebrating the love of my mother and father in-law. It was great spending time together. Their love and commitment to each other is beautiful.

I don't usually post personal things on my blog, but I wanted to share this. I think anyone who is able to not only stay together for 70 years but actually still enjoy one another's company and still express their love, that needs to be shared!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Gold and Glory, New Acrylic Painting in Miniature

This work is another recent miniature I've done in acrylic. It's a painting that I'll submit to one of the upcoming miniature art society shows*. It was inspired by the small country church, The Little White Church on the Hill.

I saw a peek of this church as we were driving by and had to stop to photograph it. I love our drives in the country, this one was on the Pioneer Hwy, close to the town of Silvana, WA. It's near the bridge overlooking the scenic Stillaguamish River Valley. The Little White Church on the Hill is an historic site completed in 1898 and is listed on the Washington State Register of Historic Places.

Gold and Glory ©Barbara A. Freeman
Acrylic on Art Board 2" x 2"

It was in late autumn and the trees had already lost most of their color. I didn't have as much information in the photograph to work with as I would have liked. I decided to give the tree colors a touch of autumn gold. It worked well with the whites, bathing them in a golden glow. I tried two different frame styles on it and I think the one above is the best choice, more delicate. It works well with the theme of Gold and Glory.

In the above photo you can see where I started the painting by covering the entire surface with a blue wash to tint the illustration board. Then I built up the layers with thin applications of color. On the upper right side next to the first tree you can see the color of the first blue layer. This helped me to lay in the whites of the church and the blue was a great contrast to the orange. I painted the roof and shadows with tints of blues and lavender. Actually, this piece is filled with complementary colors. I also used a bit of metallic gold paint on some of the trees. The bell in the tower was a real challenge, it was so tiny! I decided to mat it in a smaller format to create a more pleasing composition.

I selected this frame and the first one above as possibilities for the finished piece. I think the first one is the better choice, more delicate and the yellow gold is a better match. Sorry, as you can see the first gold framed work is not very straight. I'll post a better photo of the final matted and framed work at a later date. As always, thank you for taking the time to read about my work. Your comments are always welcomed and appreciated.

*I am in the process of putting the final touches on my work and will be shipping them out soon to the two Miniature Art Society Exhibits coming up, the Miniature Painters, Sculptors & Gravers Society of Washington DC, (MPSGS) and the Miniature Art Society of Florida, (MASF).

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Work Accepted in Festival of the Arts at Mountlake Terrace

I've received notice that four of my miniatures and my larger submission in metalpoint was accepted in this year's 32nd Annual Juried Arts Show at Arts of the Terrace, Mountlake Terrace, Wa.

Sculpted by Time ©Barbara A. Freeman

Metalpoint on Prepared Paper, 8 1/2 " x 8 "

My miniature works that were juried in this show are, In Fair Condition, "Rhodie"With Bee, Bright-eyed and Bushy-tailed, and Always Illuminated. My larger work in this exhibit is, Sculpted by Time. This exhibit takes place at the Mountlake Terrace Library Complex, 23300 58th Avenue W., Mountlake Terrace, WA. There will be an Awards Reception for Sponsors, Artists and Guests, on Friday October 1, from 7 to 9 pm. The exhibit continues through Saturday, October 2nd, from 11am to 9 pm and Sunday, October 3rd, from 11am to 5 pm. Come enjoy painting, prints, calligraphy, drawings, miniatures, photography and 3-dimensional works by top local and regional artists. I look forward to another exciting venue to exhibit my work. I have several aritist friends in this show, so it's going to be a fun time with great art viewing. All work is for sale, so come on out and support your local artist!!

Penny is shown for scale only and does not appear in the work.

In Fair Condition © Barbara A. Freeman
Colored Pencil on Acid-free Film, 2 3/4" x 3 3/4"

Bright-eyed and Bushy-tailed © Barbara A. Freeman
Silverpoint on Prepared Art Board, 2 7/8" x3 7/8"

"Rhodie With Bee" © Barbara A. Freeman
Colored Pencil and Iridescent Acrylics on Acid-free Film,
2 3/4" x 3 3/4"

Always Illuminated ©Barbara A. Freeman
Acrylic on Art Board, 4" x 5"

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Work Juried in Green - themed Exhibit Lynnwood Library Gallery

The Vernal Arrival of the Green Darner © Barbara A. Freeman
Mixed Media on Film 7" x 7"

I received good news that my graphite and mixed media work, The Vernal Arrival of the Green Darner, has been accepted for the themed, juried art exhibit, It’s Not Easy Being Green, sponsored by the Lynnwood Arts Commission at the Lynnwood Library Gallery. Thirty eight artists were chosen to have their work on exhibit and mine was one of them! The show runs from September 27 – November 18 at the Lynnwood Library Gallery, 19200 44th Ave W Lynnwood WA 98036. There will be an Artists' Reception on Saturday, October 2 at 11am - 12pm. I'll post this again when the show gets closer. I did this show two years ago when the color theme was Mellow Yellow. That was the first one I entered. Last year, however, was different with a theme of Celebration/50 as it was their anniversary. This year it was back to the color theme with green in it's many different interpretations. I'm sure it will be a very interesting group of work and I am looking forward to seeing all the different viewpoints of being green.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Traveling the Slow Road - New Miniature Art Work

Traveling the Slow Road © Barbara A. Freeman
Acrylic on Illustration Board, 2 7/8" x 3 3/4"

My latest work is another in my Italian Landscape Series of Miniature Art. This drive was not far from our apartment in the countryside of Montepulciano. We would often choose to travel this route, the slow road, to connect to the larger roads. There are many cypress lined roads in Tuscany, the most well known near La Foce. As you can see from the photo below, my painting is NOT that one. However, even though I took some liberties and changed a few things with my version, I'm sure it will be familiar to those of you who have traveled in this area. As usual, the time of the season is autumn, one of my favorite times of the year, when the fields are in transition, recently plowed or sprouting the green winter grasses, the hay stacked in storage. We always traveled in the autumn, less tourists, fresh olive oil and la raccolta delle uve da vino, the grape harvest for wine making. Seems everytime I do one of these works, my mind takes a bit of a vacation, memories come flooding back. Oh, to return someday!

View Near La Foce © Barbara A. Freeman

Traveling the Slow Road © Barbara A. Freeman
Acrylic on Illustration Board, 3 3/4" x 2 3/4" Framed

Thursday, August 19, 2010

EAFA Exhibit at Columbia Winery

I went to the EAFA Member Exhibit last evening at the Columbia Crest Winery. My friend Janie Olsen , above, is standing in front of her two paintings, Too Beautiful For Her Mask and Crow to Crow. Cecelia Venolia, another artist friend also had two of her works in this exhibit, sorry I didn't get photos of Cecelia and her work. It was a very nice show and reception in such a lovely place. Eden Hopkins was at the reception, but like myself, not in the show. We both agreed that we needed to become members so we could participate in their member juried shows! I think Eden has already joined, so hopefully, we will all be in the next one together!

The other reason I have a photo of Janie is because she brought along with her the work that she commissioned from mosaic artist, Gina Ballew, (my daughter) to show me. Janie has a friend who is a retired teacher and every year she gives him a gift with an apple theme. She saw some of Gina's work and asked if she would do a mosaic for her for this years' gift. The work, Jazz Apple is the small 6" x 6" she is holding. Gina said that Jazz is the variety of apple that she used for the model. I think it's a perfect title for a perfect apple!

As to my new work, I am waiting to get some photo software on my computer so I can post my new miniature. Hopefully it will be soon. Thank you for taking the time to read about my work and hear about what I've been up to.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Late Bloomer - Miniature Acrylic Painting

Late Bloomer © Barbara A. Freeman
Acrylic on Illustration Board 2 5/8" x 3 5/8"

Wow, time sure flies! I really didn't fall off the edge, I've just been painting away trying to get my miniatures finished in time for the fast approaching deadlines. Then there were computer issues and life things getting in the way. So far I have two miniatures finished, and am working on my third. This first one is varnished and ready for matting and framing. I'm pleased with the way it turned out. I really had a time doing the strands of straw though! Also, orange was a challenging color to mix at first, finding the right combo of red and yellow that didn't look neon. I chose to stay with my favorite earth colors of transparent red iron oxide and yellow oxide. I started the piece by covering the surface of the illustration board with a layer of blue. I like it better than starting out with an all white surface. I'm still thinking about the title.

I'll try not to be so long before I post the next miniature painting, an Italian landscape. Thanks for taking the time to read about my work.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Group Show at Meyers Cafe at the Marina

A Meditation on the Pacific Northwest, © Barbara A. Freeman
Acrylic on Gessobord, 5 1/2" x 5 1/2"

I will be participating in a group show curated by Everett artist Shannon Leah Danks at Meyers Cafe, 1700 West Marine View Drive, at the Marina in Everett, WA, (425) 259-3875. It will be an eclectic mix of works from many local artists. The work I contributed is my Buddha painting, A Meditation on the Pacific Northwest. I'm not sure who all the other artists are that will be in this exhibit, but I do know that Janie Olsen and Eden Hopkins have both contributed work. When I asked Shannon what she needed, she said,
"the group show is very eclectic...whatever you want to display is what i want."
I thank Shannon for putting this together! All work is for sale so go have lunch or brunch at the beautiful marina and support your local artist! Oh, and if you go on Sunday, you can enjoy fresh veggies, flowers and more from the Farmers' Market, all taking place at the Marina!

As to other things... I know I've been absent for too long here. I have been busy trying to get new work done for the deadlines for the miniature shows I do every year, MPSGS in Washington, DC, MASF in Florida and a local invitational Holiday Show at Kaewyn Gallery. There will be other small shows and festivals that I will be submitting work to that are coming up as well. I will be posting all the shows that I will be in as they come up. I will be gone for a bit more than a week in September to make a much needed trip to visit family in IN. Then hopefully sometime in the beginning of the new year my husband and I, along with our daughter Gina, will be visiting family in FL. Both our parents have been dealing with illness so we want to make the trips to spend some time together. Also it will be great to see Gina again! We are in touch everyday via IM and Facebook, but it sure doesn't make up for real hugs! Until next time, thanks for taking the time to read about my work and sometimes other things.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Update - Finished - Forest with Dragonfly, Graphite on Dura-lar Matte WIP

I thought I had finished this work of the forest with dragonfly, (still untitled), but had mixed feelings about it after I photographed it and saw it on the monitor. The area that radiates from the dragonfly was to be of a greenish glow. Instead it was a bit too much on the yellow side, (see above).

The Vernal Arrival of the Green Darner © Barbara A. Freeman
Mixed Media on Film 7" x 7"

I decided to go back into it and lift some of that color off and add more green. It still doesn't look as green here, above, as it does in person. However, I am much happier with it now that I've changed it. A work always looks better after I get away from it and then look again with new eyes. It will be cropped a tiny bit after I mat the work which I think will make the composition stronger.

Close-up of dragonfly detail.

This work was done with graphite on Dura-lar Matte film. I used colored pencil on the back of the finished graphite work. The dragonfly's tiny wings were glazed with Golden interference oxide green (yellow shade). When I have it titled and framed, I'll post it again in it's completed form. Thank you for taking the time to read about my work in progress.