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

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

New Painting: Camp-of-the-Woods Sunset

Camp-of-the-Woods is a Christian family camp in the Adirondacks on New York State in the village of Speculator. My family has been going there since my mother was a child. Always love going there. I've done 5 paintings of various scenes from there and they are now hanging on the walls of the main building. I used a photo off their website to paint this. As usual you can buy Mugs or bags from Zazzle

Sunday, January 17, 2016

recipe - Butternut Squash Spaetzle

This is another in my Recipes for the Feeding of a Starving Artist
This a recipe assembled from two other recipes
Butternut Squash Spaetzle With Apples and Bacon
From the Food Geek - Butternut Squash Spaetzle with Bacon and Apple
This started with seeing this article in The Record, a local newspaper, for Delcata Squash Spaetzle (a German Egg Noodle)

and I like spaetzle and I need something for a dinner party, so decided to give it a try. Only butternut available, so used that. It needed something more to it so came across a Butternut Squash Spaetzle with Maple Glaze recipe. Decided to ditch the maple glaze part but keep the bacon,roasted squash and apple part. I neglected to save some of the squash when I roasted it so used some sweet potato instead. I got a cheap wide opening colander at Target instead of a spaetzle maker and did two batches. First was a test and the 2nd came out pretty good. Splashed it with some orange juice before serving.


Thursday, January 14, 2016

guest blogger - Lori McNee on creativity blocks

One of the artists I follow on Twitter and Facebook is Lori McNee

who, besides being a painter, is also a writer, blogger and a resource of many kinds of advice for her fellow artist. Her entry of 10-ways-to-overcome-mental-blocks-boost-creativity
contains lot of helpful tips. A couple speak to me
2) change or clean tour enviroment. I have lots items representing my interests in my paint space, giving me inspiration. My cooking magazine collection is here, as is some of my sci-fi images. There's a a block drawing of a Dalek from Doctor Who saying "EX-TER-MIN-ATE". A few old toys and my photograph albums and my TV. But, I tend to be a messy painter. Tubes of paint tend to get other colors on the. The newspapers I use to cover my old TV stand that my mini-easel sits one get messy. Its good to clean everything  off once in a while. Weekly?
4) give yourself a break from technology. I don't own an smart phone, just an old style flip phone, but I have my TV in my paint space and I need to turn it off and any music so I can concentrate on what I'm painting. Try watching a football game when you are painting. Not a good idea. Maybe listening to the Tonight Show or some other talk show rather than watching it And if I did have an iPhone, I would turn off that annoying "bing" you get when a new post comes on.
Check out the rest of her article

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

New Painting: Oaks Bluff Gazebo at Sunrise

Martha's Vineyard is a another of my favorite New England islands. Its a short ferry ride from Woods Hole, Mass. Oaks Bluff is full of very colorful Victorian style houses, very similar to the New Jersey shore town of Ocean Grove. Both were as Methodist Camp Meeting retreats and maintain many of the characteristics today.
My friends and I go there in June to stay at the Hostel and bike the island
In a large park by the ocean is a Gazebo. It's one of the images used to promote the island. Here is my painting of it. As usual, you can purchase items featuring this painting from Fine Art America, 
or Bags and  Mugs 
and other products from Zazzle

Friday, January 8, 2016

artist spotlight: Doug DeWitt - Elemental

This artist spotlight is special because its family. My sister-in-law's (Julie DeWitt McKenzie) brother, Doug DeWitt, is an artist. He makes found object constructions- stick, stone, wire, rubber sheeting, and weathered boards of wood, creating an abstract narrative of the artist’s experience with a landscape. He's currently has an exhibit called Elemental at the McClean County Arts Center , Bloomington Illinois in Armstrong Gallery January 9 – February 27, 2016 The Artist Reception will be on Friday, January 22 from 5 - 7 pm. Check it out