Some Inspirations This Week

February 12, 2016

Earlier this week I got to see “Red”, the Tony-award winning play about one of my favorite painters, Mark Rothko.  In the first act there’s a terrific back-and-forth between Rothko and the young artist he’s hired to be his studio assistant, of different things colored red.  Its a verbal panoply of all things red, and in my mind’s eye as I visualized each thing they mentioned:  tomatoes, blood, lips, cherries, apple, red pepper, rose, red hair, beets, lobsters (cooked), sunsets, strawberries, pomegranates, poppies, I saw all those different versions of red:  cadmium red, alizarin, vermilion, scarlet, carmine, crimson, garnet and more.  All so different, and all so red.  I use them a lot.  Its a fun exercise, and illustrates so well the differences between warm reds and cool reds to boot.  In my workshop 2 nights later we started doing a similar thing, so they could all start envisioning different variations of just the one color.

 

Its a fun exercise, and illustrates so well the differences between warm reds and cool reds to boot.  In my workshop 2 nights later we started doing a similar thing, so they could all start envisioning different variations of just the one color.

Next:  I was born in the Year of the Monkey, so it’s ‘my’ year according to the Chinese zodiac calendar.  There have been some interesting illustrations for it online on various social media sites, but I wanted to share one with you all especially.  A friend of mine, Kay, who does sumi-e, created a lovely tribute to this year here.

And finally, speaking of reds, have a lovely Valentines!

Valentine 1

Plumeria Down Under

September 1, 2014

An email arrived earlier this summer, someone asking about one of my paintings of plumeria.  These are always fun emails to get, of course.  This person was from Australia, making the contact even more exciting, to realize someone halfway around the world found my work and so enjoyed it they wanted to buy a piece.  This person did end up buying that painting, and icing on the cake, they commissioned a second painting, based on a small one I posted on this blog a couple of years ago.  The client wanted the commissioned piece to be larger than the original, so I got to adjust the composition, adding a more flowers to it, to make the larger format work well.  

Here’s the finished commission.

Plumeriasfinal100

 

I shipped both paintings together, and they arrived the other day, they have them in their “hot little hand.  They are gorgeous – thank you so much!”  Its so lovely knowing that something I loved making is going being enjoyed so thoroughly by someone else.  Thank you back!

Teaching About Color

March 20, 2014

I have a workshop of new watercolor painters that just started last night.  For new painters, I give out a list of supplies they’ll need to have, including a list of paint colors they need to get.  This list includes a breadth of reds, blues, yellows and greens, mostly, noting that they can choose to add any colors they want, that a combination of those colors might not create…usually for me this means pinks, purples, turquoises, and some greens.  Black and white are not on my list, neither are the umbers or siennas.  I talked about this in a posting a year ago: https://jillpaints.wordpress.com/2013/02/27/about-using-of-brown-and-grey-in-watercolor/

In getting ready for a set of workshops, this one is all about still lifes, I do some research online about the genre, refresh my memory, and find known and unknown painters’ work to show my students.  And you know how when you go online that the thread of what you look at can look like a ball of string your cat unravelled?  This time I stumbled upon pictures of a eucalyptus tree I’d never seen before:  a rainbow eucalyptus.

Rainbow Euc

One sample of a rainbow eucalyptus

A quote from Love These Pics, where I found the above picture (and many others) notes:  “The landscaping article Under the Rainbow explained, “As the newly exposed bark slowly ages, it changes from bright green to a darker green, then bluish to purplish, and then pink-orange. Finally, the color becomes a brownish maroon right before exfoliation occurs. Since this process is happening in different zones of the trunk and in different stages, simultaneously, the colors are varied and almost constantly changing. As a result, the tree will never have the same color pattern twice, making it like a work of living art.”

Now, I get to have some fun explaining to my students how all tree trunks are not brown.  Happy First Day of Spring!

Leaves, wet-in-wet

November 12, 2012

 

“Leaves, wet in wet, purples” ©Jill Rosoff 2012.  12″ h x 6″ w

This painting came out of a demonstration I wanted to do for my watercolor workshops exploring wet-in-wet and dropping in color.  It was also to show the physical properties of water in watercolor, and how it can be used, exploited, but also how it can be a great tool.   I lightly sketched the leaf shapes onto the paper first.  Then one by one, I painted each leaf in clear water, then dropped color into the wet areas with strong watercolors, diluted enough to make the paint liquid but to hold on to the intensity of the color.  As each drop of color spread out when it hit the wet paper, I dropped more color into the tips and the stem to hold on to that intensity of color.  It was lots of fun to do, but what was truly fun was watching my students observe what the paint does as the water dries.  

This piece is now for sale via my shop on Etsy.  If you’re looking for holiday gift ideas, you can now purchase a gift card for my shop on Etsy and let the person your giving the gift to choose what they want!

“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!

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.

“Field of Poppies”, ©Jill Rosoff 2010

Thank you to the Environmental Nature Center in Newport Beach, CA for showing my work for the month of February!  

“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.”

Environmental Nature Center

1601 16th St.

Newport Beach, CA 92663

Hours:  8 am to 5 pm, M-F, 9 am to 5 pm Saturday

949-645-8489

New scarves, new events

February 3, 2012

Poppies scarf #27, yellow and orange poppies, on habotai silk.  ©Jill Rosoff 2011

Big week!  I had a meeting at the Muckenthaler Cultural Center in Fullerton, CA, with the woman who runs the gift shop and they are now carrying my scarves.  Yay!  The Muck (as they’re known around here) has an exhibit that opened this week on Korean textiles, which is pretty yummy.  So if you live anywhere nearby, are at all interested in textiles and fabric art, or are looking for something lovely to do, its a terrific exhibit, and the gift shop has some great scarves for sale1

I also have 17 of my watercolors hanging  at the Environmental Nature Center in Newport Beach, CA for the month of February.  This lovely oasis of nature sits next to the sports fields at Newport Harbor High School.  Originally unused land where dirt was deposited from grading for construction at the school, it has been shaped and nurtured for years and is now a center that ” provides quality education through hands-on experience with nature.  The ENC’s 3 1/2 acre outdoor classroom displays 15 native plant communities that range from a desert, to a freshwater marsh, to a redwood forest.”   I’m showing pieces from both my “Blossoms” and “Tapestri” collections, all with floral subjects of course.  The ENC is located at 1601 16th St. in Newport Beach, and my paintings are hanging in their gift shop “Nature’s Gifts”.  They are open M-F from 8 am – 5 pm, and Saturdays from 8 am – 4 pm.

Last but not least, this new scarf is now available at my Etsy shop, along with more scarves, small paintings, notecards and limited edition reproductions.  In case you want something for your Valentine? 

Poppies in a garden

November 8, 2011

“Small Garden” ©Jill Rosoff 2011, 5 1/2″ x 8 1/2″  SOLD

Off tonight to do a presentation/demonstration to the Saddleback Art League in Mission Viejo, CA.  For this presentation I’ve deconstructed a painting that will be a part of my Tapestri Collection, showing the process I go through to make one of these paintings in four stages.  Using four different versions of a painting, I show the layering of content and composition, and how the transparent quality of the watercolors themselves build the intricacies and richness into completing a painting.

This little watercolor was completed yesterday, a small garden of Iceland Poppies and buds, cranberry red impatiens, coral bells, and lavendar star-shaped flowers.  It will go up for auction tonight at the Saddleback Art League, after my demonstration.

In the meantime I’ve got reproductions of the four images you all chose last week going to print, look for them to be available soon.  These limited edition prints will be printed on 12″ x 18″ paper, and will each cost $35.00 apiece.  They’ll be available through my Etsy shop.

Blueberries

August 8, 2011


“Blueberries I” ©Jill Rosoff 2011, 5 1/2″ x 8 1/2″,  SOLD

It’s always a great moment when I find something new I want to paint.  A few months ago it was a nasturtium that one of my workshop students brought in to paint.  See the April 21st posting.  This new subject matter, blueberries, started manifesting itself earlier this year.

There was actually a trio of attention-grabbers that all occurred in April.  First, I began noticing photos of blueberries in magazines and online.  You know when you buy a new car and you begin to see scads of them on the road?  Like that.  hmmm.  It must be blueberry season!

Next, there was a posting on Facebook that April 28th was National Blueberry Pie Day.  Whoever got that holiday up and running was genius.  Of all the lovely things to celebrate.  Pres. Reagan had the third Sunday in July declared National Ice Cream Day — did you all celebrate that??  My grandmother loved to cook for her family, and though her enthusiasm wasn’t always matched with success, she did make great pies.  Just three flavors, though, and one of them was her ‘Blubry’ pie.

The third thing that happened was a call from someone to collaborate on a project, and one of the subjects they were interested was blueberries.

Common wisdom says that things come in threes.  Best not to ignore it.  And I didn’t, though this painting took its sweet time coming to fruition.  Four months down the road, here it is. 

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