Saturday, March 29, 2014

Cement, original Betker oil on canvas, Seattle’s Harbor Island, industrial-recreational marina

Cement, © BVF Betker, oil on canvas, 36” x 36”
Seattle’s Harbor Island, mixed-use industrial and recreational marina
Currently exhibited and available at Jamieson Furniture Gallery, Bellevue, Washington
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Monday, March 17, 2014


Sweet Revenge, © BVF Betker 2014, mixed media collage on canvas, 24” x 18”

Time to savor the pleasures of the studio!  Swimming upstream all the way, this collage is composed of woven acrylic skins, acrylic and oil paints on paper, molded acrylic forms, wood, and hand-painted silk threads and shreds.  What is not to love?  We work hard, we play for keeps.

Inquire through this blog or at Visit website for more!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

old town, new discovery

Today I had the privilege of going to Tacoma to meet with Urban Sketchers from several communities in our region!  There's a building there that has intrigued me for quite a while and begs to be immortalized, so I took the opportunity to sketch it for the first time.
At the same time I had the pleasure of trying out a new fountain pen!  I have been timid of fountain pens so this was a new experience and I really enjoyed it.  It is the Platinum Carbon Desk Fountain Pen, a Japanese pen available only at JetPens.  When it arrived, I couldn't read the instructions due to my language deficit, but took heart from the illustration showing me how to thrust the included ink cartridge into the forward section of the pen and get the ink flowing using a tissue.  It flows beautifully and I looked forward to trying it out today at the sketchcrawl.
The ink is pigment-based and permanent, a must when adding watercolor over drawn line work!
So I was delighted to learn today that not only did this pen continue to release the ink in a reliable flow, but that a variety of line strengths/widths is available with different angles and pressure.  Once dry -- the sun was hot today so that made this quick! -- the ink stayed put when watercolor was overlaid.
Best of all, the pen was still willing to draw on top of the watercolor layers -- something I have found lacking in the disposable "artist pens" I've always used from another manufacturer.  This has made this pen my new best friend, and I have already ordered a couple more like it to keep in different places, and more of this marvellous ink.
Here is my Moleskine sketch of the day, of the Albers Bros. Milling Co. building, now apparently repurposed as lofts:
Very sketchy indeed, but I had a lot of fun, and note the ink-over-color potential here!  I look forward to doing some serious experimenting with this pen.
Here is the link to learn about/order one from JetPens:
JetPens Platinum Carbon Desk Fountain Pen
Congratulations to JetPens for offering this marvellous product. I am really grateful to have learned about it!

Monday, June 11, 2012

secret gardens

This Saturday we celebrate the Secret Gardens of Lake Forest Park!  I will be privileged to paint in the garden of Betsy and George Piano.
Meanwhile, throughout June please visit the Sunlight Cafe and consider giving a home to one of my primitavist knifepaintings of Northwest human habitat -- pruning helps us thrive, in art as in gardening!
view my website

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

sharing the wealth

Swinomish, ©2012 BVF Betker, oil on canvas, 24 x 36 inches
Hope all local friends will come down to take a look at my June show, Stolen Beauty, at the Sunlight Cafe, 6403 Roosevelt N.E. in Seattle!  My friend Brian Forrest's gorgeous paintings are up until then.  If you have missed them he and I will present a duo show there in September!
Please join me for happy hour Thursday, June 14, 4 - 6 pm and enjoy some of the Sunlight's scrumptious treats!
And don't forget the Quarterly First Friday Open Studio, June 1, 2012, 8 - 10pm at Gasworks Studios, 3515 4th Avenue N.E. (Across the street from Ivar’s Salmon House).
Explore three floors of studios including my new space in the underground's east end!

Friday, February 3, 2012

splash in the pan

Beauty Alley II, ©2012 BVF Betker, oil on canvas, 24" x 36"

It has been pointed out to me I haven't posted in awhile. That's because I've been putting everything new on the website instead of writing about it. I need a staff!

Last November the sun came from behind the clouds and I started painting in earnest and building what might actually be considered a body of work -- rather than the Frankenstein's monster I'd been gathering all these years. Its focus is human territory: the occupied landscape.

Rather than begin at the beginning, here is one of the latest pieces. I paint with a knife, thus avoiding the need for solvents, and adding that element of sculpture with impasto that I love so much!

Monday, May 30, 2011

adding and subtracting

copyright 2011 BVF Betker

This accidental monoprint is just a tonking of a small piece I'm painting on copper sheet. So far I like this better than the painting, but I plan to change that!

Monday, May 23, 2011

portraits of friendship

acrylic on canvas, 10 x 10

acrylic on canvas, 8 x 8 (tonked)

watercolor on paper, 20 x 14

My dear friend Teresa has been sitting for me every week. She is a forgiving sort and lets me manipulate and distort her features every which way. At some point I will settle down and get closer to what I actually see of her! But here are a few of the latest efforts.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

plein beginnings

untitled, copyright BVF Betker 2011, w/c and ink on resin-infused paper

This began when Leigh took Seattle Plein Air folks to the new footbridge across the creek up in Lake Forest Park several weeks ago. Out there in the trees, I used gouache on black multimedia artboard to create a value study. But pretty soon the rain sent us all running for cover (of course).
Later I added pale watercolor washes for moody stage 2 (immediately above), and then just kept working and adding layers till my desired image emerged (top). I think paint is some kind of magic!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

riparian value

A sail glows 2, copyright 2011 BVF Betker, 8 x 10 inches

A sail glows 1, copyright 2011 BVF Betker, 8 x 10 inches

Here are a couple different views of one scene. These are painted from a single (morning!) photo reference taken on a Seattle Plein Air outing to Lake Forest Park -- created in an attempt to study value. One is painted in gouache and watercolor on black multimedia artboard; one on white.