Linda Halcomb's Blog

Just another weblog

January 24, 2012 January 24, 2013

Filed under: Abstract,Daily Post,Watercolors — lindahalcombfineart @ 9:37 am
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

As I mentioned in my last post, I want to improve my ability to paint realistic (but not photorealistic) works in watercolor. I admire the lessons that Barry Coombs posts on his blog. Barry just started a new term and has been posting his weekly assignments. Using his week one class, I completed preparatory studies and included those in my last post. I struggled through the painting and am posting it below.

Barry Coomb's Class -Week One

Barry Coomb’s Class -Week One

First of all, I cannot believe how much Barry’s students accomplish in just three hours. Incredible work and incredible talent. Here is my painting. It was done on 140# CP Arches paper and is  9″ X 12″.

This morning I saw a absolutely beautiful abstract – one of the most powerful I’ve seen in ages – on my friend Chris Carter’s blog. As you know I paint abstracts and love looking at them. I was blown away by this painting and wanted to share it with you. Enjoy


January 19, 2013 January 20, 2013

Filed under: Daily Post,Drawings,Watercolors — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:41 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

I mentioned in my last post that I wanted to focus my attention on improving my ability to paint realistically. Over the last two years I have been consistently impressed by the teaching, paintings and generosity of Barry Coombs. He posts his lessons and examples from his classes on his blog (see my Blogroll). I have always thought I would benefit from trying the exercises he teaches in class. Well, the time is now and he has just recently started a new term. Here is the link for week one.  I started by making a series of compositional sketches using Barry’s “set up”. His compositions literally glow with vibrant color so I was itching to move on but I made myself THINK as I did my sketches.

Compositional Sketches - Barry Coombs Week One

Compositional Sketches – Barry Coombs Week One

I thought the final two compositions were the best so I darkened the basic outlines and moved on.  Next I completed color sketches using the last two compositions.  These were done in a Bee sketchbook that handles watermedia (although not like WC paper). These are not meant to be finished paintings but were helpful as I determined my color scheme. I decided to use Barry’s original color scheme with a very dark background that is primarily brown. I hope I get started on the painting today. The pile of shoes he used for week two is beckoning!

Color Sketch 2

Color Sketch 2

Color Sketch 1

Color Sketch 1



January 18, 2013 January 18, 2013

Filed under: Daily Post,Watercolors — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:32 am
Tags: , , , , ,

I have decided to spend more time trying to develop my ability to paint realistic watercolors. I won’t give up painting abstracts, which I love, but I feel remarkably clumsy when it comes to realistic work. Before my workshop with Cheng Khee Chee I did a drawing to take to the workshop. I did not use it because it was on 9″ X 12″ paper and was really too small for the processes we were using. This week I worked on this painting and the results are below.

Ruins 1 - 140# HP Arches - 9"X12" Watercolor

Ruins 1 – 140# HP Arches – 9″X12″ Watercolor


This composition had a difficult challenge – the major movement is horizontal and vertical. I used the cypress in the background, the diagonals in clouds and the subtle diagonal placement of the red flowers to add interst.  I am not happy or unhappy with this painting. It is a good starting point for the year.

When Ken and I lived in Germany for six months we were in awe of the ancient ruins and the commitment to preserve history and heritage. It was evident in every country we visited. That was my inspiration. I tried to show the freshness of nature against the beauty of past civilizations (the work of man).


January 13, 2013 January 13, 2013

Filed under: Daily Post,Drawings — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:13 am
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Another page of sketches from Gulf Shores. I was amazed at the color diversity I saw looking at Heather’s shell collection this year. I have never seen a green shell when collecting in the past. I also have never seen the fragile beauty of the tiny shell with the purplish stripes. The green, purple and pinkish/gray shells were all tiny, fragile things – obviously not drawn to scale. I was just trying to capture the general shape, color and direction of the stripes and blotches. I really mangled the purple stripes which were a delicate purple/magenta color much lighter than shown. Oh well – I was on vacation… I’m always too hard on myself. It’s our nature, isn’t it?

Just a quick note about the BP Oil spill. Workers were on the beach two days during our visit searching for and cleaning small blobs of oil from the beach. This activity ended while we were visiting Gulf Shores. I did not see any oil in evidence but my son-in-law saw two small blobs. The birds and fish and dolphins appear to have recovered but I thought you would find it interesting to know that BP continued to fund clean-up until January 2 or 3, 2013 and that it has now stopped. I hope the municipal areas continue to monitor the situation since this was such a massive environmental disaster. Again, I must be honest – I didn’t see any problem during my visit. Here are my shells:

Gulf Shores Shells

Gulf Shores Shells


January 11, 2013 January 11, 2013

Filed under: Daily Post,Drawings — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:19 am
Tags: , , , , , , ,

I took my three daughters and their familes to Gulf Shores for the holidays. Ken and I loved Gulf Shores. When I worked on my MBA, Ken would pick me up after my last final in December and we would start the 12 hour drive to the sandy beaches. Our anniversary is in mid-December so we used these vacations as a time to celebrate. The most interesting story I have from our time there was about the native’s reaction to snow. One December we were staying at the State Park in Gulf Shores (buildings destroyed but hurricane Ivan, I think) and they had their first snowfall in 15 years. The response to less than an inch of snow was very dramatic…schools closed, servers sent home, road crews responded…for someone from the snowy north pretty extreme stuff. I’m not making fun but we did enjoy the reaction – after we found somewhere to eat dinner!

My daughter, Heather, was the shell collector on this trip. She walked on the beach every morning looking for specimens that she did not already have. I have never found crabs on the beach before but she found three whole, unviolated specimens. The birds had not had time to peck them to pieces yet. I used one of her finds for this sheet of sketches. The page includes gestural, contour and colored pencil sketches. Very fun to do.

Sketches and colored pencil drawing - Gulf Shores

Sketches and colored pencil drawing – Gulf Shores


January 9, 2013 January 9, 2013

Filed under: Abstract,Daily Post,Watercolors — lindahalcombfineart @ 8:54 am
Tags: , , , , ,

The last few weeks of 2013 were very rough for me and I didn’t seem to be able to create during that period. One thing I realized is that I do my best work when I am heavily invested in the subject…and the subject can be anything. I am an Indiana farm girl and one of my life long sources of enjoyment is the beauty of an Indiana autumn. I mentioned this earlier and the ATC’s I created for family in 2012 were all inspired by the glorious, glowing Indiana fall leaves and our juicy apples with their reds, golds, yellows and oranges. I also did one of my abstract paintings during late December. It was inspired by the joy I feel when walking through the woods on a Indiana fall day. Sunshine warming my back, breeze cooling my face,  colors delighting my eyes. I get a feeling of peace, calm and rightness with the world. I hope you feel the same.

Indiana Autumn 1 - Half sheet 300# Arches and Watercolor

Indiana Autumn 1 – Half sheet 300# Arches and Watercolor


January 8, 2013 January 8, 2013

Happy New Year to everyone! As you probably realize, I have been on hiatus. During November I was chairman for a 125 person, 17 vendor luncheon and bazaar for the Association of International Women and during November and December I was touring at the Indianapolis Museum of Art at about 5X our normal rate. Usually we do 1-2 tours per month and I was doing 8 or 9 tours each month. The museum is built on an estate that was owned by a member of the Eli Lilly family (as in Lilly pharmaceuticals). When the Art Association of Indianapolis needed a home for a new museum in the late 1960’s the estate was donated by the Lilly family. The original home is now a national historic landmark and the museum’s largest work of art. The family donated the home with most of the furniture and decorative arts on the first floor in place so we have a unique and special situation. The home is always decorated for the holidays with designs from 1920-1940. It is very popular and quite beautiful. We had huge crowds this year and I am always glad to see so much interest in something so historically important to the area. If you’re interested in learning more click here .

I wanted to share a photo of the Best in Show for the Watercolor Society of Indiana’s Juried Show. The painting is a watercolor collage done by Peggy Brown.

Peggy Brown - WSI Juried Show Winner

Peggy Brown – WSI Juried Show Winner

I took a workshop from Peggy several years ago and she is universally respected and admired. The link to her website is in my blogroll. Peggy has a very unusual process that she also uses to create marvelous art quilts.   I hope you will check it out.

Wishing everyone a great Tuesday, happy New Year and success in 2013.



2012 in review – Thank you to my visitors January 7, 2013

Filed under: Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 2:06 pm

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 42,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 10 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.