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MY DIY panel carrier

I have noticed similarities between kentucky and mexicos cultures. We both have a talent for using the materials available to create a solution for a problem. We call it appalachian engineering. They call it technologia mexicana.

I recently made this oil panel holder; using scrap wood from printmaking/woodcut projects, nails, glue, and of course, duct tape!!

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Plein Air Paintinting in Augusta, KY – March 2019

Augusta, KY will always have a special place in my heart. During my formative years as an artist (my 20s), I met many amazing people, who nurtured, encouraged and supported me…their friendship and kindness played a major role in the artist I have become. Looking back, it was a magic time and place for me.

Time has passed…and we have lost too many of those wonderful people. I haven’t been visiting Augusta like I should, and today, I decided to fix that. I paid a visit and set my paints up to make a little oil painting of the heart of Augusta — it’s library.

Afer painting the library, i also visited Augusta Ky’s namesake church “st. augustine” and painted it too…the sky was so blue today…almost surreal. I love how the white steeple contrasted with the blue sky.

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Barns, Bridges and buds

Im trying to paint outside more often. Its a great way to challenge myself and grow as an artist. I *almost* didnt paint today, because its a cloudy, grey day. Then i realized that grey is one of my favorite colors…it looks great with everything! Hope you are having a great, grey day!

sketch of suspension bridge in aberdeen ohio by artist ken swinson
sketch and view for today’s painting #2
plein air painting of suspension bridge across the ohio river by artist ken swinson
Bridge over the ohio 6″x4 1/2
plein air underpainting of yellow house in old washington kentucky by artist ken swinson
the buds on this tree are just about ready to POP!
plein air painting of a yellow house in old washington kentucky
Old Washington, KY

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Plein air painting in Aberdeen and Ripley, Ohio- March 18th

I have been struggling with some of my studio work, and these little pleinairexcursions have been a great exercise in capturing a moment, color, light…and knowing when to stop…plus an added bonus of fresh air, and making art in public.

sketch of st michaels church in ripley ohio
photo of artist ken swinson with friends ron and betsy in Ripley ohio

 i love visiting ripley. Such a friendly little river village. Ripley artists Betsy Adams and Ron Ralston stopped by to see what i was working on (st michaels church)
plein air painting of ripley ohio by artist ken swinson
The finished painting- St. Michaels Church-Ripley, Ohio
photo of artist ken swinson painting from the rankin house in ripley ohio
Painting at the Rankin House in Ripley, Ohio
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A chilly day of painting in Old Washington, KY 31 March 2019

sketch of taylors corner in old washington kentucky by artist ken swinson

I have thawed out from this mornings painting (you can see it in my instagram or fb stories) . Now that its warmed up to 37 degrees, i thought id take my paints down the street for a second plein air painting. Todays a great day to be here because Robbin Lee Weingartner is hsving an open house in his studio–with Nicholas Denham performing live music.

underpainting of old washingtons taylor corner by kentucky artist, ken swinson
working out the composition and values. I love my alpaca fingerless glove/mittens…its chilly out here!
close up photo of oil colors on a palette
im ready to start mixing color!!! Trying to only use red yellow blue and white…to improve my mixing skills
artist ken swinson painting with artist/singer leah frederick admining and smiling
Our super talented Leah Frederick, stopped by!!!
plein air painting of taylors corner in old washington by artist ken swinson
some color on the panel…
plein air painting of taylors corner in old washinton kentucky by artist ken swinson
taylors corner. Old washington, ky
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painting in the countryside

sketch of a barn and house in rural mason county kentucky
Yesterday was city painting, so today is countryside. I like the way the road winds up the hill and the contrast between the black barn and white house
plein air underpainting by ken swinson of a barn and house in mason county kentucky
This painting and i have different ideas about whether it will be a landscape or vertical. It keeps telling me it wants to be landscape. I say, no, you are vertical. I think im going to win. Heres the composition worked out. Now time for color!
painting of a plein air painting outdoors on an easel
im using some new colors… Having fun with the greens… Trying not to get too wild with the violet. Detail time
plein air painting of barn and house near the AA highway near maysville, Kentucky
I love the smell of oil paint and cows while im painting outside in the springtime!
sketch of churches in minerva kentucky with photo of actual buildings in the background
next stop, minerva, ky. If you love old country churches they have a lot in this little town. The church in the background is from yhe 1830s, the church in the foreground is important because it was an early african american church. Sorry i dont know all the history about it, but hopefully, someone will chime in.
plein air underpainting of 2 churches in minerva kentucky by artist ken swinson
i wasnt happy with my original composition, so i moved to a different spot, and came up with this vertical composition and value study. Its color time!!!
plein air painting of two churches in minerva Kentucky by artist ken swinson
i love this time of the day. The light is so beautiful, this painting is shining!
plein air painting of churches in minerva kentucky by artist ken swinson
Thats a wrap! Im having such a good paint day, id love to try the dover covered bridge, but the light is changing fast, and im hungry… Forgot to pack snacks! 
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Arts Of All Sorts – Old Washington, KY

banner photo with person printmaking and pottery

I made a short video of Old Washington’s recent: Arts of all sorts. The video was LIVE, so it’s a little bit shaky and I did do any editing, but it takes you into the moment of visiting our little village during an art activity. I’m so lucky to be a part of such a creative community. Thanks everyone for making it possible!

If you don’t have the time to watch the whole video, here are a few photos of the video’s highlights.

basket weavers in old washington kentucky
woman making a clay whistle in old washington kentucky
father michael henderson spinning wool in old washington kentucky
barb clarke and ginny b butler volunteering in old washington kentucky
children painting a mural in old washington kentucky
theresa barns leading a felting activity in old washington kentucky
artists painting in old washington kentucky
artists doing body painting in old washington kentucky
woodcarving in old washington Kentucky
tents at washington hall in old washington kentucky
pottery making pottery in old washington kentucky
printmaking at old washington kentucky
linocut of the old washington courthouse being struck by lightning in old washington kentucky
pottery in old washington kentucky
marie kelsch in old washington kentucky
aromatherapy in old washington kentucky
acrylic pour painting in old washington Kentucky
maysville mayor david cartmel buying pottery in old washington kentucky