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Sunday, July 27, 2014

Beach Party, 6x6 Inch Acrylic Painting by Kelley MacDonald


A little something different for me!  The paint is layers and layers, inspired by a recent trip to the beach.  The figures are having a party and I painted them in a naive manner, without modeling of darks and lights.  Just simple, fun and THERE.  
I really enjoyed painting it - I hope it's fun to look at, too.....

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Stand At Pardon Gray, 5x7 Inch Oil Painting by Kelley MacDonald

I have loved this stand of trees a couple of miles from my home for the 10 years I've lived here.  It's at the Pardon Gray Preserve.  Beautiful and different in every light... and I want to paint them all.  I started out with the image on my iPhone, then sketched in ink, and colored in with markers... to see what I liked in terms of size of the trees, placement, and atmosphere.

First small sketches,

Then I did a 5x7 in acrylic - to see if I liked that... and I DID, 

But then I did the top one in oil... and it came closest to my vision in my head.  After painting this same scene all day, I was treated to this sunset view, below.... breathtaking....

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Here's Looking At You! Open Studio This Weekend!

It's a beautiful weekend here in Little Rhody!  I'd love to see you if you're thinking of doing the South Coast Artists Tour!  11-5 Saturday and Sunday.  There are over 100 artists - too much to see all!
But I'll be at my studio, and you can come enjoy the breezes, sip a cold drink and soak up ART!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Yellow Bouquet, 6x6 Inch Oil Painting by Kelley MacDonald

  Getting ready for Open Studios this year has been more of a push up than usual. In the past I tidied up, brought bins of paintings from my studio, hung the signage, and VOILA!  This year I still had boxes I had yet to unpack form moving my studio into my LIVING ROOM, plus I had 3 easels, 3 mediums, all my art supplies... all that needed moving.  Oh, and stacks of paintings against the walls, on the walls and on the shelving, which needed to be relocated, too.  WAH!  What was I thinking?  I should have been getting ready for this for MONTHS.

Well, what happens when you're under the gun and the clock is ticking, and you know you should have started waaaaaay earlier?  You become exhausted, you fall down the stairs, you miss deadlines because you were not looking at the clock, you accidentally let the cat out one day and he disappears (no worries, he did come back) and the dog out another day and he runs down the middle of Main Road leaving you NO choice but to chase him in your NIGHTGOWN and flip flops, you argue with people you love, UNTIL it's all done.

Happy to report it's all done :)  And we can be normal now - I mean, as normal as we ever were.  Some nice Facebook friends have suggested that if this art thing doesn't work out I could write sit-coms from my life.  We'll see how it goes.  Anyway, I'd SO love to see you, and have you see what I've been working on.  I love meeting people who follow the blog - so be SURE to introduce (or re-introduce - I have a brain like a sieve) yourself if you decide to take a ride to one of the most beautiful areas in New England!  

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Maine Thing, a collage of Maine Paintings by Kelley MacDonald

I threw together a little collage of my most recent Maine paintings.  Most of these are available at my Open Studio this weekend.  I know I'm supposed to be organizing, hanging, spit & polishing, etc. but here is what I have been doing: 

Yup, painting MASSIVE jelly donuts, then trying to get a selfie wearing a hat because - well, it was a Bad Hair Day, that's all I'm gonna say about that.  So on the front of my house is a strange assortment of large paintings:  A red dory on a calm pond.... A Sun & fields with fractured paint - in thick squares and dabs.... and two massive jellies in a stack.  Still painting like crazy - thank God when I missed a step on the stairs on Saturday last it was my LEFT shoulder I wrenched.  

If you're in driving distance, and want to take a nice drive - we have dozens of artists this weekend who have opened their studios.... so ice cream (Gray's), seafood and art - does it get any better than this?

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Those Luscious Lips, 6x6 Inch Oil Painting by Kelley MacDonald

  Oh... those sweeties... and that top one was over-stuffed - don't DO that to me!!!  I have to fight my dog and my husband to get one of these! :)  I had these two picked out while I was in line at Dunkin's.  The lady in front of me acted like she was in STARBUCK's - she had questions about every beverage they carried, and she had a little boy that I was afraid was going to claim these excellent 'models'.  Turns out his 'event' was an in depth discussion about the merits of mixing flavors for a personalized 'Coolatta'  (at this point I have broken out in to a sweat, I felt like a junkie - wanted to place my hand over both their mouths and just beg "Please put the two middle jellies aside for me, OK?".  So, yeah.... I did a very small amount of foot tapping and eye rolling.. and then when it was my turn - don't you know I was 5 cents SHORT?  I had left my bag in the car and only brought in a little cash.  While I debated whether I should just get ONE of them, or neither, the lady who was in front of me reached over and tossed a dollar bill on the pile of money I had.  Yup.  Just like that.  I felt smaller and smaller (hadn't I just rolled my EYES at her?) and then, fortunately a dime fell out of my pocket, so I had it covered, but still.  Put me right back in my place, being patient.  Not judging.  Accepting what the Universe/God/Angles have lined up for me.
And I painted like the WIND when I got home!

Now - one of these days I'm going to do everyone a favor and start a Newsletter.  Yes, Leslie Saeta, I am!  But I want to tell you that NEXT weekend.........

You are all SO invited and would be extremely welcomed!  It's a wonderful Tour.  I can steer you to some of the most amazing artists!  Please introduce yourself (again?) to me, as I am swamped with faces those days... :D

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Dreaming of Maine, 8x8 Inch Oil Painting by Kelley MacDonald

  Deceptively simple.  But like a dream, there are many layers of paint on this painting.  It has a solid 'structure' but then the paint just glided on...fluid and in ... well, 'dreamy' colors.  With a hint of what we call 'calligraphy' on the little islands, where I've carved through the paint.  I was going to save this for my Open Studio, but I though, ... no.. I had to share it.  Feel free to zoom in, you find all sorts of interesting things going on in this painting.  I don't say this about many of my paintings, but I love this piece.

Busy getting ready for my Open Studio next weekend!!!!!  I am inviting you all.  This year I'm leaving up a Work In Progress, and you can see my palette, my favorite brushes, and my colors.  I'd like to say I'm cleaning and organizing but I can't stop PAINTING.  You may show up to my usual disarray of stacks of paintings I'm working on, a table with acrylics set up, my oil paint set up, my colored markers - all in the midst of being used!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Old Barn, 8x8 Inch Oil Painting on Paper by Kelley MacDonald

8x8 Inch Oil on Arches Oil Paper

Another one from Hersey Farm in Hingham.  Loved painting the weathered wood!  Once again, keeping it loose.  It's funny, when I first started painting I wanted to be EXACT EXACT - totally realistic - photo realistic if I could.   I now think that it is actually harder to paint a good, solid, loose piece.  Carol Marine said once that you progress to a certain point, then you have to decide - extreme realism or expressionism.  The masses certainly admire extreme realism ("Ohhh, it looks just like a photo!" *cringe*).  But at this point I"m leaning towards a certain degree of expression.  Even though my darling husband will inevitably say "Couldn't you paint the shingles?

Well, here in our little corner of the world, we have had 2 beautiful days after the 4th of July.  So.... for all the kvetching and napping and reading that got done on the 4th - good!  Sometimes it takes an act of God to make me relax.  So... thank You!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Hersey Farm View, 6x6 inch Oil Painting by Kelley MacDonald

Last week I had the great pleasure of painting with some fabulous painters at Hersey Farm in Hingham MA.  We decided to paint in 'study' mode - not to get too wrapped up in detail, in a struggle for perfection, and rather to be more impressionistic, to be loose - but correct.  It was wonderful, and we all got a few nice pieces.  This on is a view up at meadow.. with a bit of standing water brightly reflecting the incredible blue sky that day.  The cows will be coming to this farm soon for summer grazing.  We've been invited back.  I cannot wait!

We saw at least 13 different sets of fireworks tonight.  You have to find things every day to be grateful for.  I am.  So grateful.  For my family, my friends, my work....

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Independence Day!

11x14, Acrylic
Long May It Wave

This painting was done on location in the Long Pond area of Bristol, ME.  A 2 room home, it was restored lovingly by a family over 42 years.  I love, love, loved painting it.

Happy 4th!  May we ever be grateful for our wonderful country, and though we may have our  differences, we are one nation.  Every state has it's beauty and personality, each as beautiful as the next.  I hope you get some good family time, festivities and maybe a parade.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Thoughtful Gull, 12x6 in Acrylic Painting by Kelley MacDonald

 $125 & $10 S&H
Email me at to purchase

Summer is here, and the gulls are back!  I'm always inspired to paint them, and I think I am getting better and better at capturing our local gulls' likenesses!   This one, above, is for sale (see the close up below the entire piece) but the one below I'm saving for my Open Studios, coming up on July 19th and 20th of this month.
It's taken from Jamie Wyeth's painting.  That's one way artists learn, to hone their skills.  I'm no Jamie Wyeth, but I did enjoy painting this gaggle of gulls!
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