Daub du Jour

My name is Marianne Plumridge. I am an artist of mythic fantasy works and fine art images. More of which can be seen at my website, 'MariannePlumridge.com', and also my main Blog, 'Muse du Jour'. These sites are in the links section of this page. This site began life as a painting a day blog in 2007. However that project has now passed, but I still find myself painting in that way. So this site will now be the showcase my new paintings as inspired by those previous efforts.

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Location: New England, United States

Monday, April 30, 2007

Day 54

Spiritual Light
(8x10", Oil) Not For Sale

I discovered a new author - Victoria Laurie - two weeks ago. Her books are about a psychic who reluctantly gets involved with murder investigations. I found these books compelling, and also that they punched my own intuitive buttons on several levels. I sat down and wrote an extensive review of the aforementioned protagonist and each book in turn - which you can read on my Muse du Jour blog at http://musedujour.blogspot.com/ Together with that inspiration, came the fully formed idea for this painting. I nixed trying to paint this image in a multi-session attempt, or in a greater size: I'm having enough trouble starting the small one-session paintings I post here. Also, I haven't painted a human figure in a good long while as they are quite demanding to do. I tried last week to start painting this image - on a smaller canvas, as the support I wanted to use wasn't ready - but it wasn't working out, and I scrubbed it out three times. Deciding I wasn't ready to paint it then, and being dog tired, I gave it up till this week. So, with the right sized canvas, and sick of endlessly painting the darn thing in my head, brushstroke by brushstroke, I painted it yesterday. With a migraine...

Still it isn't too bad, in spite of the washed out face - trying to photograph a dark glossy surface is hell.

Palette consisted of a slightly larger array than usual: Burnt Sienna, French Ultramarine, Cadmium Yellow Hue, Titanium White, Cadmium Red Light, Permanent Rose, and Cobalt Violet. Brushes were a 1/2" Filbert, a Size 2 Round, a Size 6 Round, a Size 4 Filbert, and a big fluffy blending brush.

Whew, now that's over, now I can get back to painting something else. The universe wasn't going to let me paint any other subjects until I'd gotten this one off my chest.

So, see you tomorrow!

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Day 53

Mini Magnolias
(5x7", Oil) SOLD

Since I've been a bit distracted lately with business, I haven't been painting as much. I'm about to remedy that today. However, while waiting for paintings to dry again, I thought I'd put up this older painting. At the beginning of the month, I donated this little piece to the Alzheimer's Charity Benefit Art Show at Spring Bull Gallery in Newport, Rhode Island. The show is run like an auction, and I'm pleased to find that the bids on it are now over $200. At 4pm tomorrow, the final bids will be taken. The money raised will be donated to the Rhode Island Alzheimers Association.
The gallery allowed each artist who donated something to put in an extra painting to sell for themselves. Bob's extra painting sold on opening night. I'm hoping that his replacement one and my little pansy painting might have attracted buyers as well. It always feels good when you sell something, but even better when the money goes to a good cause.
Cheers until tomorrow

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Day 52

Lunar Duet
(Moonflower and Lunar Moth)
(6x8", Oil) Price: $125.00

Okay, I've been a bit slack lately. I got sidetracked by a new author and had to write a long review of her body of work for my Muse du Jour blogsite. Go look if you like mysteries...

Anyway, it seems I'm graduating to more complicated compositions. The moonflower came from a friend's garden last year, whilst I already had a reference photo for the Lunar Moth. The moon figures large in my astrological sign, Cancer, so it seemed an appropriate theme. Besides, the colour schemes complimented each other nicely. And of course, I did enjoy smoodging the background again.

The palette conisted of: Cobalt Blue, Cadmium Lemon, Alizirin Crimson, Transparent Gold Ochre, and Titanium White.

Now all I have to figure out is what to paint next. The more complicated arrangements take about the same time to paint - give or take an hour - but the concentration it takes to actually paint them take a lot more energy and mental alertness. We'll see.

Cheers 'til then,

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Day 51

Courting Budgies
(6x8", Oil) Price: $120.00

I am getting ambitious!

I found out last week that budgerigars - which are native to Central Australia - are called Parkeets over here in the USA. A bit of confusion for me, I assure you, when confronting a photo of a 'parakeet', I thought "Well, that looks like a budgie, to me."

Anyway, this is a contrived setting in this painting. I found two delightful references for budgies - one male and one female - and placed them together in the framework of some Cherry Blossoms that bloom in our garden every Spring. The painting itself is a bit brighter and clearer than produced here, and I'm quite proud of it. The elements themselves, work well together, although I thought something was missing in the top left hand corner before I finished it. I thought of adding some floating blossom petals behind the birds, but concluded that that would just make the painting look too busy. In the end, I just darkened that corner with some Ultramarine and Yellow, to complete the framework and lead the eye back to the birds.

Palette included: Burnt Sienna, French Ultramarine, Cadmium Lemon, Permanent Rose, Transparent Gold Ochre, Titanium White, and a bit of Cobalt Blue. Brushes were: a very raggedy 1/2" Flat, a Size 4 Flat, a Size 8 Round, a Size 4 Filbert, and a very pointy small round one.

See you tomorrow,

Saturday, April 7, 2007

Day 50

Mourning Dove
(4x5", Oil) Price: $ 70.00  SOLD

Yes, it's another bird. I tried something a little more complicated than usual with this painting. I used the head of a statue that a seagull was gracing in another photo, and then chose a photo of a mourning dove to supplant said seagull. I changed the background entirely, and noodled lots of happy smoodges in green to give the dove's warm colouring a chance at standing out against it. Unfortunately, there is a bit of light reflection from the camera in the photo I took of it, over the dove area, washing him out just a bit.

I used the left over paint from yesterdays palette to paint this little guy and his perch. However, with a tight time constraint and not enough paint on my brush, the dove isn't quite as finished as I'd have liked. That's an old habit of mine - not enough paint on the brush. I'm learning to gauge amounts of paint needed for each brush stroke, and when to let the undertint of the canvas show through. It changes with each painting. It's funny, when I was young and learning to use oil paint, I was very impatient - as youth is - to see a finished product. Of course, my canvases were overly large and things got messy as I tried to complete each painting in one sitting. As years progressed, I began to paint in very thin layers with lots of glazing and blending. There was still room for happy accidents on the canvas, but I'd formed the habit of not using nearly enough paint on the brush. In these recent months, I've been having fun correcting that and working my little paintings up in one sitting again - just like I used to when I was young. The size, content, and paint are a lot less messy and a lot more controllable. Strangely enough, I've been consistently painting my birds on 4x5" canvasses. So much so, that's a bit daunting to go back up to using 6x8" canvasses: they now seem so big.

Anyway, more tomorrow I guess. I can't believe I've reached fifty little paintings. Wow. That's a helluv an achievement for me. Thanks for hanging in there with me.
Now, back to painting...

Friday, April 6, 2007

Day 49

Swanning Around
(4x5", Oil) Price: $100.00

I was so tempted to call this painting of a Mute Swan "Cranky Cob". The day we took the reference photos - at Lake George in New York State several years ago - this male swan was vain, arrogant, pushy, and just a bit cranky. A male swan is referred to as a 'cob' while a female is called a 'Pen': I have no idea why. However, ole cranky boots chased off his mate when she swam near us and planted himself decorously there instead. He followed us all around the tiny pond and posed for pictures. It's a good thing he was beautiful and the sunlight was stunning that day. Bob sketched him and I took photos with both of our cameras for maximum effect. I might just paint him again: some of the other photos from that Fall day aren't too bad either.

Anyway the title is apt, as the term means - according to the Oxford American Dictionary - "casually moving to and fro in an arrogant or aloof manner". I think my generation refers to it as 'posing'.

I'm trying to use a great deal of my own reference photos for my subjects, as I don't like infringing on the copyright of professional photographers who make a living from their product.

The palette consisted of the usual suspects: French Ultramarine, Burnt Sienna, Transparent Gold Ochre, Cobalt Blue, Titanium White, Alizirin Crimson, and Cadmium Yellow Medium. Brushes included: 1/2" Filbert, Size 4 Filbert, Size 1 Round, and small fluffy blending brush.

So, I guess I'd better go and see what else there is to paint. Things got decidedly frantic this week, and I'm behind again. So what else is new?