Artist Painter Brenda D. Johnson's Wildlife and Nature Inspired Art

Brenda's Blog and Studio Journal features new works in progress and general updates. You can also follow Brenda on Facebook (search Facebook: Brenda D. Johnson Wildlife Art. (NEW!)

Friday, December 28, 2012

Warm Holiday Greetings from the studio of Brenda D. Johnson.   We are looking forward to another
lovely year here on the mountain and wish you and yours all the blessings of health and prosperity in the coming months!

2012 is almost over but certainly not all the wonderful memories associated with it.  Our summer 
was again spent exploring the southern California shores.   The weather was surprisingly warm this year which meant retreating to the water for relief.  Amongst the incoming waves were beautiful leopard sharks hunting for sand crabs.  One only had to stand in the waves knee deep to see them.
I did manage one decent photo of the leopard shark.  This one was rather large and it's markings
so striking.  Painting?  

We attended a family wedding this August back east.  The temperatures were mild.  Often trips back east are not pleasant with the humidity being so very high.  We took in some beautiful hikes along a few reserves were we stayed.  There are miles of trails to walk were we observed many wetland critters and birds.  We saw dear along the shores coming down through the brush for a cool drink.   I was hoping to see a few frogs but I think I managed to see the splash as we approached more often than not.

Until next year........ celebrate and be merry!   

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Wolverine, Progress update

Yesterday in the studio was a productive one.  I'm very close to finishing this wolverine piece with a bit more work on the face, a little fine tuning here and there on the body.   Today I'll focus on the pine log.  It will begin to take a better rounded shape when I add more highlights, shadow and the amber glow highlighting the lower sides.  

As a look out my windows at the beautiful Pines and Red Cedar I am reminded of the peach and amber glow beneath the branches.  I love reflected light and color I see on many things here in the forest.  The lovely cast shadows and rays of light streaming onto the forest floor add so much dimension.  It's very nice having a reference to which I am painting just outside.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Wolverine, "On the easel..... "

Currently on the easel a beautiful Wolverine.  At this stage I'm well passed the base coat and now pressing on with the fine details of the branches ( I will be adding more to the right side).   I've included a few detail brushes by Dynasty that I have enjoyed trying out.  Black Gold 10/0 which I'm particularly fond of for the REALLY fine hairs on the animal, 2/0 and a #3 for the larger areas.

Once this painting is finalized, a print will be available for the June fundraiser at The Anchorage Zoo.
The subject here is a Jenny who resided at the Zoo for many years.  I understand she passed away.
RIP Jenny.  She was indeed a beautiful animal and I'm sure was a lovely source of education for years.

"Oreo" has arrived at it's new home on Monday and is hanging on the wall.   The second painting will not be unveiled until later this month.  I'll post it for you later.    Above is a 5" x 7" acrylic on Amperstand Clayboard.     

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Cat Portraits and quick Brush review

What keeps a painter out of trouble?  Lots of work!  This is Sam.   One of eight cats owned by a rancher collector and dear friend.

You might remember the lovely cat with the butterfly in its mouth painted last year.  Well this is her inside kitty.   We can often tell which kitties live inside by their bulk.  I'm pretty sure most if not all her cats have been rescued or saved from certain demise.   I applaud such generosity of heart!

As well as painting way here on "Oreo" (appropriately named), I've been trying out new 
brushes for the fine detail on smaller paintings.
This painting is a 5" x 7" acrylic on Amerstand  Clayboard.

So far, I'm finding a liner best for the finest hairs.  I think I've come up with an idea on a brush design for adding multiple hairs at once.    I will be presenting this idea later to a manufacturer.

Currently,  the brushes I've tried are a Simply Simmons # 2/0,  and Loew Cornell JS Mid Liner #10/0.
though both get the job done, they have particular  design traits that consume way too much time per stroke.  They are too soft and or in the case of the Simmons 2/0, hold too much paint and to tap it out prior to each stroke.   Sounds crazy I know......  The perfect brush or brushes I've used in years passed were discontinued.

The brush shown in the photo above is a Dynasty Black Gold #0  liner.  This brush along with others of the same manufacturer are very well made.  I'm finding this liner quite nice in applying single extremely fine hairs to Oreo.    I have other Dynasty Brushes to try out.  I'll be sharing those experiences as well in the future.  I'll post when those examples and reviews are up.

I have another Tabby I'm currently working on.  As it's a commissioned gift, I cannot post it until after it's been presented to its recipient.    I'm particularly proud of this little gem.  I'll post my "new brush experiments" along with the painting when appropriate.    

Monday, April 30, 2012

Juvenile Wolf Pup

I can't resist pups of any kind really.  Pups at this stage of development are awkward and clumsy.
They are quit humorous to watch as well.   I began this painting with full intend of completing it by the Reflections of Nature show next weekend.  HOWEVER......    I'm moving through it more slowly
than anticipated and refuse to rush the process.   I know I'm really going to love the end result if I 
take my time.  

This painting is a 12" x 12" acrylic on board.    I have all the reference to 5 pups, all one litter.  I think a large painting is in order!  I haven't done a large painting of multiple wolves before.  (Why is that? ha ha ha)   

I've been struggling with brushes lately.  I think it's probably every couple of years a manufacturer will
decide one brush or several will be replaced by another design and or material.  And in my humble opinion, not with the best results.   I'm once again in search of the perfect detail brush having marginal results with same.

For the first time ever, I'm using a liner for hair!  WHAT?  That's just crazy, but hey.... if it works, I really don't care what it's original purpose was.

I'm open to suggestions from you artists out there.  Please, offer up some suggestions.   : )   

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Reflections of Nature Art Show and Sale

I'm looking forward to participating in the Reflections of Nature Show this year.  This lovely art community is pure joy for an artist or art enthusiast.  It's that time once again to visit with friends and and make news ones.   Please stop by my booth and say "Hello"!

Spring might well be in full swing but images of Fall are still alive and well in this upcoming print release titled: "Incognito".

For those who expressed an interest in a print, now is the time to order.   The print should be available within a week or so.

For those in the California area, I'm in hopes of offering this print at the Reflections of Nature show in Fallbrook on May 5th and 6th.

I'll post the Reflections of Nature show (web version)
information up for your convenience here on the Blog.

If you are interested in attending the show, Fallbrook offers
so much for an art enthusiast such as galleries on the main street and in walking distance from Reflections event.  So, if you haven't had enough after viewing the show, you are in LUCK!

Title:  "Incognito"
Medium: Limited Edition Giclee on canvas
Edition Size: 50
Artist Proofs: 7
Image Size:  11" x 14"
Price:   $175.00 AP $195.00

Please contact the studio for inquires or purchase.  

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Elk, On the easel.........

Here's a fun small painting of a Champion Elk I'm working on here in the studio today.   This one will measurably be viewed as a 7 5/8" x 4 1/8" from within the frame.

Most of the basic animal is in.   I'll be painting in the textures of antler and fur as well as correcting bits around the mouth and jaw line to show facial muscles and expression. 

The background will show distant tree line somewhat vague as not to distract from the foreground.

I have two maybe three small critter portraits coming up shortly.  The drawing for the first will be completed today for client inspection.    With clients permission, I'll post the progress on that painting as well.   Thanks for stopping by.  Love to hear your comments!  Thanks

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

On the easel ~ Cougar progress update

Moving along briskly now on the cougar painting.  I decided to add another dimension by including branches and fall leaves.  I have a lot of fine tuning to do before completion but feeling rather well about it's progress.

This painting is an 11" x 14" acrylic on Amperstand board. 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

On the easel ~ Pacific Underwater painting progress

A little progress report as promised.  I've been painting primarily base coat on the newly added items.  (view previous post for comparison) I painted in some missing details as well on the right hand side.  The kelp is taking a lot longer to paint than I had thought.  Right now the little otters look like bullets.  I don't think I'll be happy until I paint those much needed details in to make them look real.  THEN I can really get charged to wrap up all the loose details in the remaining kelp. This painting like others will take stages of development.  After finishing up the otters, I need stop and add the sun light filtering through from above.  Then I will proceed to the foreground kelp to wrap it up.  

There is a LOT of real estate here to cover.  This is a 24" x 36" painting.  It always amazes me how some can zip through paintings this size.  Though, perhaps they are more familiar with their subject matter.  This is new territory for me. Those familiar with my work know.   Because there is little reference material (like photographs), I'm having to just use recall and imagination to pull it together.

I love a good challenge as you know!  ha ha ha!  More to come.......  Thanks for stopping by and checking in.  : ) : ) : )

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

On the easel ~ Pacific Underwater painting progress

Don't all New Years start with a new promise?   I'm not sure what adventures will unfold for the upcoming months.  I'm an optimist myself and feel we make our own destiny.   

My plan for this year is much like the years past; work harder, be more creative and pave a new path. (and be darn careful what you wish for, ha ha ha)

I'm back at work on my new Pacific underwater painting for the time being.   This subject matter still proves to be a learning experience as I go.  

As soon as I finish the kelp visible here in the photo, I'll be adding the underwater critters.   I have no photo reference to study and work from.   I've studied the critter and drawn it out according to observation.  I think I have good understanding of the anatomy and her design function or movements through the water.   

I should think it will take another several days to complete the kelp and I will add in the critters.  (Yup, it's a surprise unless you've kept up with my travels and articles here.)   I'll repost updates as time permits. 

For all those I have not had the pleasure of chatting with, I wish you and yours a healthy, prosperous New Year!         

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