Adam Houston

American Impressionist Oil Painter

Pear on Blue II

Back to the fruit again. I had drifted into some harder stuff at the end of 2010 and felt like now was a good time to get back into a still life. I’m trying to do simple composition, painted from life to help me get back in a groove. This one was harder than where I left off but it felt great to be back working on these again.

Sunlit Church

No. 102 is a painting of the First United Methodist Church in downtown Athens. It originated with the same set from the end of last year. We were working our way from campus into downtown and I really liked the way the light hit the front of the church.

This was another one of those like Headed Home or Pharmacy at Night that I felt should have been a home run but proved much harder to execute. In my head this is exactly what I want to paint but I end up feeling more rigid compared to when I am painting fruit.

It’s not that I think it’s awful but it just does not capture what I know it could and that is REALLY frustrating. You look at someone like Stephen Magsig and appears effortless to describe that light but it’s a much, much harder task.

As a side note, how weird is it to have two 8″ x 16″ paintings in a row? Probably the last of those for a while.

Second Serve

So I’m finally back to posting now. I think I needed a really long break to get some perspective and put last year into context. I’m still processing it all but I know I have a lot of painting in front of me.

No. 101 was a gift. It’s a portrait of my friend, Chuck, who had diligently led the men’s group I attend each Wednesday morning. For the last five years Chuck has been there to teach us, mentor us and put up with my garbage.

The first time we met he told me that at 30 he had a successful business, a loving wife and a little baby and asked me if that sounded familiar. It did. He then proceeded to tell me how a few bad decisions blew apart his life and left a trail of emotional wreckage he was still cleaning up. He told me to check myself and be very, very careful. Wow, nice to meet you too.

Chuck has spend probably the better part of 15 years putting his life back together after that and using his experiences to help guys like me avoid the pain he went through. He got married in January and the painting was a gift from the guys in our group. It was an honor to do it and I love the idea that with time and forgiveness we can get a second serve in life.