Tuesday, May 5, 2015

A zebra “traffic jam!”

NEW Painting!


"Before and After (Zebras)"

Oil on 1/2 in. Maple panel   
16 x 12

Available through
Tulsa, Oklahoma
918.664.4732

The idea for this painting emerged one evening while I was sketching a zebra that I had spotted near the Silale swamp road in Tanzania, Africa. It was actually one of many zebra that I had seen that morning during a zebra “traffic jam.” The road next to Silale swamp runs pretty straight along the edge of the marsh, and the zebra were using the road as their route to a watering hole. As far as you could see, the zebra were nearly stacked one on top of another like dominoes, but they were kind enough to open a path so that we could drive through the herd. We slowly made our way to the head of the column as the zebra continued their journey, hardly paying us any attention at all. I seized the moment to capture reference photos from different vantage points and lighting angles but this particular scene, with the zebra just slightly turning its head so the morning sun warmed the front of its face, spoke to me. As I look at it, I can remember the sounds of hundreds of zebra moving through the grasses. It was an amazing sight to see.

Here is the painting in its frame...


   




Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The man’s foot came out of the truck...

New painting!



"Disquieted Agitation (Lion)" 

Oil on Board on 1/2 in. Maple panel 
15 x 30 

Within 11 seconds everything changed.

In October 2013, I was in Tarangire National Park, Tanzania, with a group of artists taking part in an elephant conservation/awareness safari hosted by African Wildlife Trust. We did indeed have a great many opportunities to observe and witness the planet’s largest land mammal. But we also had the fortune to see myriad other species including the king himself, the lion.

Out of my two trips to Tanzania, this particular moment that I have captured here is probably one of my most remarkable. It went from a calm, serene scene, almost boring, to intense agitation in the matter of seconds. I was fortunate enough to capture the changing moment with my camera.

My fellow artist and professional photographer friend, James Gary Hines II, and I were standing up and out of the roof of the Land Cruiser photographing two lions by a baobab tree. Both of us are discussing if we should move onto something new, all the time having our cameras up and ready for the “just-in-case” shot. It was at this moment when a guide from another group, about 50 feet away from us to our left, got out of his vehicle. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the lion slowly rise as the man’s foot came out of the truck. By the time the man’s feet hit the ground, the lion was up and not too happy. Everyone in the vehicles around us were screaming at the guy to get back in his truck which, of course, he did and then the lion lost interest.

Although this was a very intense moment, and things could have gone horribly wrong, I can remember as clear as day James and I putting our cameras down on the roof of the Land Cruiser, turning to each other and saying, “What an idiot! But what a great shot!”



Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Colobus Monkey goes to Vermont!

I am very pleased and honored to announce that my drawing "Kutokua Na Hatia (Colobus Monkey)" has been selected for the Art of the Animal Kingdom XX exhibition at the Bennington Center for the Arts in Bennington Vermont.

Art of the Animal Kingdom XX

The Bennington
Bennigton, Vermont
June 6 - August 2, 2015


Graphite Pencil on Arches #300 watercolor paper
15 x 6

This years anniversary exhibition of Art of the Animal Kingdom XX will feature approximately 70 pieces by invited artists and will have over 15 pieces by past Special Guest Artists. The special guest artist are Greg Beecham, Carel P. Brest van Kempen, Michael Coleman, Luke Frazier, Nacy Howe, Laney, Terry Issac, Jan Martin McGuire, Rosetta, Sandy Scott, John Seerey-Lester, Dan Smith and Morten Solberg.

In Swahili, “kutokua na hatia” roughly translates to “innocence/free of guilt.”
I spent the last day of my African adventure in Arusha National Park, which boasts many different animals than those I observed in the earlier part of my trip in Tarangire. The park’s habitat is almost jungle-like. I entered the park knowing that it served as home to black-and-white colobus monkeys, and I will admit I was really hoping that I would have the chance to see them.
Arusha National Park lies on the side of Mount Meru, an active volcano. As we made our way up the edge of the crater wall, we could see Mount Kilimanjaro through the tree canopy. As we came around a bend on the path, we spotted a grouping of colobus monkeys. The dense trees made it tricky to capture reference material. It wasn’t until we were coming back down from the top of the road that I saw a glimpse of white. My guide, Jeremy, very excitedly turned to me and said something in Swahili and pointed up at the monkeys. Even though I had been in the country for more than a week at this point and I felt like I was getting a grasp on the language, I had no idea what he said but I looked up and saw this little innocent face looking down at us. Baby colobus monkeys, I learned, are born with pure white fur but don't stay that way for long so I was extremely fortunate to have seen this little guy.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Fresh Graphite!

Presenting two new drawings!


I managed to finish up these two drawings around the holidays just in time for the opening last Friday, 1/9/2015, at glave kocen Gallery in Richmond, Virginia!


Graphite Pencil on Arches #300 watercolor paper, Hot Press
4 x 14

Graphite Pencil on Arches #300 watercolor paper, Cold press
6 x 9

Both of these drawings are available exclusively at glave kocen gallery gallery in Richmond, Virginia USA. Call 804.358.1990 or visit them online at www.glavekocengallery.com



“Size doesn't matter”

Glave Kocen Gallery

Richmond, Virginia
January 9-31, 2015





Thursday, January 8, 2015

Homecoming?



In case you missed the invite in your inbox...



“Size doesn't matter”

Glave Kocen Gallery

Richmond, Virginia
January 9-31, 2015
Opening reception Friday January 9, 2015
6 - 9 p.m.


Oil on board
16 x 8

I consider my participation in this exhibit at Glave Kocen a “homecoming.” For the first time in my art career, I will be showing in a gallery in my hometown of Richmond, Virginia. I have five pieces in the show, 3 paintings and two brand spanking new drawings!

“Size Doesn't Matter" is Glave Kocen’s annual exhibit displaying work that is 16x20 inches or smaller. The gallery will showcase the work of 30 artists, including gallery-represented and well-known artists from Richmond.

"Ginter Mausoleum" is a painting of a historic Richmond site and it returns back to Richmond for this event after being exhibited in several museums around the country such as the Henderson Fine Arts Center for the Kentucky National Wildlife Show in 2012. This painting also exhibited at the Woolaroc Museum & Wildlife Preserve in Oklahoma, Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art, Salisbury University, and the Irving Arts Center in Irving Texas.

Hope to see you there!

Visit www.rlcaldwell.com/Event_glave_kocen_gallery_Jan2015 for more information about the show.


Thursday, October 9, 2014

Minnesota and wildlife! (Part 1)



Notes from Day 1 & 2…

Capture, Compose and Create Workshop

Minnesota 2014




Day 1

What a great experience not only for myself but for the students as well, I saw smiles all weekend.  There were 12 workshop participants ranging in all skill levels and mediums. 


The first morning started off bright and early with our first photo shoot and even though it was overcast and lightly raining, everyone was excited to get several hundred images of a beautiful Grey Wolf. They overcast wet conditions really made for some highly saturated colors with great contrast. One of our other subjects for the morning was a young black bear that really pushed our limits with understanding the use of our cameras. There was a lot of adjusting of the ISO, shutter speed and aperture settings to accommodate for the darkness of the bear’s fur in the low lighting. Nevertheless there was many, many oh’s and ahh’s as each artist looked at what they were seeing on their LCD screens of their cameras.


After lunch and back in the classroom artist/instructor Jan Martin McGuire gave a presentation on her evolution of an artist and her process of creating a piece of art from working with reference material to planning the composition of the painting. Jan being a master at her technique as well as a very knowledgeable naturalist created a frenzy of pencils moving as fast as possible taking notes,  in fact cell phones started coming out so they could capture screen shots of the presentation.


I am positive that all artists went back to their individual hotel rooms over flowing with new insight from Jan's presentation and eager to finish uploading their memory cards to their lap tops.

Day 2

Rain was forecast for most of the day but that couldn't stop us.  With as bit of a delayed start so that the sun had some time to burn  off some of the cloud cover we went out with bags over our cameras and sporting large black trash bags as rain coats for those who didn't have them.  The rain did set in after only about 30 minutes of shooting but we all did have great time capturing a mature raccoon by the water with some great fall colors. 

Artists working in the rain

After a good old “country” lunch at a nearby cafĂ© we went back to the classroom for the continued presentation by Jan on creating a painting and her process of how she does it. Again all artists in the workshop were feverishly taking notes and at the same time I saw that many of them were uploading their images from the mornings photo shoot. The day ended late with my presentation on “Composing in Photoshop” after dinner that went on to about 9pm. I thought having my presentation coming after Jan’s was perfect since she talked about the actual process of painting and then I talked about using the reference that the artist where capturing at the workshop and how using Photoshop could aid them in pushing their compositions further then what they caught in one individual image.

Many artists stayed up late that night playing on their laptops!

Workshop artists composing with Photoshop





Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Waterpump painting - progress


Here is a sneak peek into the current painting that I have on my easel. Most of the reference for this particular piece came from a visit to Tulsa Oklahoma around two/three years ago. I was out visiting and exploring the country side with a collector friend of mine when he told me about this old water pump he had and after seeing it I knew I wanted to paint it!

Progress to date... I am currently on the second layer of color, background is finished and I am currently working on the galvanized metal textures of the pump.

This painting will be unveiled at an upcoming show at Lovetts Gallery in Tulsa, Oklahoma during the first weekend in November.