My Blog | Artist Geeta Pattanaik

Art Float event in Riverside

Migratory speres

Art Float event in Riverside, California

"Migratory spheres" watercolor 12" x 16". Riverside had the most amazing display in the lake at Fairmount Park to raise money for the Riverside Art Museum. Children from the Riverside Unified School District painted 350 of the 6 foot spheres which were floated for a few weeks in the lake. Many organizations and individuals sponsored each sphere. Artists and photographers were encouraged to do their own take on this event. This was mine, which won Honorable Mention in the event. I put a migratory Canada goose on land, with its chicks, for a humorous twist on the event.

My class at The Arts Colony of Corona


Classes at The Arts Colony of Corona

For many years I have been teaching the watercolor class at The Arts Colony of Corona. I finished this painting there and so did the students. I hold this class one day a week for six weeks, repeating it a couple of times a year. It is one of the most pleasant times for me to teach a group of adults, who take time away from their busy days to further their interest in the arts. I identify with them so much because I was in their shoes not long ago, and studied and practiced hard to improve. I also teach them everything I can in a short span of time, including things which I wish I had learned earlier, in a way which I wish I could have been shown.

Painting the lake at Fairmount Park

Painting "Lake view" 2

Painting the lake at Fairmount Park

Today I painted the lake at Fairmount Park along with my friends from PAAR ( Plein Air Artists of Riverside). It is one of our favorite places to paint locally as there are a variety of views to choose from. Later that morning sail boats came out in force, but I had already finished my painting by the time they came.

The beautiful travel painting set I was using was a very generous gift from the well known company called
Cheap Joe's Art Stuff. They sent it to me to try out, after I was awarded Signature Membership in the National Watercolor Society in 2016. The colors are excellent and the set has a sturdy but light construction with a lot of thought put into how it can be used. There is a little ring to put one's thumb through, so the palette rests on one's hand comfortably and there are many small sections in the fold out palettes so the colors do not mix together. There are six larger pans and twelve smaller pans of color. One can always refill the colors when they are finished. I would recommend it to anyone for plein air painting, or to take along while traveling.

Painting at Crystal Cove, July 2017

Fun day at Crystal Cove copy
Painting the beach at Crystal Cove 2017

Painting at Crystal Cove, July 2017

I went with Cathi, a friend from PAAR (Plein Air Artists of Riverside), to paint at the beach and despite all my attempts to reduce a lot of gear, I did manage to carry too many things(everything, including my kitchen sink, it seemed like, when I carried them into the bus from my car). There were a few people at the beginning of my time painting, then people put up lots of shelters from the sun and my view was totally blocked. It was a good thing I was quick to complete my painting, which is on the bench in the second photo. I took a bit of time to do the waves, which were completed last. Between the time I started and when I finished, the waves were much larger, and people were keeping away from them. There were helicopters above, as sometimes they scour the coastline for sharks, to warn bathers and surf boarders.

Painting at Warrendety, Melbourne

Painting at Warrendety, Melbourne

Painting at Warrendety

On a recent trip to Melbourne, my sister, Pushpita, and brother-in-law, Sanjaya, planned lovely plein air painting venues for me and for her. She did sketching and I did sketching or painting. This was a scene near the Yarra River at Warrendety, a very leafy area. There was a bridge with lots of tree stumps and broken branches to add to the beauty of the place. I always pack my painting things before my clothes and this small set up is good enough to complete some finished pieces. I had about an hour to pick a suitable view, find a seat and get a small painting done, while talking with the lovely passers by, and be congratulated by a group of 14-15 year olds for my painting (one of them giving me gentle pats on my shoulder for the work I was doing). One merges into the spirit of the place when one observes all the details of the scene, the smells, the sights and the sounds and how they fit into each other to form the unique place. I always remember and acknowledge J. Krishnamurthy, the world renowned philosopher, for his encouragement to actually open one's eyes and not just "see" in a passive way.

I am grateful to have had the opportunity to see and do some unique things in this gracious city, thanks to Sanjaya and Pushpita, who found out what we wanted to do and made it possible, and not just take us to the usual spots tourists see. My mind and my camera are still brimming with the images from this memorable trip my daughter and I took to mainland Australia and the extended trip to Tasmania. It is one of the most memorable trips I have ever been on.