A Conversation, art and otherwise

Welcome to the art blog of Mike Menius, Northern CA plein air painter. Please join the ongoing conversation about art, the studio projects, etc.

Monday, March 28, 2011

"Crown of Love" in complementary colors

"Crown of Love," stage 1

Here is the first stage of a colored pencil piece.  It uses water soluble colored pencils, which turn brilliant when water is applied.  In stage 2, the complementary colors will go on top of this brightness, creating a calmer more subdued color scheme, but with the bright under glow of these colors.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Doorway abstract

The mid-tone was a muddy brown.  On top, I added thicker brush strokes of umber, purple blue, lavender, etc.  It all looked muddy and confused, so I added parallel passages in viridian green and very high value viridian.  The result was something vaguely like a door, leading out of this muddy mess. 

"Orange & Green" abstract

"Orange & Green" abstract

The background treatment consisted of varying hues of orange.  The foreground consists of abstract shapes, based around viridian green and ultramarine blue.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


Posted by Picasa


Today's muse was this orange.  Tomorrow morning, it will be juice.  I created two palettes of orange: one using cadmium red (for the illuminated side); one using alizarin crimson (for the shaded side). 

Sunday, March 6, 2011


The vintage green mug has been around for years.  This is a small painting, using the old mug and three colored pencils, those dear friends from so many works on paper.  These days I'm painting in the dark in the studio: overhead lights off, shades on the studio windows, a single light trained carefully on the set-up.


Posted by Picasa