Monday, January 31, 2011

Monday, Jan 31

Here is today's block-in, another 30x40 of Amsterdam. I just spent the morning figuring out the composition. So tomorrow I can work a little on the background and see how far I can get on that.

Richard Boyer


We are once again up at the cabin, with plenty of snow about.

Am I allowed to rest?

Certainly not!

At four in the afternoon when we arrived, our over night bags, grocery and other miscellaneous stuff was unloaded out of the car and we headed off to do the ten kilometer track from Northfork to Soapstone Basin.

Such is the winter life style up here, no such thing as lying on the couch drinking beer. Yes we practice the healthy life style; at least my wife makes sure I do it. That’s why I’m sitting here typing with a glass of wine, after reading the surgeons general about how healthy red wine can be, I figure it best to keep up the pace.

Yesterday at the local grocery store I ran into Tyrone, who is a judge at the third district court here in town. He was picking up steaks for dinner and I was picking up something healthier like fresh fish for the grill. Our topic of conversation, or rather I should say his topic of conversation, how long he had to wait until retirement, or as he put it the time before he could enter into the next phase of his life…..

He made the comment that he needed a career like mine as an artist. I smiled, as an artist I really don’t have that idea or notion of retirement. It really doesn’t exist in our vocabulary and I couldn’t really image what the galleries would say if I told them I was going go into my next phase of my life and if they could just please start sending me my monthly checks as I sit on a lounge chair somewhere in the Caribbean.

We started comparing occupations, grant it mine is most likely more relaxing, but at the same time it can be slightly stressful with the prospects of your next sale and incoming check. Tyrone on the other hand has the luxury of a check being deposited into his account for a pre-determined amount. Myself, it could be several months before I see anything.

Them I begin to thing about what he needs to do in order to earn that dependable income. His job as a judge would mean reading through volumes and volumes of boring depositions about cases that have basically nothing to do with his life. That alone would drive me to contemplate suicide. There is no way I could do that. So of course he would envy the life of an artist and of course the artist would envy the live of the nine to five paid government employee.

The grass is always greener on the other hill. Is that not how the saying goes.

Richard Boyer

Friday, January 28, 2011


The crit went well last night and I got the list of things to change on the paintings. As usual they are all relatively small fixes. Like on the Amsterdam piece they felt the grocery barge was just a little too dark, so a simply stroke of blue over the top pushed it back more into the distance. The smoke coming from the boat on the left side gave the painting a little too much of an industrial feeling, so I painted that out also. All in all there was about five things to work on and then it was time to move on to the next painting.

The Grocery Barge in Amsterdam 30x40
Boats at the Lake 24x36

With the row boats it was some more work on the grasses and water, all very small changes. I sent off images of the pieces this morning to Ron at the May Gallery. He wants to put out an invitation with the paintings for my show coming up on February 24th.

Richard Boyer

Thursday, January 27, 2011


This piece most likely needs another session, but still I got quite a bit done on it today. I’m sure Zorn could have put the sea grass in a lot better than me and I admit the background water might be a little rich in blue color. Once it dries a few days then it will be easy to glaze over with some yellow ochre to knock it down.

We have another model session at Bryce’s place tonight form six to nine, then the crit afterwards at Nick’s. Today will be one of those busy painting days.

I sent Ron Bailey from the May Gallery a picture of our model session from Monday; the girl reclining with the cigar in a rather un-lady like pose. I kind of knew what his response would be, basically who the hell would buy that ! But what can I say, it’s a practice session. The main point is to be better at painting the figure, so I’ll practice when ever I get the chance. Still its nice to send the results off to somebody in the gallery business to get their view point… matter how brutal it might be!

One thing I am doing is using Anders Zorn’s pallet for the figurative paintings. I have Titanium White, Ivory Black, Cadmium red light and yellow Ochre……that’s it !

Richard Boyer

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Here is my result from our Monday evening model sessions. Rick Graham normally has it, but since he is out playing around on the sun shinning coast of California, Bryce Liston took over at his studio. Thanks Bryce for stepping up to the plate!

The model thought a pose out of the ballet “Carmen” would be interesting, the story about a beautiful woman working at a cigarette factory in Seville. "L'amour est un oiseau rebelle"…. Love is a rebellious bird, the main character responds as she walks out of the factory with cigar in hand and all the men of the town eyeing her.

Actually it’s usually a cigarette in the ballet, but the cigar looks bigger.

Any ways she had the cigar and black dress and sat down on the couch. There was the painting. And I know that none of the galleries would be able to sell this kind of subject matter. But I do have to admit it was a fun painting to work on.

This morning I was working on the horse painting again, just fixing up small detailed areas that most people wouldn’t even notice. So I figured it wasn’t worth an image of.

Richard Boyer

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


This morning we were inundated again by snow. A fast moving front came through and dumped about 3-4 inches and now they are saying it will all be through the state by late afternoon with a chance of sunshine. Well we have skate skiing this afternoon, so I shouldn’t complain. They need the snow up at Mountain Dell where they have the tracks.

Ron from the May Gallery called yesterday, telling me that they had sold a painting, my mind of course started racing along with the thoughts of a large, very expensive painting. Those notions were dashed against the rocks. It was only a small 11x14; or as Jim Peterson from the Mockingbird Gallery calls it “Lunch Money!” I’m hoping next time they call it will be with news of something more substantial, something I could use to pay off the mortgage!!!

Like that would ever happen!

I worked on something new today. I did this piece first as a 12x16 and thought it would make a good 24x36. Without the architectural problems of Amsterdam, this one feels simple and fun. Something I can get done in a relatively short amount of time. This is only the block in stage and I’ll see if I can finish it off on Thursday.

Right now its time to shovel the driveway.

Richard Boyer

Monday, January 24, 2011

Monday, Jan. 24

The whole family went skiing yesterday up at Deer Valley; we ended up with some free tickets from a woman who works part time there in the bakery department. Sunday morning the sun was shining and it was warm, so we loaded up the car and took off.

Maybe I should explain that this week we have Robert Redford’s Sundance Film Festival going on, where independent film makers gather in Park City, Utah to show off their latest creations. The entire town turns into Hollywood for the week, with movie stars and accompanying paparazzi filling the streets. Most normal people try and avoid it all.

I figured we might be dealing with the Film Festival crowd up at the resort, but to our surprise the slopes were relatively empty. The movie stars were most likely self absorbed in their own films playing throughout the day. With no lift lines we burned our legs up doing run after run and by one thirty were ready for their killer food and a beer. With all the wealth and prestige that hangs around the resort, their restaurants at the lodges have a reputation for being the best and surprisingly not that expensive relatively speaking. At Alta Ski resort you pay ten dollars for a wilted heat lamp burger, for just a few dollars more at Deer Valley you are getting the fresh fish taco special.

I worked this morning on the Amsterdam piece. First I defined the figures on the boat and then worked a little on the umbrellas. I then figured some clouds were needed. Now it’s all ready for the Thursday crit session!

Richard Boyer

Friday, January 21, 2011


No broken glasses at the crit session last night. I count myself fortunate.

I worked yesterday and today on the Amsterdam piece. Painting in the water and defining the right building more. There are more people I need to put in the café at the bottom and define the grocery boat more; at least so one can tell what the figures are up to.

Tonight Nick Rees is having his art show at the Patrick Moore Gallery, so we were all going to head down there and give him some support. Most artists tend to do that, especially when they have an open bar serving wine…..some things never change!

Richard Boyer

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


The skies were dark over Salt Lake City today, another warm system blowing through the valley with rain. Yesterday we were up at Mountain Dell for some skate skiing and it was warm and slushy. As it got later in the afternoon the slush turned to ice and after today’s rain showers I’m not sure there will be anything left up there. What we need is another cold front from the arctic

I spent this morning working on the café at the water front level. The boat, which in reality was a garbage scowl for a renovation project, was changed into a grocery supply barge. The cinder blocks were replaced by crates of produce and with the addition of a few figures it now fits in much better. So as a result of the changes, things took a little longer than I thought and I couldn’t get to the water today.

Here is a small close up of the area; maybe tomorrow I'll get a chance to work on the water!

Richard Boyer

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


Forgive me, it’s been a while since my last entry, sounds like a Catholic Church doesn’t it?

Sunday we went up to the cabin to try some back-country skiing. At seven thousand feet it was still raining, this warm front that pushed through the state had brought havoc to the snow pack. The day started out overcast and we had a little apprehension about even going out into it, but the sky just looked grey with nothing more. Naturally when we made it to our goal; a small creek in the middle of a snowy meadow far away from the car, it started to drizzle. The snow was slowly being transformed into a soupy massed potato type consistency. With the skies becoming darker with heavy cloud cover, we decided it best to get back as fast as possible. Back to the cabin for some warm hot chocolate and snacks. The dog was dressed up for the occasion, whether it liked that or not is still to be determined. She didn’t seem to be too embarrassed.

Monday was a holiday so Victor, Lina and I went up to Alta for a half day of skiing. As it turned out, it was a half day of skiing on ice. All that rain had frozen during the night and turned the slopes into a hard ice pack. Skis were chattering over the top and people falling left and right, it was nevertheless a challenge to make it down sometimes. The wind was blowing so hard they had to close down half of the chairlifts by afternoon. There were a few spots where Lina, with her weight being so light, was blown back up the hill.

Today it was back to painting again, an architectural study of Amsterdam. I spent much of the time working on the hotel to the right. With all the lines and angles it had to be right and in fact there might still be some things off with it, but at least its all basically knocked in with respects to the architecture. Tomorrow I’ll work on the café below and the water.

Richard Boyer

Thursday, January 13, 2011


Updating web sites has got to be the slowest process that I know of. Realistically I would rather bang my head against a wall than be a computer programmer. It’s just too mind numbing boring. So now you know why it’s taking me so long to update my web site with the new works from Amsterdam. It becomes a domino affect, once you put the new stuff on, all the older paintings have to be moved and re-arranged to fit. So in reality I’m building the site all over again. I can work on it for a few hours until my mind becomes mush and can’t thing straight any more.

What I need is a socially awkward fourteen year old, who really likes spending hours on the computer!

Well I worked on the larger Amsterdam piece today, mainly with the buildings and trees on the left side. Next week I should have it done, as with any architecture it does take a while to do, if you want to get it right.

Richard Boyer

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


I was on the tech support line yesterday with Dell Computers. Seems like the weather in India is quite nice! No matter how many times my call was re-routed I would end up talking to some tech savvy guy with a heavy accent in New Delhi trying to understand my problem. Since I bought this new monitor I’ve been trying to get the image as large as possible on the screen. What's the point of having the tool bar and other surrounding junk taking up space where I could just have the image that I'm working from? So I was trying to find out if I could just get the picture to fill up the entire monitor by my easel.

For some odd reason they couldn’t figure out why I would want to do that. And after the third guy, they finally figured out my dilemma and told me the only way to do what I wanted was through PowerPoint. As an artist, of course I have the older model 2003, which lacks all the bells and whistles and naturally he couldn’t figure out how to do it.

I was just thinking that if I worked at the University, like some of my neighbors, I would be getting the latest updated computer every year!

Well I was back working on the “Horse Whisperer” painting today, trying to wrap it up. The monitor still showing the tool bar and everything else as a distraction.

I’ll bring the 30x24 to the crit session tomorrow and hopefully enough wine will get them to drop the inhibitions and say “the cold hearted reality” that every artist dreads to hear.

Richard Boyer

Monday, January 10, 2011

Monday, Jan. 10, 2011

Seems like the whole house is coming down with the plaque. First Markus had it and now it appears as if Lina and Karin are getting the same thing. I have the feeling it’s going to be like a time bomb soon with me. Both Karin and I had the shots, so this must be one of those “not covered in the vaccine” type strains. As they say there are hundreds of varieties out there and the chances of not catching one would be like winning the lottery.

I worked more on the figure today, as much as I could considering I have Lina home from school.

Richard Boyer

Friday, January 7, 2011


I worked on the background today. From the crit session last night it was determined that I needed more interest on the left side. Since the painting was only block in, there basically was nothing there yesterday. On Monday I will concentrate on the figure and horse.

Today I'm going to try and buy a new monitor at the University bookstore, they have some good deals up there. For a reasonable price you can pick up some large screen which will bring in all the details I need to see and should make a world of difference. I've been using this small 20 inch monitor for years now and its time to upgrade!

Richard Boyer

Thursday, January 6, 2011


I’ll have the little kids again today for skate skiing. Maybe they will all be divided up into their proper groups this time. It will be fun any ways!

I worked some more on the girl and horse painting today, just defining the face more and also the head of the horse. They both need to be in the right proportion to each other. Where is the artist James Reynolds when you need him!

Richard Boyer

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


Yesterday afternoon it was the first meeting of the Utah Nordic Alliance, a chaotic collection of about 150 kids ranging in age from five up to teenagers. They were signed up for cross country ski lessons and all told to meet at Mountain Dell up in Parley’s Canyon at 4:30 for the first orientation meeting. Actually it was our job to get them all in the right groups according to their ability. Since that is not possible when they first sign up in the fall, they are just massed into age groups at first instead.

My son, Markus had signed up to be a volunteer teacher; but since he was sick, I had to take over his group. If there was any correct way of defining mass chaos, this would have been it. It was parents aimlessly walking about with skis in hand wondering where their children should be, parentless children wondering how to put them on and a collection of some, who had to urgently go to the bathroom where they was no restroom

Thank God a few there had a better idea of what was going on and could give some advice for us novice teacher assistants. One of the more experienced women their helping with my group made the suggestion to have them all ski up the nearby hill. This being in order to determine who was right for the group and which ones to send down to a lower group, or up to the more advanced.

Well within seconds it became very apparent, who had been on cross country skies before, as a small group of them plowed ahead up the incline. The second gathering struggled to get up the hill and the remaining few were sprawled out on the snow.

This method was more or less applied to all the age groups so we could see how to re-arrange the mass into more coherent groups so they could really learn something. From our notes and the help of a spread sheet they will all be re-assigned to the right level next week. All in all it was a fun experience watching it all.

Today was another block in. This will be a 30x40 for the May Gallery when it’s done.

Richard Boyer

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


Last night we had a figure painting session at Rick’s place. As usual everyone argues over the possession of the head when the model tries to re situate herself back into the pose after the break. Well here is my result, wishing I had another two and a half hour session to bring it more to that finished state.

This morning I started on a 30x24 piece. My wife has some relatives down in southern Sweden and this is their daughter, Charlotte feeding her horse. I just blocked it in for now to work a little on the composition.

Richard Boyer

Monday, January 3, 2011

Monday, Jan. 3, 2011

Here we are at New Years Eve, a quiet dinner with some neighbor friends wishing you all a good year to come. Well the dinner wasn’t very quiet and it dragged on until 3:30 in the morning! It was a lot of fun talking with old friends, and yes we all felt it the next day. It was rather hard to get out of bed, especially when we had to face a sea of empty bottles and glasses everywhere.

We did manage to get up to Mountain Dell later on in the afternoon to burn off some of that holiday cheer. A few laps around the cross country ski track made me feel the over indulgence of the night before. That Saturday evening it was a Toy Story Three on DVD, beer and pizza. From the crowds of the pizza place to the line at Blockbusters, I have a feeling everyone was thinking the same thought.

This morning it was back to reality. Like hitting the wall, that early morning shock of getting the household up for school again, a process that was long forgotten about from the holiday.

Today I painted out the small boat and brought up the colors on the right side in this piece. Those changed I felt helped it a little.

Richard Boyer