Wednesday, November 28, 2012

New Eventide Gallery Show

The Eventide Gallery in Essex, MA, owned by Teri Ermano is getting ready for a new winter show. Teri plans to have lots of lovely winter paintings in the front room. Please see below my contribution to the snow scenes.

After The Snow

Paintings also available at Eventide Gallery include the following.

This painting was started outdoors as a grisaille at Deer Island in Newburyport, MA along the Merrimack River. Deer Island is a favorite place for fishing, painting and boating. Most of the Island is wooded until you get to the edge of the water.

River Moon

Plum Island Overlook is a local marsh often visited by bird watchers. See this serene natural marsh in the painting.below.

The Overlook, by Susan B. Luca, oil, 12x16

Here are a few small paintings done on location recently as you can tell by the late Fall colors.

Autumn Rough Meadows by Susan B. Luca, oil, 6x12
Morning Along The River by Susan B. Luca, oil, 8x10
The Audubon Society has opened a new wildlife refuge off Stackyard Road in Rowley, MA known as Rough Meadows. A perfect place for painting on site.

The opening reception for the Eventide Gallery show is December 8, 2012 from 5:00 - 8:00 PM.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Pleine Air Painting - A Different Approach

This Spring, Summer and Fall I've been painting outdoors with Donald Jurney and learning that doing a grisaille/under painting developing light and dark using limited colors can be another option when painting out doors. This simplifies the task of trying to deal with shapes, composition, light, dark and color. A fairly complex grisaille can be done more quickly and can be viewed later to confirm that the design is pleasing before completing the painting.Of course one doesn't walk away with a completed painting but how many times have you worked a little more on a plein air painting in the studio or a return trip to the site?

Whatever you decide to do the grisaille approach to painting on site has made me even more anxious to paint in out doors on site. The ability to capture the details of the trees and landscape help me feel closer to the scene and helps me remember the look of the scene including the colors and what attracted me to the site. In addition I've been able to do larger canvases. Below are a few examples of what I have been doing this Fall.

Rough Meadows oil 12x16

Work in process - these are the under paintings done on site at Rough Meadows in Rowley, MA

Rough Meadows Marsh 6x12

Rough Meadows High Tide 12x24

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Sunday, October 14, 2012

Dennis Sheehan In The Studio

Great news, Dennis Sheehan is now offering an on-line video academy with step by step instructions.  He plans to do one instructional video per week plus one or more silent videos. The subject matter includes landscapes and portraits. He may also do some still life paintings. If you've watched his videos on You Tube these are even better. Please visit his new Web site and start learning how to paint beautiful landscapes and portraits using Dennis's methods.

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Sunday, July 29, 2012

Newmarket Creativity Center Art and Poetry

More poems from the Newmarket Creativity Center inspired by my painting "Ocean Moon". The first poem "INDIGLORIOUS" is written by George Jack and "My Heart Is An Ocean Moon" by Ross Bachelder musician, artist and poet.


   by George Jack

   Waking up an hour before
   The alarm is set to go off

   Some insomnilonging lulls me
   From beneath the pre-dawn and its
   Chrysallislumberous keep

   That indiglorious first hour of morning
   When the room is steeping in
   The same blue glow curve
   As the outside sky

   On the front porch
   A light fog dampens all it touches
   Impassively clouded agent of freecipitation

   Dew, like softly jeweled fugitives
   Cling to leaf, stem, petal, in it’s wake, and
   Presses the shoulders of my robe

   As might ghostly fingertips
   Belonging to the opened palms of well wishes
   Reassuring me at some reverse-funeral procession
   I would only be welcome at, and
   Privy to
   At this sherbet-spectral hour of the day.

   All that’s missing
   Are all of the colors
   In dreams and in the world and
   Everything else I’ve left behind
   To be here at this moment,
   To bathe in this both rare and
   Precious blue, illuminating this,
   The other side of twilightenment.
   ~George Jack

My Heart is an Ocean Moon
Response to “Ocean Moon,” a landscape by Susan B. Luca

Poem by Ross Bachelder

You know, I’m just another guy,
I think you’ll all agree.
But there are times when I see stuff
That other guys don’t see.

For instance, when I watch TV
Or shop around for food,
I learn just how to be a man
And cop a manly mood!

On every channel except C-SPAN,
And down those grocery aisles,
They tell me how to be a stud --
Man Stuff in piles and piles!

But really -- can we always trust
What Advertisers say,
‘bout what it takes to be a man,
And live the manly way?

On Tuesdays they don’t like my hair --
They think it’s too damn gray!
But when those Fridays roll around,
Gray makes a HUNK, they say.

I really want to learn the truth --
It couldn’t come too soon!
But what the hell does THIS dude know?
My heart is an Ocean Moon!

If you REALLY want confusion, friends,
Check out the deodorant aisle!
Make a pit-stop in the smells
And linger for awhile.

Such an awful stink they make
About which brand to choose.
Adrenaline will make you tough -
Your testosterone will OOZE!

Or give the Power Beads a try --
Temptation might do wonders!
But which, you ask, is sure to bring
Excitement to my unders?

And what about them razor blades?
Now THERE’S a manly  item!
Mach 3, Flex 4 or Turbo Charge --
But WHICH one will EXCITE ‘em?

Hey, let’s go down the Shampoo Aisle --
And get an Ocean Charge --
Want Heat Igniting Citrus, Boys?
Them babes are loomin’ Large!

I want to know just what to buy,
What makes the women swoon --
But Jesus -- what does this guy know?
My heart is an Ocean Moon!

My LOVE LIFE sure could use a fix --
I’ll get me some Viagra!
A pill or two should do the trick --
I’ll become the Great Niagara!

I suppose it would be swell as hell,
To be up for four straight hours,
It’s an inconvenience I can’t afford --
I’d have to take a shower!

Now I hate to be redundant here --
I’m sounding like a goon!
And besides -- what do I really know --
My heart is an Ocean Moon!

I don’t shoot guns, I don’t race cars,
Don’t drink and chase the ladies.
I’ll bet those guys on Madison Ave
Think I belong in Hades.

I like to READ and WRITE, you see,
And visit ART MUSEUMS.
Kandinsky, Klee and Nevelson --
You really oughta see ‘em!

And sometimes, on a warm spring night,
I drive down to the Ocean
And stand beneath a cool blue moon --
I GET these funny notions.

The tender part of me is tough --
Though the Manly Man’s inside.
It insists on equal billing, by God --
The POET is my guide!

So hit me with your Hard Sell, boys --
And I’ll take it like a man.
Just hang on to the stupid stuff --
Or dump it in the can.

You know, those Empty Suits must think
I’m crazy as a loon!
And they may be right, for all I know --
‘Cause My heart is an Ocean Moon!

-- Ross Bachelder June 13, 2012

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Eventide Gallery - Essex, MA

The lovely gallery, Eventide, run by Teri Canelle Eramo is sponsoring a new summer show "Open Spaces". The opening is Saturday July 14, 2012 from 5pm to 8pm. The gallery is conveniently located on Route 133 a few  places down the hill from The Village Restaurant. I'm planning to visit the opening and hope to see you there.

A few of my new paintings will be showing at Eventide Studio & Gallery this summer.




 Visit Eventide Studio & Gallery in magical Essex, MA to view my paintings and to meet Teri.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

"Fresh Air" Group Show Of Newburyport Ten Painters

Busy preparing for the "Fresh Air" show starting July 1st at the Newburyport Art Association. This is a group show including seven artists from the Newburyport Ten Plein Air Group. The group has been in existence for over ten years, meeting at interesting sites in the area every Thursday morning from 9am until noon for painting outdoors. When the weather doesn't cooperate the group still gets together to paint at a church in Amesbury along the Merrimac River. It's a great group of artists inviting you to visit the show July 1-14, 2012 and if possible come to the reception July 7, 2012 from 7-9 pm.

I was honored that the group chose my painting Essex Marsh as the background for the show postcard.  Here are a few of the plein air studies I plan to put in this show. 

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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Newmarket Creativity Center Art & Poems

The Newmarket Creativity Center art and poetry reception was enjoyed by many people. The poetry reading was very enlightening. It was so much fun for me to hear what the poets wrote after studying my paintings.


Chip Bergeron wrote a poem called "The Old Bridge" for a my painting "Bradford Bridge". The painting was sold that evening in the silent auction. Here is a picture of Chip and his poem.

Chip Bergeron, Poet


Memories are always like this: hazy, indistinct;
I can see engineering-old time, not like it’s done today:
Concrete on stone footings much wider than the creek.
In the summer it barely flows, but melting snows
Make it in spring a swift freshet, drowning boulders
Otherwise exposed, and rising sometimes to within inches
Of the bridge bottom. But it always held, and holds now.

The mind is a funny thing: physical reality is unclear,
But the events of a boy’s life around the bridge are sharp;
Sharper than sharp, and focused like beams of purest light
That will remain uninvented for decades. What wonderful times!
Do you remember fishing there, catching horn-pout and perch?
And the day Andy caught that humungous bass, the one
That was unlucky enough to blunder down from the pond?

In high summer we’d shuck our clothes and jump and splash,
Sometimes diving off the big boulder in the middle.
There was always a deep spot right behind, and boy…
Was that water cold!!! Mom told us to always keep our
Clothes on, but what mothers didn’t know never hurt them.
It wasn’t as if there was a lot of traffic, and as long as you
Kept an eye out for girls, nobody minded. We felt so free!

What about all those skating parties in the winter, the games
Of swamp hockey and shinny? Or we’d make a long line and play
Crack the whip, peeling off in a million directions. One of the
Big kids would build a fire from fallen branches, and when we got cold
We could get close, and warm hands, feet and backsides. Someone
Would bring hot dogs, boil water for hot chocolate in a #10 can-
There was never a king who banqueted better in youth’s comradeship.

So much, so much happened around that bridge. An older me
Stole a kiss or two under it. But can a kiss be stolen actually if it
Was freely given? Those first were far sweeter than any shared since.
Time obscures. The boy I was then is still a boy. The body changes,
The mind remembers what it wants, and it still wants-fiercely.
The old bridge stands, and though how it stood then is obscure,
This old boy sees unhindered the life and the times that flow beneath.

Chip Bergeron
14 June 2004

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Comment::  Thank you Susan, I appreciate it... Chip Bergeron on Newmarket Creativity Center Art & Poems

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Gallery Show Newmarket, NH

Newmarket Creativity Center


A combining of Visual Art and Poetry

Opening Saturday, June 16, 2012

Reception June 16, 2012 from 5:00 pm - 8:00pm

Come enjoy art, poetry reading, snacks, wine, silent auction

   My paintings include the following and I'm hoping a poet picked at least 
one to write a poem inspired by the painting.


Newmarket Creativity Center
112 Main St 2nd Floor
Newmarket, NH 03857

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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Celebrating Lyme's Beauty Art Show

The Lyman Allyn Art Museum in conjunction with the Lyme Art Association and the Lyme Land Conservation Trust are hosting an art show in the Glassenberg Gallery at the museum during the month of June, Celebrating Lyme's Beauty featuring paintings inspired by visiting Clucas Field in Lyme, CT.

I'm happy to show you my painting which was chosen to be part of this special show from the May Paint Out.

Early Spring Near Clucas Field, 12 x 16, oil by Susan Luca

The opening reception for the show will be June 1, 2012 from 6:00 pm until 8:00 pm. Lyman Allyn Art Museum on Facebook The show will be at the Lyman Allyn Art Museum June1-30, 2012 and will then move to the Lyme Art Association for a showing July 7, 2012 until September 3, 2012.

Dick and I plan to be at the opening reception Friday June 1, 2012, Lyman Allyn Art Museum New London, CT.

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Monday, May 21, 2012

Dennis Sheehan Dynamic Portraits

A few more portraits by Dennis Sheehan for you to enjoy and study. Dark areas are used to create the drama of the portrait and direct the viewers eye to the face. Hope you enjoy seeing these.

The dark figure is enhanced by a light background
The light face is enhanced by the surrounding dark area.

As an artist it is important to experiment with different ideas. Above is an example of Dennis Sheehan painting two portrait paintings in different styles and each with a special feeling and drama. Notice the white areas carefully placed beneath the woman's face and the one to the lower right of the man's face. These white areas complete the framing of the face. 

Have you decided which appeals to you more?


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Amsterdam, exciting city of wonderful museums, canals, tall narrow buildings with unique rooftops and much more. We just returned from this wonderful city and there is so much to show you. If you've visited Amsterdam please share your adventure.

Sample of Amsterdam Architecture
Beautiful inspiring Vondelpark landscape and wild life.

Vondelpark Lanscape
Vondelpark Family


Thursday, May 3, 2012

Dennis Sheehan's Dramatic Portraits

In the previous post I introduced portraits by Jim Tinguely which are colorful and playful. In contrast I'd like to show you a few dramatic and dark portraits done by Dennis Sheehan. One reason for showing both styles is because I truly enjoy looking at both. Another reason is to help those of you who are artists choose your direction in creating a unique style. Both Dennis and Jim have a unique style that one can immediately identify.

By looking at different styles of paintings it will help you choose a direction: do I like the colors in Jim's portraits? do I prefer the dark moodiness of Dennis's portraits?

Presenting a few portraits by the master landscape painter Dennis Sheehan.


Notice how what has been left out is of great importance to this painting. The eye is drawn immediately to the center of the face where you are mesmerized by the penetrating stare. 


Friday, April 27, 2012

Artist Creative Search

In my February 16, 2012 post I introduced you to Hank Blaustein from Brooklyn, NY. Hank is an illustrator who loves to draw. While I was  visiting with Hank, he reminded me of Jim Tinguely, an artist from the Newburyport area. Hank and Jim are both driven to draw. Their interest started at a young age and the joy of creating a drawing continues to thrill them.

Last week Jim invited us to his home to see some of his work. I chose to look at his oil paintings on paper and couldn't resist getting some for my collection. I chose the following:

This painting is a study of loose brush strokes strategically placed to portray the soul of the model. What confidence Jim shows in his placement of strokes and use of colors.

This painting is in a frame made by Jim. Besides painting Jim loves to make things from wood. He also does woodblock prints and he is currently experimenting with different methods to get a unique look of his own. There are small stars placed as accents on the frame that are not clearly visible but distinguish a Jim Tinguely frame.

This painting has so much character. The hat and blue scarf nicely outline the face.

Each of these paintings makes me smile every time I look at them. I'm so happy with my choices, what do you think? 

My thanks to Jim for inviting us (myself and my husband Dick) to his home and giving me a glimpse into his life of an artist's creative exploration. 


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Dennis Sheehan Class April 12, 2012

It was obvious by the number of unfinished paintings in the studio that Dennis had been working hard all month and was carefully choosing the best paintings to complete for Gallery shows. It's always a special treat to be allowed into his studio and be able to look around and see so many wonderful landscapes. Mixed in with the landscapes, there is an occasional still life or a marsh scene with wonderful figures waiting to be completed, allowing them to come to life.

Dennis Sheehan easel

Here is a small peak at Dennis's painting setup.                    

The class demo was a repaint of an old painting that wasn't up to Dennis's high standards. The repaint consisted of sanding down the canvas and painting over the entire canvas with a completely different scene.

Dennis Sheehan demo painting

A quick try in a frame to add more to the final touch of orange/pink sunset hint.

Framed demo by Dennis Sheehan

Many new students have been coming to class, and this month we enjoyed having a graphic artist from Connecticut. Laurie drove 2 1/2 hours to join the class for the day. She had been wanting to experience being taught by Dennis and said at the end of the day she was very happy that she had come and hoped to  return.

Newburyport Art Association

Very nice Spring Show at the Newburyport Art Association, stop in if you get a chance. You will see one of my paintings downstairs. The Japanese Iris are from our garden and each year inspire me to paint overlooking the garden to capture the delicacy and beauty of these iris.

Japanese Iris

The Regional Juried Show will be on display in May 11, 2012 - June 9. 2012. I'm happy to say that my tonalist style painting was accepted in the show. 


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Spring Show

The Newburyport Ten Plein Air Painters is starting the 2012 season with a Spring show at Angles & Art in Haverhill, MA The show started April 2nd and goes until May 31st. The Newburyport Ten is a fun group of artists who enjoy painting together on Thursday mornings. A reception will be held at Angles & Art April 20, 2012 from 6-9 pm. If you live in the is area I hope you will be able to join us for the reception.

If you are interested in painting with the group send me your name and email and I will have you added to the distribution list.

That's me kneeling in the front.

Below are some of the paintings Harmke, Angles & Art owner, chose from my studio for the show.





Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Dennis Sheehan Class Demo 3/8/12

Second Thursday of the month, another inspiring class at the Dennis Sheehan studio in Bedford, NH. We started the class with a demo by Dennis, see below.

Dennis emphasized the need for interest across the whole painting. The interest can be added by varying chroma (color intensity/tone) while still maintaining the overall tonal quality of the painting. Variation in the sky is an important part of giving the painting more eye appeal. The design of the trees including varying the edges from soft to hard as well as the placement on the canvas are keys to a good landscape composition.  

Dennis also teaches that whatever you do it must be believable. The viewer needs to imagine a place like the painting portrays. If the painting is successful, missing details will be unconsciously added by the viewer and help engage the viewer in the painting. This will also continue the pleasure of looking at the painting every day at the owner's home. 

With some time remaining for the demo Dennis did a quick glazing of a winter scene to tone down a painting.

Dennis put a light blue glaze over the top of the sky and toned down the lower part of the stream to go with the sky change. He also put a light green glaze over the white snow and cleared highlights off with a Bounty paper towel. 

What do you think of the change? Can you find the differences?