Monday, December 1, 2014

Celebration in the Woods

Celebration in the Woods oil on canvas 16 x 20 in.
Thank you to everyone who came to our open studio. It was great.
This new painting is in the Berkeley Art Center's annual members' show called Here, open through December 14.
With the days being shorter and colder and some rain finally coming through California, this isn't a time of year when I get much painting done.  I have restocked at my beloved Arch and Flax art supply stores, and had a short trip to a strange, magical little town on the straits northeast of here. The trees and lights, trains passing through, Victorian hotel, delicious restaurant and the creative souls there have inspired me.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Right now I'm in the middle of this

Sean, Mark and I each have a piece in ArtSpan's Open Studios exhibition, which will be open through Nov. 9 if you'd like to see a sampling of 450+ SF artists' work.

I will also have a painting in Modern Eden's Open Studios "hub" show, 12 x 12 which will be on view Nov. 4 - 9 and can be previewed here. Modern Eden is a North Beach gem of realist and surrealist art.

And I intend to submit a piece to Berkeley Art Center's annual members' show, Here, running Nov. 15 - Dec. 14 because it's an unmissable array.

Finally, fabulous news! Seattle's Center on Contemporary Art is publishing a catalog of the summer's juried national, Postglamism: Glam Art in the 21st Century. You can order it here and preview the book too.
From the juror Michael Sweney's remarks: "The most traditional painter in the show, Hadley Northrop, depicts people from an apparent post-glam world, party-goers and scene-sters. The works are deftly-painted realism, but not literal, like an absinthe-fueled dreamscape."

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

New work

The Accordionist oil on canvas 28 x 16 in.
I'm posting new work daily to my website,, and getting my ArtSpan page up to date in preparation for Open Studios in one month. Probably all the paintings I'll be showing at Open Studios will be previewed on the ArtSpan website.
Also have been taking a community college sewing class - I love to sew, it makes a great counterpoint to painting because you follow a series of steps and don't have to make decisions with every move! Then again some paintings - the big, complicated ones - are like making a quilt, and the only way to finish them is stitch by stitch. 

Monday, September 1, 2014

The oil paint equivalent of glitter

Brand new paintings in my studio
These are new:  two in the aforementioned tree series, a tiny trailer and, from a photo by Sean Vallely, fires on Ocean Beach. All are pretty much true to their photographic sources, except that I felt the one on the left, the tree with Victorians, needed a little something extra. On Castro Street there is a tree that looks positively magical when you are walking down the hill towards the Castro in the evening and the lights shining through from ahead seem to twinkle in its branches.  So I gave my tree some tiny lights, a little sparkle from the streetlight. Then I turned a house into a car in the tree with the moon - magic! Then  I stretched a big preprimed canvas and it was all  floppy, until I sprayed water on the back and it's now like a drum - I'm easily pleased!
Our open studio is two months away, and because we travelled so much this year, I feel like I just have to catch up. I've also spent quite a bit of time reworking old paintings but really only because I enjoy it. Once the figures are in place, which they are in these two larger-scaled works, it's just a matter of changing the colors to give the painting more dimension and mood. Remember how much fun coloring books were? It's like that. Almost a year ago I started reworking. I will post images when they are done so you can see what I was talking about.
Sorry for the crappy photo this month - I couldn't seem to save changes to the image and I want to get out and enjoy this beautiful Labor Day.
If  you'd like to get on my mailing list for the Open Studios postcard, I suggest sending me a message via my Contact form. Also visit me on ArtSpan and find out all about San Francisco Open Studios. November 1 and 2.

Friday, August 1, 2014


My paintings with video installation by Vin Hill in "Postglamism: Glam Art in the 21st Century" at CoCA
Went to Seattle and attended July 3rd Thursdays at the Seattle Design Center, getting to visit Postglamism:  Glam Art in the 21st Century at the Center on Contemporary Art. Participating artists Vin Hill, Christian French, Lindsay McCoy and Matthew D. Rowe were there, and Michael Sweney gave a talk about his curatorial process. It was an honor to be included in this exciting exhibition and to hear that Sweney appreciated my traditional technique in a show that also represents a lot of conceptual and hi-tech work.
Today is the last day of Postglamism, and also the international Larroque Arts Festival in France, curated by Ken Hay, has just ended. I was able to upload images to Dropbox, and they were printed and mounted there at Galerie La Vieille Poste. Isn't that amazing? I hope to attend someday:  Larroque is a commune of Tarn, near Toulouse (which I loved when I went there once, as well as the artist bearing that name) and it looks like they have an absolutely beautiful time there.
From now until the beginning of November I will just be working on paintings for ArtSpan open studios.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Mid Century Madness

Blue Line Arts
Went to the reception at Blue Line Arts in Roseville, and Mid Century Madness is a wonderfully put together show of everything from that era - furniture, housewares, and even a 1957 Nash Metropolitan - and current art and lamps inspired by that style. My two matted & framed oil paintings "Fire Place" and "Star Light" can be seen near the center of this photo on the wall between the car and a door, and in my previous post Places and Times. The show's last day is July 12th.

We had a brief stay in Sacramento while there and were able to take in the Railroad Museum, State Capitol, and also the Crocker Museum with my friend and fellow artist Marianne Bland. She recently gave me a shout out on her blog Marianne Bland's Art Blog! Her night time city scenes in acrylic on canvas are definitely in the same vein as mine and she's a great painter so I recommend you check her out.

Sunday, June 1, 2014


Just dropped off work for another out of town juried show:  Mid Century Madness at Blue Line Arts in Roseville, near Sacramento. The show will be up June 5 - July 12 with a reception Saturday June 21 and it sounds like it will be a big celebration of the MCM style!

Also just flew back from Chicago, which we got to by train from San Francisco. We took a break from the 60-hour journey by stopping in Denver for a couple of days:  a clean and beautiful city. What impressed me most was the vegetarian restaurant Watercourse Foods, which is filled with paintings of prairieland creatures by Denver artist Ravi Zupa. A thoughtful and beautiful installation down to the drawings that trickle off the parchment-colored canvas onto patinized walls, and I'm telling you, they love bison art in Colorado, but Ravi's is the best. How I would love to fill a restaurant with paintings and get to really create an immersive experience like he has.
Chicago of course is amazing for its architecture, Anish Kapoor's Cloud Gate in Millenium Park, and the Art Institute with its Impressionists and Edward Hopper's Nighthawks. Also my friends there, and the polar bear at Lincoln Park Zoo. Travel ought to be great inspiration for many more paintings.

We could see Blue Line Arts from the train as it passed through Roseville. Find out about the gallery here:

Thursday, May 1, 2014

20th Century Boy

Alan oil on panel 20 x 29 in.
If all goes well in shipping, two of my paintings will be in a show at the Center on Contemporary Art at the Seattle Design Center. When I heard about a show called "PostGlamism:  Glam Art in the 21st Century," I knew I had to apply. If you really know me, you know the word glam, overused as it is, is always so evocative to me because I love glam rock:  T. Rex, David Bowie, Roxy Music, seventies-era Stones, the New York Dolls, Hanoi Rocks, and many homegrown romantic and decadent musicians of the places in California and England where I lived during my impressionable years. It influenced my painting, for sure!
I won't be able to attend the opening on May 15, but the exhibition runs until August 1st and Seattle is lovely in the summer. We like to take the 24 hour train ride there and back. Please let me know if  you go.

Statement by curator Michael Sweney for PostGlamism: Glam Art in the 21st Century
(Speaking of music) Statement by curator Andrea Schwartz for Like a Tom Waits Song opening Saturday May 3

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
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.