“Daffodils on Hot Magenta” ©Jill Rosoff 2012  12″ x 9″

This painting was hanging around for a good part of the spring and summer unfinished.  It actually was hiding from me at home because I had it in my supplies basket that I take with me to my watercolor workshops.  I had used it, mid-stream, as an example to my students about contrast.  

Imagine it with no background.  A field of yellow color on a white background just isn’t very contrast-y.   So it’s a delicate balance bringing the yellow up enough to work on that white background.  For comparison, look at my blog post from April 30, 2009.   However, a composition that is built up over the whole piece of paper, instead of focusing on one part of an image, comes together more readily, more often than not.  Usually when one of my students brings a painting to me with the problem that a certain area isn’t working, it’s because they are fussing with that area, and the rest of the pice of paper has, for all intents and purposes, been left alone.  When they start to focus on the rest of the painting, the problem either resolves, or changes.  

So this painting is not only of daffodils, its about the yellow subject on the magenta patterned background.  They are two colors that I’ve enjoyed contrasting to one another in the past few years.   Its also fun to use a warm and cool version of a color to bring some contrast between them.   

A red background is fun to do, and not often done in a still life.   There was this story about a painting Matisse did for a Russian client, that I read about somewhere.  The painting was one of his depictions of a room, with a woman sitting in a chair, and the background was a wonderful blue patterned oriental rug.  The client took it home with him to Russia, very pleased with his purchase.  Then awhile later he got a message from Matisse who said there was something about the painting that bothered him, that he wanted to change, just something to make it work better, that would more complete it.  The client sent the painting back, Matisse did the work on it he wanted, and returned it to the client.  And when the client opened up the packing crate, Matisse had changed the rug color, and so the whole background color, from blue to red.  Sometimes its the little things.

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.

“Three Poppy Pods” ©Jill Rosoff 2011

This painting came about during a demonstration I did in one of my workshops.  I have a bouquet of dried poppy pods that I got when the pods were still green, from my sister Jenny’s garden, where they grow each spring  I take the bouquet to my Watercolor Workshops now and then if someone needs a subject to paint.  This demonstration was about getting the shape of an object onto the paper without overworking it.  And then about using paints that have a sedimentary quality to them for the shadows, how the texture of the sediment brings a whole new quality to the painting.  

At the end of the workshop I had the three pods on the paper, nothing in the background.  So I brought them back to the studio, and layered in the background, one layer of magenta, another of more sedimentary colors, primarily terre verte, with a little cobalt green and some turquoise in for flavor.  It was just a little dull with just those two layers, so I added one more thin layer of magenta with a little quinacidrone pink thrown in.  And voila.  

So, the question I have now is whether to leave it like this, or add my fan/wave pattern to the background?  Don’t know.  Hmmm.  What do you think?

Four of my paintings, on the wall as you enter Glimpse Living in San Diego

Glimpse Living, a wonderful home design store in the North Park neighborhood of San Diego, is having it’s Grand Re-Opening this Saturday, March 19th, from 5 – 10 pm.  This entry wall happily features four of my watercolors on a luscious raspberry-pink wall, there are more in the store as well.

If you’re interested in coming:  http://www.glimpseliving.com/


More Tiptoeing

February 22, 2011

“Single Pink Tulip”  ©Jill Rosoff 2011, 4″ x 6″, $40.00

Once again tulips are in season.  Happy sigh.  I’ve been reorganizing my paintings, working out a show I’m planning to do, and some of them really show well in groupings.  I posted a painting of single purple tulip here in March 2009, it was only the one, and I really like it, and so I’m making more.  And I just learned that tulips originally come from Turkey, not Holland, not the far east.  Who’d’ve thunk?   Thank goodness for Trader Joe’s, once again!  Next one will be red, I think.

There was also one of a single daffodil, posted in April of 2009.  Hmmmm….

Who is it?

February 20, 2011

Ok, I’m just plain curious.  One of the paintings on this blog gets a LOT of visits.  Its the “Freesia” that I posted on July 31, 2008, the second piece  I put on the blog, ever.    I’d love to know: who are you all?  Would you let me know please?  You can use the comment button below (the comments remain private unless I publish them).  I’d appreciate it!  Thanks!

Here’s the page link:  https://jillpaints.wordpress.com/2008/07/31/freesia-buds/

Daffodil with bud

January 28, 2011

“Daffodil with Bud on indigo” ©Jill Rosoff 2010, $65.00

I do like these long stems that daffodils, and all in the narcissus family have, and this long, narrow paper size so wonderfully shows them off.  This is a quieter color combination than I normally use, but I love the indigo, its not quite grey, and not quite midnight blue.  Its got a wonderful atmospheric quality to it.

By the way, I opened up a shop on Etsy this week.  I am starting primarily to sell my notecards, and will also be adding some of these small works there as well.  Please go take a look and let me know what you think!


Paperwhite Narcissus

November 21, 2010

“Paperwhite Narcissus” ©Jill Rosoff 2010, 17 1/2″ x 6″, $145.00

Its that time of year.  These flowers, paperwhite narcissue, are from the same family as daffodils are.   They are just plain wonderful, white and lovely. Too bad you can’t add the scent to a blog.

This long, narrow piece of paper lends itself so nicely to their long, willowy stems crowned by the papery blooms.  I have painted narcissus before, I will paint them again.

Daffodils, ©Jill Rosoff 2009, 6" x 12", unframed, $85.00

Daffodils, ©Jill Rosoff 2009, 6" x 12", unframed, $100.00

Spring is all about new growth, bright fresh colors, a portentous feeling in the air, and delicate wonderful flowers.  It all sings, especially the colors, which are so often what’s in my palette. The blooms from bulbs that only come out this time of year is a fleeting joy, especially since they’re close to impossible to grow in Southern California, and I enjoyed my bulbs in my garden when I lived in the Bay Area.  So here is a last gasp of spring in pretty much a Provençal palette.

Summer is around the corner.

Daffodils galore

May 11, 2009

Daffodil buds on lavendar-lores“Daffodils buds on lavender”  © Jill Rosoff 2009, 5 1/2″ x 8 1/2 “, $75.00

I like it when the season come around each year, and we get to enjoy the natural flowering of everyone’s gardens.  My Cecile Bruner roses are in full bud, and their little pale pink blossoms will open soon and their magnificent, intense fragrance will burst in my nose.  My the neighbor’s jacarandas fill the view out my back windows  with that incredible rich blue/purple color.

This small work is another tribute to Trader Joe’s and their spring fling with daffodils, with their delicately ribbed petals and wonderful crowns.  This little painting features a pale version of the color of the jacaranda, a perfect compliment to the daffodils, in the background.

I’m showing this coming weekend at the Balboa Island Artwalk again this year!  It’s on May 17th, along the bayfront walk of Balboa Island.  You can find me between Apolena and Coral Streets, just down from Marine Avenue.   http://www.balboaislandartwalk.info  for parking and location.     See you there!


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