For more information on purchasing this painting go to Available Paintings Page
Back at it a second day in a row. I'm down at Wooster Square in New Haven CT. I find this place incredibly magically especially during the springtime. The cherry blossoms line the streets, kids are playing in the park. Lots of people walking their dogs. The annual Cherry Blossom Festival is happening in a few days and you can just feel the excitement in the air. Pink Rain - full of joy and wonder!
It was a little cooler today than yesterday and the spot I selected was tucked away in the shade of a large tree. I love the colors of this beautifully crafted brownstone home. The teal color trim, red brick and burnt red-orange transom over the front door and first floor windows gave a nice backdrop to the pink blooms. There was so much architectural details that I had to leave out but what I hope I conveyed was the essence of this picturesque scene.
As you can see in the photo below, the petals would float right through the air and stick to my canvas or palette! At first I thought ... oh no... I've got to get this off... it's going to ruin the painting.. but second thought... let me leave it there, it's great for matching colors!
The last photo in the group below is from inside the Famous Pepe's Pizza! My friend Patty and I finished our painting session by splitting a small sausage pizza.... what a fantastic day!
Do you want to join me for Plein Air Painting lessons? I just finished posting the Summer Schedule of 4 week classes. We'll meet every Thursday in the Branford, Guilford and Madison area. Click here for more information... this class is great for beginners and those who want to brush up on their skills.
To purchase this painting go to Available Paintings Page
At the end of April I was with a small group of painters from the Madison Art Society, we met up in New Haven at Wooster Square.
There are dozens of Cherry Blossom trees that line the square.
It's so incredibly beautiful there.... almost magical! The finely crafted architecture of the old brownstone homes are along the parameter of the park where folks are walking their dogs, children are playing and everyone seems to enjoy a leisurely stroll. Every Saturday in the summertime there's a farmers market. It's just the friendliest neighborhood.
People come from all over the state to walk around, take photos, and enough a delicious authentic Italian meal in the heart of Little Italy of New Haven. I've been here numerous times to paint and I'm always so in awe over how beautiful and enchanting the Square looks with the unique architecture of each building and the soft pink cascade of the cherry blossoms.
I met so many interesting people, a photographer name Jason, who took the coolest photo of me while painting. I'll share it in an upcoming e-book titled 10 of my Best Tips for Painting Outside. I met two lovely ladies who were good friends, they even dressed alike!
I met an art student who took a photo of my easel and painting for her final project and a fellow artist (tattoo artist) who was working for the City of New Haven planting trees.
I hope I encourage a really nice gentleman to join our Madison Art Society Plein Air group ... he said he would love to get back into painting again....
This is exactly what I love about plein air painting... it's not just painting outside... it's meeting new people, sharing stories, learning about new places, making friends...
I just set up my Summer Plein Air Painting Class schedule, go here for more info. If you'd like to start painting outdoors but don't know where to begin... join me.!
A few photos while painting at Wooster Square - April 24, 2109
Exploration and Hidden Gems
Today: Sunny but windy... and...
Yikes... still just a little too cold for me to paint outdoors.
So what does a fair weather painter like me do as option B when the temperature and the wind are not worth fighting? I'll grab my sketchbook and iphone and go for a walk around town. The Branford Town Green and Main Street are a great place to walk around and explore.
Parking near the Towne Pharmacy, (2 hour free street parking - love that!) and found G's cafe just a few doors away. The little cafe chairs and tables outside along the sidewalk was a welcoming sign and a quick jot in my sketchbook that this will be a great place in the future to grab a cup of coffee and stay for a little while to sketch.
As I entered the building that offered several first floor business there was one that caught eye. Myer's Flower Shop. Here's a quick shot I snapped from the inside window. Of course the light flooding in the big front windows washing over all the colorful pots, flowers and greenery is like candy to an artist. But as I scanned the room I spotted several creative displays that suggested... this is no ordinary florist.
First, the green rain boots with the sunflower bouquet... now that's totally fun! The gigantic sunshine yellow, indigo blue and lime green flowers sunbathing in the window. Oh and the pink and purple pots stacked bottom to bottom is a clever way to add height and color. The white washed armoire with a sky blue cloth draping the inside of the panels to offer a soft feminine touch.
I will definitely make a trip back soon when I'm getting ready to paint a still life or just fill our new home with fresh cut flowers.
I guess you could say I'm a fool for colorful flowers! Happy April 1st!
Harbor Street View, Branford, CT , acrylics, 24 x 36", gallery-wrapped, available
We finally made the move! We are now officially Branford residents! Just a few short weeks ago we were packing and toting boxes, wrapping and donating lots and lots of stuff. We made the leap over the Hwy 91 headed just a slight southeast on the CT map and landed in Branford, CT.
I really could have said "I told you so" back a few years ago because Branford has been one of my favorite places to paint and meet up with friends for hmmmmm.... 6 years! As the calendar year turned the corner from end of winter to early spring I could feel the itch to head down to Branford. Soon the town green will be cascading pink from the dozens of cherry blossom trees that run up and down Main Street. The boats will appear back in the harbor and their white plastic covers will cast aside.
This painting is of Harbor Street in Branford, CT. It went through a few stages and modifications but I have to say, I'm thrilled with the end results. The first time Dean drove down this road a few years ago, I knew someday I would paint this scene. It's been in my mind for a while. A few times Dean would park the car just off to the left side of the road and fish. I would stroll down Harbor Street snapping photos for reference. I loved the charming old New England homes with friendly porches or decorative architectural details from an era past.
I took a few artistic liberties in this piece, added the cars, changed the color of the houses and added a porch... that's the beauty of painting... as I continually remind my students... and myself.
My vision was to capture Branford's charm and coastal feel with vibrant colors and an all around feeling of a welcoming shoreline neighborhood. Although Harbor Street appears to be a direct and fairly straight route from Maple Street when you look at a map, the drive is quite different. It has just enough curve in the road to offer a welcoming surprise as you round the bend. You could even miss the water if you had your head down looking at your phone ( that was me). So I had to catch it on the way back.. and that's the view that one would see as they make their way back to town from Branford Point.
For us, it's only a mile away from our new place.. so excited to be such close proximity to so many beautiful places to paint!
So happy to share with you my vision of our new hometown - Branford!
Today I want to share with you a painting and an excerpt from a current project I'm working on. I'm gathering the paintings, sketches and notes from my trip to Italy this year. At the end of April, I flew over to see my son Ray and his girlfriend Ria while they were spending a semester in Rome on a study abroad program. If you want to see more artwork and sketches head on over to the Italy Paintings page here.
Italy Trip April 2018 - Excerpt:
Day 2 -4/25/2018
Today is Liberation Day in Italy. A national holiday celebrated annually on April 25. It marks the fall of Mussolini’s Italian Social Republic and the end of the Nazi occupation in Italy in 1945. The streets were filled with both tourists and natives soaking in the sunshine, enjoying the sights, shopping, listening to music - like one big street party. The temperature peaked around 65 to 70 degrees. The blue sky gave way to just a few white fluffy clouds.
First stop on the agenda, the Vatican. Ray and Ria have become so familiar with the streets in Rome. Since they arrived a few months ago for their study abroad program at JCU they have called Rome their home. As for me, I had to put a little pep in my step to keep up with them. I did the best I could to capture the scenes with my iPhone. A photo here, a short video clip there. I don’t think they realized I needed to do double time to keep up with their longer strides by their longer legs. But that’s ok, they would move ahead through the crowds and then instinctively know to turn around to see where I was at. Allowing me time to shot a few photos here and a few videos there and then scurry up to them. They patiently waited for me... what lovely tourguides they made. They also didn’t realize how in shape they were from their daily walking routines and how out of shape I was. (puff - puff)
Every street we turned down there was either a trattoria, ristorante or cafe or sometimes all three! Each one set and ready to serve. The vibrant overhead awnings stretched out just a little past the dining tables offering a comfortable shady spot from the bright sunlight. The tables set with rolled up white napkins and sparkling wine glasses, sometimes a tiny bouquet of flowers in a glass vase graced the table. The string of lights were definitely for ambiance and character, and I must say they played their part well. As we strolled past each establishment we could hear a friendly voice call out "Buongiorno" - "Good Day". From the savory aromas, to the abundant visual scenery and the romantic sounds of the Italian language - a stroll down the streets of Rome is sheer bliss.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog - I'll be sharing more of my Italy adventures in upcoming posts.
Ciao! From the streets of Rome
Side note: A funny little story to share. The stretched canvas that this painting was painted on I gave to my son for Christmas. I wrapped a blank canvas with a note attached "Future home of a Linda S. Marino Original Oil Painting" - and 5 months later I gave this painting to him for his birthday.
This original painting was created in 2012, it's been in and out of a few art shows and exhibits but has remained a loyal companion in my studio. Last week I decided to give it a fresh coat of paint, pop the colors and glaze the background color to lean more toward an orangey coral. Why you ask? and I'll answer.... why not? (I hope that didn't sound too snarky?)
I've learned over the years that as we grow in our art journey we see things differently, we're evolving and hopefully, learning, developing and building. With each painting we create we learn a little about ourselves, we develop our skills and build our confidence. And sometimes as we reflect on a piece created a few years ago we can see where some improvements could be made. There is a risk involved, especially if you've become attached to the piece and like I said earlier it's become a friendly companion. But never the less, when the desire for making a change outweighs the familiar, it's time to put the brush in motion.
I think a lot had to do with the announcement of the Pantone Color of the Year. In early December the international color company Pantone announces their pick for 2019. Living Coral.
As I was sitting in my studio, contemplating the Pantone press release article that read, "how colors can embody our collective experience and reflect what is taking place in our global culture at a moment in time" and "Living Coral, is an animated shade of orange with a golden undertone, which reflects the warmth, nourishment, and shelter of coral reefs to sea life." Pantone states that this year's selection symbolizes an "innate need for optimism and joyful pursuits".
ohhhh... I like that. Definitely worth repeating a few times... an innate need for optimism and joyful pursuits. Couldn't we all use a fresh coat of optimism and a pop of joyful pursuits as we look to open the book to a new chapter, new year. I know I could.
Thanks for reading my post. Let me know what you think about the Color of the Year - Living Coral. How does it make you feel? What images come to mind when you see this color. And believe me you're going to see it pop up everywhere. In graphic design, packaging, clothing, make-up, fashion design, interiors and decor and yes..... ART. If you continue to read this blog I'm sure you'll see a few more posts about this blushing, pinky-orange hue as we joyfully leap into 2019! I'm quit certain it will be a "regular" on my palette.
Cordially.... or should I say "Coral-dially" yours,
This painting was created during a three-day workshop on the Thimble Islands with Bob Noreika. The weather was absolutely gorgeous. Sunny with a slight breeze. On the third day, we were at the tail end of Governor's Island. I love to paint and sketch my fellow artists as they work. For the most part, they stay still and they're concentrating so much on their own work, they have no idea I'm painting them.
This piece has gone through the editing and refining process twice! And I'm happy to say it's finished... I think... :)
12 x 16" oil on canvas
framed in a silver/gold champagne finish frame
for purchasing information click here
I love painting interiors! What I often do is flip through design magazines and when a photo has the right light effect I use that as my starting point. I love the way the light streams through the windows and casts a warm glow across the counters and wood floor. From there I like to put my imagination to work and re-decorate the room. I'll add my own elements, change the light fixtures, add different accent pieces. Change the fabric or window treatments. It's like redecorating but without the fees or the mess! Just a little paint a brush and my imagination.
For more information on purchasing this painting click here
Soup Prep - Chef Dean
oil on board, 6 x 8" framed in silver and gold tone frame
for purchase info click here
Often times I tell my art students to "trust in the process" and not to judge their painting too soon, especially while they are in the midst of creating it. I’ve said in the past it’s like baking a cake and trying to eat it when it’s half baked - it doesn’t taste good.
It’s easier for us to understand the cooking process when it comes to creating a meal. Planning the menu, buy the ingredients, prep the food, cook or bake, waiting time and then knowing when it’s done. And then.... yes enjoy eating it!
There are many similar steps and stages when it comes to creating a painting with the exception of one. The "Cook Time" or the "Create Time". For instance, you do have to plan and purchase materials. Find a place to create, whether a studio or a kitchen table. You'll also need some instruction, even the basics like mixing and applying paints. And surely what would be helpful, like in a recipe you are given the time it takes to prep and the time it takes to cook or bake. But that's not the case when it comes to creating art.
"Create Time" is the one mystery element. It's the one ingredient that is truly different for every artist. How can I tell my students that an exercise will take exactly one hour. Sometimes I'll try to set time limits and on occasion it will work but for the most part, I've come to the conclusion - a painting will get done on it's own time. We truly don't know how long it’s going to take to create a piece of art. For some it could be thrown together in minutes and called finished for others the "cook time" could take hours, days maybe even years.
But what if we savored and embraced that "time of simmer" - the "process time". What if, with patience and with a listening heart, we lean more into the method than the end result. I mean we aren't planning to eat our painting like we would a meal, so why can't we just take the time to listen to our heart not a grumbling stomach. What if we apply the phrase "Trust the process" to mean both trusting you will be satisfied with the end result AND enjoyment while in the midst of creating it.
So perhaps the next time you are in the middle of painting a painting whisper to yourself “ embrace the simmer” .....and I will do the same.
Happy to say this painting: "Soup Prep- Chef Dean" was accepted into the "Deck the Walls - Holiday Show and Sale" at Lyme Art Association in Lyme, CT - The show will run until January 4th, 2019.
"Tomatoes on the Vine - Kitchen Prep - Chef Dean"
oil, 16 x 20" -
Winner: Honorable Mention 2017 Biannual Juried Exhibition at
Wethersfield Academy for the Arts, Wethersfield, CT
for purchase information
For an experienced chef who knows just the right time to add the ingredients to a soup or a sauce, he begins by activating all his senses. He smells, sees and hears the sounds during the cooking process and knows exactly when to move to the next step. At first it could be the sound of the onion coming in contact with the heated oil - he listens for the sizzle or the pop. Or perhaps he’s waiting for the stock to reach a slow boil before adding in the seasoning.
As students of art our senses need to be engaged too. Of course we don’t take this literally when it comes to tasting our paints - we aren’t tasting anything - that would be gross! But when it comes to creating art "switching on" your senses is part of the creative experience. Sight is the obvious one, but how about smell, touch and hear?
To this day I can still remember so clearly the smell of the wet watercolor paper when I first learned how to paint. During my college years my instructor had us wet the entire sheet of paper in the sink, place it on a board, staple and tape it down. As the paper dried the smell would disappeared and then I knew it was time to start painting. Some say it smells like wet dog, others say glue or adhesive, even unbaked bread - yeasty smell - for me it I can't really describe the smell but what I did know is that it triggered an internal sense of "NOW. Now it's time to create!".
Recalling an instructor's exercise at the Yale British Art Center for art educators, the facilitator placed several pieces of fruit on the table and asked us to create a still life using the art materials supplied. I thought to myself - I got this.. But it wasn't until she had us close our eyes for a minute and she cut open the orange and asked "can you paint what you smell?" Just being more aware of the smells around us can influence our work. The orange sphere on the paper just became juicier, the lemon yellow made you pucker your lips and yes .. just about taste it.
I believe our sensory awareness plays a key roll in our artistic growth and development and the more we paying closer attention to the ordinary things around us in our everyday environment the more we connect more deeply through the expression of our art.
Back in the kitchen with Chef Dean as he's preparing a meal or getting ready for a cooking class all the senses are awakened. The sweet aroma of the hand-picked basil drifts through the air, the freshly cut onions releases an all too familiar odor and maybe a tear or two, and the vine ripened tomatoes, still warm to the touch from the afternoon sun. As Chef Dean incorporates these ingredients into a stainless steel pot over high heat, is when your mouth begins to water as you breathe in sweet aroma of an Italian kitchen ... in essence, he just creates a masterpiece for the palate!
Branford, CT 06405
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