Archive for June, 2009

It aint over till it’s over…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 28, 2009 by Eldon

and it looks like it’s not gonna be over till Monday. As much as we’d have liked to see it finished today there’s more than a days work here. Oh well!  Monday’s good too!

This morning

But! I’m thinkin the condition of my house isn’t all that exciting so this one photo is all I’m puttin in for right now. Maybe I’ll do a “finished, thank God!” picture later but for this post I have a way old progression of a way sold and gone 30×40 landscape. One of my favorites.

30x40 oil

This was done with a burnt sienna under painting and drawing before “Eldon Orange” <—- (So named by my friend Dawn.) came into the picture. Burnt Sienna works just as well. The stuff that shows through in the finished piece is nice and warm just not as bright as the orange.

30x40 oil

The palette was probably the same but there may have been, from the looks of the piece, some Alizarin Crimson on there as well. For those following who don’t know my palette, here tis. Titanium White, Cad Yellow Pale, Cad Orange, Bright Red, UltraMarine Blue and Sap Green. Visitors to my palette are Burnt Sienna, Yellow Ochre Pale and Alizarin Crimson. Once in a great while, Cad Red.

30x40 oil

The Cad Orange is a great color to neutralize a green. I use the Sap Green way too much and I also mix a green with the blue and yellow. The orange puts the green nicely into a neutral position. A touch of Bright Red works great too and gives a little warmer green.

30x40 oil

Green! Ewwww! There was a time I actually nearly hated green. It’s hard! I struggled with it every time I put a brush in it. I’d avoid it as much as possible and it avoided me. Me and green didn’t ride in the same car.

30x40 oil

Then one day I’m riding along. I’m rubber neckin and looking at all those different shades of green and, thanks to who knows what,  noticed their differences. I’m thinking,…..that’s a yellow green, …..that’s a red green, …..there’s a silver green and a blue green….so on and so on. I made it a habit and after a while I could identify a green and mix a reasonable representation of what I was seeing out in front of me. Finally green and I had come to terms. I know now what a cool green is and what it takes to mix a warm green but until I finally opened my eyes and looked it was chaos!!! Now I boss the green around!!!

Who wants to see a post with a bunch of green paint mixed warm and cool? I think I’m running the progression thing into the ground anyway and maybe it’d be good to change directions with the blog for a while. Let me know.  🙂



The Clean Studio Blues

Posted in Uncategorized on June 21, 2009 by Eldon


Today was spent working at home. We tore out carpet, ripped up the vinyl in the kitchen and we cleaned my studio.

I, however, am having a hard time dealing with the studio. I liked my clutter. It made me feel cozy and safe somehow and now it seems my personality is at stake. Maybe I threw it out with the rest of the junk (it wasn’t all junk) and the personality is already gone. I threw out lists I’d made years ago. Lists of things I was gonna do and never got around to. Still they were my lists and as long as they stacked up on my desk there was still possibilities.

30x40 oil trees step one

I pitched art magazines I’d never gotten around to reading and I know darn well some of them were collectors items. I miss, too, all those worn out brushes that would have made at least one more perfect stoke on perhaps my next master piece. Or the next.

30x40 oil trees step two

I don’t have a single painting leaning against a wall, or my desk, or my easel and all my extra frames are put up nice and neat. (they are against the wall) I hope like heck I can find one I need when I need it. 

30x40 oil trees step four

The place is akin to a hospital room. I swear now and then I smell antiseptic. I’ve heard the distant soft “ding” of an elevator.

Perhaps it’s the wine. But I deserve a nice glass of wine or two after all the hard labor that took place around here today don’t I? Don’t I get to relax and take it easy for a little while? 

30x40 oil on canvas

And maybe I’ll need a third before this studio starts looking friendly again.

Oh well, hope you enjoy this short progression on painting pine trees. This painting went to the Squash Blossom in Colorado Springs. It’s titled              “The Center of the Universe”.

I’m gonna hit the rack. Ahm tard.


“Sunset On Fall River”

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on June 14, 2009 by Eldon


22x28 oil on canvas22×30 oil Rocky Mtn. Natl. Park

    This is all I have for the post this week but this link —–> “Sunset On Fall River”  will get you to the progression for the painting above . The progression is on U-Tube.  There is no narration, only a bit of Vivaldi covering about 15 images. The video is just over a minute.

“Sunset On Fall River” is part of the show I just took to The Squash Blossom in Colorado Springs. Anyone wishing to inquire about this painting can contact the gallery through the link or contact me through my blog.

Debra is responsible for what you’re about to see. She’s the brains of this outfit. Thanks Debra. 🙂


Doug’s Back Yard

Posted in Uncategorized on June 10, 2009 by Eldon

A friend of mine asked if I was going to put the painting of the cars on my blog. I told him I would so for him here it is. It was done in Doug Holdread’s back yard down at Trinidad. Sort of. The cars are on the property where Doug’s studio is. I had the opportunity to paint these 3 old guys while waiting for Doug to finish some business before we took off for Rancho Largo on the 3rd of June.

untitled 12x16 oil

I had a great opportunity also, while at Doug’s studio,  to take  some photos. The painting below is the demo I did at The Squash Blossom in Colorado Springs last Friday. It was done from one of those photos. My style is changing slightly here lately and I see a lot of that change in this piece. The change has to do with the way I’m laying in some of my initial darks (brush work mostly). They seem to be darker, richer and more transparent as well. As a result my later layers of opaque paint are changing too. I think maybe I’m just muddling around with my opaques less and less. Anyway, many thanks Doug!

16x20 oil untitled

This painting (below) is one I took to The Squash Blossom last week so it was there for the first Friday opening.  It’s 30×40 and it’s titled “Center of the Universe. I actually took eleven pieces but I’ve hidden some of the photos so well in this cavernous computer that I’m having a hard time finding all of them. Anyway, I thought I’d stick this one in here for you for now.

There is another I’ll post later from the show. It has a full progression and then some. Perhaps this Saturday? Or maybe from the one below. I dunno.

30x40 oil

Till then, 🙂


Some of my painting friends from the Mitchell Museum

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 7, 2009 by Eldon

Mitchell Museum

This is the interior of the Mitchell Museum. I guess in the “old days” this was some kinda department store. Check out the ceiling tile. This view shows about 25% of it. The lower level was still hung with Mitchell’s work and our show hung upstairs. If anyone reading this is ever passing throgh Trinidad take an hour and see this place. You won’t be disappointed

Doug Holdread

Doug….I really like his work. I think tradsees are in negotiations. Doug is also the force behind these painting tours in S.E. Co. and opposition to the Pinon Canyon Expansion. By the way we’ve made some awesome progress down there.


This is Linda. The focus in her art is finding and recording things most of us miss. This lady is can render in pen and ink like it’s goin outta style.


Lois:  Lois made the only sale opening night. Congratulations!! She works in pastel. Great work! Do a close up of the horses and you’ll see what I mean.


Deborah…..She says she takes a terrible photograph. I beg to differ. And SHE was one lucky enough to get a photo of the Whiptails at our last paint location.


Fran…..Fran works in pastel also. The painting just to her right (about elbow height) with the violet and yellow is my favorite.

yers truely

Yers truely. Nuff said


Can You Hear Me Now?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on June 7, 2009 by Eldon

Where I was

No post last Saturday. My apologies. I was at Rancho Largo with Doug Holdread and the gang.  No wi-fi, no cell phone service. Verison would have hated it out there but our little band of plein air painters  found it to be one of the most beautiful places to paint you can imagine. Rancho Largo boasts one of the few  wild herds of long horn cattle and a species of lizard growing to over a foot long. (including the tail) Our host called them Whiptails.

first light

We were all invited to go Saturday morning to a branding on a neighboring ranch. A bunch of ranchers from the area get together and one ranch at a time do the branding until all the work is done. (but not all on the same day)  I’ve been to see a branding and mostly what I got was in the way. It’s  interesting to be sure with lots of activity and cowboys,  a big mid day meal and tall tales told all around.  There was only going to be one day of painting for me though so I passed on going branding and made good use of the sun. The photo of the cactus was taken just minutes after sunrise.

my subject

This old cedar tree was my choice of subject. It’s mostly front lit and I kinda  liked the dark shapes and shadows down inside it. There weren’t a lot of cast shadows to speak of except those lower left so I took some liberties and painted them  more prominently.

About 10:30 a.m.

At about 10:30 a.m. this is what I had. The shadow area lower left is a little on the violet side but it made sense with the yellow light of the early morning. It measures 18×24 inches.

I pulled up stakes and went back to the bunk house thinking of a nap but that didn’t happen. It was way to hot so I just lazied around.


next thing

But by about noon I thought I’d best get my heinie back to work. The temp. was already in the 80’s so I thought I’d look for a subject I could paint from the shade. What did I find  to paint? The old ranch house and the only shade was what fell beneath the brim of my hat. Oh well, I rolled down my sleeves, pulled up my collar and commenced the roast.

the result

Worth it though. The reflected light on the side of the house was what did it for me. The photo doesn’t show the light as I’d have liked it to but the painting pulled it off.

early afternoon

And as per normal early afternoon brought the thunder heads. I was all worn out from painting so I decided to explore a little bit and get you guys a few photos of what the ranch is like.


The cactus is early in the bloom. Most blossoms aren’t even open yet but this one growing from the top of a rock was awesome. It amazes me how the desert plants live so well with so little.

Indian Paint Brush

This flower is called Indian Paint Brush. Our host, Grady, said when he first came to the ranch the only place they grew was in his yard that was fenced and not grazed. He has taken a unique view of helping the land replenish itself and now, through his efforts, they’re all over the place.

We listened for quite a while as Grady told us about his method of ranching,  (he’s a biologist, Princeton edumacated) and he aint no slouch. Had I had a second day to hang out and hear more I’d have gladly slept on a rock to do it. Sadly I had a boat load of paintings to frame and get to the Squash Blossom in Colorado Springs so I reluctantly put up my gear and headed home. Thanks Grady for a most excellent time at Rancho Largo.

leaving Rancho Largo

This is the last photo I got as I left the ranch. The afternoon had clouded over and a rain storm was approaching that no doubt added a little more green to  Grady’s grass. Rancho Largo was once on the list for the army expansion at Pinon Canyon. It has since been removed and will supposedly stay that way.        Yeah right.        For now.