I heart Carmel

Lobos looking north

Just back from the amazing Eden that is Carmel, California and the fun plein air art fest they have there. First let me say that I have much to write about, a couple of good questions came in whilst I was on the other coast and I will get to those in the next day or two. Back to Carmel. I will do that event until I can no longer afford to do it, there are a few things I wish they would change; they don't provide host housing as does every other major event, it's only two days which makes no sense, they only allow you to hang two paintings and the show is in a big long tent on the street. But. the people are wonderful, I get to see my friends from the left coast and the stuff to paint is endless.

I went out there with Don Sondag, one of the McRae studio mates, whom I have mentioned before, he's easy to travel with, is open to painting wherever and is a dern good painter. We also met up with the immensely talented Stacy Barter , long time friend who lives about a block from the studio here in Fl and Lynn Whipple, another fellow studio mate who taught a workshop in SoCal and drove up to paint with us. We had quite the Florida contingent storming the beaches. In addition we joined the the extremely talented Jesse Powell and John Burton, local rock star artists and wonderful friends.

The painting above won an honorable mention. It was painted at Point Lobos and I have to say if you ever wanted a painting bucketlist place to go, it's there. There's a path that is maybe an eighth of a mile long that I could spend the rest of my life painting... spectacular, diverse, dramatic indescribably delicious and unattainably beautiful.

Through the cypress, 20x20

I only want to say about myself that I thought I painted pretty well. I went larger, going for the prize money because I knew sales would be iffy and I wanted to drop new work to my gallery, James Reiser Fine Art, that had a little substance to it. I did not feel the love for the above painting from the artists but I like it and that's most important. But I did win the quickdraw with a flower painting, ironic because I never paint them... ever. Forgot to get a pic though.

The thing I took from this trip was how fruitful and fun it is to paint with people you admire and respect and who feel the same in return. We all painted together for at least 4 or 5 of the 7 days we were there. John and Jesse are a joy to hang with and talk to. I learned so much from them on this trip. What I learned is for the next couple of posts, some of it is really thought provoking and some is just damn funny. I'll talk more about those two later also.

tree study, 9x12

I want to focus on Stacy Barter for a second (there are links above), she is a consummate artist, a master, and I don't use those terms lightly. The most impressive thing is her will to learn and improve. And there is nothing more enjoyable for me than seeing a fellow artist grow and succeed. She won best in oil and mayors choice with a single, smallish, stunning, shining example of paint handling and simplicity. About 25 or so years ago we took the same workshop together, Greg Kreutz, and in the time since, she has mastered the still life, flowers (which I can not ever figure out) and the figure... and all through hard work, study and sheer determination. She's also just a sweetheart of a person. It was rewarding to see her joy in painting Pt. Lobos down to Garapatta and beyond and doing it so well.

Flowers in may, quickdraw winner.

I don't usually go for the flowers but I do love me some pattern. 2 hours with a hangover and little sleep.

More on everything learned later.