Hooray for the Red, White, and Blue – Jacki Kellum Oil Paintings

In my college art classes, I initially trained to paint in oils, but for most of the past 50 years, I’ve painted in watercolor, which is a much less forgiving medium–especially for loose, expressionistic painters. For quite some time, I’ve wanted to try oils again, and I’m finally doing that again. I’ve spent the month of January and have harnessed the Strada easel challenge to paint every day from life and to re-learn how to paint in oil.

Apple Cider – Jacki Kellum Oil Painting on Hardboard Panel
Painted from Life – in my Studio
January 25, 2023

Three weeks later, Apple Cider is the first of the 2023 oil paintings that I’ll frame. It is okay to paint to get better at painting. Painting only what you think will sell is limiting. When I’m only painting what I think will sell, I resist the need to experiment, explore, and dig deeper.

Paint Brushes – Jacki Kellum Oil Painting on Hardboard Panel
Painted from Life – in my Studio
January 26, 2023

One of my favorite painters was John Singer Sargent. He also painted in both watercolor and oil, but I especially appreciate the way that Sargent was able to capture volumes with only a few sketchy strokes.

Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose - Wikipedia

Carnation, Lily, Lily Rose – John Singer Sargent

Although Carnation, Lily, Lily Rose appears to be a very realistic painting, many of the flowers are mere sketches and/or pools of color:

In my painting Paint Brushes, I like the sketchiness with which I  suggested the brushes.

The above marks are the first marks that I made when I was sketching my paining in oil. I intended to finish the brushes further, but when I came to that step, I realizedthat the brushes were finished perfectly–just as they were. In realizing that, I feel that I’m a step closer toward painting like Sargent. The sketchy slashing of paint is how Sargent creates the bravura in his oil paintings. 

What Is Bravura in Painting – What Is Painterly Painting? Focus on the Oil Paintings of John Singer Sargent

Teapot Red, White, and Blue – Jacki Kellum Oil Painting on Hardboard Panel
Painted from Life – in my Studio
January 27, 2023

As for the red, white, and blue, I’ve always liked that color combo. Perhaps it’s a little bit of patriotism. Perhaps it’s just my overall love of primary colors, but I call the blue my Van Gogh blue, and indeed, Van Gogh is another of my favorite painters.

“I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day.”
― Vincent van Gogh

I am currently working on a picture book about the stars, and my paintings of blue now are preparation for that project.

“I dream my painting and I paint my dream.”
― Vincent Willem van Gogh