Saturday, February 27, 2016

Sand Artist

Sand Artist, 20x20" oil, Diane Mannion

Figurative Series

Working on a series of figurative paintings.  Having a good time in the studio using plein air experience and reference, finding a snapshot taken years ago and then just making stuff up.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Blue Tube

BLUE TUBE, 20x20" oil, Diane Mannion

Slow Painting

Have been working on this for awhile.  It's partly from an old photo I took myself, one that I couldn't delete and kept going back to.  The photo was a lot different than this painting which appeared mostly from imagination.  Changed everything about the old photo but the blue tube, which I loved.  

The boy was much younger and had washed up on the sandy beach.  I made him older, changed his outfit and moved him into to deep water, which I hope gives the painting a bit of drama and danger.
John suggested a shark's fin... didn't want to get that dramatic!

Refreshing change from plein air studies, although painting the surf on location a lot may have helped me visualize this scene.  Used layers of glazing and scumbling, letting one section dry while working on another part or another painting.  

Slow painting allows me to refine, reflect, polish, and take my skill to another level.  Worked in the studio while listening to audio books, but having my studio right next to the kitchen can be dangerous.  Even though I may have eaten too many cookies, I'm darn happy with this one!

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

View from the Dock

View from the Dock, 11x14" oil, plein air, Diane Mannion

Light Chasers Quickpaint

Over 90 artists painted for two and a half hours this morning at the Phillipi Estate Park in Sarasota.  This was my contribution, black boat left before I finished.  Always happens...  but had enough blocked in.


Monday, February 15, 2016

Wendy Painting

Wendy Painting, 10x8" oil, plein air, Diane Mannion

Beautiful Lies

Thought I'd try a figurative sketch this morning at the Punta Gorda Environmental Center painting with the Peace River Painters.  I'm not happy painting on cloudy days, need those strong, Floridian shadows and screaming light patterns.  Gray days for me are blaaaaaaaahhh.

So, practiced with a figurative sketch of my painting neighbor, Wendy who was blissfully unaware that I was painting her.  There were about seven other artists behind her, but took them out to simplifiy the scene, changed the building, and when the sun weakly eeked out for a minute or so... rapidly put the light pattern down.

*Boring technical info alert:
Also experimented with Gamblin's chromatic black, which is a mixture of red, yellow, and blue.  It acts very differently than using Ivory black, found it turned a strong blue when white was added.  It seemed less "muddy" than Ivory black, which I use rarely.  I like to create blacks with ultramarine blue, burnt sienna, alizarin, or viridian green, or burnt umber, whatever it takes to get a warm or cool interesting "black."  Oh, almost forgot to mention... Gamblin chromatic black with yellow ochre makes a lovely green!

This painting's simply a sketch, could have tinkered with photo ref later, but then it would be a different painting.  Decided to leave it as is and give it to Wendy who was happy I didn't make her butt too big.

Afterwards we lined up our paintings and talked about them.  I kept telling the lily pond painters that the lily pads in the foreground should be larger.  "But they were baby lily pads," they said.  SO LIE, I suggested, to make a better painting.  We don't need to reproduce what's in front of us, an impression will do.

Loved it when alert artist, Stephen them "Beautiful lies."  

Monday, February 8, 2016


PORKY, 6x8" oil, Diane Mannion

Pig Payback Sketch

Had fun with this quick sketch promised to friends for pig-loan of previous painting...Spam.

Painted on oil primed hardwood panel with limited palette:  ultramarine blue, transparent red oxide, and white.  These warm and cool colors worked well!  Kept it loose and messy.

Short post, busy with large commission this month.

Paint away, Friends!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016


SPAM, 11x14" oil, Diane Mannion

Why I Painted This

While visiting friends, I always look around for things to paint.  This antique pig bank (Buy at Norco and Save on it's side) was locked in a display case along with a collection of vintage objects.  The owner allowed me to borrow his prized possession in exchange for a sketch of it (which I will do asap).

It's always a challenge to paint something completely different and... why I painted this.  Thought the pink roses from my garden would work well along with the vintage pitcher of orange juice because the colors work well together. 

 At first, there was nothing behind the pig and something else was needed in the background.  The can of Spam was John's idea, so we can blame that on him.  Attempted to paint the Spam so it would not dominate the painting... tough!  I like how it added to the zig-zag composition design.

Have been busy working on a commission for the Hughes Gallery, Boca Grande where many of my paintings are finding new homes fast!