About Me

My photo
Paramus, New Jersey, United States
No, this in not a blog about gardening in any way, but a journal of my journey to become a professional landscape painting artist. For years, I’ve given my paintings as wedding gifts without thinking of profiting in some way from it. I worked for 18 years at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC as a computer programmer. I have been a painter since 1990, coincidentally, when I started working at the Met. I watched Bob Ross do his thing on Channel 13 in New York and decided I could do this, too. I have no formal training. I incorporate Bob's wet-on-wet technique for sky and water. My subject matter is covered bridges, lighthouses, fishing village scenes, barns, etc. Maine, Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard, Nova Scotia and Spain are some of the places I have painted. My style is detailed and sometimes people think a photo of the painting is an actual photo of the scene. I hope to continue and grow in this medium. I also like to cook & dance. I am also a committed Christian. I am taking commissions - painting your landscapes style photos or your vacation home. Prices on request. contact me - Jackmck@juno.com my website is www.artofjackmckenzie.com

Friday, February 28, 2014

Art Quote - creativity quote from Ray Bradury - Dont think, do

This is a new occasional posting of quotes from creative people that give some insight as to how they approach their craft and may help in defining how I will or will not approach mine. Its always good to get a different perspective. This one was posted by artist Jennifer Beaudet on her Facebook page JBeaudetStudios  from Ray Bradbury, one of my favorite Sci-fi writers - 

“Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things” – Ray Bradbury

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Blog spotlight: Jason Horejs from Xandadu Gallery: Artists, are you consistent?

All  artists would love to have gallery representation which results in a  following and recognition. Gallery owner Jason Horejs in his Reddot  blog post artists are you consistent: a gallery owners perspective points out that consistency in what you create is a major factor. He uses one examples of an artist who did not want to be pigeon-holed in to one style, but that attitude makes it difficult for the gallery owner to sell you. "...Consistency is the key to long term success"

Jason states that " While my ultimate goal is to sell an artist’s work and create a base of collectors who will sustain the artist over the long-term, the immediate goal in terms of consistency is much simpler: when someone walks into my gallery, I want them to see a number of your pieces and have them be able to instantly recognize all of the work as having been created by one artist. I want the artist (you!) to give them a strong thread running through the work that ties it all together. From the first piece they encounter to the last, I want them to look at each and see its relation to the others."

I know I have personal style that people recognize. My family has had a multi-generation relationship with a Christian family type camp in the Adirondacks called Camp-of-the-Woods.  I have done a number of paintings that hang in the 3rd floor stairway of the main lodge. A friend who had not been there in a few years and did not know I had paintings there, saw them and thought "those looks like something Jack would paint". She looked for the artists name and saw mine and got excited for me. Thats what it means to have a consistent style. People will look a a painting and see you.

Check out the post. Lots of good thoughts here

Monday, February 17, 2014

Michael Blanchette on my painting of his Portland Head Light photo

In my last post, I showed my painting of a photo of the Portland Head Lighthouse posted on Facebook by  Michael Blanchette Photography . I had his permission to paint it and he asked to see the results. He re-posted it on his page with the following comment - "Artist Jack Mckenzie has just completed this painting based on one of my recent photographs of Portland Head Light. It's always an honor to see new artwork based on your own!" 
Thanks Michael!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

new painting - Portland Head Light at Sunrise

You all know lighthouses are one of my favorite subjects to paint. I keep an eye out on social media and various other places for photos of them that strike my fancy and get my painter muse going. I found this picture on Facebook from   Michael Blanchette Photography  of the Portland Head Lighthouse at sunrise and it made me want to paint it. I, of course, got permission to do so. As usual mugs with this image are available. Here's the painting