May, 2010

May 10

Appreciating those along for the ride

Chelsea, detail, acrylic on canvas


Chelsea is one in a small series of recent portraits of bright faces I encounter at the local Starbucks. There is a hint of the exotic in her eyes, but study any face you come in contact with and you’re likely to find something new and fascinating to appreciate. In the event that mankind ever achieves that happy tipping point, appreciating all, as Charles Dickens’ wrote, “fellow passengers on the way to the grave”, then maybe justice and peace will prevail.

Here you can see where I took advantage of the white canvas, allowing it to appear, here and there, around and in the subject to add contrast and drama to the scene. I often use acrylic colors as others use watercolor, to stain and create wash-effects. Mixing this technique on canvas with opaque applications and an ‘active brush’ creates an exciting, expressive surface.

To examine more of my artwork visit Brad Faegre Fine Art


May 10

Full spirit

John Balsamo, 1936- 2009
pastel, 25.5″ x 15″

A few weeks ago (and a few blogs prior to this) I began a portrait of John Balsamo, commissioned by his son, Sal. I learned that John was a people person, a gregarious man who loved to cook—anything he could find in the kitchen—and he did it exceedingly well.

John emigrated from Sicily with his family following WWII. He was many things in his adult life: among them a barber, the owner of a grease collection business, and later a propane business.

Sal’s stories conveyed a passionate man who “always had a cigarette and a cup of coffee in his hands”, so I imagined and painted John that way.
















To examine more of my art visit Brad Faegre Fine Art



May 10

Field Hand

Spring Harvest, pastel, 18 x 24

Last night I painted this still life as a demonstration at Village Art Center, part of the City of Fullerton Art Walk. A few hours before the event I went to a local market and purchase produce for my demonstration. Back at my studio I assembled the various objects in an interesting way on a table and quickly roughed-out a sketch using a dark, red-brown pastel stick on an olive green colored pastel board. This drawing left me plenty of room to improvise later using just the memory of the objects and the evening’s time constraint to simplify and stylize my subject.

This morning in my studio I made a few improvements to last night’s effort, signed the painting and photographed it for the blog.


To examine more of my artwork visit Brad Faegre Fine Art


May 10

Warming up

Z-Man, acrylic on watercolor paper

After a period of drawing and painting inactivity I often develop a hesitancy as I resume my work at the easel. My method for working through the awkwardness and reacquiring that sense of confidence and ease is to begin sketching strictly for fun, creating playful things, like caricatures. In this example, I took my neighbor, Joe Zizi, and I began playing with his happy disposition, added his passion for golf, added a touch of ‘superhero’, and included his beloved Jack Purcell sneakers.


To view more of Brad’s artwork visit Brad Faegre Fine Art