Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Fabulous Fifties Digs

Diane Mannion, Fabulous Fifties Digs, 6x6" plein air oil

      We painted vintage, Venice ranches near the art center when the early morning sky was still lemony-yellow.  Had my class set up easels in a parking lot near their cars because rain and wind threatened.  Open hatchback doors are perfect for auto-painting: a place in the shade,  a cushion to sit on for breaks, cooler handy for snacks, hot coffee in a thermos... luxurious plein air painting!
     GREAT NEWS!!!  My first Artbyte Tutorial, SECRETS OF THE UNDERWORLD is now available at Daily Paintworks!  It's FREE!  Did I mention, it's FREE?  Please check it out and let me know what you think. 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Diane Mannion, MAC, 6x6" oil

      Fresh batch of shiny new artists in my class at the fabulous, Visual Art Center in Punta Gorda.  First lesson was A for Apple painting, tossed everyone a Mac (not the computer type)  and put them to work creating works in oils, watercolors, pastel, or acrylics.   This was my demo, started in class and tinkered with later.  And class homework: finish apple painting, eat the macintosh, and bring finished masterpieces back next week.  An apple a day makes artists healthy, wealthy (maybe), and wise... whether painted or consumed. 

Monday, October 29, 2012

Green Egg

Diane Mannion, GREEN EGG, 5x7" oil

      Green egg!  Yes, there is such a thing... my friend, Julie gave me a green egg and it was delicious with ham.  Her chickens have been so productive it's hard to keep up with all the omelets, scrambled, and sunny-side ups.
      Difficult painting today with Frankenstorm worries.  Stay safe, all my northern friends and family!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Heidi's Hibiscus

Diane Mannion, Heidi's Hibiscus, 3.5x2.5"oil on linen
        Artist friend, Heidi picked this flower outside the art center while we were arranging bottles, shells, and fruit to paint.  Another Snippet Series painting, I think it's number 25, but the list was lost when my computer burned out. 
        Had to replace computer... going through technological nightmare trying to restore lost files.  At least I had an outside backup, although it will take awhile to get everything back in place.  Four years of high definition copies of almost 800 paintings.  And all my writing and teaching notes...  And now my cell phone stopped working.  Sigh.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Lichee Black Tea

Diane Mannion, Lichee Black Tea, 10x8" oil on linen

      This might look a bit familiar if you check my last post!  The more I looked at the painting at that stage, the more I wished I had done.  So, rather than rubbing it out, I reworked it... a free feeling of not having anything to lose.  I took more chances adding and changing and am MUCH happier with it!  
      Many years ago, when I was working in watercolor, I did a still life by adding objects as I went along.  Without any plan but filling the space in a visually pleasing way, I painted one object and then another without ever setting everything up together.  This painting happened in the same way and I think I'll continue playing with this system.  Letting the still life grow piece by piece organically... an all natural, organically grown still life!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Red, Yellow, and Blue

Diane Mannion,  Red, Yellow, and Blue, 10x8" oil on linen

      Started this demo for a painting class I'm teaching in Venice and finished it later.  Set up the still life and had students paint from life.   Good practice for working on technique and training the eye.   
      "Remember, it's only red, yellow, blue... and white," I kept repeating.  All mixed together, they make neutrals... warm and cool grays.  

Monday, October 15, 2012

Brilliant Morning

Diane Mannion, Brilliant Morning, 8x10" oil on linen
Painted during the Golden Hour... right after sunrise this morning.  
This is what the first layer, the underpainting looked like.
Not a bad place to start the day!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Greenhouse Jungle

Diane Mannion, Greenhouse Jungle, 8x10 oil on linen

      It's impossible to reproduce the heady scent of orchids blooming in the Selby Gardens Greenhouse in Sarasota, Fl.  No, didn't set my easel up there, but have wandered through often, wishing I could.  Photo reference had to do.
      Started this painting during Dreama Tolle Perry's workshop last weekend in Jacksonville at the Eileen Corse Gallery.  Only had time to block in the underpainting.  Scratched my name on the bottom left with my handy-dandy meat skewer stick while the paint was still wet.  Much easier than painting it with a brush!  
      Home again, I took the painting to show during a class I was teaching in the Venice Art Center.  Dropped it face down on the floor... still a few scratches on the bottom left corner that I left for dramatic effect.
      Then I took this painting to work on during a demo at Ringling's Englewood open house on Saturday.  Kind of difficult to paint and talk at the same time, but did drop in some lights.
      Finally, this morning... was able to finish it!  I'm pleased with the way I was able to play with the light flickering on the orchids and leaves.  It's still a rough sketch, left it the way it developed on top of an (unfortunately) dry underpainting.  I prefer to work in alla prima style, wet into wet, but this time wasn't able to.  Can't wait to try it again, gradually working in the new techniques I learned at Dreama's workshop.
      My excuse for not finishing it sooner and not posting all week:  WORKED ON MY FIRST ARTBYTE TUTORIAL FOR DAILY PAINTWORKS!!!  As soon as it's posted I'll let everyone know.  Really proud of this honor.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Dreama's Workshop 1

Diane Mannion, Dreama's Workshop 1, 8x10" oil

      This is a workshop painting.  Although everyone used Dreama's photo reference, each painting expressed the personality of the artist.

            "Why are you taking Dreama's workshop?" someone asked me.  "She doesn't paint like you at all."
            DreamaTolle Perry's workshops are usually booked full a year in advance.  An artist friend asked me to find someone to take her place in last weekend's workshop at the Eileen Corse Gallery.  I thought, well why not me?  And my husband said, "You should do it."  So, packed my paints and drove almost six hours up to Jacksonville.
            I follow Dreama's blog and have listened to her on Artists Helping Artists where her sparkling personality and lively sense of humor always shines through.  I admire and respect her paintings, especially her brilliant colors and playful designs and compositions.  I knew I was in for a treat and would enjoy the three days painting along with her and a many other artists.  But what I didn't know was how much I would learn.  And I thought I knew everything!
            So in answer to my friend's question... Even though I don't paint like Dreama, I do paint with oils.  I can't wait to assimilate the gems of information I learned about technique and color into my future paintings.  But there was something else...  this workshop was a booster shot of inspiration!  Dreama's love and joy for painting and her ability to share that gift with other artists is exceptional.  "Paint what you love," she said.   "Enjoy the process and that joy will shine through in your work." 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Venice Beach October

Diane Mannion, Venice Beach October, 6x6" oil
      Only had a short time to paint this morning with the Light Chasers plein air group in Venice.  Delightful welcoming back the snowbird artists!
      I'm much happier with this little painting than my last post... maybe only allowing myself an hour to get the paint down helped.  Keep it simple!  Slap that paint down and leave it alone!  
      Will be taking a workshop this weekend at the Eileen Corse Gallery with Dreama Tolle Perry.  She doesn't paint anything at all like me... so I expect to pick up some new ideas, especially about color.  Check out Dreama's work and also visit the Corse Gallery.
      See you here next Tuesday!  Have a painterly weekend.  SOLD

Monday, October 1, 2012

Morning Moon

Diane Mannion, Morning Moon, 10x8" oil SOLD

      Painted with my friend in Venice this morning... first plein air outing of the season.  Beautiful but fast changing sky with full moon peeking out behind clouds.  I'm not thrilled with this painting, have to keep reminding myself it's just practice for the next.  But the morning wasn't a total loss as I watched my painting friend create this beauty!
       Eileen Wright, gave me permission to post her gorgeous painting: 

Eileen Wright, Venice Clouds, 11x14" oil