Tag Archives: sand

Amazing Sand Castles @ Neptune Festival part 2

People’s Choice by Abe Waterman from Canada

They titled it People’s choice because it has something for everyone. There’s a ballot box for you to vote on your favorite but I didn’t hear that the votes are counted yet.

Don’t those scales look great?

also in “People’s Choice”

A happy dog with a job.

on another corner of “People’s Choice”

Cute free kittens in a box

another side of “People’s Choice”

One side is a dragon. And you can see right through the door of castle on top.

another side of “People’s Choice”

This side gives you an eagle with a snake. That’s for our military. One side is a mermaid, one side a dragon, one side an eagle, a dog, kittens, and there is an angel but she’s hidden by all the awards this won.

4th place

sculptor’s choice

Neptune’s choice.

“In the Depths of Dreams” by Ilya Filimonstev from Russia

This is a close up of the dreamer.

a view of “In the depths of Dreams”
close up from “In the depths of Dreams”

Check out that amazing stick like texture next to a wavy texture!

These are inspiring me to do a sand sculpture. I’ll have to work on a smaller scale. I wonder if the use of Elmer’s glue is permitted to be mixed in the sand when it’s wet. Also, I wonder if it’s allowed to glue sand on sticks or something for that texture.

And like the one in the previous post with the keyhole, did they make a frame in the keyhole shape and build around it instead of carving the keyhole all the way through?

There are 18 sand sculptures in the show. You pay $5 to get in and $10 for the parking but it’s worth it. There are a lot of tents set up for a mile or so up the boardwalk (which is made of cement) next to the beach with stands selling art, and the community sponsors of the festival, souvenirs etc. There are free concerts too. I’d go back to see 10,000 Maniacs but I’ve had enough of being in a crowd for now. 10,000 Maniacs, I love the the singer’s voice and just last week was listening to them on Spotify so I was happy to see they’re playing here this weekend.

Amazing Sand Sculptures @ the Neptune Festival

The Lost Kitty of Atlantis by Meredith and Dan Doubleday from Florida

This photo doesn’t show the lost kitty.

a close up with tiny Atlantean petting giant tortoise
There’s the lost kitty in a seashell behind the tortoise.

This won a Neptune’s Choice award.

Reigning Cats and Dogs by Peter Vogelarr from Canada

Cats and dogs were popular subjects this year. I saw them on a few of the sculptures. Here are a couple cool cats lounging around their castle.

the dogs of Reigning Cats and Dogs.

They’re in the castle yard. I guess the cats rule. It won 5th place.

The Destiny by Bagrat Stepanyan and Alexey Vazhnsky from Russia and Ukraine

That keyhole cut out is a masterpiece of sand carving. I wonder how they did that.

the front of The Destiny

They give you this quote from William Shakespeare, “It’s not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves.”

I have more sand sculpture pix. I’ll try to sort them out and post more later.

how I rig up my taboret for plein air painting at the beach

IMG_1955

I looked at plein air easels in catalogs, and saw most of them don’t have spikes on the legs. They also have tiny pallets. I have an easel with spikes, It’s saved my painting from falling down in the wind a lot of times. I wonder why spikes aren’t always on plein air set ups. And why the tiny pallets? How’s an artist going to mix up colors and thin them down with turp for a glaze? I guess that might be one reason plein air impressionists don’t use a palette knife to mix paint, their pallets are too small. I usually spend a lot of time preparing my paint so I need a big enough palette to mix a few colors. I bought a palette for watercolor or acrylic and discarded the sponge it came with. I have a piece of glass with duct tape on the back to mix on. I can see my colors and values better on the gray duct tape than on a white background.

They make the plein air kits so it all fits in a box you have to lug out to your location. Maybe most plein air painters don’t go over sand dunes or down long trails. A few years ago I bought this beach cart with wide wheels. That’s how I can take all these heavy supplies down a sandy trail. I lay my cart on it’s side close to my easel on the left because I’m left handed, and put my palette on the side of my cart. It’s off the ground high enough that I can easily reach it, and it was windy this week but my palette stayed wedged in that spot and didn’t blow down. I had to keep a hand on my painting at all times, and when I stopped painting I had to take it off the easel and put it on the ground so it wouldn’t blow down. Even so, sand gets into my paint and sticks blow on it that I can brush off most of after the paint dries.IMG_1956

This is my camera’s perspective of the scene. It looks far away compared to my naked eye perspective, and the colors look more gray. It got a little cloudy so the shadows aren’t showing up in this photo. This is why I don’t use a photo to get my sketch.

Instead of starting my painting from the weak perspective of the camera, I hold up my sketchbook and try to imagine it’s transparent. I decide how much of the scene is covered by my sketchbook and measure my perspective by comparing nature to the size of my paper. I try to decide where I want my horizon line to be on my sketch and how far I can extend my sketch on each side. How many trees can I fit in the painting, how much sedge, water, etc.

Even though I am trying to match the colors and values of nature so that I can make the illusion of depth, I can’t copy nature exactly.

I recently read an article about a plein air painter who says don’t copy nature, just do your own interpretation of it. His paintings were monochromatic. What’s the point of going out to paint in plein air if you’re not trying to match the colors and values of nature? I can’t see anything more beautiful than nature as it is. My own interpretation comes through in the painting even though I am trying to copy the beauty of nature as I see it. That artist with the big write up in a magazine has a much larger ego than I do if he thinks his monochromatic fuzzy flat paintings are somehow better than real life.IMG_1954

This is my painting with one layer of glazes over the whole canvas. You can see the difference between my naked eye perspective and the camera’s. My perspective is up close and personal compared to my photo. So, what is real? It could be entirely something else from the naked eye or the camera.