Tuesday, November 29, 2011

K.I.S.S. - An Old Field Study

The acronym K.I.S.S. echos in my brain quite often. I heard a motivational speaker talk about the idea around 15 years ago. The letters stand for Keep It Simple Silly. Ever since, when a situation becomes too complex (without the need to be complex) I come back to this idea and it helps me sort through the "junk" to get to the solution.

This painting was created on location in about 20 minutes about 3 years ago.  I was leading a fellowship group for artists at my church (West Shore Evangelical Free) and the session was to be relaxing and social. Although it is not a masterpiece, I really like it. Today it will help me stay focused while I work on a 4 day agenda for the Gettysburg 2012 Artist Colony and prepare for the grand opening of my own gallery.

Monday, November 14, 2011

A New Fine Art Gallery in an Old Bank Building

Brath and Hughes Fine Art, LLC

On November 1st, 2011 Brownyn Hughes and I started our own gallery in Mechanicsburg PA. We both have a passion for art and our community. In addition to showing our own artwork, we will represent several local and regional artists. Regular hours will start at 10am on Nov. 15th.  The grand opening will be Friday December 2nd from 6 - 9pm.

See the Gallery's Blog at

Monday, October 17, 2011

Codorus State Park - Lake Marburg by Mary Beth Brath

11x14" Acrylic on Canvas
Started plein air and finished in the studio.

Well, I am finally able to get back to blogging after technical problems with my computers.  This is the most recent painting that I have finished.  I have piles of paintings around the studio in various states of completion.  I am happy to be back to blogging and painting!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Codorus State Park WIP by Mary Beth Brath

Codorus State Park (current work in progress)
11x14" Acrylic on Canvas

I started this painting a few days ago on site (plein air).  Yesterday I made a few minor changes and am almost finished. There are a couple of places that I need to soften edges and adjust saturation.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

My First Gallery Representation by Mary Beth Brath

11x14" Acrylic Streetscape of the Vancura Gallery in the Summer of 2011

In 2005, I was accepted into my first fine art gallery.  The Vancura Gallery of Fine Art in Middlefield Ohio is owned by Donna Vancura.  My professional art career started with 5 gallery wrapped canvases painted in bold saturated colors.  Donna actually painted my wall royal blue to showcase my work.  I was so excited and inspired.  It is so important to have people in your life that believe in you.  Many years ago I read a book titled "Balcony People".  Donna is a balcony person in my life and the lives of so many other artists.  Thank the people in your life that sit in the balcony and cheer you on to reach your dreams.

Monday, September 19, 2011

50 Daily Paintings in 50 Days #8 and #9 by Mary Beth Brath

50 Daily Paintings in 50 Days

#8 - "Together Forever"
2 1/2" x 3 1/2" ATC - ACEO Mini Linen Canvas Paper

#9 - "Elissa Gore at the Gettysburg Artist Colony"
2 1/2" x 3 1/2" ATC - ACEO Mini Linen Canvas Paper

 The "50" challenge has made me search through my photo reference files from June and July.
#8 - "Together Forever"  - I came across these trees at Cook Forest State Park PA while hiking this summer. Wish I could have painted it plein air while I was there but my family was eager to find the next discovery along the trail. I would love to see David Bottini and James Browne paint their versions of this scene.

#9 - "Elissa Gore at the Gettysburg Artist Colony" -  This summer I worked as a consultant for the Gburg Artist Colony.  Elissa came all the way from NYC to participate in the event.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

50 Daily Paintings in 50 Days #6 and #7 by Mary Beth Brath

#6 of 50 Daily Paintings - "Sailing at Pinchot"
2 1/2" x 3 1/2" Mini on ATC - ACEO Linen Canvas Paper

#7 of 50 Daily Paintings - "Gettysburg Festival Plein Air"
2 1/2" x 3 1/2" Mini on ATC - ACEO Linen Canvas Paper

And the challenge continues.  These mini paintings have me longing for a huge canvas!

Friday, September 16, 2011

#5 of 50 Daily Paintings in 50 Days by Mary Beth Brath

50 Daily Paintings if 50 Days Challenge
#5 Cottage Wetlands after the 2011 Flood
Acrylic on 2 1/2" x 3 1/3" ATC - ACEO Linen Canvas Paper

During the flooding this month, a wetland area outside of Mechanicsburg was extra wet.  That night, I decided to do my daily challenge painting from memory.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

50 Mini Paintings in 50 Days #3 and #4 by Mary Beth Brath

50 Daily Mini Paintings in 50 Days

#3 - This painting was completed for the September DPP Challenge and my personal challenge.

#4 "Helen's Table"

All "50" paintings are 2 1/2" x 3 1/2" Minis on Linen ATC - ACEO Canvas Paper.  The completed series will be available for sale in November 2011 - just in time for Holiday Shopping.  Details to come...

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Sunflower on Bible - Number 2 of 50 Daily Paintings in 50 Days by Mary Beth Brath

50 Daily Paintings Challenge

"Sunflower on Bible"
Number 2 of 50 ATC Mini Daily Paintings in 50 Days
Heavy Acrylic on  2 1/2" x 3 1/2" ATC Linen Canvas Paper

On Friday September 2nd, I didn't get a chance to paint until after midnight.  Determined to stay on task, I sat down at the kitchen table and painted this little sweetie.  I attended First Friday in Lancaster PA and visited my favorite Lancaster Artist Christiane David.  So inspired by her work once again, I was driven to do a sunflower. I had a couple in a vase that I gathered while plein air painting at Windmill Creek Studios.  I placed the flower on my bible and intended to have the writing in the background, but I just couldn't get that to look right so I left the background solid.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Banana's - Mini ATC - ACEO daily painting by Mary Beth Brath

Banana's Mini ATC - ACEO daily painting

Banana's is not a part of my current daily challenge.  This one was created during my summer vacation at our cabin in Northwestern PA.  Completed in one sitting late at night.  All of my paintings are available for sale.  Either contact one of my galleries in Ohio or PA or email me directly and I will refer you to the proper dealer.

For information on the galleries and shops that carry my work, go to http://www.marybethbrath.com/.

Friday, September 2, 2011

"50 Daily Paintings" Challenge #1 "Berries" by Mary Beth Brath

50 Daily Paintings Challenge

In April of 2011, I started some new goal setting and heavy analyzing of my career in Fine Arts.  One of my plans was to start a daily challenge for myself on September 1st.  The children are back in school at this time and I have always enjoyed "nesting" in the fall. Well, yesterday my day was packed solid from 6am to 9pm...that did include a 30 minute nap.  I love naps. Sometimes my naps are longer.

At 9:30pm I was determined to get in my first daily painting for my challenge. Here are the details...

I will challenge myself to paint 50 mini ATC - ACEO sized paintings in 50 days.

I finished the first in this series around 10:40pm. Here is the result.

"Berries" 1/50 - 50 Daily Paintings Challenge
2 1/2" x 3 1/2" ATC - ACEO Sized Canvas Paper

See more of my work at http://www.marybethbrath.com/

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Gettysburg Paintings Find a Happy Home by Mary Beth Brath

So many changes happening in in my career this month. Some doors closing and some doors opening. God's timing is so perfect.  What a joy to get a phone call yesterday that 2 more of my paintings sold.

Sold - View From Hauser's Estate Winery

Sold - View From Steven's Knoll - Gettysburg Battlefield Auto Tour - plein air

Tomorrow I will be plein air painting in Brooklyn along the waterfront just outside of BWAC.  If the weather does not cooperate, I have a plan to paint inside next to my art exhibit. Life is good.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Evening at Camp by Mary Beth Brath

Painted plein air in 2 evenings last month as the sun was dipping behind the mountain.  What a wonderful vacation.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Recently Sold Paintings in North Jersey by Mary Beth Brath

Sold - The Willow at Pheasant Field Inn Bed & Breakfast
20x24" Acrylic on Canvas

Last month a long time client and supporter of mine from Northern New Jersey bought 2 paintings from me while I was visiting.  Thanks C!

The other painting that sold was a smaller romantic french scene that may be used for a dust jacket on an upcoming novel she plans to publish. That image has not been released online.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

My Final First Friday with the 7 Lively Artists at Gallerie Thirteen by Mary Beth Brath

I have really enjoyed my time directing Gallerie Thirteen over the past 18 months.  The gallery will be consolidated back into the parent gallery named 2nd Floor Gallery at the end of August.  My time at Gallerie Thirteen has been filled with wonderful artists and patrons.

This Friday is our opening reception for a well known group of artists named "The 7 Lively Artists".

When I first moved to the South Central PA region in 2006, the "7" were being honored with a group show in Carlisle PA and a lovely book was published showing various works and great history about the group that has met for over 50 years to paint.  I stood in front of the paintings thinking how exciting it would be to meet some of these artists.  The group reminded me of the New Hope Pa Impressionists.

One opportunity led to another. Not only have I come to know a few of the members, I can call them my friends and have painted with them.  This week I am helping to hang a large featured show of the group's work at Gallerie Thirteen.

Friday night will be bitter sweet.  Personally, I am realizing how far I have come in my art career since moving to South Central PA in 2006.  Perhaps this month will be a milestone marker in my artistic journey.  Many exciting projects are waiting for my attention.

I wish the artists of Gallerie Thirteen and the 2nd Floor Gallery the best of success.  Dream Big and Work Like Crazy.

The 7 Lively Artists
Photo shows many of the members during a group exhibit held at the Mechanicsburg Arts Center.

See over 50 original paintings and meet the 7 Lively this Friday Evening at Gallerie Thirteen from 6 - 9pm.  Free and Open to the Public. Live Music and Refreshments.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Time For Dessert by Mary Beth Brath

Time For Dessert

Currently Showing in Brooklyn New York at BWAC

MB Surrealism hits NYC.  Guests at the reception enjoyed my rendition of Time's Square.  My New York Style Cheesecake is falling and it is "Time For Dessert". Notice that the billboard ads below the cheesecake are re-makes of other paintings in the show.  The top one is a wheel of cheesecake.  The middle one is titled Lady Liberty of the Susquehanna.  The painting on the bottom is one of my landscapes titled "Spring Peepers".

It was so fun looking out the window near my display and seeing the Statue Of Liberty and then looking at my painting titled Lady Liberty of the Susquehanna that depicts the statue that stands in our river north of Harrisburg. Come to think of it...it was surreal.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Beech Springs Farm during 2011 Gettysburg Colony by Mary Beth Brath

In order to get a decent photo, I had to take it from an angle and use a flash.  Straight on muted all of the colors and softened edges.  Anyway, I kept at this painting this morning until I felt that I could move on.  The gold finches visited often while I was painting on site so I had to add them in to the composition.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Studying with Bill Schmidt at the Gettysburg Art Colony by Mary Beth Brath

During the juried artist colony at this year's Gettysburg Festival, Master Artist Bill Schmidt http://www.billschmidt.net/ taught onsite at Beech Springs Farm.  I started to draw out my idea on canvas and block in some color when Bill came by to take a look.

He asked if I would mind if he made some suggestions.  Well, I was more than happy to have him help. He pulled out a piece of charcoal and this was the result.

I continued to block in colors and adjust lines but ran out of time to finish.  Below is the current state of the painting as it was at the end of the plein air session.

I hope to work on this today to completion. Sometimes a plein air painting is not completed onsite.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Coming Soon by Mary Beth Brath

Coming Soon by Mary Beth Brath
Acrylic on Canvas

This is a streetscape of Brooklyn in early March.  The elderly woman is carrying a box that reads "MB Confections".  This is one painting that will tie together my Pennsylvania Landscapes with my Confections Series.  The other painting that ties my show together will not be shown online until the night before the opening reception.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Vancura Gallery of Fine Art - July 30th - 11am - 4pm

I will be painting en plein air and enjoying the afternoon at the Vancura Gallery as a featured artist on July 30th, from 11am to 4pm.  I will have 6 new paintings along with me. Come and enjoy an afternoon of food, fun and laughter.

Congratulations to the gallery for celebrating their 5th Summer Season!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

New Growth to Restore the Battlefields of Gettysburg by Mary Beth Brath

8x10" Acrylic on Canvas
Plein Air - painted on location during the 2011 Gettysburg Festival

This was the fourth year for me to paint at the Gettysburg Festival.  This was painted at the Bushman Farm along the auto tour of the battlefields. The landscaping is being restored to what it was like during the Civil War.


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Do you know emerging artist Brownyn Jean Hughes??

Brownyn Jean Hughes has started her own blog site. She has been selling her original paintings for the past ten years, but is now ramping up her career. I encourage all bloggers to follow her blog.

Congratulations Brownyn!  Thank you for supporting local and regional artists!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Plein Air in the Evening at Pinchot State Park by Mary Beth Brath

On May 29th, our family went to the lake to canoe and explore.  When we went to unload, we realized we forgot the oars.  My husband headed back home, the boys played and fished and I set up my easel OF COURSE.

I finished most of the painting before my husband returned - about 30 minutes - I was in my own race against time.

I came back to shore with my canoe a little before dark so I could finish the painting.  My son took a picture of me at the easel.  The next morning, I cleaned up the colors in the water and called it complete.

This is the third painting of this same area. All are different. One sold last year, one is in my home and this one will go out to one of my galleries.

8x10" Acrylic on Canvas
Pinchot State Park.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Romance on Depression Glass by Mary Beth Brath

Romance on Depression Glass by Mary Beth Brath

8x10" Acrylic on Canvas

NYC Bound

Another new piece for my show in New York City. What a wonderful time I have had preparing fresh work for the Big Apple! Mmmm...Red Velvet Cake!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Trout Run Preserve by Mary Beth Brath

Trout Run Preserve by Mary Beth Brath

3 1/2" x 3 1/2" Mini on Acrylic Paper

Trout Run Preserve is an area between housing developments in Cumberland County PA. I am so glad that people stepped up to keep this small piece of land natural. Really, I think it is too wet to build on anyway so it is perfect for a small park with gardens.

Monday, May 16, 2011

King's Gap State Park Mansion by Mary Beth Brath

King's Gap State Park Mansion

10x8" Acrylic on Canvas

This painting was created for the Garden Harvest Day Festival 2009 at King's Gap State Park in South Central Pennsylvania. I paint with a plein air group that was invited to exhibit in the mansion on the day of the festival. We demonstrated in the gardens and enjoyed talking to the public on the day of the festival. In preparation for the event, we painted several weeks in a row at various locations in the park.


Friday, May 13, 2011

Leave It Plein Air or Fix It by Mary Beth Brath

A Gettsyburg Battlefield

8x10" Acrylic Plein Air Painting on Canvas

Well - yesterday I was in Gettysburg for festival meetings about the paint outs. I also managed to get out to the battlefields and paint. This painting is plein air, but now that I am home, I would like to change the green in the closest shadow and clean up a couple of small items in the distance. This area is along the Auto Tour just past Culp's Hill.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

I Want Some More by Mary Beth Brath

"I Want Some More" by Mary Beth Brath

6x6" Acrylic on Gallery Wrapped Canvas

Yup - I am really stuck on this genre. Absolutely loving the Confections Series. This little piece will be shown in Brooklyn in July. The Confection Series is starting to fill a wall in my studio. This experience has already been a huge turning point in my artistic journey.

Don't Let Anyone Steal Your Dream.


Monday, April 25, 2011

Eat Your Fruit By Mary Beth Brath

Eat Your Fruit

11x14" Acrylic on Canvas

Fruit with cheesecake is the best! The slice in this post came from the "Wheel" in the last post. Starting another one today. I actually have a landscape and a still life on easels this morning. If I only had more arms.

My studio at home is filling with new works. I have 4 exhibits for 2011 planned out on my walls. Andy and Linda Smith reminded me to keep my inventory fresh. Also need to supply fresh work for 4 galleries. The good part? I love all of it...even the business side of it.


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Wheel of Addiction by Mary Beth Brath

Wheel of Addiction by Mary Beth Brath

18x24" Acrylic on Canvas

NYC Bound

Watched a movie last night...Julia and Julia. Happened by it while filling Easter Baskets and plastic eggs. What a total "chick flick". Really related to parts of it.

Anyway, I had a great time playing with perspective in this painting. Funny thing is if I turn the painting on its side, it is more readable, but to traditional for my purpose. In addiction, nothing is balanced.

Friday, April 8, 2011

The Braths Go To New York - BWAC

In March Phillip and I went to NYC with our 4 boys. Great trip! The photos are from a huge fine art gallery in Brooklyn called BWAC - Brooklyn Waterfront Artist Coalition. I will be having my first NYC exhibit this July at BWAC. The above photo shows the boys taking part in an interactive piece of art at BWAC.
This is Phillip and the boys standing outside of the gallery on the Brooklyn Waterfront.

Culture Happens!! Ha Ha. Not sure if the boys will ever be the same.

This is Fritz Weiss and his wife and I. Fritz is on the board of BWAC and he now has a studio within the gallery that I help run in Mechanicsburg PA. Thank you Fritz for the opportunity to show in NYC! I can't wait!

See the website for BWAC at www.bwac.org.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

United Water Facility by Mary Beth Brath

8x10" Acrylic on Canvas
Finished. Two hours outside yesterday, about 10 minutes in the studio today. This is my second plein air of 2011. This one really shows my love of the Pennsylvania Impressionists of New Hope.

Plein Air at United Water by Mary Beth Brath

April 4th, 2011 was an overcast but warm spring day. My husband and I decided to spend part of the day outside together. He fished in the Yellow Breeches and I set up my easel. We enjoy the area around the United Water Facility. Phillip is an environmental/civil engineer and I love painting landscapes on location. I have heard artists say "there is no color" on a day like this. I don't agree. This is one of my favorite times of the year to paint. My sketch is done in burnt umber with a very stiff short hair brush. I did not have time to tint my canvas yesterday. Usually I prime the canvas with burnt sienna mixed with gesso.
I only had about 2 hours to work. Before I leave a location, I try to have the painting completed enough to only make small changes back in the studio. Hopefully today I will touch up some tree structure issues and add my husband in with his fishing pole.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Room For Dessert by Mary Beth Brath

Room For Dessert by Mary Beth Brath
5x5" Acrylic on Acrylic Paper
Many changes going on with me lately. I am preparing for a very special show that will open just 3 days before my birthday in July. I have been a dreamer since birth. My elementary report cards prove it in the teacher comments section. A dream without action is nothing. A dream with passion and constant perseverance becomes reality...in July.
I completed this painting yesterday in one sitting. Yes...it is another "bedroom" painting and is a part of my Confections series. I photographed the cheesecake quite a while ago, but pulled up the reference photo in order to add it to the still life yesterday. I have always wanted to paint pictures of my early 1900's Art Pottery. This was so fun. This series has been like self portraits for me.
The story unfolds as July approaches...
Most of my Confections series paintings are currently at the 2nd Floor Gallery in Mechanicsburg.