Posted on Leave a comment

Plein Air Painting – Ripley, Ohio 16 June 2020

It’s been awhile since I have been Plein air painting. All my recenty projects have been in the studio. When an artist friend invited me to meet up somewhere to paint outside, I said ‘sure! Where do you want to go? ‘ It didn’t matter to her, so I got to pick.

I picked the Rankin House in Ripley, Ohio. It’s a historic site that was once the home of John Rankin, an abolitionist who helped many people escape slavery. Perched on a hill, overlooking the village and ohio river, the rankins were able to give signals from their home to Kentucky.

Not only is the rankin house an important part of the underground railroad, it offers artists a magnificant view!

I wasn’t fully prepared to capture the view. I *should* have brought a panoramic canvas to capture everything. To improvise, I used 2 8×10″ wood panels, and set them beside each other to make a dyptich.

plein air painting of the Rankin house in ripley ohio

I have been experimenting with live videos and I tried live streaming the entire painting. It put a little bit of pressure on me…having a live live audience brought out some of the best of my talent, and I am happy with the finished painting!

Ins addition to my ‘virtual’ audience online, some friends (1 a fellow artist) came up the hill to watch me work.

artist standing outside painting with friends at the John Rankin house in Ripley Ohio

Thanks again for a great day!

Here is the full length stream of the painting…originally live streamed on Facebook.

Posted on Leave a comment

The John P Parker House – Painting

Remember 2 weeks ago, when I made a block print of the John P. Parker house in Ripley, Ohio?

Well, i thought it was such a great scene (and important historic landmark) that I made an acrylic painting of the scene!

If you are a fan of John Parker (like me) you also might like this painting I made a few years ago

Posted on 1 Comment

Church Paintings Update 1-16-2020

Awhile ago I started 3 paintings. They were different interpretations of the same scene. Since then, I’ve made some progress

3 paintings in a row of the church in Vicco, Kentucky
work in progress

also, since then, I have been gifted with an old drafting/artist table. It belonged to one of my best friends, also an artist, Lucciano Moral. He was making room in his house, and thought I would like it. He was RIGHT!!! It’s perfect! Thank you!

desk covered with art supplies and paintings
can you even see the desk under all my art stuff??!!
Posted on Leave a comment

Painting studies of church at Vicco, KY

I want to start the year doing more painting.
Over the summer, while in Vicco, KY, I sketched a scene of a little church beside a creek. Using the original sketch as reference, i drew these three compositions, using a sharpie marker.

3 sketch studies of a church in vicco kentucky

I like all 3 for different reasons, so I’m going to make 3 different paintings

the first step in painting 3 churches in Vicco Kentucky
the 3 paintings — work in progress

the one on the left has it’s base colors…now time to color the other 2

3 paintings of church in vicco kentucky work in progress

UPDATE: 7pm a little more color, will do some more painting tomorrow

CLICK HERE FOR PAINTING UPDATES

Posted on Leave a comment

New paintings -indoor safari + geese

I’ve been back in the paint studio, and am super excited about my new acrylic paintings.

8×10” framed acrylic painting.

our little birdie is on a safari adventure inside the people house. Such interesting plants and wildlife!

And a portrait of the Canada geese, who winter here in Old Washington

Click either of the links for a better look, and information on how to support my work by buying a fine art reproduction.

Posted on Leave a comment

Checking in from us route 62 – Old Washington, KY to Niagara Falls, NY

Greetings from US Route 62! I’m trying to explore and get to know the entire highway. Yesterday, I was inspired to try to make it to the highways furthest east/north point: Niagara Falls.

I DID make it past Columbus (my previous furthest distance) and stopped at ye old mill in Utica, Ohio. It is the home of Velvet Ice Cream. Their headquarters is located in a historic old mill. I was tempted to make a painting, but wanted to cover more distance, so I settled on a few sketches

holding a sketch in front of ye olde mill in utica ohio
Ye Old Mill-Utica, Ohio

After driving through picture perfect Amish Country (I am going to stop on my way home) I arrived at lanterman’s mill in Youngstown, Ohio.

sketch held in front of lanternmans mill in youngstown ohio
lanterman’s mill in Youngstown ohio

Lanterman’s Mill is a beautifully restored mill, located by a waterfall in a beautiful gorge. (it’s gorgeous!)

I had a feeling my theme for the trip was going to be mills.

The next day, I arrived at Niagara Falls. I was prepared for a big and beautiful waterfall, but STILL was unprepared for the majesty of the falls…especially the iconic horseshoe falls.

I was too intimidated to try to capture the horseshoe falls. I don’t think a photo even get’s close to giving you an idea of what it is like.

photo of rainbow at niagara falls ny
horseshoe falls-niagara falls

It was also very busy, and i didn’t want to try to push through a crowd of people to try to setup my easel and paint.

Instead, I chose to paint the bridge between the USA and Canada. It is actually the very beginning of US 62, which I thought was appropriate. I also love the symbolism of bridges, because they bring people together!

plein air painting of the bridge and falls of the americas at niagara falls, new york
Falls of the Americas – Niagara Falls

The overlook where I stood has so much mist from the Niagara Falls, that the painting was covered with water from the falls. Good thing I was painting in oils!

Now that I have surveyed the entire East of Old Washington section of US Route 62, I am taking my time, stopping to study, or get to know places that got my interest on the way up. I won’t lie to you…it’s not always easy for me to travel. I’ve seen so much on this trip, i’m visually and creatively overwhelmed. I’m stopping to make sketches on my drive home, but I’m also feeling a little tired, and I miss my studio. I’d like to dive deeper and start some big studio paintings. Stay tuned, I’ll have more to share soon!

Posted on Leave a comment

A Special Delivery – M’s Canvashouse

My friend, Meredith owns a business in Lexington, KY, called M’s Canvashouse, which supplies hand painted canvas designs and anything else you could need for needlepoint.

She works with all kinds of artists; including Charlie Harper (one of my favorites!) and …..Ken Swinson!

in meredith willetts studio looking at new designs
M’s Canvashouse has a wonderful new space…a beautiful store and showroom (not pictured) and great workroom

She recently moved to a new building, and needed a painting for her new office! The walls in her office are pink. What better place for ” Here, Birdy birdy”!

I love it when I get to deliver a painting in person (especially big art). It’s very exciting to see my painting in it’s new home.

painting of cat hanging on office wall

Thank you Meredith, for supporting my art; bringing it into your home and workplace, collaborating with me, and inspiring me with the possibilities of builidng a successful creative business.

artists ken swinson and meredith willett
Ken and Meredith

Stitchers! if you haven’t already visited her new shop, pay her a visit the next time you are in Lexington.

m's canvas house storefront lexington ky
M’s Canvashouse new building!

Or visit online: www.mscanvashouse.com

Posted on Leave a comment

Goddard Bridge – Plein Air Painting

It’s a hot sunny day, but I still can’t help stopping at the picture perfect Goddard Covered bridge in Fleming County, Ky.

panoramic photo of the  historic goddard bridge in goddard kentucky

It’s been awhile since i’ve made a plein air painting. This is a perfect opportunity!

pen sketch of the historic goddard covered bridge in goddard kentucky
ive got my sktech done…let’s start painting!
plein air underpainting of the goddard bridge in goddard kentucky
underpanting…now time for color!
plein air oil painting of the goddard bridge with actual bridge in the background of the photo
Goddard Bridge – oil on panel
4 1/2″x6″
Posted on Leave a comment

Here, Birdy Birdy

I just finished this portrait of my cat, his name is Here. He’s a sweet cat, but unfortunately, a birder–he’s also lazy, and will try anything to keep from having to work so hard.

The original is a 24×30″ acrylic on canvas. Because of the size, If you live within 100 miles of Maysville, KY. I will hand deliver your painting. if i need to ship by USPS, there is still no charge, but the canvas will be removed from the canvas, and shipped in a tube. UPDATE: the original has found it’s forever home

Prints are also available if you or someone you love is a cat/art lover.