January 27, 2013
“Three-plus Poppies”, ©Jill Rosoff 2013, 4″ x 6″
I have these small pads of watercolor paper that I keep around for quick “jots” of ideas like this one. In watercolors, any whites in a painting are the paper left untouched, since watercolor is a transparent medium, and the transparent version of white is, well, nothing. Transparent. It’s a fun conundrum to play around with.
In this piece, I wanted to leave no blank paper, no white areas, but instead to paint the whole piece of paper, and to let the shapes of the flowers do most of the talking. Getting the colors this rich and intense is a fun challenge in watercolors. And there’s still good contrast between the brightness of the yellow centers, and the dark lines where the green paint overlapped the red. Unintended, and perfect.
One other thing: I love rich, vibrant and maintaining a sense of the transparency in the paint. In watercolors it is possible to use too much paint, which when it dries, looks dry, dusty and opaque, qualities that you just don’t strive for in watercolors. I like striving for the saturation and the transparency, especially since they are paradoxical. Fun!
It’s now available on Esty here.
January 11, 2013
I started this piece in the fall, as a demonstration piece once again in one of my workshops. This piece actually started me on the intention of loosening up on color ‘rules’ I have consciously and unconsciously obeyed. Since I often use a subject I know when I’m playing around with ideas, and I have been painting Iceland poppies forever, so shape, color and composition are like second nature to me, I find it really easy to go for changes and experimentation with them as my subject.
There is no such thing as a lavender Iceland poppy. Yellow, orange, reds, pink, and white yes, but nothing in the blue spectrum. And I’ve always wanted them. So ‘tada!’ I made them. In the grand scheme of things its really not much of a huge plunge, but then again, baby steps are just fine to start out on new paths. I also broke another covenant I heard early on in my painting education, that paintings with red backgrounds can be difficult to make work, let alone sell. Thank goodness Henri Matisse didn’t believe that! There are essentially four different reds used in the background, but with layers and some mixing, it looks like more. I am really enjoying how this piece turned out. You?
This piece is now available through my Etsy shop.
October 22, 2012
continued from Part 2, posted October 17
While I was having such a grand time watching the painters as they were in the process of developing their painting, I was also looking around the painting studio. You start noticing interesting things, given the time to sit and take the environment in: the air ducts, the odd shape of the room, where the windows are, the flourescent lights, and how those two sources of light inform the visuals. And some wonderfully mismatched socks.
I took my first break after posing for about an hour. I wanted to hold the pose for a long time, but was also really looking forward to seeing their paintings in progress. After the placement of my limbs were marked so I’d be in the right position when I resumed the pose, I unfolded my tucked-in leg, stood up and stretched. Then I walked around, talked to each painter, heard about what they did, both for a living and with their art, which sometimes dovetailed. It turned out two of them are art teachers in the community college district. And they allowed me to photograph their works too. The versions I’m showing here were taken toward the end of the session, when the pieces were fairly well developed.
So here are the works of the five artists, at least where they got them to at the end of the session. After three hours, it’s a pretty fun collection. Its an experience to see oneself painted or drawn in so many ways. Each person’s individual view is so distinct, their palettes are so unique. I hadn’t realized that I’d hand-painted silk scarves of pink and orange poppies for the sitting.
Such a diverse result! I especially loved how some incorporated my paintings that were hanging on the wall behind me, melding them into their compositions, or in my scarf, picking up the colors from me to the surroundings, five very distinct renditions. I got very nostalgic for painting in a group, it was some of the most fun part of painting in school, seeing everyone’s version of the model and pose. My great thanks to all the artists for having me come and pose, and for letting me show their works.
May 14, 2012
“Red Tulips”, ©Jill Rosoff 2012, 15″ x 11″
I’ve had bouquets of daffodils, tulips and sweet peas in the house a lot lately. Its spring! and they’re really affordable now at Trader Joe’s. And REALLY affordable from my sister’s garden–she has a wonderful huge crop of sweet peas along the fence in her yard. The flowers have been my live ‘models’ for both for my paintings and my scarves, and I take them to my workshops for my students to use as subject matter for their paintings. I’ve while I’ve got a couple of paintings of daffodils nearing completion, but here’s my most recent watercolor of red tulips. I love these pieces, just the red of the flowers, on the white background, punctuated by the black stamens in the centers of the blossoms.
Tulips were some of my ‘teachers’ in watercolors. On a trip in Europe toward the end of college, I bought some bulbs in Amsterdam which were sent to me when it was time to plant them. In the spring, voila, I had some lovely tulips in my garden, and sat outside trying to get them down in watercolor. I was painting exclusively with oils at the time, and watercolors are nothing like oils to paint with. So I practiced with the watercolors, trying to figure out how to use them, as often as I could as long as those tulips were blooming in my garden, just about 2 weeks. I tried to get those watercolor paints to behave. Ultimately I learned to surrender to them, which is usually the case, isn’t it? So this painting is my most recent visit to an old friend and teacher.
The other fun things? I’m getting ready to show this coming Sunday, May 20th at the 18th Annual Balboa Island Art Walk. I really enjoy this show, partly because its on the bayfront of Newport Harbor, which is beautiful, but also because at this show is along a walkway thats about 8′ wide, so our displays are flat along the walkway. You can walk right up to the artwork, there’s no intimidation factor of having to enter into a 10′ tent. Click here for more information about the Artwalk. I’ll be between Coral and Apolena streets, just look for my apple-green umbrellas!
And I’ve got all sorts of new scarves! I’ll have them at the Artwalk, and they are also available through my new Etsy Shop, “Blooming Silks”. Please visit soon!
April 26, 2012
My scarf line has its own new name!
These are three of the new scarves I’ve been painting, of butterflies and dragonflies, for the upcoming Spring Faire and Butterfly House Opening at the Environmental Nature Center in Newport Beach, CA. On Saturday, May 5th, come celebrate the annual opening of their Butterfly House and see the butterflies that have come out of hibernation and/or a chrysalis! Lots of great art, and lots of great things for the kids, too.
May 5, 2012, 1o am to 3 pm.
1601 16th St. * Newport Beach, CA 92660
Look for more scarves soon too on my new Etsy shop: BloomingSilks on Etsy
April 11, 2012
I’m showing my scarves at an event at the Environmental Nature Center in Newport Beach next month, its their Spring Faire celebrating the annual opening of their Butterfly House. Of course the scarves that feature flower designs are wonderfully Spring-y, just right for the show. Then I started thinking about making some scarves to celebrate the reason for the event, and started trying out some designs. These are shots of some of these new pieces as they’re drying.
Pink butterflies, silk scarf design, ©Jill Rosoff 2012
Now, I like butterflies as much as anyone. I really have a proclivity to dragonflies and damselflies, those lovely double winged, long-bodied, brightly-colored mosquito eaters, which were always around in the spring and summer, flying around our pool while we swam the days away. Even my doorbell plate is an Arts and Crafts-style dragonfly design.
Dragonflies in orange, purple and red, silk scarf design ©Jill Rosoff 2012
And here’s some orange butterfies too (taken with a flash, so these look yellower than they really are).
Orange butterflies silk scarf design, ©Jill Rosoff 2012
So if you’re near Newport Beach, CA on May 5th, come on by the Environmental Nature Center from 10 am to 3 pm and try on my scarves, along with all the other artisans work that will be showing that day, and visit the butterflies too!
The ENC is located at 1601 • 16th St. in Newport Beach, just off Dover Dr., next to the sports fields of Newport Harbor High School.
March 26, 2012
“Cherry Blossoms”, ©Jill Rosoff 2012, 9″ x 11 1/2″
Years ago I got the chance to go to Washington D.C. in the spring. My main reason for going was to see a retrospective of Winslow Homer paintings, as I recall. After immersing myself in Homer’s work, I also went to see shows at the National Gallery of Art (the newer I. M. Pei designed wing), the Corcoran, and the Phillips Collection, all on my list of favorite places in D.C.
Coincidentally it was also a couple of weeks before the cherry blossom trees went into their annual bloom around the Tidal Basin. So of course I went, and saw it just at the beginning of the bloom. And although I was early, and didn’t see the full explosion of flowering, it was pretty fun, especially because the branches could still be seen, they weren’t hidden for all the cherry blossoms. And they make a nice leggy counterpoint to all that pink. I’d all but forgotten about it, in the midst of other things I’ve been concentrating on. Spring is a flower-palooza for me, I’m overwhelmed with ideas for paintings this time of year with all the spring flowers blooming. (There’s three other paintings in production on my painting table.)
A few months ago I got an inquiry as to whether I’d ever done cherry blossoms in watercolors. Up to that moment, I’d never done one at all. I have to say I’d rarely thought about doing a painting of them, partly because there aren’t a whole lot of fruit trees, let alone cherry trees, in bloom nearby. But that phone call got me going, thinking about what a painting of them would be, and remembering seeing them in D.C. So here you go, my first attempt at cherry blossoms, ever.
March 2, 2012
Pink poppies on habotai, Flower Fields on crepe de chine, Yellow Poppies on chiffon, Large Orange poppies on habotai, and Blue Poppies on crepe square.
Here’s a selection of the new scarves I’ve been making. The theme is poppies, and I’m playing around with the sizes of the blossom and also the colors. I also have them in red, tangerine, lavender, purple, and combinations of red and orange, yellow and orange, and red and pink. So far, that is. I’m painting these on three different silk fabrics: habotai, crepe de chine, and chiffon. The oblong scarves come in three sizes, and I have 44″ square scarves too. The procion dyes are set so that they bond with the silk fibers, so the color is permanent. If you see a color you like but want a different size or material than what is currently available, contact me to order the scarf you want.
I’ll be showing them this weekend and next at the Art in the Park section of the 41st annual Festival of the Whales, in Dana Point, California. Dates are March 3, 4, 10 and 11, from 9:30 am to 5 pm. Art in the Park will be on the grass areas at the corner of Dana Point Harbor Drive and Island Drive. A shuttle bus that will be running, and Art in the Park is at stop #E12 on the attached map. I’ll have my notecards, reproductions and small, matted watercolors with me too! We’ll be having a whale of a time!
Can’t make it this weekend or next? You can order the scarves through my shop on Etsy: Rosoff Artworks. And of course if you have questions, use the comment button below (all inquiries remain private), or convo me from my Etsy shop.
February 23, 2012
I’ve been doing a lot of marketing work lately, one result of which is that I haven’t been painting much lately. And I miss it! But I’ve had a lot to do both in the marketing and in my art projects.
One project is my hand-painted silk scarves. I paint them with permanent dye, right on to the silk fabric. I’ve been in production, developing the designs, and getting ready to show them at a few shows in the upcoming months. My next show is the Festival of the Whales in Dana Point, CA, at the Art in the Park section of the Festival. For the first 2 weekends of March each year, Dana Point celebrates the return of the once-endangered California Gray Whale with “a leviathan-size event”. I spent my teen years near here, I learned to sail sabots in Dana Point Harbor, so it’s a bit of home turf for me.
Back to the scarves. The photo above is from my production day yesterday. The scarves are pinned onto canvas on the painting table, where I then paint them with the dyes. You can see the vestiges of previous dyeing under the scarves. These are just 2 of the new crop of poppy scarves, all of which signed and numbered, and which I will be showing at the Festival of the Whales. Come see what they look like on! My booth will be at Art in the Park at the Festival, located at the intersection of Dana Point Harbor Drive and Island Drive. It’s at stop E12 on the shuttle route, which you will find on this map. Look for my apple-green market umbrellas.
If you aren’t anywhere near Dana Point and are unable come to the Festival, the scarves are currently available in my Etsy store, where I’ll be posting the new ones as soon as they’re completed and photographed. And for those in and around north Orange County, they are now also at the Muckenthaler Cultural Center‘s gift shop, in Fullerton, CA.
February 15, 2012
“Field of Poppies”, ©Jill Rosoff 2010
“Swing by the ENC’s gift shop, Natures Gifts, for unique, environmentally friendly gifts. Orange County watercolorist Jill Rosoff is well known for her sumptuous paintings of nature. They will be on display and available for sale in Nature’s Gifts through February 29th.”
1601 16th St.
Newport Beach, CA 92663
Hours: 8 am to 5 pm, M-F, 9 am to 5 pm Saturday