Friday, October 28, 2016

Grandfather's Shirt

Grandfather's Shirt, 14x18" oil, ©Diane Mannion

Shirt Came First

Another painting inspired by my summer model, Megan.  Loved the pose and shirt.  Everything else, including the figure's head is from my imagination and memories of painting at the beach.  I'm enjoying the challenge of combining landscape and figurative.

The title came when Megan said, "This is my grandfather's shirt."  Grandfather's shirt echoed through my mind while painting and helped create the narrative feeling of this scene.  A young girl hugging the memories of her grandfather.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Sand Sailors

Sand Sailors, 9x12" oil, ©Diane Mannion

Vintage Sails

Came across some vintage photos of sand sailing, a sport that still exists today!  (Go Google it!) Inspired by the classic sails and homemade contraptions of the vintage variety, thought I'd attempt to paint a few.  This one, made up from my imagination based on extensive research, is the tricycle style.

What struck my about this era, was the ho-hum attitude of the sailors, especially the females  who seemed quite bored with the activity.  Folks were dressed in their Sunday best, hats, ties, and dresses with long skirts.  Children weren't even wearing seat belts or helmets!  The characters and the lab in my painting are figments of my seedy imagination.

I'm torn about painting any more of these because they verge on my old illustration style rather than my more sophisticated fine art flair.  But it's all fun!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Simply Sunday

Simply Sunday, 14x18"oil, ©Diane Mannion

Dog Obedience

Simply Sunday sat around the studio for months and went through many changes, most of which I hated.  This painting was a dog (no insults to pooches intended here).   

Changed my summer model to not look like her at all (sorry Megan, they all can't be you).   The window view is from a plein air study that I did at the Hermitage, an artist's retreat on Manasota Key.  
Most everything here, including the non-Megan model, is from my imagination.

At first the figure held a letter with an empty envelope nearby, but who writes letters anymore?  It seemed too sad, like bad news received.  The book worked better, I liked the triangle shape of the white pages and the patch of blue.  Last thing I added was the bookmark to visually flow up to the petals and flowers.

Did not like this painting at all until yesterday… Sunday!  Somehow it came together with the relaxed feeling of a day well spent.  Now I like it even more than yesterday.  Very satisfying bringing this dog to heel!

So my tip of the day is to keep working with those dogs even if they bite, don't give up too easily.
Update:  Love this quote from Johan who posted on FB!

Johan Bjurman Sometimes a rescue dog saves you and becomes a seeing eye dog.

Friday, October 14, 2016

All That Glitters

All That Glitters, 23x32" oil, ©Diane Mannion

Growth of a Painting

Something about a few small sketches I did of my granddaughter kept haunting me… had to follow my instincts and explore the possibilities.   After a long and arduous journey, have found what I was after and at last, am ready to let this one go.

Part 1:  My original small sketches, the first quick block in with payne's gray.  Was excited about the figure but after working on it in the following stages, lost the "older" child of the block in, appeared to look too much like my granddaughter.  I wanted the figure to be someone I didn't know, a figure made up from my imagination, more "iconic."

Part 2:  Final stages.  First major breakthrough happened when I changed the figure to an older child.  Second breakthrough when my husband came in and wrinkled his nose, "Is that girl going to be hit by a giant wave?"  His comment caused me add a horizon and sky.  And final stages, added details and lightened the sky.  ***Having a problem photographing this painting!  iPhone shot came closest, last image.

Sunday, October 2, 2016


My PT, 8x6" oil, Diane Mannion

My Physical Therapist

Tricked my lovely physical therapist, Mylene into posing last week, one way to get her to stop twisting my leg!  Promised her a sketch if she wouldn't hurt me.  I have nothing but good things to say about Englewood Hospital's Rehabilitation center next to the Y… lots of kind, gentle folks with magical healing powers.

All's well, walking without cane already.  Spend half my time working out, the other half painting (with time out for sourdough bread baking)… healthy lifestyle.  

My PT!  Happy with her portrait sketch!