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Horsing Around With Accordions

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Horsing Around With Accordian, Original Painting by Jenny Armitage

Horsing Around With Accordions (watercolor 17x20) SOLD

Buskers with wearing horse-heads and playing the accordion are standard Vienna fare. We heard these three coming to and going from The Leopold. They were loud, enthusiastic and good, playing both traditional folk and a few pop pieces. But mostly they are just visually fun.

—This painting has sold, but you can still purchase a fine art print.

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Divide and Conquer or the Power of the Scissors

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Italian Heat is not my first attempt at that painting.  It is the second.  I made several mistakes with the first painting, most of them having to to with composition.  I left too many people from my reference photos in the image, and that took away from the real subject, the biking couple at the end of the street.  Having reached the conclusion that the painting was a failure, I played around with photos the spoiled painting before sketching out the second version which ended up in the blog entry below.

That left me with a poor complicated painting with great color but no real focus.  So I set the failed painting aside for a while.  Then a few weeks later, I got out the mat corners (“L” shaped pieces of mat board used for visual cropping) and singled out the two bicyclists.  The result is Florence Bikers.

Florence Bikers, a Watercolor by Jenny Armitage

Florence Bikers (9 x 16 watercolor) SOLD

Or purchase a fine art print.

Having rescued one painting I looked at the remainder and found Three Italians.

Three Italians, Painting by Jenny Armitage

Three Italians, (9 x 21 watercolor) $125


Or purchase a fine art print.

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Brasenose Lane

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Brasenose Lane, Original Painting of Oxford, by Jenny Armitage

Brasenose Lane (watercolor 15 x 21) $650

Another painting of Oxford.  It is after all one of the most beautiful cities to walk there is. 


Or purchase a fine art print.

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Oregon State Fair

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I had a stellar week in the Artisan Village at the Oregon State Fair. I sold seven originals.  Three of Riomaggiore on the Italian Med:

An Italian Jewel, Painting of Cinque Terre by Jenny Armitage

An Italian Jewel (16 x 23 watercolor) SOLD

A Slice of Riomaggiore, watercolor by Jenny Armitage

A Slice of Riomaggiore (10 x 12 watercolor) SOLD

Riomaggiore Hillside, Painting by Jenny Armitage

Riomaggiore Hillside (16 x 22 watercolor) SOLD

Two of Florence:

The Ultimate Alley View, Painting of the Duomo, Florence, Italy
The Ultimate Alley View (12 x 19 watercolor) SOLD
July in Florence, Painting of Old Florence by Jenny Armitage
July in Florence (13 x 23 watercolor) SOLD

One of Oxford:

Oxford Lane, Original Painting by Jenny Armitage
Oxford Lane (watercolor 13 x 19) SOLD

And one of The Valley of the Gods in Utah:

Moki Dugway View of the Valley of the Gods, a Watercolor Painting by Jenny Armitage

Looking Down From Moki Dugway (14 x 24 watercolor) SOLD

My “problem” now is putting together enough paintings for my feature at Art in the Valley this coming October.

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Oxford Bike

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Oxford Bike, Original Painting by Jenny Armitage

Oxford Bike (watercolor 17 x 19) SOLD

I poured this painting at the Oregon State Fair on yesterday and spent this afternoon finishing up the brushwork.   I rather like it.  The greens feel very England to me.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a fine art print.

 

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Painters Academics Exhibition – For The Love of Art

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See my work in Painters Academics’ For the Love of Art,
sponsored by Solo Exhibition

Spinning Tales, by Jenny Armitage

Spinning Tales (13 x 19 watercolor) SOLD

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The Mission Church at Sky City

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Sky City Mission, Painting of Acoma Pueblo Mission by Jenny Armitage

Sky City Mission (watercolor 16 x 20) SOLD

Built in the 1200s and located atop a 365 foot high mesa, Acoma Pueblo is one of the most spectacular of the nineteen modern pueblos of New Mexico.  It looks like what it is, the home of the descendants of the Anasazi peoples of Mesa Verde and Chaco Canyon.    The San Estevan Del Rey Mission Church I’ve painted is a late comer to the pueblo, built between 1629 and 1641.  The church was built by order of the Spanish government.   Although it was built with slave labor, the Acoma people are proud of it, and did not destroy it during 1680 revolt against the Spanish.  It is still a place of Christian worship today.

The building is made of sandstone and adobe, rather than adobe bricks.  The result is sturdier than adobe, but when in need of plaster very rough looking.  The stones were very much visible when we visited this last summer, though I’ve seen pictures of the Mission looking as smooth as any brick adobe building.  I like the rough stones and I’ve done my best to give a sense of them here.

My painting is entirely poured (see a description of the pouring method here) from just four pigments:  raw sienna, burnt sienna, quinacrididone rose, and dioxion purple. The hard edges caused by mask used for pouring and the limited palette, give the painting a raw graphic feel that reminds of seeing that massive building in the July heat.

This painting is sold, but you can still purchase a fine art print.

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Riomaggiore Harbor

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An Italian Jewel, Painting of Cinque Terre by Jenny Armitage

An Italian Jewel (16 x 23 watercolor) SOLD

Riomaggiore is built on the cliffs above it’s harbor, rising chaotically up in a happy clutter of homes.  The effect is charming whether seen from the harbor looking up or from the narrow streets looking down.  The final shape of the village looks like a jewel set into the hills.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a fine art print here.

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Riomaggiore

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Riomaggiore Hillside, Painting by Jenny Armitage

Riomaggiore Hillside (16 x 22 watercolor) SOLD

We visited the Cinque Terre or Five Lands  in 2012.  Clinging to the the cliffs about the Italian riviera, these charming wine and fishing villages are an Italian national park and a tourist magnet during the summer.  I painted Monterrosso, the largest of these villages last year.  This is Riomaggiore, the smallest of the Cinque Terre, and the first village many tourists see.  It was the first village we visited.  And yes we were charmed by it’s pocket sized harbor and steep narrow streets.   But these first paintings are not of the houses on the harbor cliffs, but the vineyard hills.

A Slice of Riomaggiore, watercolor by Jenny Armitage

A Slice of Riomaggiore (10 x 12 watercolor) SOLD

These paintings have sold, but you may still purchase fine art prints here.

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Four Violins

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Four Violins, Watercolor by Jenny Armitage

Four Violins (16 x 20 watercolor on clayboard) $450

A violin painting about rhythm and shape.

This painting is on Aquaboard, and may be framed with or without glazing.


Or purchase a print from Fine Art America.

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Valley of the Gods

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Moki Dugway View of the Valley of the Gods, a Watercolor Painting by Jenny Armitage

Looking Down From Moki Dugway (14 x 24 watercolor) SOLD

This is the view from Moki Dugway (sometimes spelled  Mokee or Moqui).   But however you spell it, it is a most spectacular pass overlooking The Valley of the Gods and Monument Valley.   Utah Highway 261 traverses north from Gooseneck Sate Park north through the Valley of the Gods, at which point it becomes a set of dirt road switchbacks yielding the some of the most amazing views of the whole southwest canyon lands area.  Those switchbacks are Moki Dugway.

We visited The Grand Canyon, Chaco Canyon, Bryce, Natural Bridges National, Capital Reef, and Kodachrome State Park, yet my husband found this little stretch of road the most scenic view of the trip.  I can see why.

This painting has sold, but you can still purchase a fine art print.

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A Painting to Inspire Jazz Improvisation

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Pacific Rhythms, Seascape, by Jenny Armitage

Pacific Rhythms (18 x 36 watercolor) Commissioned

I painted this seascape for the most marvelous client.  Her request charmed me.   She wanted a seascape with no figures or land masses, beach, or boats; just waves, sky, and clouds.   The waves and clouds must be rhythmic to inspire jazz improvisation.  The painting must be large enough to fill the space above her piano.

The project presented some challenges, most of them having to do with size.  Standard watercolor sheets are only 24 x 30 inches.  She wanted a painting that was 36 inches wide, so the paper had to be special ordered.  I don’t have an easel large enough to accommodate a painting this size, so I used my studio table.  When I taped the paper to my studio table, there was no room left for water and brushes.  To see how the painting looked from five feet back, I had to stand on a chair.

The other challenge had to do with how to create a path through the painting for the eye.  I decided on a sideways “u” beginning on the bottom left following the breakers in and return across the horizon and out through a break in the clouds.

I presented it to the client this morning and I’m happy to say she loved it.  It’s at the framers now.

The original belongs to a lovely pianist, but prints are available here.

 

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The Ultimate Alley View

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The Ultimate Alley View, Painting of the Duomo, Florence, Italy

The Ultimate Alley View (12 x 19 watercolor) SOLD

A colorful back alley view of the Duomo, Florence, Italy.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a fine art print.

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Bicycle Florence

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Waiiting Bike, Original Painting of Florence, Italy, by Jenny Armitage

Waiting Bike (13 x 19 watercolor) SOLD

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a fine art print.

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Pausing Before the Bridge

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Pausing Before the Bridge, Watercolor of the Bridge of Sighs by Jenny Armitage

Bridge of Sighs (13 x 19 watercolor) SOLD

This is Hertford Bridge, more commonly known as the The Bridge o Sighs, after the The Bridge of Sighs in Venice.   It connects the two quads of Hertford College, in Oxford, England.  It doesn’t really resemble Venice’s Bridge of Sighs, but it is beautiful, and quintessentially Oxford.  We visited in the late afternoon when street was beautifully shadowed.

This painting has sold but you can still  purchase a fine art print.
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Rainy Night Giant

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Eiffel Tower a watercolor painting by Jenny Armitage

Paris Giant (watercolor 18 x 24) SOLD

When we travel, we Armitages climb things.  In Paris we climbed Nortre Dame and the Arch d’ Triumph.  But we took the elevator at the Eiffel Tower. We had tickets for the evening we arrived at ten thirty.  We choose the evening  and only the second platform out of necessity because two of the four elevators had been out of commission all summer.  It turned out to be a delightful choice.  It was our only nighttime view from above, and such a view it was. The Seine with city lights is a sight to see.

The Eiffel Tower itself is a spectacular view at night and we were there when the lights came on. The colors of the lights have changed over the years.  When we visited they were predominately gold.   The sky was black despite the early rain.  The wet lawn and paths leading to the tower added to the effect.   Walking to the tower across the park was a plus too.  The vista leading up to the tower is grand and seemingly endless.

 

I took the photo for this painting on our way back through the wet to the metro.  We didn’t mind standing in the wet to look one last time at Paris’ four legged giant.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a fine art print.

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Florence in July

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July in Florence, Painting of Old Florence by Jenny Armitage

July in Florence (13 x 23 watercolor) SOLD

July in Italy is hot.  This July was particularly hot.  The week we were there, highs hovered in the upper nineties and topped one hundred from time to time.   It had been the same in Rome the week before.  But it didn’t feel quite as hot in Florence because of the narrow little streets.  It simply isn’t possible to find a street in old Florence without shade on one side or the other.  In this painting I tried to capture that cool shade under hot hot skies.

Like The Pilgrims at the Gate and The Arch of Titus, this painting is poured.   Pouring is not an easy process to describe so, this time I took photos of the painting in progress.

I begin the design process by making a value  sketch of the painting.   A value sketch is a rough black and white sketch with very clearly defined values.  It is my broad outline for the painting.  I refine it until I get a compositional plan I think will create a striking painting.

Next I create a detailed line drawing or cartoon.  A cartoon is the extreme opposite of a value sketch.  It has no shading at all, just lines.  It is as detailed and small picture oriented as the value sketch is loose and big picture.  If the value sketch is the destination, the cartoon is the road map. The image on the far right below is my cartoon for this painting after I transferred it to my watercolor paper.

Together my reference photo, the value sketch, and the cartoon function as my guides during the painting process.

With poured paintings, I always begin by washing the cartoon loosely with color.  The idea is to make sure none of the paper is truly white, even though it will read as white later.   In this case, I washed the sky and the pavement with light blue and the buildings with yellows and oranges.

Once the color wash had dried, I use a removable liquid mask to cover everything I wanted to remain white.  The mask shows as a blotchy coral color in my photos below.  Then I mixed some very watery cups of yellow and orange paint.  I wet the paper with clear water and then poured each cup of paint on  the base of the builds and tilted the paper to let the paint run off the top.    Then I poured cups of watery blue and purple on the lower left and tilted the paper to the right to let the paint run off.

Pour one above, shows the results of that first pour.

For pour two I masked the lightest values and poured again.  This time I used thicker paint and no yellows.  I added more reds and allowed the blues and violets up into buildings.

I masked medium values for pour three.  Then I poured yet darker paint and left out the golds.   After pour three had dried I removed some of the mask to check to see that I was maintaining the value contrast I wanted.  Then I re-masked the lifted areas and masked the areas I wanted to remain dark to medium values before doing the final pour.  In the end I did five pours total.

As you can see, each pour makes it a little harder to tell what the painting looks like as more and more of it gets covered up with liquid mask.   This is why the value sketch is so important to me when pouring.  It helps me remember where the majority of the lightest and darkest values must go.  The cartoon and the reference photo help me place the smaller details.  This helps me keep my eye on the final painting even as it disappears under mask.  But, there are always a few surprises after the mask is removed:

Once the mask came off, the brushes came out.  I cleaned up the windows, finished the figures and added the darkest values.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a fine art print.

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Pilgrims at the Gate

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"Pilgrims at the Gate" a watercolor of Canterbury by Jenny Armitage

Pilgrims and the Gate (watercolor 15 x 20) SOLD

 

 

This is Canterbury.   I began with reference photos showing  Canterbury Cathedral’s spires rising above the gate, but in the end I cut back to the gate itself.   The gate is now the only approach for tourists, and  the streets leading up to it are charming.   But despite the Tudor buildings, it is modern.  There are Starbucks and Subways.  These tourist use smart phones and get their cash for ATMs.  Rather than providing a refuge and a place to sleep for pilgrims, the cathedral charges  a fee to tour the cathedral and view the place where Thomas a Becket was murdered.

Like the Arch of Titus below, this painting is primarily poured rather than painted with a brush.  The result is rich color with a graphic feel.

This painting has sold, but you may purchase an art print.

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Inside The Musee d’Orsay

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Inside Paris Time, Painting, By Jenny Armitage

Inside Paris Time, (12 x 16 watercolor on paper) SOLD

We are just back from a fabulous trip to London, Rome, Florence and Paris.  Our first museum visit in Paris was the d’Orsay, a fantastic art museum that picks up chronologically where the Louvre leaves off.   Van Gogh Monet, Manet, Renoir, and Cezanne are all well represented.   But this painting is not about the art in the d’Orsay, but rather about the museum building itself.  The d’Orsay began it’s life as a train station.  The gigantic clocks which once informed train passengers of the time remain in the building both inside and out.   This clock is one of two facing the Seine River and the Tuileries Gardens.  Outside the clock faces appear opaque.  Inside it becomes obvious that the clock faces are actually windows  Museum patrons are as drawn to the view through the clocks as they are to the artwork in the galleries.

To capture the feeling of the light through the clock, I primarily poured this painting, using removable masking and cups of paint instead of brushes.  Only the final details and the view through the clock were added with a brush.   I used New Gamgee, Hansa Yellow Light, Cobalt Blue, Thalo Blue, Rose Madder Quinacridone, and Windsor Red.

This painting has sold but you can still  purchase an art quality print.

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Handyman’s Preserves

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Handymans Perserves, Painting by Jenny Armitage

Handyman's Preserves (9 x 23" watercolor on paper) $600

Right now I feel like a magpie–I’m attracted to shiny things.  I’ve just finished a series of shiny brass and silver instruments.  The last couple paintings, I’ve done cut glass.  This subject is a little humbler, but it’s still all about shine.

I like the nostalgia of it too.  Surely I’m not the only one who’s seen a shop window full of jars of screws, nails, washers, and bolts and noticed how beautiful they are.  The subject may be humble, but it was a bit of a challenge too.  I began by painting the background in layers starting with new gamgee and ending in dioxin purple and cobalt blue.

In Progress

Filling in the background brought the jars into instant relief.  After that it was simply a matter of adding the contents one jar at a time. I treated each jar as it’s own little painting, with it’s own compositional problems. The result is a happy variety.

This painting has sold but you may still purchase a fine art print.

 

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Graphic Art and Art

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Quintet in Color (watercolor on claybord 14 x 18") SOLD

Recently I’ve been doing some graphic art to sell on Zazzle a print on demand site that sells mugs, ties, business cards, phone cases, coasters, T-shirts and a variety of other useful things.  My particular corner of Zazzle, is called Paintbox Silhouette.  There I sell images like these on a variety of products:

Goose Pile

 

 

Color-washed Rooster

Golden Trumpets

Earth Apple

This work is a combination of silhouettes I drew with the mouse in Photoshop Elements and watercolor backgrounds  photographed and manipulated with Photoshop.  This kind of computer drawing and collage is  incredibly fun to do.  But, while fun, comparing this kind of work to making paintings is like comparing candy to a full meal.  It’s quick and fun, but doesn’t lead to the same ultimate satisfaction.  However I did learn some valuable skills, including how to do my value sketches with the mouse.

Lollypop Violins and Violas

More importantly, one kind of art inspires another.   The image for mugs above, is my inspiration for this latest painting.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a print at my print shop.

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37th Annual Western Federation of Watercolor Societies Exhibition

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New Orleans Reeds, painting by Jenny Armitage

New Orleans Reeds, (12 x 15 watercolor on paper) SOLD

Each year The Western Federation of  Watercolor Societies hosts a  juried show open to its member associations. The Western Federation of Watercolor Societies’ members association include:  the Arizona Watercolor Association, The Colorado Watercolor Society, The Idaho Watercolor Society, The New Mexico Watercolor Society, The Nevada Watercolor Society, The Southern Arizona Watercolor Guild, the San Diego Watercolor Society, The Southwestern Watercolor Society, The Utah Watercolor Society, The Watercolor Society of Oregon, and the West Texas Watercolor Society.

I am pleased to announce that New Orleans Reeds has been chosen as one of the 100 paintings to be exhibited in the 37th Annual Western Federation of Watercolor Societies Exhibition.  The exhibit will take place at the Marjorie Barrick Museum on The University of Nevada Las Vegas campus, from April 13th to May 19th, 2012.  This year the show was juried by Gerald Brommer, who will pick the award winners in April.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a giclee print from my print-on-demand-outlet.

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Ompa Rainbow: Painting and Painting Again

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Ompa Rainbow, watercolor of a tuba by Jenny Armitage

Ompa Rainbow (watercolor 14 x 19) SOLD

I’ve recently begun painting on clayboard.  I love it.  But, may of the juried competitions I’d like to enter require that watercolors be on paper.  In response I’ve been repainting some clayboard paintings on paper.  “Ompa Rainbow”  is a paper repaint of  “Big Boy.”

Big Boy, Painting of a Tuba by Jenny Armitage

Big Boy (watercolor on cradled claybord 11 x 14) $300

The results of all this repainting  have been what I think are often better paintings, though not better  in every way.   Practice makes perfect is of course part of this equation.  But beyond that, looking at the finished work allows me to make serious design choices.

In “Big Boy” the idea was to make the tuba very large by looking up into a sky dominated by tuba.   In “Ompa Rainbow” I wanted to make the colors pop. I slid the tuba to the left to give it some space around the bell, but the big change is in the background.  “Big Boy” is set against  a blue background, resulting in a very cool painting, all blues, greens and yellows.  To make those cool colors really pop, I gave “Ompa Rainbow” a very warm background.  I also paid attention to color theory.  At the top, where the tuba gets blue the background is blue’s compliment, orange.  At the base, amidst all that glorious plumbing, the background becomes purple the compliment of the predominating yellow.   It’s a very warm red leaning purple though because red sets off green which is  the other color sharing dominance in the lower half of the tuba.

Brass Winds and Shadow, Watercolor by Jenny Armitage

Brass Winds and Shadow (11 x 14 watercolor on clayboard) SOLD

The Color of Music, Painting by Jenny Armitage

The Color of Music (16 x 20 watercolor on paper) SOLD

 

I made several deliberate changes when I repainted “Brass Wind and Shadows” as “The Color of Music”.  First, I backed up on the subject a little and allowed all the trombone bell to show.  The colors are deliberately brighter.  I lightened up the shadows.   In retrospect I like the lighter brighter colored version better but I think the tighter crop of the first painting works better.

Bouquet of Reeds, Painting by Jenny Armitage

Bouquet of Reeds (11 x 14 watercolor on Aquabord) $300

New Orleans Reeds, painting by Jenny Armitage

New Orleans Reeds, (12 x 15 watercolor on paper) SOLD

 

I did very little to the composition when I repainted “Bouquet of  Reeds” as “New Orleans Reeds,”  but I did deliberately change the mood by intensifying the colors.  I also reversed the basic value plan of the painting by making the background light rather than dark.  I’m not sure I like either painting better.  It’s the mood, not the quality that changed.

Jazz Buddies (watercolor on Aquabord) $300

Taking a Shile to Each Other, painting by Jenny Armitage

Taking a Shine to Each Other (13 x 19 watercolor on paper) SOLD

With “Jazz Buddies” and “Taking a Shine to Each Other” the later is to my mind a much better painting. With “Jazz Buddies” I intended to really show off the way the bright sun washed away the sax. I think I accomplished that.   With “Taking a Shine to Each Other” I went for drama and I got it by really darkening up the instruments and complicating the dark colors.

Prints of “Ompa Tuba” and the other paintings shown in this entry, are available through my print-on-demand shop.

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Taking a Shine to Each Other

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Taking a Shile to Each Other, painting by Jenny Armitage

Taking a Shine to Each Other (13 x 19 watercolor on paper) SOLD

And here’s the completed painting.

This painting has sold, but

giclee prints are available.

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“The Sound of Paint” Featured Artist at Art in the Valley

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Jazz Buddies (watercolor on Aquabord) $300

My instrument show, “The Sound of Paint” opened Today at Art in the Valley, and continues through the end of November.  Reception Thursday, November 3rd at 5:00 pm.

I hung the paintings Sunday and I’m very pleased with the way they look.  In addition to the instrument paintings,  there will be a selection of matted original watercolors and a selection of my animal sculpture.

 

"Three Horns" (watercolor on canvas 16 x 16 inches) $400

"Three Horns" (watercolor on canvas 16 x 16 inches) SOLD

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Brass at Rest

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Brass at Rest, Painting of Brass by Jenny Armitage

Brass at Rest (8 x 8 watercolor on clayboard) SOLD

Trumpet and trombone share fabric space on a mirror.  This little painting  has sold.  But prints are available through my shop at Fine Art America.

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Ringing in the Brass

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Ringing in the Brass, Painting of a Trombone by Jenny Armitage

Ringing in the Brass (8 x8 watercolor on clayboard) SOLD

Trombone bell resting on the bells and facing a flute. My daughter says this one has a Christmasy feel to it and I think she is right. In any case, I like the red and gold.

This painting has sold, but prints available through my print shop and Fine Art America.

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Brass and Silver Keys

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Brass and Silver Keys, Painting of a Trumpet and Flute

Brass and Silver Keys (8 x 8 watercolor on clayboard) SOLD

I painted this little baby yesterday at the gallery. I like the contrast between the silver and gold, but I wasn’t really happy with it until the shadows went in.
This painting has sold, but prints are still available through my print shop at Fine Art America.com.

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Reeds Between Sets II

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Reeds Between Sets II, Painting of a Saxophone and Clarinet

Reeds Between Sets II (watercolor 8 x 8 ) SOLD

This is a second and slightly larger version of Reeds Between Sets which sold before I could get it posted.  Like most of the rest of my instrument series it will be on display at Art In the Valley beginning November 1st.

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The Glowing Sound of Brass

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The Glow of Brass (16 x 18 watercolor on paper) SOLD

For this painting I used the very same reference photos that I used for Three Horns.   In repainting this image, I’ve made several changes besides the obvious change from canvas to paper.  This time I’ve kept the background quite light and emphasized the shadows and the reflected light from the horns into the the shadows.   I’ve also bumped up the contrast by leaving more white and taking the darks much darker.

This painting has sold, but prints are available through Fine Art America.

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The One That Sold Before I Could Post It

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Reeds Between Sets, Painting of a Sax and Clarinet

Reeds Between Sets (6 x 6 watercolor on clayboard) SOLD

I painted this little watercolor just after we got back from vacation and promptly sold it at the Silverton Fine Art Fair a couple days later.  I love the composition and I’m tempted to do it again a little larger.

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Silverton Fine Arts Festival Is This Weekend

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Watercolor Painting of a Tuba, by Jenny Armitage

Little Big Boy (watercolor on clay board 8 x 10) SOLD

Today I set up my booth for the Silverton Fine Arts Festival.  It will be the first showing of my instrument paintings in mass and only the second time any of them has been shown in public.  It’s fun to see them all hanging together. I’m in booth #71 right next to the information booth.

The fair runs Saturday and Sunday.  Admission is free.

The tuba painting pictured is not Big Boy.  It is still big, but this painting is smaller.  Painted from the same photo as “Big Boy.”

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Pear Roadie

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Pear Roadie, Still Life Painting By Jenny Armitage

Pear Roadie (6 x 6 watercolor on clayboard) SOLD

This is another little painting, completed during my Southwestern vacation. I started it  in a little Victorian Hotel in Durango and completed it poolside in Cortez.

Finished with clear acrylic and mounted on a black cradle frame, this painting is ready to hang.

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Some Assembly Required

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Flute Painting by Jenny Armitage

Some Assembly Required (8 x 10 watercolor on aquabord) SOLD

We’ve been traveling in Southwest Colorado and New Mexico the past few weeks.  I have tons of photos for Southwestern paintings.  But while I was gone, I went right on painting instruments.  I did this one at my Father’s just outside of Albuquerque.

Painted on clayboard, finished with clear acrylic, and set on a black cradle frame, this painting is ready to hang.

This painting has sold, but you may purchase a print.

 

 

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The Color of Music

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The Color of Music, Painting by Jenny Armitage

The Color of Music (16 x 20 watercolor on paper) SOLD

This is a larger and more colorful version of “Brass, Winds, and Shadows.”  I liked the first version, but I like this one better.   Besides enlarging the painting and bumping up the color, I expanded the field of view to include more of the flute.  I also made the shadows more transparent.  I think all of the changes are improvements.

Prints available through my shop at Fine Art America.

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Duet for a Pear

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Painting of a Pear, Piccolo, and Clarinet by Jenny Armitage

Duet for a Pear (watercolor on clay board 8 x 10) SOLD

 

The is another painting from my photo session at Weathers Music, but I painted it on the patio of a beach house just outside Sarasota on the Gulf of Mexico.  Painting under an umbrella with the ocean just yards away–what could be finer?  We spent the last week there getting our fill of salt and sun.  After the long wet cold spring here in Oregon the sun sure felt fine.  But my is it hot and humid there.  I spent the afternoons painting in the cool.  I have five new paintings to post over the next few days.

This is the first one I did.  I really like the greeny black of the clarinet and piccolo in contrast to the greeny yellow of the pear.  The pear and clarinet bell shapes echo each other nicely too.

Another painting on clay board, the painting is finished with a clear coat of acrylic and mounted on a black wooden cradle.  This painting has sold, but you can still purchase a print through my Shop at Fine Art America.

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Three Horns For Art Squared

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"Three Horns" (watercolor on canvas 16 x 16 inches) $400

"Three Horns" (watercolor on canvas 16 x 16 inches) SOLD

I painted  this one specially for Salem Art Association’s Salon: Art2 exhibit. All of the artwork in the exhibit must be 16 x 16 inches inclusive of frame.  I had to think carefully how to meet the size requirement.  I didn’t want to fit a watercolor on paper into a 16 x 16 inch frame since the artwork would end up being 12 x 12 at most. I didn’t have any 16 x 16 inch aquabord either.  So I stretched watercolor canvas over a 16 x 16 inch frame and gallery wrapped the edges.

It has been quite some time since I tried painting on watercolor canvas.  Paint lifts from watercolor canvas even more easily than it does from clayboard.  The surface feels like a cross between clayboard an yupo (a plastic paper) to work on except that the unlike board or paper the canvas gives a little to the brush.  I like the canvas’ linen texture, but I’m not sure I like the painting experience as much as the board, though that may be just a matter of getting use to the new surface.

This painting has sold, but prints are available through my gallery at Fine Art America.

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A Magic Afternoon At Weathers Music

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"Quilted Brass" Painting of Brass Instruments by Jenny Armitage

Quilted Brass (watercolor on clayboard 11 x 14) SOLD

If you have been watching this blog of late, you know I have become fascinated with painting bright shiny band instruments.  I had been renting loaner instruments one or two at a time from a shop in Corvallis.  But renting instruments, especially expensive instruments for just a month at a time, makes instruments shops who rent to sell nervous.  So I was afraid I had come to the end of my supply of instruments to paint. But a couple weeks ago I got a brainwave.  Weathers Music, here in Salem,  has a recital room that sits empty most days.  So I thought maybe I could talk them into letting me rent the instruments and the room at once.  That way the expensive instruments need never leave the shop.

I gathered up two of my recent instrument paintings and went to ask. I had dressed nicely and rehearsed a little speech about how I would use the instruments for art, and how careful I would be with them.  I never got more than three sentences into my little sales pitch.  Keith Weathers simply said, “yes.”  And the very next Friday I had the use of the Bach Room, from ten to five and an almost unlimited supply of instruments to photograph.

I brought quilts, fabric, crystal, flowers, and fruit.  I also brought my studio lights. By eleven o’clock I had everything I’d brought in and Keith had gathered me a whole little band to play with.  I had three saxophones, a clarinet, a piccolo, a brass trumpet, a silver trumpet, a violin, a french horn, a trombone, and a tuba.

I spent a magic afternoon setting up and photographing one still life after another.  I spread cloth, arranged flowers, climbed on chairs, moved lighting, and toted instruments back and forth.  At the end of the day I was exhausted but happy.  I also had over five hundred photos on my camera chip.

Since then I’ve been too busy painting to post blogs, a sorry state of affairs for which I apologize.  So here is the first of many more instrument paintings.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a print from Fine Art America.com.

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Brass, Wind, and Shadows

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Brass Winds and Shadow, Watercolor by Jenny Armitage

Brass Winds and Shadow (11 x 14 watercolor on clayboard) SOLD

Another instrument still life painting.  I did this one mostly at the gallery yesterday working on little details between customers.  I love the way the shiny brass pops in this painting, when I finished it yesterday morning I was both vaguely dissatisfied with it and puzzled over where to put a signature.  You see, I had planned the painting to be hung horizontally with the big trombone horn at the bottom, and the  so the whole bottom edge was busy and full.   Then it occurred to me that since the view was straight down, it could just as logically be hung upside down.  So I tried all four angles.  I like this upright view much better than the horizontal view I planned.   It has more visual energy, and the eye enters from the bottom left hand corner, which is the most natural entry point.

Once again painted on Ampersand’s aquabord.  This time I painted on cradled board which mean that the clayboard rests on a two inch thick wooden frame which I have painted black.  The painting may either be framed like an oil or acrylic without glass or, for a sleek modern look, hung as is.

This painting has sold, but you can still purchase a print from Fine Art America.com.

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On the Way to Depot Bay

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Between the Showers on HWY 101 (watercolor 10 x 14) SOLD

This January we spent a weekend in Lincoln City. It being January in Oregon; it rained at lot; it was often foggy; and in between the sun shone. I took the photo for this little painting in the car on the way to wave watch in Depot Bay. Before we reached Depot Bay it rained again and then the sun came out to stay for the afternoon.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a print from Fine Art America.com.

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