lullabyprt1Lullaby, oil on panel.

A new work! I’ve been playing around with line and symmetry forms found in nature. I would normally add that this is a new direction for me, but experience has taught me that I rarely follow one track for very long. ūüôā

For those interested in technique, I blocked the entire painting in with oil. Paint was later applied with either a palette knife or brush. Hand made stencils were used for some of the geometric forms, and generous amounts of scraffito (scratching through top surface of paint to reveal another layer) were used to support the curvilinear structure of the forms.


Nature inspired visual language

As some of you know, I have been slowly¬† transitioning towards an “abstract” style of painting. Along the way, I have¬†tried many sources for my inspiration. As a whole though,¬†creating works that might resemble a relic or a sacred¬†icon (though mostly arbitrary in execution) sprinkled with lots of goof humor, has been¬†my¬†catalyst,¬†and along the way I have discovered I love playing with curvilinear forms, circles and color.

More recently, I have incorporated forms found in nature, dandelions and other spikey weeds, into my shapes I create in my art.

In my latest work, “Dandelion Lady” I give the status of Dandelion a much over due place of reverence. I love the curvilinear symmetry of dandelion leaves and the stages at which the dandelion flowers and then spreads it’s floating starters in the air.

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Spring Water, oil on canvas – 40″ x 30″

“Spring Water”¬†was finished up in time for International Woman’s Day. Using a few doodles as my launching point, this painting was¬†created¬†with a very relaxed and spontaneous spirit. Relying on the preconceived structure of the composition, that was based on my initial sketch,¬†allowed me to paint freely and reactionary without having to worry much about the cohesiveness of the completed painting. When you are at least 80% sure the painting is going to work, the rest of your mind is free to explore and experiment with color, adding the emotional flavor needed to make the work relatable and relative to the human experience.

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Spring Water web


Early Spring

I finally painted an early spring inspired work.¬†I made¬†this with one of my favorite methods of painting-Palette Knife! I would say 95% of this painting is done with a knife. In order to achieve the inlay effect with the lines, I work the smaller areas first. Working with the knife insures a very¬†impasto look. The technique, in my opinion, is a fantastic way to make colors glow and the added surface texture is icing on the cake…or canvas. ūüôā

“Early Spring” oil on panel, 20″ x 31″ (approx.)


Diet Soda On the Rocks

Defining glass objects, by painting the bent and warped shapes, is one of the more enjoyable ways to paint for me. In an effort to keep motivated and log in hours in my studio, I have dedicated myself to making 90 paintings in 90 days. This still-life is number 6. In order to make that goal, I have been painting smaller paintings, mostly 6 x 6 inches, and no larger than 16 x 20 inches. While my recent larger works have been primarily abstract and experimental (very fun to do!), I find returning to traditional art making as enjoyable as it was when I first began painting. Who knows..maybe I will throw a few abstracts in those 90!

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Diet Soda On the Rocks Small

Oregon Coast Study

Oregon Coast Study, 20″ x 16″, oil on canvas.

Another palette knife painting.

Oregon Shore StudySmall

The Oregon coast is one of this countries greatest treasures. Unspoiled by overdevelopment, this beach is a beautiful park where miles and miles of vistas await. This is one of my favorite vacation spots with my family. There are plenty of camping and lodging facilities to make it a comfortable visit for all ages.

Jar Of Mums

Jar Of MumsMedium

Jar Of Mums, 6″ x 6″, oil on canvas (buy now)

# 2 of my ”90 paintings in 90 day challenge.” This one was done using a palette knife to apply the paint. At six inches square, it was quite a challenge to move the paint around using only a knife, but I always like the thick impasto effects this technique creates.

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-Shawn Pagels

90 Paintings in 90 Days. A variation of the Daily Painter.

Guard CatMed

Guard Cat¬†¬† 6″ x 6″¬† oil on canvas¬†¬†(purchase)
Today, I made¬†the first painting of my 90 paintings in 90 days goal. It is a twist on the “Daily Painter.” Well, actually it is exactly like the Daily Painter work model, but with a deadline. After the ninety days, I can either continue another ninety days, pause or stop. From what I have read from several artists, this method works because it provides structure and helps ease the anxiety of starting a new painting(or in my case, often prevents me from starting at all at times.) Giving yourself one to two hours to three hours to paint, and then another hour to post on your blog, auction site and other social media creates a steady workflow .For many artists, myself included, this is a big deal. Relying on inspiration, dedication, and hopefully not too much self-medication, is not enough. A framework of activity must be set into play so there is some structure to work around.

Like the daily painter model, I am going to be working on paintings 6″ x 6″¬†and no larger than 11″ x 14″. I can work larger as well at the same time, but the paintings for the 90 days are going to be small. The idea is you work quicker and are able to produce more efficiently over time. Working small also greatly reduces the pressure for¬†having to creating a masterpiece every time because the goal¬†is shifted to creating a “good” painting everyday. Perfectionism can be wrestled¬†with more triumphantly later when the artist faces the larger canvas or mural.

Here it is. 1 of 90. 89 more to go!

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(This is available for sale. If you or someone you know absolutely love this, click the¬†”Purchase”¬†link below the image for a pay-pal transaction.)