Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Nancy's Plein Air Painting Adventure

I am thrilled that Mike Rooney and Ben Keys have joined our family of artists at Spectrum Art & Jewelry, and I mean that sincerely when I say "family" - it is rare to find a working environment as supportive as Spectrum.

Last week my husband, Russ and I were on vacation at Wrightsville Beach and I invited Mike and Ben to come join me in some plein air painting. We had a wonderful day - painting on the sound side of Banks Channel in the morning, going out for a delicious lunch at Baja K-38 (love their fish tacos!) and an afternoon painting a cute yellow cottage at Sprunt and Lumina.

Each artist sees something different and our afternoon session had us all painting the same cottage - but from different angles and viewpoints. There was an old Cadillac in the driveway and Mike and Ben loved adding it to their composition. I decided to do a close-up color blocking of the cottage - Ben said it reminded him of a Hopper - loved that comparison!

Last month Kristin Gibson, Ann Hair, Phil Meade and I went to Carolina Beach to paint from the north end's new boat ramp and park. It's great to get outside, have the fellowship and critique of other artists and change your surroundings. You see things in a totally new way. I normally paint in my studio, and braving the elements (especially this heat) is at times hard...but always rewarding.

After lunch with Mike and Ben I was thinking about going up for a nap...but the guys convinced me to join them for an afternoon painting session. Glad I did, I was happy with the results and Mike told me I passed the plein air test and could paint with him anytime...thanks Mike!

It was so much fun to spend time with Mike and Ben and get to know them better, I've added two new dear friends - and you can never have too many of them.

If you want to experience plein air painting at its' finest...join us October 12th & 13th for
"Loose and Colorful Plein Air Painting with Mike Rooney"

contact me at the gallery for more information

Paint on,
Nancy Noel May

Below are photographs of each artist and their plein air paintings from the day. It is so interesting to see how different each artists painting of the cottage turned out!

Nancy Noel May

Morning plein air painting
across Banks Channel

Afternoon plein air painting
of Sprunt Cottage

Ben Keys

Morning plein air painting
at Hanover Seaside Club

Afternoon plein air painting
of Sprunt Cottage

Mike Rooney

Morning plein air painting
at Wrighstville beach

Afternoon plein air painting
of Sprunt Cottage


Monday, June 27, 2011

Phil Meade: Sneak Peek

(In case you haven't heard...Spectrum Art and Jewelry has an open house and wine tasting the second Friday of every month with live music, artists, new artwork and wine!)

Local painter, Phil Meade, is going to be the featured artist for Spectrum's July open house and wine tasting! Phil will have fresh new work on display and will be available to speak with you and answer whatever questions you may have.

I have gotten the pleasure of seeing two of his new paintings!
They are amazing and like always Phil's ability to catch natural light in his work is absolutely breathtaking. I am so excited about these new paintings! I am going to share them with you too, but don't miss out on seeing the real thing, photo's just don't do the paintings justice!

Phil Meade "His Brothers Boat"

"While riding around coastal areas looking for possible subjects to paint, I came across this scene behind an old building on a river. To me it seemed perfect. The smaller boat was resting on the mud pointing right at me. The larger boat was in part shadow and at a right angle to the smaller boat. The lighting was perfect. I quickly did a small tonal sketch. When I was almost finished the owner of the shrimp boat appeared. He was very friendly. He noted what I was painting and said the small boat belonged to his brother. His brother used it for fishing and clamming. Although he doesn't use it too much anymore, he still takes care of it. It was a perfect story for my feelings about this subject."
-Phil Meade

Phil Meade "Port City"

"The river is always a place of inspiration for me" says Phil.
"The old historic buildings on the hill. Shops along the rivers edge.
Boat activity. The river itself racing with the tides.
The views and the light are always changing."

The Open House is Friday, July 8th. It will be from 5-7 pm, but get here early because Phil will be here doing an artist demonstration in the gallery from 3:30-5:30 pm. So mark your calendars, you don't want to miss this!

Live music will be furnished by husband and wife duo, Lisa and Galen.

Come and meet one of our favorite artists, enjoy live music, wine and light refreshments!


Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Kristin Gibson's Story Behind the Painting

I love art, I always have.
I can spend hours in galleries and museums
looking in awe and wondering
what the artist was thinking and what inspired them.
I decided to start asking our artists at Spectrum
if they would share a few of their stories.
Here is what Kristin Gibson had to share...

Cezanne's Coutryside II
©Kristin Gibson

Cezanne's Birthday
©Kristin Gibson

For me, Cezanne has always been a favorite painter to study. Last summer I had the opportunity to see "Cezanne and American Modernism" at The Baltimore Museum of Art. A look at how Cezanne transformed American art alongside the work of 34 American artists who demonstrate the vital impact Cezanne had on modernism from 1907-1930 in the US.

That exhibition, in conjunction with an invite by Nancy Noel May at Spectrum to create small works inspired by locales outside the US, led up to painting a small study and then this 36x36 on linen. I have taken the perspective of painting a landscape Cezanne was immersed in, saw through his eyes, but in my style and color palette. As with my still life paintings, I focus on the play of shape and color with expressive thick brush work. I enjoy the white of the road and buildings that lead one through the composition.

As a further ode to Cezanne, on his birth date of January 19 this year I composed a still life with a nod to works I saw at the museum show. Take a look at the suggestion of landscape through the window. The blue band of color and green shapes of mountains is my "Cezanne's Countryside II" simplified! Thank you for your interest in my work. I hope you enjoy both of these paintings, and I invite you to see them in person at Spectrum.”

-Kristin Gibson