Weekend Watercolor Workshop

This past weekend I took a super fun workshop at Glen Echo and learned my basics in watercolor. I haven’t taken a class in it since a short workshop about 8 years ago at the community college my Mom taught at. So we started with veggies and fruits, and moved on to any outdoor scene we wanted to paint. I enjoyed painting the peppers the most I think, it’s amazing how many colors you see when you’re really looking.

This class made me take a step back and really consider my color more before applying them, since watercolors are not the most forgiving. I painted all weekend just using the three primary colors and mixed every other color myself. 

Posted in the order I painted them in:

Yellow pepper- first painting of the day.
Yellow pepper- first painting of the day.
An abnormal nectarine
An abnormal nectarine
First fuller painting of the day. Nectarine and bottle still life.
First fuller painting of the day. Nectarine and bottle still life.


Plein air painting at Glen Echo. Painted all day Sunday.
Plein air painting at Glen Echo. Painted all day Sunday.
painting and scenery at Glen Echo
My plein air studio

NYC Subway Original Graphic Standards Manual

NYC Subway Original Graphic Standards Manual

There’s a recent Gizmodo article that talks about an original NYC Subway graphic standards manual found in the basement of Pentagram. It’s awesome that the general public is interested in this (which the article notes), not just the design community. It’s all up online so we can see every page. It makes many other manuals I’ve seen look insufficient, that’s for sure. Pretty neat that the print design world is still so impressive to everyone. Check it out!

Hello spring! You’re finally here…

sunflower drawing
We’ve missed you warm weather… Went outside and played with oil pastels which are possibly as old as I am, or close to it. I received this card recently and immediately knew I had to play with painting it. Before I get the time though, oil pastels will do.

Amsterdam’s Identity Update

This is a great article about the city of Amsterdam’s updated identity and the kind of thinking that goes into it. Of course the public was outraged at first that the city would spend money on rebranding at all. The designers wrote some blog posts communicating more about the redesign, the purpose, and kind of money it is actually saving the city in the long run; and so the criticism has subdued mostly. This identity update was a pretty big undertaking shown in the results and the criticism they would have had to expected.
Read the article in Creative Review!

Here is a fun quick video- party of the identity update:

Rapid Notation Painting Class

From the second class
From the second class

I took a two night workshop on rapid notation in paint. Somehow I decided that painting 12-15 paintings in oil in one night was a good idea. My kitchen table was out of commission for a week after each class (luckily they were a week apart). It was a great experience- we painted each composition for anywhere from 1 to 15 minutes.

Warmed up with just drawing to music with our eyes closed. Then did contour charcoal drawings, blind and not blind. And then we jumped into painting. It was super challenging but the different rules and timing for each painting really forced you to focus on just trying to communicate some sort of depth/composition visually with little detail. I learned a lot more about the way to start a painting, which I’m excited to try out in my next one.

Here are a few of the painting I like best:


Happy New Year! (almost a month ago)

New Year’s resolution? Post more. Get portfolio together- the usual. Though I did post more last year, I am hoping to have a regular schedule this year. Already I’ve made good on my goal to paint more! I attended a two night workshop in rapid notation painting which was awesome and taught me a lot. I’ll post soon with the masterpieces made in 2-15 minutes each. (ha! right.) It was a really challenging but awesome workshop. 

Soon to come- travel photos as well… then hopefully some paintings of them too!

For now, some amazing visual work- haven’t seen anything like this I don’t think:

Rashad Alakbarov Paints with Shadows and Light