Saturday, September 11, 2010


Sometimes I don’t get outside to paint because I don’t have several hours to lug out my gear and work through a study. But I can’t discount the value of being outdoors to sketch and study the light. So, what I need is a way to do some quick color studies along with pencil sketches.

I’ve been watching some very talented artists like Deborah Secor, Larry Seiler and Ralph Parker produce some wonderful little sketches using gouache which is really just opaque watercolors. I tried watercolors and missed the ability to mix colors that same way I can with oils or acrylics. So, I picked up a few basic colors and started playing around with this.

I don’t know a lot about this yet but I can already tell that gouache looks like just the ticket for doing quick outdoor studies. And it travels light too!

Here are a couple of my first attempts:

3 x 5 gouache on hot pressed watercolor paper




OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA 3 3 x 5 gouache on heavy sketch paper

Monday, September 6, 2010

Borrego Valley Inn

I found this photo the other day that I took on a weekend trip to Borrego Springs (local desert) last winter. I put in on my computer and it's been calling to me all week.

9 x 12 oil on canvas panel

To purchase this painting please contact: Randall Smith

Saturday, September 4, 2010

My Studio

Someone recently asked me where I found enough space in my home to paint so I snapped this photo. A couple others have also asked so I thought I would publish this picture.

It’s not huge but – very comfortable!


Looking Back

I’ve been trying to get some of my photos organized from last year and I came across some that I forgot about.

Last year I spent a delightful week painting with Michael Chesley Johnson in Sedona, AZ. On one of the first days we spent the morning near an area known as Red Rock Crossing (if I recall correctly). It was a little overcast and quite cool. Being still a little early the in spring, a lot of the trees by the river were still minus their green leaves. Kind of a somber mood. So, that’s what I tried for in this little study….

8 x 10 pastel on sanded paper

To purchase this painting please contact: Randall Smith