My Blog | Artist Geeta Pattanaik

Jacarandas - plein air and studio paintings

Jacarandas 2019Jacaranda trees 2019

Jacaranda trees at Fairmount Park (plein air and studio paintings)

I did the first piece recently when the jacaranda trees were in full bloom at Fairmount Park. It was done in about 1.5 hours, as I just wanted the colors and placement of objects right. I followed up by doing the painting on the right, by getting in more details, but without looking at any of the photos which I have taken there. I added a few distant details to add interest to the backgrounds. The jetty on the right is for launching the small sailboats, in which the city gives summer classes. This park has become a favorite haunt for me, to paint different things in different seasons, sometimes with my group and sometimes by myself.

A smart travel palette


My new travel palette

I saw this palette advertised and thought it to be a really neat idea, so I bought it for my last trip abroad. The paints come in shallow wells, and the holders fan out to paint or slide back into place forming a compact block, which is easy to pack and carry. It comes with a brush pen with an incorporated water tank, 42 colors and a mixing palette and a sponge to wipe the brush,. I used it on this little 3" x 5 " sketch I made with a black Pitt pen, which has permanent ink. The wash went over the drawing, which I did in a garden.

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.