Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Harlem on my mind

"CCNY Gargoyle #1"
Oil on panel
6 x 6 inches

A friend recently moved to Harlem and I've been enjoying my visits to her new apartment and our explorations of the surrounding neighborhood. Hamilton Heights is the site of The Grange, Alexander Hamilton's country home. It has been restored and has been moved to St. Nicholas Park and is well worth a visit. Not far away is the campus of the City College of New York and for anyone interested in gargoyles, this is the place to be. I'd heard about them for years and was very excited to finally explore the stately campus and find many of the little, whimsical figures that dot the buildings. This gargoyle painting is the first of several I plan to paint. The variety of textures of stone and the one-of-a-kind figures make for an exciting subject.

In addition to Alexander Hamilton's home, the Jumel Mansion, which has not been restored and is showing its age, is a pleasant stroll away. I believe it is the oldest building in New York. George Washington spent months in residence planning the battle of Harlem Heights.

It was fitting therefore, to find myself in Harlem on President's Day, where many of the country's founding fathers spent their days. This time I was there not to explore the neighborhood but to celebrate my birthday, a big one this year as I enter a new decade. Thank you Debbie for hosting a wonderful birthday brunch spent with good friends in your cheerful apartment. I'm looking forward to future explorations of your nabe soon, camera in hand.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

I Heart New York

"I Love NY"
Oil on canvas panel
4 x 5 inches

Passed by this window a few years ago and created this very small painting. Pretty much sums up my feelings about my hometown, as if you didn't already know. Love to all my faithful readers, wishing you a Happy Valentine's Day.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Mystery solved...almost

"Abstract Reflections"
Oil on canvas
24 x 24 inches

The mystery of where this subject was taken has been bothering me as I usually can identify the buildings and sites I paint. So, I went back into my iPhoto files - and I had a lot of photos to look through - but methinks the mystery is almost solved. I took the photo that this painting is based on in December of 2009 and believe it is a building on Fifth Avenue, not far from Bergdorf Goodman. My suspicion is that it might be a reflection of St. Patrick's Cathedral, but maybe not. The only thing to do now is to head back to midtown and look around. As I've been immersed in reading the Sherlock Holmes and Mary Russell series of books by author Laurie R. King for the last few months, I'm in full-blown detective mode. Hopefully the answer to the location of this painting will soon be found.