Archive for Art Themes

Day Nine: Studio Cat

I will not lie, my cat loves to be a part of the action, always within arm’s reach of where I am painting, designing or drawing. Sometimes, when looking for a way to warm up in the morning, I’ll grab my sketch book, as she lazies about, looking back up at me with curiosity.

One day, I decided to see what would happen if I painted her in caricature. I drew her a few times, each time pushing the exaggeration until I arrived at a point I was satisfied. Then I painted her in, using my traditional “Mod Narrative” style. For day nine, I present to you: Studio Cat. Acrylic on board.

 

Day Eight: Clear Creek Plein Air

Excited to report we have already sold two paintings during this 10 day sale! Our next piece was painted on location, on the Washington Street Bridge, looking at Clear Creek, in Golden, Colorado. Barely a stone’s throw away from this spot sits Coors Brewery. Day Eight’s offering is titled Clear Creek Plein Air, oil on canvas.

Size of art: 9″ x 12″. Sold with optional frame as shown. Size of frame: approx. 12″ x 16″.


When I endeavored to paint this original on location, I did not anticipate working in 95 degree heat. Needless to say, the summer’s sun hitting down on me and glaring off of the wet paints made creating this painting one of the more enduring pieces I’ve done to date.

Complain, I shall not, as the great masters Winslow Homer and Claude Monet were known for dragging their easels into the most brutal of elements, as the only way to truly depict nature on canvas was to observe it in person.

Painting was made sitting on the Washington Street bridge looking west. Lookout Mountain is in the background.

$99 for today only!

 

Day Seven: St. Mary’s Glacier

“St. Mary’s Alice” oil on board. Framed as seen in picture. Size of art: 10″ x 16.” Size of framed art: approx. 13″ x 21″ Comes with a certificate of originality.

Above Idaho Springs sits St. Mary’s Alice, formally St. Mary’s Glacier, where an ice field straddles between two mountain ridges. The bottom layer of the ice field has existed in its present state for thousands of years, as the snow and ice never completely melts during the summer months. What does melt pools into a beautiful and pristine lake at the bottom of the glacier, which then drains into a creek, surrounded by lush vegetation. This is where I chose to paint this image.

Day Six, Like Counting Down to Christmas!

Day six, and this is almost as exciting as counting down to Christmas! And speaking of Christmas, today’s piece is another Christmas themed piece. Titled “Mele Kalikimaka,” this is the result of what happens when you combine Christmas with Hawaii. This 20″ x 16″ painting will embolden any room with its presence, and get the festive holiday Aloha spirit going!

And if a painting is too much, we still have these available as cards. Order a ten pack today. Use promo code “surfsup” to save an extra 25% on this item.

Day Three: “Along the Road to Cape Cod, 2”

“Along the Road to Cape Cod 2″ $99 for today only as a part of the 10 day, 10 paintings, cyber week special.

Oil on board. Optional frame as seen in picture. Size of art: 11″ x 14.” Size of framed art: approx. 17″ x 21″ Comes with a certificate of originality.

Being a Colorado native, what amazes me about the East Coast is how much water can be found in the area. On our way to Cape Cod, along the New England coast, we were greeted by several bogs, lakes and eventually the ocean. These dreamy landscapes are not exact locations, but inspired by our drive.

Made to coordinate with “Along the Road to Cape Cod 1”.

Sailboats – Work in Progress

This is an unfinished piece that I am currently working on. I started it in late January, mixed all my colors and was ready to dig right in.

But then life happened and I experienced a loss I had never known before when my father passed away February 2. My world was rocked and the painting remained unpainted as my colors began to dry on my pallet.

When I was finally ready to get back into it, most of my acrylics were on the verge of drying out. I scraped and squeezed whatever remaining wet pigment I could get from them before they finally dried out on me. The underlying color structure has been set, but I still need to push and pull more values into the piece to make it stronger, crisper image. As soon as I am able, I’ll crack open the acrylic tubes once more and finish this piece in dedication to the man who encouraged me to chase after my dreams.

 

work-in-progress-sailboats

 

“Safe!” New Art by Benjamin Hummel

safe-rgb-500px

He’s reaching to steal second. The pitch is low and inside, which most pitches tend to be at this level. The batter was told to swing regardless, to distract the catcher, while the runner on first waits for the sign from his coach… who happens to also be his dad.

“He’s scratching his nose. Does that mean it’s time? I forget what scratching of the nose was supposed to mean,” are the thoughts of number 4, but in the end he decides he can’t sit and think about it, and he takes off. Barely touching the bag and sliding low to avoid the tag, he makes it in safely to second.

The number on the kid’s shirt is 4. This is not accidental. Who can be the first to tell us the significance of the number 4 on his shirt?


“Safe!” Original Colored Pencil on Paper
$100.00

Landscape to Paint: Colorado’s Hill Country

In today’s edition of New Art!, I’m always impressed with some of the spectacular scenery the state of Colorado has to offer, from the flat Eastern plains to the sharp cliffs of Ouray and Telluride. In the middle of teaching a landscape painting class, I painted this piece as a class demo from a photo we took on one of our Rocky Mountain excursions. If you are ever looking for a landscape to paint, Colorado is a great place to start.

Enter our contest!

This photo was taken from a very specific town in Colorado. Perhaps you may recognize it. The first person to guess the name of the town either here or on our Facebook page will win a box of Colorado Landscapes cards.

 

 

“Colorado’s Hill Country” oil on canvas
was
$250.00
$175.00
Save
$75.00

The Future of Children’s Literature: The Story Behind the Art

This new piece, co-illustrated by both Benjamin Hummel and Cherish Flieder, tackles the question, what role does children’s literature have as we move full steam into the 21st century?

We certainly live in a changing world. Book sales nationwide continue to drop–magazine and newspapers are going out of business left and right. We are in the growing pains of a new, digital revolution, in which everybody can become a contributor. There are pros and cons to this new digital age, but in the end, I believe that kids still want to be entertained, they still want to escape into a world of imagination.

With the new technology changes, we have newer and more innovative ways to distribute great storytelling to kids these days that could never even been dreamed of even fifteen years ago. From smart phones to tablets, kids can enjoy interactive e-books–filled with learning, fun, imagination and animation. As we figure out our way through these cool new changes, we as artists and writers and poets will still be called upon for our creativity and imagination.

We chose Steampunk as a theme for this illustration, to tie in with the juxtaposition between the past and the future. The books in the foreground countryside represent the fact that no matter what happens, paper pages will always be here with us. (Something about not needing batteries, never freezing, and never having to worry about data loss.) The tablets and smart devices in the distance form the booming and approaching city. And the pig? Why the pig? Well… Why not?

So what about you? What are your thoughts about the future of children’s literature? Reply using the form below and let us know!

Surfer’s Crossing: The Story Behind the Art

The painting began as inspiration of the wet island of Kauai. However, after scumbling in a few cliffs and some virga in the background, the painting was lacking something. It needed… a story. It wasn’t enough that these were beautiful cliffs with some tropical trees; what’s going on in the foreground? Eventually Benjamin came to the conclusion that there was only one thing that would perfectly compliment this dreamy Hawaiian landscape: a classic woody with surf boards on top.

This painting encapsulates the Hawaiian free spirit. Even if you have never been to Hawaii, you can appreciate the mood of the painting, as it draws you in and invites you to hop in back for a day at the beach. It is a wonderful addition to our Road Trip series, paintings created to celebrate the open road. This painting is the quintessential perfect “dude” art.

The original is for sale. Make me an offer!

“Surfer’s Crossing” framed original
$700.00