A Current Painting by Diana Moses Botkin

Welcome to my Art Blog! I paint or draw most weekdays and sometimes finish a painting a day. I fondly call them my "Postcards from Paradise" because it's such a beautiful place the Lord made here for us.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Two to Redo

(left) "Sky Light" oil 4"x6"
©2012 Diana Moses Botkin

If you are an artist you might have, like I do, a pile of paintings that still need work or should get thrown in the fire. I have several sizable such piles which taunt me from time to time. I've been wrestling with a few of them lately: some successfully and others not so much.

Here are two I've brought to a better conclusion. These were both plein air pieces I did during a paint out a couple of years ago on a day when nearby forest fires pretty much ruined long-distance visability.

(left) "Hazy Canyon" oil 6"x8"
©2012 Diana Moses Botkin

The three studies I did that day were all pretty much failures so into the pile they went. These two look a lot better now: presentable, even. I've added more color, bumped up contrast and cropped the canyon piece.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Two More Orphan Drawings

(top left)
"Deep Slumber”
Original drawing, approx. 10"x18"
Charcoal and chalk on grey paper 
©2013 Diana Moses Botkin

I mentioned in a previous post about uncovering previously undocumented and unphotographed work while straightening and filing in my studio space.
Although there were some pieces which were not worth saving, here are a couple which I didn't relegate to the wood stove. To purchase, simply contact me.

(lower left)
“Deep in Thought” 
Original drawing, approx. 16"x11"
Charcoal and chalk on grey cotton paper 
©2013 Diana Moses Botkin

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Plein Air Skyscapes

"High Against the Sky" Original oil 10"x8"
©2014 Diana Moses Botkin

Although portrait and figurative subjects are my favorites, I also love painting skies. Landscapes, especially in beautiful light, continue to inspire.

When I first tried plein air work, I was surprised how impossible it felt to capture a scene before it changed completely! During the past decade of painting on location I have managed to pull together some decent pieces and also wipe off more than a few failures. Rubbing shoulders with other plein air painters shows me I'm not alone with the difficulties.

"Storm Silhouette"
Original oil, 7"x7"
©2014 Diana Moses Botkin 

This second painting I've been looking at for almost a month since I put down the paint. I knew I wanted to tweak that cloud shape just slightly. I noticed after I painted it that it was a little too symmetrical, so I've finally added a teensy bit of volume to one side.

I can show you these two small pieces that I'm not wiping off or painting over! I hope you enjoy them. Please contact me if you would like more information about them.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Charcoal Drawings

Since the return from my winter art trip I've had more catching up to do than I care to mention. But I've checked stuff off my to-do list. That, at least, feels like some things have been accomplished. Doing taxes, major cleaning, and weeding are certainly not what I like doing, but I'm glad to get them done. I'm enjoying having them done (at least for a little while).

During some recent organizing of my limited studio space I discovered a small pile of drawings I'd set aside before my journey. The sketches had not been photographed or put in my inventory list. At the time I had lots to do to get ready for my extended trip.

I had also been asked to do more evaluations of art materials for Staedtler. These first two sketches shown here, I did to assess sets of charcoal sticks for the company and the last one I did using a line of charcoal pencils they plan to market.

Please contact me if you would like more information about these studies, or my other work.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

I'm Pleased to Finally Show You This

Over a year ago, I was contacted by Staedtler after they saw one of my figure drawings.

The international art materials company based in Germany was redesigning several lines of supplies and wanted me to develop art for each line, similar to my drawing they liked. They planned to use the pieces for their new packaging and related advertising.

So, finally the first product line is ready for market, the Tradition® pencil sets. I created this special drawing you see at right, using their products. 

Last year when I was testing out the pencils and working on this drawing to meet their deadline, I hinted at the process in some blog posts. I'm so happy to finally be able to show you my work.

I saw Staedtler's advertising for the first time yesterday for the Tradition® pencil set (in Drawing magazine), which shows my work in the ads. I feel blessed and honored to have my art shown off by Staedtler. Soon there will also be a couple of other products with my work on the package. I'll let you know when those are out! 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

"New Place" Available

One of my larger paintings I completed during this past year brought some interesting remarks. One friend noted that she had stood in doorways of new residences many times like this, wondering how to make the empty place seem like home. 

This image is now available at my giclée reproductions gallery, in the figurative/portrait section. Or you may contact me to purchase the original oil painting.

(left) "New Place"
Oil on hardboard, 24"x18" 
©2013 Diana Moses Botkin 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Giclées Available of "Afternoon Study"

This painting of a woman behind lacy curtains, peeking out from the window in an old house is sold, but reproductions can now be ordered in several sizes, on canvas or art paper, framed or not. They are available at my online print gallery, in the figurative/portrait section.

And there's a special offer this month when you purchase any size print from the gallery: order before the end of July and receive a $100 gift certificate from NakedWines.com!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Trompe l'oeil Reproductions Available

This whimsical piece is now available in the humor section at my online reproductions gallery. Trompe l'oeil art (French for "deceive the eye") aims to give the impression of being actual 3-dimensional objects, rather than painted 2-dimensional ones.

While this is generally what many painting styles try to do, trompe-l'oeil presents the piece in a format that invites the viewer to believe the objects are real, rather than painted.

There is room on my "bulletin board" to tape a photograph or other real item, (which is sometimes done in this genre to assist the illusion). Any number of items would be fun additions to my little lego boxing man who has been working out, the needle and thread with the button, the keys, and my lists. What would you put on there?

And don't forget the fun deal for print orders through July: purchase any size reproduction, framed or not and receive a $100 gift certificate from NakedWines.com!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

New Repros and a Wine Certificate with Orders!

Two new pieces have been added to my giclée reproductions gallery. You can find them in the figurative/portrait section. Both images are available on canvas or art paper, framed or unframed, in several sizes. Cards and phone covers can also be ordered.

And here's an amazing deal: order during the month of July and receive a $100 gift certificate from NakedWines.com! 

Monday, June 30, 2014

Pastel Figure Studies on Black Paper

Three different models posed for these studies. These are all I have left to show you from my trip this winter, except a few pieces that still need work.

Now that I'm back on the farm at home, I sure am missing the Open Studio opportunities from my travels. Of course I have plenty to do here, and it's time to get out and about for plein air painting. But I do miss studying with the models.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

More Drama

Three different models posed for these studies, in the dramatic lighting I like.

Upper left study is pastel on watercolor paper. Upper right drawing is pastel on black Canson, as is the third piece. These are all different models. The second study was an interesting combination of patterns and weirdness. That wild tie-dyed t-shirt with the stripped leggings and heavy boots were topped off by extensive arm tattoos. All this was quite a challenge to capture.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Studies on Black

Here a more drawings: studies of two different models. As you can probably tell, I prefer dramatic lighting. It's especially interesting on the dark background. Using the black paper really forces some concentration.

One has to work backwards from the usual practice of blocking in shapes with the darks. Laying down the lights first to define the form feels quite awkward when one is used to doing shadows first. I'm usually pleased with the results, though.

These studies from life are all drawn in pastel on black canson. Please contact me to purchase them, or others here at my blog.