Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Step Right Up!

Bar at the Make Out Room oil on canvatex 20 x 16 in.

I'm honored to have been included in the upcoming group show at Arc Gallery & Studios, "Like a Tom Waits Song" curated by Andrea Schwartz. Arc is at 1246 Folsom in San Francisco, and the exhibition is May 3 - June 21 2014.
I've been a Waits fan since Rain Dogs came out, but his 1974 album Nighthawks at the Diner is one of my all-time favorites. Named after the painting by Edward Hopper, it's full of atmosphere, of night time and classic America. Its loungey sound and humorous lyrics create a lush, louche world that immerses the listener every time like a dark, familiar old bar.

And there's more good news:  I've finally been able to take control of my own website thanks to a friendly interface! It had been far too long but I now have a useful and up-to-date hadleynorthrop.com
I'm adding new images and content every day - please check it out.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Places and times

Fire Place oil on canvatex 16 x 20 in.

Star Light oil on canvatex 20 x 16 in.
Corner in the Fog oil on canvas 10 x 10 in.

Moon oil on canvas 10 x 10 in.
I've always considered the 19th Century to be the spiritual home of my way of working. Most of my favorite artists are from that time period:  Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Edouard Manet, and Edward Burne-Jones. I'm also drawn to architecture from that period, with the feeling of substance, romance and a connection to the past which I like to incorporate into my paintings.
However, sometimes I move into the 20th Century, at least. Airstream trailers and neon lights have an undeniable appeal. Fire Place and Star Light depict a bar in San Francisco called Swank which is the epitome of Mid Century Modern Style.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

What It's All About

Foreign Cinema oil on canvas 10 x 10 in.
Two Trees oil on canvas 10 x 10 in.

Not much to report:  tomorrow is the last day of the show at City Art, and today "Impulse" at Arc Studios & Gallery ended - that one goes up quickly after an in-person selection process, and comes down even more quickly. The ArtSpan fundraiser, which I never miss donating to, is on March 29 this year. . .  other than that I'm on my own!

Remember I said I didn't get Pinterest? Totally hooked now. Go to my Pinterest page and the Inspiration for paintings board to see What It Is All About. I wouldn't paint directly from other people's photos - those amazing photographers really deserve to be credited - but they could be a resource for palette or composition.

This year I hope to paint more animals, more children, and more little fires. I think I will do some small paintings of trees, which just sounds like nothing, but may be a simple and useful exercise. I took some photos of trees on a moonlight walk home one time - actually, many of my paintings are from photos I took on my way home.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Last Chance

Over the window at City Art
My musician paintings will be up at City Art through January 25. This is my final show after seven years in this cooperative gallery. I've put a lot into it and enjoyed having small wall spaces to curate regularly, but it's time to try other things. As at the beginning of every year, I have a lot of ideas! Thank you, everyone, for your support in 2013.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

One Minute Tutorial

Halloween 2013, oil on canvas 24 x 32 in.

The current show at City Art will remain up until January 25 2014, and will include a group of my oil paintings of musicians. I have wanted to show this group of paintings together there practically since I started in 2007! Please don't forget to go, and when inside, look above the front windows.

I was recently asked about giving painting lessons. I think it would take about 5 minutes to explain my technique, but part of it is rules to work by and here are a few of mine:
I start by placing the heads in the composition, then adding the line of the shoulders and plane of the torso.
In the end, if the faces look weird, the whole painting will.
I don't use paint straight out of the tube: most colors need to be mixed.
I don't use every color in the rainbow in a painting:  if you leave out part of the spectrum, even one color, the painting will have atmosphere.
A few years ago I took a workshop with Stanley Goldstein and he gave us his own set of rules to work by - it changed my life! One was that pure white paint may very well only need to appear on a painting when representing the light source (such as light bulbs or flames).
And. . . get your artwork professionally photographed (unlike what I have done here).

Friday, November 1, 2013

The City Art Postcard!

Open studios was a success and I'm so grateful to everyone who visited and my friends who helped out. Still exhausted from it. Tonight was an opening at City Art:  another month, another show. I was flattered that they used the image of my painting for the postcard. A lot of my new paintings are there now for my Day of the Dead (and one Halloween) theme. We went to visit my mom this week and she said (about my painting and showing) that I'm relentless, and I liked that.

Sunday, October 13, 2013


Please visit my art studio in the stable building at:
2169 Folsom St. (between 17th & 18th)
Studio S-107 (gate at north end of complex)

Saturday & Sunday October 26 - 27
11am - 6pm

With the stunning photography of Sean Vallely: bluefortyseven.com

Previews on the ArtSpan website:
Hadley Northrop
Sean Vallely