Welcome to My Scene

"My Scene" is sharing a finished painting or my 3 step process to a finished painting using photographs or sketches. Asking, how can I make this scene or subject mine from refrences that hold my attention longer than 5 minutes. Some photographs are just....photographs not paintable interesting subjects. So let's began and hope you enjoy your painting experience........JoBeth

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Chop Shop

Demonstrations from teaching or exhibits can accumulate in my studio faster than the speed of sound.  The yellow brick road can sull quickly when answering questions and talking through a demo.  So....when the print rack becomes full...it is time to add finishing touches to complete the painting or....the chop shop.  A stack of paintings with a variety of subjects became a challenge....jumping from flowers, sidewalk cafes and city scape's....high key to dark keeps the creativity flowing .  I actually enjoy switching gears using a variety of mat sizes to create different images from the original.  Values or colors usually need tweaking because some shapes need to reconnect.  These are a few of the crops/finishes that made for a fun day.  Must confess some demos decorated the trash and others will be turned to the back side and used for studies.  Below are the 15x22 original paintings and the crops are 16x20 or 15x11... 1/4 sheet of watercolor paper. 
Although I liked the subject...the white awning cut the painting in half and detracted from the the action underneath.  This was on Arches rough 140# paper.
The 16x20 crop below was more appealing to me with a few adjustments....glazed the awning with a warm yellow ochre. 
Another half sheet on Arches 140# rough paper...colorful newspaper dispensers could take center stage on their own.  I chose to add a few figures and umbrella for interest.  The painting wasn't
trash worthy but a 16x20 mat cropped out areas that were not important. 
The focus on figures and newsstand's....the windows were darkened and colors were popped up to enhance the overall painting.
This was an oblong southwest blend on hot press paper this size occasionally
creates mat/framing/hanging issues so...decided to create
two 11x14 paintings.
                                Twenty demos had make overs today.....hair cuts, color or new style...another advantage of cropping...paintings are simplified with a new perspective from the original.....

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Fun Figures

Had a fun day...no pressure.....going through photographs chosing figures that appealed to me or provided a challenge started the ball rolling.  These are painted on Kilamengro paper, 11x15, a quarter sheet of watercolor paper.  The subject and figures were drawn with a brush...this gives me freedom to think related shapes and eliminate detail.  Hard and soft edges keeps the eye moving from one value to another.   Simplification of the story was major because the  figures are the most important.  I didn't realize how many selections there were to chose from until I started looking through all my stacks of photos.  Hope you enjoy stepping into the scenes as though you were there.....there is enough mystery for you to imagine your own story......keep painting..JoBeth

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Lamesa Figure Class

Glad to know someone reads my blog....this is Brenda Thompson's  painting of an entertainer friend.  The photo was taken at night with bright lights producing lost edges...she did a great job painting the values needed to express the singer....

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Lamesa Figure Class

Is anyone reading this like me.....take a camera or Ipad....and forget to take the photos of your journey.  Well this is the second time I have failed to use the resources available.  Those attending came to paint and at the end of the day produced some great figures.  If those taking the class would send a photo or photos, some did more than one, I will post them. 

I draw figures using the same techniques as other subjects. Starting with a proportional lose drawing with little detail is my approach to any subject including figures.  When I am satisfied with the placement of the figure and the proportions I began with light value washes of warm and cool colors....painting around the figure here and there but also using this wash over the figure.  Cutting across the figure anchors it to the background and splatters in the foreground are much more interesting than cuffed pants and shoes..  When the wash is dry the figure gets attention with color and any detail it needs to come alive.  Waiting for the colors to dry I began with background and foreground....letting the previous wash suggest the setting.  Dark dry brush marks finish the painting....lot of fun and for me a challenge...  

Saturday, October 13, 2012

All About Color

Estelle Howard was an inspiration to me last week in Lamesa.  She painted on watercolor canvas for the first time and her painting was exceptional....this is no surprise for those who know Estelle.  She is 93 and continues to paint in oil/watercolor and anything else that comes her way.  From her photograph of an open air art exhibit, she maintained fresh colors flowing into one another. When the canvas was dry a sketch of the subject was introduced with dark lines using a script brush.  As I previously mentioned my camera remained out of sight and unfortunately I can not share her painting and the paintings of those who participated.

We all have photographs or sketches books laying around without plans....stacks of organized photos waiting for me to go through...thinking 'not sure what I want to do with this'...I tend to put those in a stack of 'maybes'.  The photograph below came to mind instantly when Estelle began painting on her canvas..

 As I drove home that day....the image of my photo was rehearsed a million times.  As the tires screeched into my drive and a quick hello to my husband, I was in the studio looking for the photo.  The painting below is all about color....green trees became festive fall yellows and reds. The buildings at the left of the photo where boring and unimportant so more tree color and shapes gave a nice backdrop to the tents.  The painting is  16x20 on Yes watercolor canvas with a warm dominance.  Colors of cool and warm mingle to make their own neutrals.  After it was dry a rigger brush loaded with a dark value is used to sketch my subject.....thoroughly enjoyed this paint time....simplified without the fuss....


Lamesa Class

Everyone was ready for line painting in Lamesa...unfortunately I forgot to remove my camera from my bag, DUH!! thus don't have photos of the finished paintings that were critiqued at the end of the class...Everyone did exceptional work from their sketches and drawings.  Below are two quarter sheets of my demonstrations which paled in comparison with the quality of work  produced.  My hats off  to the eight of you who took the challenge.....

Color passages of warm and cool mixing together dominate the painting.  A flat bush doubled loaded with a cool and warm indicate figures under the tent.  When this wash of clean colors is dry a rigger brush with a dark value is used to redefine the original sketch.....done!!

Coleman, TX

What a fun time judging Coleman's Fine Arts League membership show.  Artist residing in small or large communities  have the same goals....enjoying every stolen moment to create as if it were a first time experience.  Bill Shields, the Leagues President, drove me to their newest venture or venue, a combination of old and new. The First Presbyterian Church now houses the Coleman Museum and the Leagues Art Gallery.  Members of the League have  a great facility to conduct workshops/exhibits and a great meeting place.   Hard work and elbow grease showed the minute I walked in the gallery.  If you go to or through Coleman make sure you stop to see the beautiful art and browse the Heritage Hall Coleman Museum....thank all of you for making me feel at home and sharing your talents.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Big Spring, Texas

Thank you Big Spring Art Association for inviting me to share my passion.  Special thanks for Jean Money and her efficient organizational skills keeping me on track.  Also thanks to  Lane Bond for making me feel at home.  The evening was perfect visiting with old friends and meeting new artist with like minds.  The below image is the demonstration painted for the association.  It is an interior low key painting taken in an ice cream shop or parlor if you happen to be my age. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Pampa Workshop...

Had a wonderful workshop last week with some very talented ladies in Pampa, TX.  We zoomed in on value key paintings.,,,high, middle, and low key.  Trying something new is always a challenge but they stepped up to the plate.....or palette.....and plunged right in.  Unfortunately I didn't get shots of everyone.....below are some who wet a brush....Keep painting, ladies.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

First Friday September 7, 2012

Well...I have been really busy and my blog has been neglected.  First a great 3 day workshop in Lubbock and preparing for a 3 day workshop in Pampa, TX....September 11,12,&13.  Also, painting some new things for First Friday oh! throw in those never ending jobs laundry/cooking/cleaning.  Whew! just makes me tired writing everything down think I need a nap.  Hope you enjoy the video and if you are in town come by and visit any Friday...

Monday, July 30, 2012

Copy or Plagiarism......fine line

Recently reading a publication online, one article caught my eye.  The winners of a recent competition were posted....1st place winner was one of those 'really' moments.  My first thought, was a question, is that my painting?  A closer look revealed  an identical copy from my web site with an unfamiliar signature.  Surprise! Surprise! Surprise! as Gomer would say...those of you to young to know who Gomer was....check out Mayberry, U.S.A.  Some of you reading this can relate... a deer in the headlights moment.  It's a flash back to the reference photo and the last brush stroke that  finished the painting.  The time of completion is mentally documented with your signature. The time is a prerequisite for painters because the most frequent ask questions from the viewing public 'how long did it take you to paint that?'   Composing an acceptable piece of work doesn't always come easy for most of us. Drawing, adjusting shapes, choosing colors, right technique are just a few major decisions in producing a work you would be proud to show your worst critic.  Unfortunately, this is not my first rodeo or experience with this issue.  How about recognizing your work on a wall knowing you didn't enter this show, because you'er the judge. I was tempted at this particular event to give myself,  Best of Show. Browsing through a gallery was another headlight experience.  A class work copy framed hanging with a familiar signature priced to sell.  Thoughts go through my head ....contact the artist for a  commission ' I want one just like this one in a different color...like red to match my sofa.'  Funny isn't it how our labored efforts jump off those walls...kind of like recognizing your kid on the playground.    Or another time as a judge,  awarding ribbons and prize money to find out latter the winner or winners paintings were not original.  Whoops!!!  Are those choices to copy made from ignorance, lack of ability or just plain lazy???  There isn't enough time or resources to keep check of every piece of art work out in cyberspace but integrity and accountability of the artist is monumental.
In defense of copy work, picking up a brush for the first time can be overwhelming. Do I have the right paint, paper, am I the only beginner in this class and what is a scraper...do I have one?  Just choosing the right brush for some can be a month long endeavor.  I'm not opposed for beginners to copy work if the intention is learning techniques, color, value or finding their style.  But hey! Keep those copies under the bed with those dogs we all accumulate because they come from the sweat of  someone else.  Let's put this scenario in the literary field....copy your favorite book word for word, change the names and location add a few scribbles of your own.....sign your name and send it to a publisher.  I am certain it would not make it to the best sellers list. Changing a few colors or lines doesn't make it your painting......

When painters pass from beginner to the next level....it is time to draw from their own imagination/sketches/photographs whatever references you choose for composition.  If composition is difficult,  study others works, books, search for workshops or classes that focus on composition.  Save yourself the embarrassment of plagiarism when confronted by the original artist, judge, organization or gallery. Bottom line....if you have painted long enough to know what a scrapper is and what it's used for it's time you produce from your own material.
Happy Painting....

Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring two pence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed.   C.S. Lewis

Thursday, July 26, 2012

3 Day Workshop

A 3 day watercolor workshop, August 28, 29, & 30 from 9 to 4......Tuesday through Thursday.  Painting on paper or watercolor canvas it's you choice.  I will be demonstrating on both surfaces.  The workshop is $150 or receive a 10% discount if you pay before August 15.  Contact me for more information and a supply list is available upon request call  806 799 4474 or email jobeth930@yahoo.com

Monday, July 2, 2012

A Week in Cloudcroft

Another fun workshop with great artist...the week is almost to short....just as I get to know everyone it is time to pack and leave.  I could write a book 'Learning from Students".....they are always an inspiration and at times a challenge.  Below are a few photos that were captured during the week....

"Where's the Party"
Hard work deserves a relaxing meal on the deck........

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Artist Touch

'Hats Off'' was selected for the new Artist Touch publication...this painting is 22x30 and the photo reference was an outdoor market covered with Guatemalan goods.  All of the colorful belts, bags, shirts, hats and scarves where like a rainbow of hues and shapes...

Saturday, May 26, 2012


Coming to your favorite online catalogue soon!!!!
Practice stokes of color and shapes....

Visualize Don’t Copy

Photographs dictate color, values and the unnecessary fluff for those who depend on them for composition.  Local colors are safe choices for most painters, values are perdicitable, and at times to much information.  Stepping out of that familiar comfort zone.....green trees, red barn, blue sky is not life threatening.  Putting all those pieces together for the sake of composition takes time and several sketches to achieve the goal.  Painting what is there doesn't stretch the mind nor take much creativity.  No one has escaped that phrase from a novice 'it doesn't look like that in the photograph'.  My reply....'it did where I was standing'.  In my years of painting and instructing, the lack of understanding good composition is missing.  Photographs are reference...spur of the moment excitement.  I have seen or taken few photographs that are sound painting compositions.  Shapes, color, value, and sometime format needs a refreshing perspective to produce 'a one more look' when framed.  If ask to give a book review, would you rewrite the book....think of using those photographs in the same light....they are only references.   Learn to paint ‘what could be not what is’.  What is....is done...what could be is your interpretation of a familiar subject.  Speaking of the familar....we don't take the time to review any seen changes that may have taken place.....so, the familiar is repeated over and over....

Quote from C.S. Lewis
Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring two pence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed.   C.S. Lewis

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Suggested Books for Watercolor Painters

I have been painting watercolor for 20 + years and still learn from reading and viewing other artist creative works.  Although techniques are basic, each artist has their own approach for application.   The  goal of each brush stroke is to produce a masterpiece.  Refreshing the basics gives me a new perspective, one of those 'Oh! yeow' moments.  I have listed a few books that I recommend for that moment if you are a veteran painter or a beginner.

Zolton Szabo's 70 Favorite Watercolor Techniques
A good book on techniques, composition, and color.   The use of bristle slanted burshs for washes.  There are demonstrations on simplification of photographs for traditional or an idealized design.  Great for beginners or seasoned painters...

Daring Color
Rich, rich color with a direct approach in painting.  Mixing colors for just the perfect neutral gray needed to enhance hues. Several demonstrations with additional tips on painting, color, supplies and composition from photographs.

Daring Color

Charles Reid Watercolor Solutions

Drips, runs, splatters of color with lost and found edges describes figures and landscapes published in this book.  Problem solving solutions that every painter has encountered at least once.  Charles is a master at contour drawing..
Charles Reid's Watercolor Solutions

Painting Outside the Lines
Negative shapes are difficult for the beginner.  This book includes exercises for painting and understanding the negative shapes for every painting.  Using under paintings to start the process of finding a composition expands the creative mind.
Watercolor Painting Outside The Lines

The Watercolorist's Answer Book
From the basics to tips, techniques and painting demonstrations from several artist.  Creating  interesting compositions with line, shape and textures from photographs or value sketches.
Watercolorist's Answer Book

Luminous Watercolor - Spring Landscape
Sterling Edwards DVD
Mixing and painting landscape greens in a 4 step process seems to be a challenge to most but Sterling's instruction is easy to follow.  Sterling's explanation of the reference photo is most helpful for future paintings.


Friday, March 16, 2012

Painting in Pampa

Had a great time with Pampa artist.....lot of fun...with eager painters. 
Learning a few new techniques is always a challenge but they all
weathered the storm with confidence...
Good job Pampa.....

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Upside Down in Lamesa

Yes...you read correctly....today in Lamesa drawings were critiqued then turned upside down for the first washes of color....after the paintings were dry...upside down again to add shadows and adjust the values.  Final darks and calligraphy marks finished the paintings....great job ladies.  This exercise helps to loosen a painting with lost and found edges with little regard for the drawing....below are some of the finished works... 

Monday, February 27, 2012

Friday, February 17, 2012

Yogi Anyone

Recently an email from a friend sent memories flooding across my minds ticker tape with images of my first Yogi class, much like an 'I Love Lucy' episode.  It began friendly and informative but quickly turned ugly, when the instructor plugged in the music.  Those women were serious..no one spoke, the only sound heard, was mine. I  pretended to know what I was doing chocking back tears of embarrassment and pain.  Sure didn't want anyone to think this was my first rodeo. I began trying to imitate the group, which seemed like a crowd, 8 women's bodies preforming those contours and convex positions like well made clocks.  From the corner of my eye without pointing or gasping, the instructor had folded her body into a small envelope...well...my body instantly went rigid speaking to me rather loudly..no way. That class lasted about an hour which was about fifty minutes to long for me. I could have left after the introductions. It is rather difficult to smile when you are in such pain.  Someone handed me the schedule for the next class and I was afraid it would go up in smoke, all I could do was nod....and that wasn't easy.  Holding back the tears...my mind was saying 'you got to be kidding', along with 'this is the last time you will this face'.  I struggled to get the schedule in my pocket and walk to my car....you know that feeling when you accidentally fall and you want everyone within 3 blocks to know you are okay....the pain. Well those cute tights are still in my closet as a reminder....to the pain my body experienced that first class of Yogi.

Palette Club..Midland Workshop

What fun I had in Midland with 14 great painters...didn't get enough photos.  I need to tie the camera around my neck...for those candid shots..thanks ladies for a great week..The Palette Club is a group of active artist painting in diverse mediums.  The Clubs programs each month give the members variety of mediums to expand their painting skills or explore another medium. Thanks to the Palette Club memebers.

Same drawing but four different painting expressions.....aren't these great?  All of the paintings where on the floor to dry and before I could get a shot some were picked up and framed....great job ladies....