Sunday, December 18, 2011

Dear Suzy, 14x11" (Sold)

This beautiful woodland creature befriended my neighbors, Pat and Rosemarie, and became a constant visitor and diner at their home.  Wild animals are a source of great fascination in our neighborhood, since we bump up next to a forest.  Our book club chats are frequently centered around who saw whom, where and when, and how everyone out there is faring.  Do we sound just a bit eccentric?  We wouldn't have it any other way!

Friday, December 16, 2011

A Place I Remember, 16x8" (Sold)

This painting was such fun to create.  Starting with paint and lots of turpenoid, I let the paint run all over the canvas.  On top of this, I used a palette knife to lay in the major shapes, and finished off with a brush to soften some edges. What I like best about this technique is that abstract forms are created, allowing us to use our imaginations to fill in the blanks.  

Friday, December 2, 2011

Mexican Woman, 9x12"

This week I've been thinking a lot about the artists that I admire.  Today, I decided to try to paint a woman in the style of Jeffrey Watts.  Bold, simple strokes with loads of paint are what sets him apart from many portrait painters.  I had to stop myself from going back in and putting in more detail many times-- it goes against my nature, but I'll put my brushes down now and let it be.

To bid on this painting, click on Ann Feldman Mexican Woman.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Tarts for Thiebaud, 10x8"

Tarts for Thiebaud, Ann Feldman

I can never just walk by a painting by Wayne Thiebaud.  I find myself stopping and staring at his paintings of pastries, all lined up like a row of soldiers, and I ask myself, what is it about this painting that I find so intriguing?  The pastries are displayed like icons, and they are imposing without being threatening.  They are tilted toward us invitingly.  The shapes and shadows are painted simply, but with extremely complex color shifts.  Thiebaud is pop art, contemporary art, impressionism, and realism all rolled into one.  He can't be defined, and perhaps that's why I find him so mesmerizing.

To bid on this painting, please click on Ann Feldman Tarts for Thiebaud.

Wayne Thiebaud, Four Cupcakes, 1971

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Das Kaffeehaus, 6x6"

This is a little cafe street scene in Germany, painted mostly with a palette knife to keep the figures very loose and open to the viewer's interpretation.  I haven't been to Germany, but I can imagine that this place creates quite a clatter!

To purchase this painting, please send me an email.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Toastie, 6x6" (Sold)

This week's challenge for Daily Paintworks is to paint your toaster.  Easier said than done.  Every time I'd get my setup together, someone would sneak up to my studio and steal it to toast something downstairs!  I hadn't realized 'til now that this appliance was so vital to our daily living around here.  I'll never take you for granted again, Toastie!

To bid on this painting, please click on Ann Feldman Toastie.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Richard the Second

Richard came in to sit for us again last week, and I developed his portrait a bit further.  I'm glad that I took the time to put more thought and detail into his face.  In the first sitting, I covered large areas of his face with broad brushstrokes of color.  The second week, I went into these areas and broke them up with shorter strokes of new color.  I think it gave him more dimension and a more lifelike appearance.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Good Dog, 8x8" (Sold)

I saw this modern-day cowboy out fixing fences in Colorado a while back.  What really impressed me (besides his fancy red horse with wheels) was his really good dog perched on the back of his bumpy vehicle.  He was more than ready to jump down and give some cows a little instruction!

To bid on this painting, click on Ann Feldman The Good Dog.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Self Portrait

Hello Friends: Yes, I know that this portrait doesn't look a whole lot like me-- I'm serious and I've got my mouth closed (!), but as you can see, it's what I would call "experimental".  I can do this with a self portrait, because I know that the client won't mind. I used a loaded palette knife to apply the paint, so the likeness got away from me a bit. But I'm happy with the push that I gave myself in a new direction, so I won't sweat the details.

And Now For A Teachable Moment:  Several of my portrait students have asked that I jot down some of my teachable thoughts on my blog, and I have a couple of them today. In class, I stress the importance of finding the light and shadowed areas on the head, face, and neck and sticking to those areas throughout the painting process. In this portrait, after I found the light and shadow areas, I was free to apply any color I wanted, as long as I stayed true to my original "map". Notice the huge green area on the shoulder. Since it's in the right value, it reads right. This allows me to push my colors into completely new and unexpected areas. Having a plan is actually very freeing!

And now a thought on using the palette knife. Applying paint with a palette knife is a lot like riding a wild horse with really loose reins-- you're not really in control and unexpected things happen at every turn! I maintain just a bit of control by having very large mixtures of paint on my palette in light, middle, and dark values, and I "average" the color in each puddle to what I see in the large areas of my portrait. As long as my values are kept separate, I can add colors and apply them liberally without as much fear as I normally would have. Let's look at that shoulder area again. I started with a very light mixture of paint for the skin in the light, then added light green and light blue to my mixture with the knife. These colors didn't blend entirely on the palette, so tiny streaks show up in the painting. I love this effect. Every time I reloaded my knife, I picked up a bit more color from somewhere on my palette and put it into my mix. This keeps the area alive and gives a feeling of movement.

So stick to your plan, and push your color! You might find new experimental horizons of your own!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Nesting Time Again, 8x10" (Sold)

If this painting looks familiar, I painted one very similar a few months ago, and was asked to paint it again!  I rearranged the order and tilted them the opposite way, but I still found it pretty difficult to paint another painting so closely related to one I had done before.  This one took about twice the time the first one did, and I think it's because I lost the freedom I had with the first one-- I had to match all the decisions I had made before, and it was a completely different process.  I enjoyed it nonetheless, because I'm intrigued with shiny objects and bright colors (I guess it's the magpie in me).

Monday, October 31, 2011

Sunday Morning, Cambridge 8x8"

It's hard to beat Cambridge Massachusetts on a Sunday morning in the fall.  The architecture, the boutiques, the Harvard bells tolling in the distance.  Emily and I were lucky to catch what was probably the last great autumn weekend of the year!

To bid on this painting, click on Ann Feldman Sunday Morning, Cambridge.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Portrait of Inna, 10x14"

Inna is a student at Mainstreet who came in to model for us the other day.  After laying in a thin wash of paint with my brush, I took my palette knife to it to punch up the difference in my values and to lend the painting more of an impressionistic feel.  For the background, I brushed on a bright orange color and followed it up with mixtures of white, blue, and green applied with my palette knife.  This technique of layering complementary colors over a bright background allows the color to "sit behind" the model, which is always desirable!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Regatta on the Charles, 8x8" (Sold)

This past weekend I visited my daughter Emily in Cambridge, and it just so happened that the Head of the Charles Regatta took place at the same time.  What a carnival!  Streets in Boston were closed to make room for the hordes of race watchers, food stalls, and rides.  The weather was perfect-- crisp and sunny.  It was the perfect New England spectacle!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A Sunny Day, 6x6"

This tiny portrait of a little girl in the sunlight was my entry into this week's Daily Paintworks Challenge.  I tried to keep this one very loose and impressionistic.  I often find this type of portrait more intriguing than a very detailed one.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Aspens in the Snow, 8x10" (Sold)

This past weekend was Parents' Weekend at both boys' schools in Colorado, so I left a few days early to paint in the Oil Painters of America's Paint Out in Woodland Park, near Pikes Peak.  The Aspens were in full color, and I was in heaven.  This being my first "away" paint out, I wasn't very well prepared!  I sat on my suitcase and balanced my painting on my knees while the wind whipped all around me.  The landscape moved me so much that I lost myself in my painting and didn't realize that I came pretty close to hypothermia one blustery morning...

Next time, I'll be ready!  Fingerless gloves are a must-- as is my easel.  I can't wait to go again!

To bid on this painting, click on Ann Feldman Aspens in the Snow.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Sun Over Mt Sopris, 8x8" (Sold)

This is the last of my Mt Sopris "miniseries".  The area is so beautiful, I couldn't paint just one!

This painting will be up for auction at the Colorado Rocky Mountain School fundraiser on October 15.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

John and Anne's Truck, 8x8" (Sold)

The founders of the Colorado Rocky Mountain School drove a truck from Vermont in 1953 to settle and set up their school near Carbondale.  The truck still sits in a place of honor on the campus!

This painting will be up for auction at the CRMS fundraiser on October 15.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Mt Sopris, Late Summer, 8x8" (Sold)

Our youngest son Jordan is finishing high school in Colorado.  He loves it there.  For art class, he elected to take blacksmithing.  His school sport is mountain biking-- a bit of a departure from life here in Illinois! Campus is in the shadow of Mt Sopris, which I couldn't resist painting last time we were there.

This painting will be auctioned at the Colorado Rocky Mountain School fundraiser on October 15.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Illinois Sunflowers, 5x5"

Sunflowers are everywhere in our area right now-- profusions of them!  During a walk in a field, I came upon a huge branch of them hanging over my path.  I could look up into them at the sky above.  I toned a board with hot pink (pthalo red rose) and layered color on top with a palette knife. Sometimes starting a painting with an unexpected color can give a painting extra vibrancy.

If you would like to bid on this painting, please click on Ann Feldman Illinois Sunflowers.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Rain in the Woods, 8x8" (Sold)

This is the other plein air painting I completed in the rain at the Crabtree Paint Out.  A week later now, and my gear is just about dried out from the excursion!  Sure, there was some hardship involved that day, but I'm so glad that I didn't miss out on the beauty of that quiet spot.

If you would like to purchase this painting, please click on Ann Feldman Rain in the Woods.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Edge of the Prairie, 8x8" (Sold)

Can you tell that this little painting was created in a downpour?  Last Sunday's Crabtree Forest Paint Out was nearly washed out by rain, but a surprising number of hearty souls braved the weather with good cheer, and it turned out to be a fantastic day.  Dear husband John stuck with me the whole day-- we resembled a couple of whalers from Nantucket in our rain gear!  We trekked way out to the prairie where the adverse weather toned the grass and wildflowers into glowing fall color.  It was worth the trip!

To bid on this painting, please click on Ann Feldman Edge of the Prairie.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Mainstreet Instructors Show

"Timeless", 18x24"

Did you know that the instructors from Mainstreet have a show going on now at the Elmhurst Art Museum in Elmhurst, Illinois?  It will be up until October 21-- plenty of time to get there!  And we'll have a reception on Friday October 7, at 7pm, and I would LOVE to see you there.

In the meantime, if you'd like to see the art that I have there, please click on Ann Feldman's Virtual Gallery.   Thank you!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Tall Grass Study, Crabtree Forest Preserve, 5x5" (Sold)

The Crabtree Forest Paint Out is tomorrow, so this is the last of my studies before the big event.  I'm looking over my studies today, deciding which type of painting I should paint on site.  So far, I've gotten votes for the thistle study and the tree.  If you have any thoughts to share with me, please do so!  I love your input -- but time is limited! I'm packing up tomorrow morning!

These little studies (and a couple of extras) will be on sale at Crabtree tomorrow.  I've decided to price them at $40 a piece.  If you'd like me to put one aside for you, please let me know.  And thanks!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Wildflower Study, Crabtree Forest, 5x5"

This is another tiny plein air study I did in preparation for the Art in Nature event at Crabtree Forest Preserve this Sunday.  These studies will be for sale at the event, but if you'd like me to reserve one for you, just let me know!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tree Study, Crabtree Forest 5x5" (Sold)

This is a little tree study that I painted in preparation for the Art in Nature event at Crabtree Forest this weekend.  All of these tiny studies will be for sale at the event-- if you would like me to reserve one for you, please let me know!

I'm trying to arrive at a final painting idea for the event, and I'd love to have your vote!  I'll post a couple more, so please stay tuned.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Thistle Study II, 5x5"

Here is the finished study in color.  While I was outside and in front of my subject, I mixed some of the colors that I was observing and made little swatches of these colors on a toned board.  When I came inside, I had my swatches, my three value study, and a photo or two to guide me. Taking the monochrome study from my previous post, I layered color on top.  I tried to keep to the lights and darks that I had mapped out, and I adjusted some problem compositional areas as I painted along.

I may decide to use this study to paint an actual painting, but sometimes I like the spontaneity of little studies like this one!

My plein air studies will be on sale this Sunday at the Crabtree Forest Paint Out-- come visit me!  The Preserve is on Palatine Road, near the intersection with Barrington Road.  I'll be there from 11-4.

Thistle Study I, 5x5"

I'm getting ready for the great Crabtree Forest Preserve Paint Out this weekend. Whenever I paint outdoors, I have a hard time getting color right, so I paint monochromatic studies like this one to get me started.  For this one, I took a new canvas and covered it with wet purple paint mixed with some Gamsol.  To find the light parts, I used a clean brush or paper towel to wipe away the paint.  Then I went in with a brush loaded with thick paint to find the dark areas.

Now that my composition is figured out and my lights and darks are defined, all I have to do is match my color with what's already happening.  Sounds easy, right?  Well, as I looked again at my composition, I decided to tweak it a bit and move things around as I painted.  I'll post the finished product so you can see the difference.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Wednesday Afternoon (Sold)

I challenged myself with this setup to paint white things without using much white at all.  I held back until the last little highlights at the end to indicate that the surfaces were indeed white.  After all, you can't paint a light highlight if everything behind it is already white!

If you would like to bid on this painting, please click on Ann Feldman Wednesday Afternoon.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Orange You Blue? 8x8"

I've entered a dangerous phase in my life-- ordering antique glass objects on Ebay!  The "buy" button on my computer just seems to click itself.  This is an antique inkwell that is one of my newest acquisitions.

To bid on this painting, please click on Ann Feldman Orange You Blue?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Best of Luck (Sold)

I hope that opening a cocktail umbrella inside brings the opposite of bad luck!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Just Peachy, 6x6"

Here is another still life setup that I painted while on vacation.  Michigan peaches!  This one had to be done pretty quickly, using a palette knife.  So many hungry people in one house means that edible still lifes have a way of disappearing pretty quickly.

If you would like to bid on this painting, please click on Ann Feldman Just Peachy.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Cape Cod Morning, 6x6" (Sold)

Sometimes vacations can be hectic, but this time, I had the rare opportunity to sit on a screened-in porch with my niece and paint for a few days.  We'd put together a still life setup and go at it for a few hours at a time.  What a luxury!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Customer Appreciation Sale-- Free Frames!

Dear Friends,

I haven't been posting much lately and I apologize for that.  I've been away on vacation and rehabilitating my broken wrist.  But I'll make it up to you!  I'm selling several of my paintings with FREE FRAMES!  These paintings are on display now at the Good Shepard Health Club, sponsored by the Barrington Cultural Arts Council.  

Please visit my virtual gallery by clicking on Ann Feldman Virtual Gallery. Let me know by email ( if you would be interested in any of these paintings.

Thank you for your patience and your support all through the year!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Here We Are, 6x6"

So, here we are, the beauties that you've been waiting for all summer.  All it took was a little weeding, some pruning, a wee bit of watering, fertilizing, eye rolling, and tongue clicking.  But here we are, at long last.  Now go sit down and enjoy us!

To bid on this painting, please click on Ann Feldman "Here We Are".

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Tishomingo Blues, 8x10" (Sold)

Last weekend, John and I went back to New Orleans, my home town.  One morning, we went to The Court of Two Sisters for brunch on the patio.  A live jazz trio was playing in the background as we feasted on Shrimp Creole, french bread, and Bananas Foster.  I bought the trio's CD (Charlie Fardella and his Sensation Jazz Band) and have been playing it all week as I paint.

This morning, I turned the music up and painted this scene as I listened.  One of my favorite tunes is Tishomingo Blues, so I named the painting after this one.  I learned that it's hard to keep serious and "in the lines" when you're listening to New Orleans jazz!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Morning Reflections, 6x6" (Sold)

This was a really good challenge-- getting those cherry reflections in the silver almost made me cross-eyed!  I entered this one into this week's Daily Paintworks challenge.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Perfect Day, 10x8" (Sold)

What could be more perfect than a day spent outside when the shadows and sunlight are "just so"?  Sometimes when I'm out with my plein air group, I can't resist trying to capture my fellow artists at their happiest and most industrious.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

And Now For a Brief Intermission...

Dear Friends:

A bit of bad luck has befallen me.  Day before yesterday, I broke my right wrist while I was playing tennis.  Since I'm now saddled with a rather cumbersome cast, I may be forced to take a brief intermission from my painting.  But I'll be back!  And I did ask them to cast me with a couple of fingers free, so I may be back at it before we know.

It's a good thing that my husband John is the cook around here.  At least we won't starve.

See you soon!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Monday Morning, 6x6" (Sold)

Before I face all the errands and little chores of the coming week, I decided to set up a sunny still life to get things off on the right foot.  I forced myself to lay down just one stroke of paint at a time, and then just leave it!  No going back and fussing with it.  I'm forcing myself to be happy with an impression of what's in front of me.  I hope you like it!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Old Mill, 8x10" (Sold)

This is my entry for this week's Daily Paintworks challenge.  After a false start or two, I reverted to my trusty palette knife to cover up the mess I had created and was able to come up with something I could be happy with.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Vase Buddies, 6x6" (Sold)

Sometimes a little knick-knack will call to me from the store's shelf.  Both of these little vases did just that this past week, and I couldn't resist.  I justify my purchases by painting them!

Click here for purchase information.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Mary (Sold)

About a month ago, I was invited to put on a portrait demonstration at the Del Webb art club in Huntley.  So many talented artists with great questions and insights made for a very lively discussion.  I was able to start Mary's portrait there, and then I took it home with me to finish it up.  I'm looking forward to going back to put on a workshop there in November!

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Balancing Act II, 6x6"

Well, I enjoyed painting the first Balancing Act so much, I just had to paint another!

For purchase information, please click here.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Balancing Act, 6x6" (Sold)

My Brother-In -Law gave me this great magnetic sculpture with blue figures balancing balls and each other.  I took one out and placed it on an upside-down shot glass.  Voila! A Balancing Act!

Click Here For Purchase Information

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Open Door, 8x10" (Sold)

Every now and then, our plein air group goes to Volkening Heritage Farm to paint.  I was so lucky to stumble upon this scene of a young girl pausing in the doorway of a century-old barn in the middle of her very busy day. Naturally, she didn't linger there long.  Modern technology came to the rescue and I snapped a quick photo of her before she slipped away.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Nesting Time, 8x10" (Sold)

$60, Oil on Gessoboard

I painted this one for the Daily Paintworks challenge this week, which was to balance a stack of something and paint it.  I used tons of thick paint and a palette knife, which meant that I ended up with more paint on myself than on my canvas by the time it was all through.  I thought of the title "Nesting Time" as we prepare to send our youngest off to camp tomorrow.  Now it's nesting time for the empty nesters!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Lavender Hillside, Colorado 10x8"

$125, oil on gessoboard

Well, the lavender color on the side of the hill is actually from scrub oak, but scrub oak in a painting title does not evoke the romance that lavender does!  I have entered this painting in a new challenge for me-- A Day Not Wasted June challenge.  The photograph is supplied by a professional photographer, and artists interpret it and send in their entries.  Should be fun!