August 30, 2010

Fast Painting in Almansa

Ninth National Painting Contest, City of Almansa.

116cm x 89cm, acrylic on panel

Badia Commission

Here's a painting the Badia family, big supporters of mine, commissioned me to do for them.The scene is of their home in the village of Marines

80cm x 150cm, acrylic on canvas

August 22, 2010

Fast Painting in Casas-Ibáñez

Painted this dreamy piece on the weekend in Casas-Ibáñez, Castile-La Mancha. Since the conditions were ideal - a shaded spot, deadline at 5 rather than 2 pm, and the car with my gear nearby - I was happier than most times with the finished result, though the jury's still out on the prizes and the competition was ferocious.

Acrylicon panel, 116cm x 89cm.

August 16, 2010

Fast Painting in Alustante

After the sweaty rush of putting the exhibit together at Café Lisboa, we spent the weekend cooling off in the Sierra de Albarracín, where it was at least twenty degrees cooler than in Valencia, though amazingly only a few hours north by car. The geography of mountains, spring streams, and prime woodland was rejuvenating, while Albarracín, a jewel tucked away in the deepest ravine of the sierra, is one of the most esthetically moving towns I have ever experienced.

Here we are, a rare shot of us all, in front of the house of a supposed commoner, at least at one time, called the Casa de la Julianeta.

The town castle, probably built by the Muslims when Albarracín was a taifa, or a small independent Muslim kingdom.

A chunk of the town from the castle.

A typical chiselled road leading in to the main square. How that car managed to get in I have no idea.

Peek-a-boo. Camping out in Orihuela del Tremedal.

Of course no outing would be complete without a painting contest. Here's what I managed to do in the small town of Alustante. If you're thinking something doesn't quite work, I'd say it's the composition. The focus is dead in the centre, a no-no for this kind of painting.

August 15, 2010

Lisboa Opening

I would to thank everyone who attended my opening at Cafè Lisboa on Wednesday - Toni, the owner, the staff at Lisboa, friends and family, buyers, critics, cheerleaders, and my supporters at home (you know who you are). Thank you! Below you have a small photo of a few overzealous viewers and thumbnails of the paintings.

M'agradaria agrair a tots i totes els que vau vindre a la meua inauguració al Cafè Lisboa el dimecres passat: a Toni, l'amo; als empleats del Lisboa; als amics i a la família; els compradors; als crítics; als animadors; i al meu suport constant de casa (ja sabeu qui sou). Moltes gràcies! Baix teniu una foto petita d'uns espectadors molt entusiasmats i imatges petites dels quadres.

25cm x 25cm - Acrylic on panel / acrílic sobre fusta

46cm x 60cm - Acrylic on panel / acrílic sobre fusta

August 8, 2010

Fast Painting in Beneixama

Beneixama, five years ago, was my first ever plein air painting contest, and this year was my fourth time painting in the village. Every year it's in August, so very hot, and runs the entire day from early morning to nighttime, when the town comes out for an exposition of the paintings in the town square and eats the local favourite, blanc i negre, "black and white," or iced coffee with "meringued milk," a kind of ice cream I've never had anywhere but Spain. Though I've never managed to win a prize in Beneixama, I've always been treated well as a painter and in the last three years sold my work.

This year with the whole day in front of me, a spot I thought would be shady all day in the morning when cool was everywhere, and a house to go for lunch, I painted a scene that was, in retrospect, on the complicated side. I think I finish it with just about every detail and was more or less happy with the result.

 On the left, folks, you'll see a Moorish tower that the city restored recently, followed by the city hall to the right, the main square with fountain and potted plants, ample greenery, and a telephone booth word has it was the first phone in town. Acrylic on panel, 116x89cm.

An action shot. It's about 11 am. Note the shadow, creeping not over me but in my direction and away. In the painting the shadow on the street is invented to make the painting more interesting, among other points of creative license.

Watching sunflowers wake up on the outskirts of town.

Fiery peppers being eyed by a saint in nearby Bocairent.

August 2, 2010

Fast Painting in Sot de Chera

This Sunday I participated in the 22nd Annual Fast Painting Contest in the village of Sot de Chera, in the interior of the province of Valencia, about 80 km from Valencia city. It was my third time participating in the extremely competitive contest, and I imagine one of the longest running in Spain. I've never won a prize but I've managed the two previous times to sell my work.

This is the view into Sot de Chera. The town in the distance is Chulilla, another beautiful village.

There are plenty of wild fig trees in the mountains and we always manage to stop to pick some, though this year they weren't quite ready yet. The stop is a good excuse to rest the stomach from the windy road too.


There I am hiding in a corner, keeping out of the sun, and babysitting the stroller.

And the final piece. Acrylic on panel, 100cm x 81cm.