Sunday, July 31, 2011

Just talk

Just a quick note so you'll know I'm still around.   I'm trying to finish a large painting for an upcoming show here in NC, so I won't bother with an image for today's post.   I'm doing a 16"x20" canvas of boats in a Northern Cal. Harbor.   Tomorrow I'll probably put up a small auction painting.       Have a nice day.      Mike

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Walking the Dog

                                                  6"x8" Oil on linen panel

A small sketch I made in a New England autumn.  I had finished a larger piece of an old shack on the hill, and  then turned around and noticed the gentleman walking toward me with his friend.  I put them down quickly, and then painted the surroundings.  I was hurrying and got the colors pretty strong, but he'd stopped to watch and seemed to think it was Ok.  Something about it satisfied me, too.   Later, I scraped off the first piece which was really not very good.  All in all, it was a very pleasant October day,  New England is wonderful in fall.       Mike

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Boats at Dock

                                                     9"x12"  Oil on linen on board
                                                 Click here to bid on this painting

This is a scene from a harbor near Rockport Mass.  I like to return to that area at least every other year.  It has so many paintable areas that almost every landscape painter of note has painted there.   Rockport itself is a beautiful little town renowned for it's artists.  I've been there so many times it feels like a second home to me, now.  Maybe this fall, if I'm lucky,  I can go again.           Mike

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


                                                         30"x30" Oil on stretched linen

Once upon a time, when the OPA first had a Western Regional Show in Santa Barbara Ca. this painting was accepted and won an award.  It was used for posters for the show, and was used for the cover of "Santa Barbara" magazine   I felt wonderful!  But it didn't sell.  Oh well! That was no big deal, The OPA had judged me, Mike Alonzo, as a winner.

Some months later, one of our very small local groups had a juried show, and I submitted it.  There were only about thirty paintings entered, so I had visions of winning a cash award, which is always nice.  I was quickly brought back to earth when my painting didn't win a thing.  It couldn't---the judge didn't think it was even good enough for the show and it wasn't hung! ( I love exclamation marks!).   Talk about being taught humility!!!     (Love em!)                               Mike            

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Homage to Sergei

                                                     20"x30"  Oil on stretched linen

I very rarely do still life painting, just can't get enthused enough to attempt one.  I, of course, do get enthused when I see one of Sergei Bongart's  masterpieces.  A while back I set up one of his type of compositions, and produced this specimen.   Looking at it now,  I'm surprised at the restrained color.  I usually go for bright, pure hues, but here, when I was trying to emulate a daring colorist,  I grayed things down.  Weird!  Maybe next time I'll try one with wild color.                    Mike

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

In for Repair

                                                      8"x10" Oil on linen on board
                                                     Click here to buy this painting

One of my favorite subjects.   This is an old repair shop in Morro Bay that has been painted by just about every plein air painter that has seen it.   I prettied it up in this sketch, which I don't usually do.  It's actually  a very faded ivory color, and in bad shape, warped and empty.  Thats how I would normally paint it.  I sent it back in time to better days for some reason I can't explain.  Nostalgia, again?
I still don't know if I will be posting for the next few days, as I mentioned yesterday.  Should know tomorrow.                   Mike

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Hi!   Have a family problem that may necessitate my absence for a few days.   May have to travel to New Orleans to help out.  If that happens, I will return to posting on about the 23rd of this month.  Will know for sure by Thursday.   Thanks to those who sent nice words about my art.       Mike

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Off for the Day

                                                         9"x12"  Oil on linen on board

This is a scene near Rockport, Mass. one of my favorite towns.    That day, I was traveling with old friends from California., Joyce Pike and her husband, Bob.   Joyce is very well known,  primarily for her books on floral and still life painting.  She is also a spectacular cook, seamstress, and porcelain painter.  
As you may notice,  I am continuing to show work that has been sold, in addition to available ones.   That's because I only produce a couple of paintings a week and have to supply my galleries,etc.  And, as I mentioned in an earlier post, I tend to be a little lazy.         Mike            

Friday, July 15, 2011

Chandler's Farm

                                                      11"x14"  Oil on linen on board

I painted this as a plein air class demo when I was in Cal. a while back.   I was thinking about putting a figure in it later, but someone bought it before I could.   Probably a good thing.  Looking at it now, it's OK as is, I think.    I'm still undecided if this blog business is a good thing or not.  I've had some response, but not a lot.  I feel a little like a comedian standing in front of rows of empty seats, undecided whether to tell the joke or not.  Oh Well!  I learned how to set up a blog.                 Mike

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Another Day

Today, I still don't feel like working.   You, have a nice day.!          Mike

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

More talk.

Today, for some reason, I feel tired and have no drive to paint.   This morning I went out for coffee with a few of my neighbors, came home and just flopped.   I think I will just read a book and continue to accomplish nothing all day.   Ambition isn't all it's cracked up to be.   Perhaps, dinner out this evening.   Maybe tomorrow I'll post another painting.  And construct more varied and interesting sentences.           Mike

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Ah! Romance

                                              24"x36"  Oil on stretched linen.

This is a little different from my usual subject matter.   I was actually going to paint a large piece of driftwood that was lying up on the beach when the couple came over the dune.   They seemed to make the scene more interesting than the cliche'd driftwood, so I switched concepts.  Is cliche'd a real word?   Anyway, the original was a smaller painting, and I did this version in the studio later.  It's strange, but now I look at it and the the male looks a lot like my kid brother ,when he was young.  Weird!            Mike

Saturday, July 9, 2011

After the Rain

                                                9"x12" Oil  on linen panel

This farmhouse is located in South Carolina, just across the NC state line.  Another artist and I went out and painted another barn, which I did because of the interesting hay bales in the foreground.  Then I just turned around and did the owner's  home.  The sun was almost gone and I thought the sky was interesting.    The night before, it had rained a bit and water was still on the ground, making a nice lead in to the subject.       Mike

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Old Man's Farm

                                                  12"x16" Oil on Linen Panel

A friend and I painted this  farm scene in Templeton, Ca. a year or so ago.  At the time, it was owned and worked by a very old man who lived alone on the property.   He has since passed away, and I believe the property is awaiting sale now.  It will almost certainly be torn down when sold, and will be one less remnant of the picturesque past of our farm country.   I sometimes wonder if plein air artists in years to come will look at condo developments and malls as wonderful landscape subjects          Mike

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Home for Lunch

                                                 11"x14" Oil on canvas on Hardboard

I have been painting quite a bit on location here in NC, because we have had some really nice weather. Recently a small group of locals and I decided to have a shot at this old home in Fletcher, not too far from where I live. It's a great old house, one of the oldest in the town, I'm told. We had a lot of fun, and everyone turned out a pretty good painting.  I am a member of Western NC Plein Air Painters, a wonderful collection of artists, and a new source of friends.  Everyone needs friends.            Mike
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Monday, July 4, 2011

Harbor Pics

This is the harbor of Morro Bay, Ca. the location of most of my "Boat and harbor" paintings.  It was once a very active fishing community, but the fishing industry is really hurting and most of the big boats are gone.   It is a very picturesque community and still very paintable.  Below is a shot of me and three of my friends, all well known artists.  From the left, Anita Hampton, Louise DeMore, me, and David Jonas.  We try to paint together when I am out there and always have a great time!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Village Landmark

                                                          8"x10" Oil on Linen panel
                                                 Click here to buy this painting

This scene is a familiar one to me.  It's just down the hill from my old home in Cambria, Ca.  The little house was originally painted an ocher color, but was changed for the better many years ago.  It is a nursery/gift shop now.   If you have seen the movie "Arachnophobia", it is just across the street from the doctor's (Jeff Daniels) medical office.   That office was once my old art gallery..  As I write this, nostalgia moves in quickly.  Better stop.              Mike

Friday, July 1, 2011

Tug at Morro Bay

                                                9"x12" Oil on Linen Panel                                                                                              Sold

This is a small painting of a scene in Morro Bay, Ca. painted on a Wednesday outing with the Irregulars.  A typical beautiful day.  Art, who was the lodestone of the group when we first started, owns the piece.  Below is a photo of Art as he typically looks on an outing.  Isn't this the way an artist should look?       Mike