"Sour Milk Gill" Oil Painting by James Swanson

"Sour Milk Gill" Oil Painting by James Swanson
"Sour Milk Gill" From the award winning painting series.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

There's no place like Home.

"Grand Junction Horse Barn"
By James Swanson/Traveler Jim S
28'x24" oil on canvas

Learn how this painting was painted here and at the end of this blog step by step.

So far in the Artist and Traveler adventures the Artist Jim Swanson has learned about walking in the UK, nap time in Italy, counting in China, Fly fishing in Montana, and sleepless in Seattle. Now it's time for the Artist to tell his traveling tale.
Traveler Jim S, with family painting on the beach in South Haven, Mi.
Meet Traveler Jim S. (OK that's me) an artist in Chicago for more years than I will tell. Making a living as an artist is a tough business, it's usually feast or famine, the hours can be weird and unpredictable. 
South Haven, MI
That's why years ago my wife and I invested in a summer cottage Near South Haven, Michigan to get some sanity back in our lives, for us and our kids.
Osterhout lake
The cottage is located near the blink and you missed it town of Grand Junction. It's about 15 minutes down the road from South Haven MI.
Christmas Tree farm
What I really love about our cottage is it's location. Besides being a great quick get away place, it's also painting haven. There's water in front of me, old pine tree farms behind, and open fields everywhere to fill my canvases.
Neighbor Ralph's horse corral
 But right down the street is neighbor Ralph's horse barn, and he and his three horses let me paint there when ever I want.
My new painting buddies.
Traveler Painting Grand Junction Horse Barn: The day I took these shots I planed to do a painting right there in the horses pasture. With the horses checking me out and giant horseflies fling around my head I set up to paint.
My Plein air box for field painting.
I had my paints out, canvas ready, and sketch done. But what started off as a great sunny day ended up with me running for my life with easel and paints under arm, when a huge thunderstorm came through. The storm was so big it knocked the power out for three days and I ended up whipping the  canvas off, but not this one.
 The photos that I'll be working from.

 The steps of Grand Junction horse Barn:
Sketch on canvas. 
Dark colors are painted in first.
Here I am laying in the different greens of the painting. The brighter warmer greens will come forward and the cooler bluer greens will fall back creating depth.

Now I put in the ground and start on the sky.
All blocked-in. Wet paint is everywhere at this point, but a lot of good things are happening. The red barn is nicely put in, the trees have good form, and the darks are clean and fresh.

Almost there. The horse has been put in and the sky has been worked on.
Done, I had just a few clean ups to do to finish this painting off. A lot of the adjustments were just color adjustments.

Framed and ready to go.
"Grand Junction Horse Barn"
By James Swanson/Traveler Jim S
28'x24" oil on canvas
This painting was a lot of fun to do and I hope that shows through in it. I thought I had some great reference to work with on this one and knowing the location sure helped with the details.
Thanks goes out to Traveler Jim S. for this nice find (oh that's me).
I'm always on the look out for new places to paint, contact me here or through the website www.theartistandthetraveler.org
Thanks for joining me next up a quick trip to San Fran.

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Have a good travel story and some fun and interesting pictures and we can get started on a painting journey.E mail me here with
name, place, and a few pics of the spot,and I'll get back to you.