Thursday, February 15, 2018

Tour Guide Rev - watercolor

watercolor, 2017
available, 11"x15"

      This was from a quick grab shot of an owner/guide of a golf cart tour we took around Southport, NC last July. He was quite a character and made the tour much more than just a history lesson. I'm very happy with the multitude of shadows and color shifts in this one. Some of those color shifts in his skin tone fought me at every step.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

66 Chevy Impala Sport - watercolor

watercolor, 2017
nfs, 11"x15"

       This is a commission I did back in December meant as a gift for my sister's boss. I was surprised at how quickly this one came together, somewhere around 6-7 hours.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Sarah #4 - watercolor

watercolor, 2017
available, 11"x15"

      Advancing a little in realistic portraiture. I'm very happy with this one.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Edgefield Winter Morning - watercolor

watercolor, 2018
available, 8"x10"

      I'd been sitting on this reference photo for a couple years because I wasn't sure if I could get it believable. I'm glad I finally dove in. It turned out to be one of my favorite landscapes. And, it's quite appropriate for the winter storm my area is dealing with now.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Portland Bill - watercolor

watercolor, 2017
available, 11"x15"

      Just a quick landscape of the Portland Bill Lighthouse and a couple resting boats. I tried phthalo blue for the sky. In mass tone I hate the phthalo colors. But, when applied fairly thin, phthalo blue makes a nice sky. I'm also happy with how the ocean and surf worked -- and how easy it was. I usually struggle with believable surf.

Friday, January 5, 2018

Doodlewash Feature


     I just had a feature go live on Doodlewash, the home of the World Watercolor Group! Go check it out: Anthony Billings Artist Feature

     Thanks, Charlie, for featuring me!

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Tulips - gouache

gouache, 2017
available, 11"x15"

      Starting the new year off with a little still life I kicked out one weekend. I think it worked out a lot better than I expected. I'm not quite as confident with gouache as I'd like to be. But I'm getting there.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Smoky - watercolor

watercolor, 2017
available, 9"x12"

      Just a quick little sketch with some ivory black. I never use ivory black. I've always preferred neutral tint or burnt umber or sienna mixed with ultramarine blue for more organic blacks and greys, and Payne's Gray for deep, absolute blacks. But, this reference photo was screaming for a grayscale treatment and what better way to do grayscale than with a pigment with "no color"?
      And, for general FYI, there are many more ways of mixing greys and darks/blacks including three primaries or two complimentary colors. UM blue and burnt umber/sienna are essentially complimentary colors for the purposes of mixing grey. Using two complimentary colors seems easier to me than three primaries. I try to limit all my palette mixes to two colors as much as possible anyway. And, a two-color grey is easy to warm or cool as necessary. Sometimes I even get the added bonus of a little pigment separation on the paper during drying. I think the look of UM blue and earth tones separating is one of the reasons I picked up watercolors in the first place.
      So, what's ivory black good for? Mixed with a little cool yellow, you can get some nice greens.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Louis Louis - watercolor

watercolor, 2017
available, 11"x15"

      This is a little different from my normal shoe still life. Works pretty well, though, I'd say.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Natalie - watercolor

watercolor, 2017
available, 9"x12"

      Just a quick, loose portrait of a model from some glamour site. There's very little about this one I don't like -- except maybe the scan. Scanning always adds contrast and washes out some of the lighter spots, hiding much of the subtlety inherent in the real painting. I recently went through some originals and was struck at how much better many of them were than I remember them because I'm used to seeing the scanned file. I'm still trying to figure out an easy method of shooting originals with my camera. Theoretically, I should get a much better, truer-to-life image that way.
       I used a pretty limited palette on this one, yellow ochre, a warm red and ultramarine blue for the skin tones - with just a touch of permanent rose to bring the nose forward. The hair and lips needed a couple more colors and I think the background blue is a loose mix of ultramarine and cobalt. The fewer colors you use, the less chance of mud, everyone always says.