Thursday, May 30, 2013

Japanese Tea Garden Plein-Air

Pond Iris Flowers San Francisco
Recently, when painting in Japanese Tea Garden of Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, I had an interesting conversation with a few visitors. They wanted to know how long it can take to make the painting like that one above. I explained them the difference between sketching and painting in the studio. Difference, they asked?! Absolutely, there is a difference between painting in the open air (under a morning mist) vs painting in the comfortable studio :0)
Here is my painting of the Tea Garden that I completed back in 2008:
Realistic Landscape
SOLD

Here is all: a careful exploration of composition, great deal of details, many hours of painting, stepping away, coming back and painting again.

Yet I still like to challenge myself with a plein-air painting when you have to make immediate decision on composition, be fast with the brush strokes, not be bothered by landing bugs, and proceed no matter what the weather is like.

Luckily, the day I painted the fist sketch transformed into the nice one. I even was able to sit outside the Music Concourse (looks like Roman Amphitheater) next to the Academy of Science museum and finish one more sketch:
Roman Theater
And later on, while resting at the De Young Museum cafe, I caught my sister in the moment of drawing. She was so focused on the process that barely noticed me "snooping" at her:
Cafe Scene


More Plein-air paintings are HERE


In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul


Monday, May 27, 2013

Glass Rocks Roll To Sacramento

Elk Grove Art Gallery

One of my favorite paintings the Rose with the Glass Rocks was accepted into a juried Art Show  at Elk Grove Art Center in Sacramento area. 

The rose in this painting was a fresh cut from my garden. The morning dew was already gone, but I wanted to play with drop-like texture that day. I placed the rose on the window and dropped a few glass rocks next to it. Each rock reflected the world: the sky, the tree branches outside, one even showed the rose view distorted through the glass:

Realistic Still Life

I am so glad that my Rose with the Glass Rocks will be on display at such famous Art Center in the Capital of California :0)

June 1, 2013
5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
AWARDS PRESENTATION @ 7:00 p.m.
The show continues through June 27th
GALLERY LOCATION
9080 Elk Grove Blvd. in Old Town Elk Grove
Wed. – Sat. 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

............................................................................................
Original Painting Rose And Glass Rocks is 10"x14" on 100% Cotton Artist Watercolor 140lb Cold Pressed


In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Golden Gate Bridge and Fort Point - San Francisco Plein-Air Day

Fort Point California San Francisco

Last Saturday plain-air paint day started with a chilly breeze at Fort Point. But due to a cold weather there were not a spec of fog or mist in San Francisco; and, the Golden Gate Bridge was glowing in its full glory. 

Our CWA artists group was enjoying painting in such touristic area.

 Everyone created their masterpiece in a matter of hours:
Golden Gate Bridge paintings

Some artists were painting outside hiding behind Fort Point's old brick walls. My sister and I painted inside the car with open windows. Why not; I've learned this trick from reading biography of Georgia O'Keeffe who sometimes painted in her car going plein-air in the desert.

Golden Bridge View
Credits for beautiful photos to Maria Batkova

*************************
Original Painting Golden Gate Bridge is 16"x12" on 140lb Arches Cold Pressed paper
*************************
More Plein-Air Paintings are HERE


In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Painting With An Opposite Hand

Sun Light Painting

Are you right-handed? Have you tried to write with the left hand?
Or, maybe you are a left-hander, who thought about drawing with the right one?

Try it! It is fun!

Those thoughts came to me when a couple weeks ago I've pulled my working arm in the elbow area. The pain was almost unbearable. It is better now.

I have put my right arm to rest for a day and did everything (EVERYTHING!) with the left one. Not an easy task, I can tell you.

I took a brush, placed my paints and water on the left side and dove/dived in.

I thought why not: 

And here is my attempt: The roses in my backyard. 

I've used a brush to draw instead of the pencil, then started painting applying the strokes one-by-one. No washes, no precise lines. At the end I grabbed a sponge and dabbed the rocky wall texture in. Maybe that was a secret of Impressionists: they worked with opposite hands ;0) ???

Quite new experience! 
Try doing something with the opposite hand. 
It is a fun challenge
 :0)
......................................................................
Original Painting Roses is 12"x16" on Strathmore 140lb Cold Pressed (painted with the left hand)


In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Watercolor Cards - Demo at Coffee Break

Painting Floral Cards

Demo at Coffee Break started with bright Red on my brush. I, all of a sudden, wanted to begin not with Wet-On-Dry technique as planned, but with Wet-On-Really-Really-Wet.. 

I splashed some water in random places on the paper and made them red allowing the paint to flow down creating the stems of the flowers. My model was a recent loose painting of Red Puppies, which I created using the same technique:

Purple Lavender Yellow Flowers

After the first painting was done, I've made a few more cards with Wet-On-Dry technique "pulling" images from my memory. 
Still Life Painting
SOLD


Cards with Flowers
SOLD


I hope everyone enjoyed the day. 
But the most people having fun, I believe, were I and these young visitors 
:0)
Fun With Paint




In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Colors Of Russia Art Show and FREE Demo in San Francisco

Free Demo


Above is a little flyer about a new Art Show. My artist-friend Vera Lysenko and I decided to paint a series of painting depicting Russia. San Francisco has a big Russian community and these series of paintings will be enjoyed by a lot of people.

I've made 12 miniatures and divided them into three groups.

Fist group shows the city where I was born, the great Saint Petersburg:
Travel Series



The next group is showing Four Seasons. Yes, there are all four in Russia even though sometimes it feels like half year of Winter:
Russian Landscape


Last group of miniatures shows one of the famous cathedrals, 
The Church of Our Savior on the Spilled Blood. I used to live 5 min walk from this gorgeous historical monument:

Saint Petersburg Cathedral

This coming Saturday I'll be in San Francisco for the Art Show  reception and I'll give a demo on how to paint cute greeting cards using wet-on-dry technique and basic watercolors

4601 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, California
(2:00pm - 3:30pm)

Needless to say, that everyone who can come is welcome! 
:0)


In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul







Friday, May 3, 2013

White Oleander Painting

Watercolor art


Do you see white flowers? 
Aha, it is a White Oleander, the one that is growing down my street.

 This yet poisonous (see the story here ) but such beautiful bush amazes me each time when I take a walk in the neighborhood.   

And now I'll explain why I asked about white:

I painted these Oleander flowers without using any white color, and on a top of it there is not even a  spec of white paper left on the painting. Before I began to paint, I made a good "rainbow-ie" wash on the paper. Then I dried it nicely, reserved the space for the middle of the flowers and started playing with one wash after another on the flowers' surface.

Yet the real magic began when I worked on the background. The so-rather-not-white flowers all of a sudden became united and quiet white against the dark of the background colors.

I love that kind of magic!! 
:0)
.................................................................
Original painting White Oleander is 20"x16" on 300lb Arches professional watercolor paper




http://irinasztukowski.blogspot.com/2013/05/white-oleander-painting.html

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Oval Paintings?

Still Life Brace Vase
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting
French Roses painting

Last weekend I was talking to a potential customer who was specifically looking for an odd shape painting. I showed pretty much all my paintings, but they were all not odd, they were squared...

Then, I started putting some thoughts into the request and it occurred to me, that it is quite easy to make pretty much any shape with the square/rectangular painting as long as composition allows.

Then I started playing with the paintings images that I have and PhotoShop in order to create ovals. And I was surprised how pictures transformed. For me personally, they started looking a little rustic, antique, and charming.  

Here are just a few as an example.

Florals look lovely in the oval shapes, aren't they?
Tea Party
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting

Tea-time Roses painting

Realistic Still Life
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting


Yellow Flower
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting


Landscapes look almost like somebody is peeking through the binoculars: 
Boat Sky Birds
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting


Italy Pink Flowers
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting

Positano Italy painting

Water Rocks Trees
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting



Fruits and berries are just asking to "oval" them due to their natural roundness:
Bowl Towel Realistic Painting
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting


Realism in Watercolor
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting


Yellow Purple
Lemons painting

Portraits definitely remind some old style photography ( except that they are just in color):
Breeze Portrait
Rainbow Breeze painting

Smiling Children
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting

Peekaboo painting

Pink Hat with Flower
Sweet Dreams painting
(previous blog post about this painting is here)

Still Life paintings look sweet in the oval shapes too:
Old Masters School

Realistic Art
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting


Old School Art


Even mademoiselle Eiffel Tower got its rustic look peeking at us through the oval shape:

Vintage Style Painting
SOLD
 (prints are available) click on the name of the painting

Eiffel Tower painting


What an interesting transformation!!! 
:0)


In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul









Published Art

My watercolor painting Dancing Fire is published on the cover of the booklet of Oncology Symposium that takes place in Kolkata, India ...