Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Famous Artists and Art Collectors

Red Cliffs First Ward Scouts visit the Roland Lee Art Gallery

This evening a group of young artists and future art collectors dropped by my art studio for a tour. After showing them around the studio we talked about the role of artists and how we interpret the world around us. They had some great questions and I have no doubt some will be professional artists one day. I gave each young man a print and a box of cards to take home with them. The boys were from the Red Cliffs First Ward Boy Scouts.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Roland Lee photo of Red Mountain Snow on KSL TV

Roland Lee photo of snow on the Red Mountain at Snow Canyon

We had a rare blast of weather today. It rarely snows in St. George, but at about 2:50 this afternoon, a front rolled in with gale-force winds and sleet which covered the red hills with a white blanket in just minutes. It continued all afternoon, and made a great view when the clouds finally broke. On the way home from the studio I stopped and shot a photo of the snow on the big Red Mountain and e-mailed it to KSL Television in Salt Lake City. They aired the photo on the weather during tonight's 10pm newscast.

Carl Purcell Visits my Studio

Carl Purcell stopped by my studio following his watercolor workshop. We were joined by Mr. and Mrs. Williams from Farmington, who also stopped by the gallery to check out my new paintings. They had previously purchased one of Carl's paintings but never had the chance to meet him. So we all enjoyed a nice visit.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Carl Purcell Painting Workshop

carl Purcell demonstrating for the southern utah watercolor society
Artist Carl Purcell demonstrates for the Southern Utah Watercolor Society

The Southern Utah Watercolor Society sponsored a watercolor painting workshop with Carl Purcell this past week. What an outstanding teacher and artist! I own two of Carl's original paintings and was able to trade him for a third painting while he was here. One of the originals that I own appears in his new book by Northlight press, "Painting with Your Artist's Brain." The same painting also appeared in an article by Carl in the September issue of "Artists Magazine." I also picked up a couple of nice original drawings that appear in in his Northlight book, "Drawing with your Artist's Brain."

Painting by Carl Purcell in his new book Painting with the Artist's Brain
"Northern Exposure" painted by Carl Purcell and owned by Roland Lee, appears in the new book as one of the demonstration pieces.

artists Carl Purcell and Roland Lee
Roland Lee (left) and Carl Purcell in Roland's studio.

Carl Purcell actually taught the first watercolor workshop I ever attended back in 1978 and was very influential in launching my watercolor painting career. It was fun to have him come down to southern Utah and Teach our watercolor group. Thanks to Dick Rose the SUWS president for all his hard work to line up these great workshops.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

More Travel Sketch Book Drawings

I had a few minutes to scan some of the drawings from my Travel Sketchbook. These were done last week on our cruise to Ensenada, Mexico. I carried a Watson-Guptill hardbound 5" x 8" sketchbook which is my favorite for travelling. I used a 4B pencil for most of the drawings which were all completed on location. I spent about 10 minutes on each one.

Roland Lee plein airsketch book drawing of The Holly House on Catalina Island

The Holly House on Catalina Island

Roland Lee plein airsketchbook drawing of Seaside village in San Diego

Seaside Village in San Diego

Roland Lee plein air sketchbook drawing of boats in San Diego Harbor

Boats in the San Diego Harbor

Monday, January 21, 2008

Newest Roland Lee Painting Purchased

Artist John Mangels with Roland Lee painting he purchased

Watercolor painting by Roland LeeToday Mr. and Mrs. John Mangels became the owners of my newest painting "Fence Line Fury." Living near the mouth of Snow Canyon, they enjoy outstanding views of the red cliffs. John attended my recent watercolor workshop and watched as I demonstrated this painting in class. They also purchased "Big Red Mountain" which portrayed a view seen from their home.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Cruise to Mexico Sketchbook Drawings

Roland Lee Sketch book drawing of Ensenada MexicoLast night we returned from a week-long cruise to Ensenada Mexico, with stops at Catalina Island and San Diego, California. The weather was magnifient with temperatures in the low 70's and the sea air was good for my soul and my body. Of course I packed along my sketchbook and did lots of drawings which will inspire some future paintings. If I get time I'll post a few more sketch book drawings next week.Roland Lee sketch book drawing of Catalina Island

Top image: Sketchbook drawing of a roofline in Ensenada Mexico. Left image: Sketchbook drawing of buildings on the wharf at Catalina Island.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Watercolor Workshop Demonstration Paintings

Watercolor painting lesson on how to paint skies

The painting above was done during our watercolor class to demonstrate a highly effective watercolor technique for painting skies in five minutes or less. Using a wet-into-wet technique, I allowed the paint to mingle freely on the wet paper, leaving areas of light for contrast and drama. I had the students paint three different skies this way.

Roland Lee watercolor painting of desert sage

Watercolor Painting Lesson by Roland LeeI began this painting as a watercolor art lesson during the painting workshop showing how to use the technique of negative painting or backpainting to depict desert shrubs and sage. Even though the foreground is in shadow, you can still clearly see the effects of the sky light coming from the left side of the painting. The highlight side of each shrub is identified by the value conrast with the shadow side of the shrub behind it. The example we used had a desert style home in it, but I changed it into a distant cliff to add more interest.

Click on the inset photo to see how I laid in broad loose washes first, then defined the edges with a pencil after the initial washes had dried. This is a technique I often use to help me find where the contrast of values will be. The pencil lines will be obliterated by the paint since they appear only where an edge will be.

How to paint skies in watercolor by Roland Lee

This was an art class demonstration of How to paint skies in watercolor. The sky only took five minutes. But the rest of the painting took another day! This painting is entirely made up without any reference material.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Another Good Watercolor Workshop

Roland Lee Watercolorpainting Workshop
Above: Bernice Payne, Paula Wadsworth, and Luzon Glines at work in the workshop. Below: John Mangels

Photo of John Mangels in Roland Lee watercolor painting workshopMonday and Tuesday I conducted a watercolor workshop at Passion for Painting Gallery with a great group of artists. It's always fun to spend two full days with my peers and feel the energy that comes when a group of like-minded artists get together. But what I really enjoy is seeing the variety of styles and techniques that is generated in class. What an art show! Students included: Karen Bettilyon, Luzon glines, John Mangels, Bernice Payne, Paula Wadsworth, Lexie Boyce, and Barbara Withelder.

Friday, January 04, 2008

1981 Watercolor Painting

Donna and Dale Burrill with Roland Lee Watercolor Painting bought in 1981

Today I was visited by Donna and Dale Burrill who recently inherited one of my older watercolor paintings from Donna's deceased mother. The painting, "Desert Rainbow", was purchased by her mother at the George Phippen Memorial Art Show held each memorial day weekend in Prescott Arizona. I painted it in April 1981, and she purchased it in May 1981. the painting is #107, and I am currently on painting #1041, so it was truly one of the earlier paintings. The painting looks great with no fading, and even the original mats are in good shape. The Burrills report that the painting fits perfectly with their Southwest decor and they are delighted with it.