Archive for the ‘portraits’ Category

Jake & Trike

When I started this portrait, it was a straightforward shot of this little boy.  I knew I wanted to add some interest to the background.  I asked the mom, “What’s his favorite toy?”  And the Red Flyer Tricycle was her quick reply.  “Great!  It would be perfect!  Send a picture!”

Remember your first tricycle?  I wish I could!  The tricycle is typically our first venture on wheels independently.  So,  it’s a very important step in the mind of a child.

The portrait’s style of painting is a modern pointillism of circular dabs mixed with some dark identifying lines surrounding the figures.  The size is 22 x 30 x .75 inches.

I used musical rhythms to keep the dabbing process going without thought.  I found that James Brown Music is the best for dabbing!  So I rocked out in the studio for this one!  I was making some moves I didn’t know I had and singing at the top of my lungs!  My husband would stop by the studio door every now and then and say, “Are you listening to that again?”, shaking his head.  I must have listened to that CD at least a hundred times!

I feel nice!  Da da da da da da da!  Like sugar & spice!  Da da da da da da da!  So nice!  So Nice!  I got you!              James Brown

And today, it feel’s good to get the portrait shipped to it’s new home.  Hope the kid likes it when he’s a teenager…..         Da da da da da da da!

1978 Corvette

There are lots of car lovers out there.  Right?

I find that when I ask a man to give me ideas for a portrait, they frequently respond, “Can you paint my car?”  Well, why not?  We do give our vehicles personalities!  Think about your first bike.  Did it have a name?  Remember the famously named sled, “Rosebud”, in Citizen Kane?  Boat lovers are notorious for naming their vessels.  If it moves and we ride it, then it will typically get a name.  So, if we personalize these inanimate objects with names such as “Bessie”, “Nelly”, or “The Tank” etc., why not consider them subjects for portraits?

This week I completed one such portrait as a commission.  The woman requesting the pointillism painting wanted it as a gift for her husband for Fathers Day.  She said,  “He would probably prefer a focus on his Corvette more so than himself”.   Surprise, surprise!  So, in gathering more details, I find that his shiny, red 1978 Corvette won an important trophy for a 25th Anniversary Corvette Competition.  She sent photos of this proud man standing handsomely in front of his Chevy winner.   More candid photos of the man and various angles of the car arrived shortly.

Rough Draft #1

After reviewing each,  I chose to create an image taking bits and pieces of several images.   I then sent rough sketches of potential portrait designs to the wife.

We decided on the Rough Draft #2 design that would include a closeup of the husband and his ‘Vette in the background.

Rough Draft #2

While working on the piece, I chose to add the 25th Anniversary symbol as another emphasis on the Corvette’s importance.

1978 Red Corvette Portrait

Today,  the completed portrait was shipped to arrive with plenty time for framing and gift-wrapping by his loving wife.  I hope he likes it.  She thinks he will!   Happy Fathers Day “Vette-Man”!

Now, I’m ready for another commission!   Email me directly should you know a special man, woman, boy, or girl who might enjoy a pointillism portrait of themselves and/or an adored vehicle.  Refer specific questions to or in the COMMENTS below.

FYI:  Here’s John Grant after reciving his Landisworks Pointillism Portrait for Fathers Day 20011.

John Grant Corvette Pointillism Portrait




His wife writes,“John really liked the painting. I think he wants to put it at the office instead of home. If it is at the office then more people will see it.  He has pictures of the car and trophies at the office so would be a good  for conversation”.

Kissing Elvis by Denise Landis is sponsoring the art contest Elvis in 1956: A Creative Celebration of Elvis’ Revolution and selected my “Kissing Elvis” pointillism portrait as one of the 56 finalists!

The winner will receive tons of prizes including a trip to 2011 Elvis Week in Memphis, tickets to Viva Elvis from Cirque Du Soliel in Vegas, and a cabin on the 2011 Elvis Cruise!

Vote for my painting!

“Uh, thank you!  Thank you very much!”  – Elvis & me

Update 5/31/2011:  “This contest has ended.  Thanks to all who voted for my painting!” Art Contest winner named:

January is the month of Elvis Presley’s birth.  It is a special month for me too!  Barbara Atkinson, Director of the Superstition Mountain Museum asked me to extend my Elvis Art Exhibit in the Bridal Dressing Room of the Elvis Presley Memorial Chapel indefinitely!


Elvis Chapel View

The Elvis chapel is a historic site that many Elvis fans and curious guests visit every year.   Admission is free.


The original site of the Elvis chapel was at the Apacheland Movie Studio once located a few miles from the museum’s current location.   Many films & TV shows, including the Elvis Presley’s Charro, were filmed at the original Apacheland Movie Studio. Unfortunately, the movie studio burned down except for the barn and historic Elvis chapel in 2004. Both were carefully moved to the scenic grounds of the museum in Apache Junction, Arizona.

If old western movies and TV shows is your thing, this is the place for you.  Come on out!


Guitar Elvis

Lights!  Camera! Action!

Apacheland Days is all about old westerns,  movie/TV stars, and legends.   Next weekend (1/14-16) the yearly celebration hosted by the Superstition Mountain Museum in Apache Junction, AZ.   Many films and even Elvis’s movie “Charro” were taped at the original Apacheland Movie Studio once located a few miles from the museum.   Unfortunately, the movie studio burned down except for the barn and Historic Elvis Chapel years ago.

The museum has asked that I display my Elvis Art in the Chapel.   I’m so excited!  If old western movies and TV shows is your thing, this is the place for you.  Come on out!

For all you Michael Jackson fans, check out this pointillism artist’s project.  You can be a “dot” on this Michael Jackson Tribute Portrait!

I think this is a great concept and could be used by other pointillism artists with special interests.  Comments?  Ideas?

Max Eberle, professional artist from Dover, Ohio,  won First Place with his portrait in pointillism titled Teresa In Prayer.  The portrait competition was sponsored by Fine Art America and focused on portraits of famous people in pointillism, a unique style of art which requires painting or drawing with dots or dabs.  The competition included forty-one portraits from fourteen pointillists.   Max Eberle’s portrait of Mother Teresa stood out as a winning piece.

Teresa In Prayer by Max Eberle

Denise Landis, also a pointillism artist, was the competition administrator and has interviewed the artist to gain a fascinating perspective of Max Eberle’s creative mind and process (c. June 2010).

Denise:  Tell me a little about your artistic life and art.  Why pointillism?  When were you introduced to pointillism?

Max:   Luckily I was drawn to art and encouraged by my parents at a tender age.  I know I started to draw at age 3 and remember sitting in the dining room drawing when I was 4.  My mom sent me to an after school private art teacher when I was 5 and from there things progressed into winning poster contests in elementary school and other art contests in high school.  For some reason, even at 4, I felt I had to draw details such as every blade of grass in front of a house and enjoyed how they worked together to create a lawn.   Junior High art class in Arlington, VA is where I learned pointillism.  I took to it right away and created many of my favorite works, yet would not take it up again until years later when a friend of mine who owned an art gallery in Arlington saw my portfolio from those Jr. High days.  Upon seeing one of my pen and ink pieces with dots, he liked it and exclaimed “You should do this on canvas!” My eyes lit up and I said “Yeah!” He then invited me to participate in his upcoming Good and Evil Exhibition with 8 artists all making one piece to represent good and one for evil.  I do have a background in technical drafting and rendering as well from my high school days, so precision work is a nice fit for me, yet I like to combine that with an artistic sensibility and expression.

Denise:   Describe your specific pointillism method.  Has your method changed through the years?

Max:    I would call my method slow and deliberate.  All the pieces submitted in this show are acrylic on canvas, and all are pretty large in scale.  Most of them took over a month to complete and up to 4 months on the Michael Jordan and Madonna pieces.  Mother Teresa took a month and a half. I’m very careful about where to put each dot, especially when there is a lower concentration of dots because a small change in placement will affect the accuracy and feel of the finished piece.  You’ve got to have a feel for the size of the dots you are using and how that affects the contrast you are going for, and you must do your best to keep it consistent throughout the whole piece so it works as a piece, even though the different sections may be weeks or months apart in working time.  My method has evolved as I’ve added or decided at time to use different size dots within the same painting.  Actually I decided to use all the same size dots in the Mother Teresa piece which creates it’s own challenges in dot placement.

Denise:   What do you “get” out of creating in pointillism?

Max:    I get anticipation fulfilled as a piece slowly comes to life.  I get the opportunity to really focus on something creative while the rest of the world slips away, the subject of my piece even slips away while I’m so focused on the details of the dots, yet as the person emerges, I get excited and motivated to complete the piece, yet to rush it is impossible as the quality must persist to the last dot.  I also get the chance to listen to motivational or educational audio programs for extended time periods while I work.  I get to enjoy expressing hand eye co-ordination and the fine motor skill it takes to make a small dot of a certain size with a wet paintbrush.

Denise:   Are you inspired by other pointillists or artists?  If so, who?

Max:   Actually seeing Seurat’s (Georges Seurat, Father of Pointillism 1859 – 1891) work on Sesame Street as a child always fascinated me.  I became a fan of Chuck Close only after I started making my own large scale pointillist portraits, I’ve been accused of being too similar to his work yet I did not even know about his work…I’d say they are pretty different if you examine them anyway.  Of course now that I’m part of this group (Fine Art America’s Pointillism Art Group I’ve really enjoyed the work here including yours Denise.

Denise:  Thanks Max!  The group does include some incredible artists and it’s amazing to see the diversity of styles.   I’m curious, what was your motivation for “Teresa in Prayer”?   When was it created?  Do you have other portraits of Mother Teresa?

Max:   Mother Teresa was my choice to represent “Good” in my friend’s Good and Evil Art Exhibition.  He asked if I would paint Hitler for “Evil” and so I chose to paint his baby portrait, which took 3 months to complete.  Mother Teresa was the person who I figured best represented “Good,” as her life of loving and giving of herself is the stuff of legend…so that’s how this piece came about in the year 2000.  This is my only piece of her and was first printed in a limited run of 200 which have all since sold.

Denise:  I’m not surprised with your sales success.   It’s obviously a piece that many people are attracted to on several levels.   What intrigued you about her face as you were creating her likeness?  Were there challenges in this portrait?

Max:   I was excited to do this piece as soon as I found the photo which was on the cover of a children’s book I found in the library.  Her expression, wrinkles, hands, and feeling just had that right mixture, plus the light/dark contrast was perfect.  I’ll look through hundreds of photos before I pick the right one to use, then I’ll spend lots of time deciding on my crop to capture the essence of my subject.  The challenging part to this piece was that my dots were all pretty big so I had to figure out how to convey detail without having small dots.  This was actually good practice for my MLK piece which had even larger dots.  So you have to figure out how to do more with less at times.

Denise:   Did you discover any nuances of pointillism portraiture while creating this piece?

Max:   I discovered that you can create a different effect depending on whether you use black dots on white background or white dots on a black background.  Of course adding color would create a whole new set of variables.  There is a little blue in the piece up in her headband that I wanted as a subtle indicator of who she was if a person could not figure it out and also as a reminder of spirit, which is often represented by blue.

Denise:   Is the original art piece available for purchase?  And if it is, where?

Max:  The original could be for sale if the offer was right.  I’ve been offered 2K yet refused.  If it went somewhere where it would be on display for lots of people such as a busy museum I’d be more inclined to sell it or lend it, otherwise I’ll probably keep it for a while yet and just sell prints.

Denise:  Have you ever seen Mother Teresa in person?

Max:   I never did see her in person.

Denise:   You entered several pieces of artwork in the FAA contest, of which all received great numbers of votes.  Is this a typical reaction to your artwork?   Were you surprised by your win?

Max:   I’m thankful to say that in person, the response to my work is usually sincere appreciation or at least it feels like that to me.  The originals are up to 6 feet by 7 feet and glowing under a black light and it is a big response or reaction that I’m going for.  I’ve often been alone and just stared at my own pieces for long periods and it feels great to have the work touch other people in the same way.  What I tend to go for in creating a large work is to have someone enter the room and have the painting grab their eyes and attention to where they will not want to look away for some time.  This is part of the job of the artist, to create a visually sticky piece, to capture the viewer’s eye, then the subject and meaning of the piece will have a much better chance to be communicated or felt.  I am surprised that all the pieces would do that well especially with all the great work by other artists, and considering that they are much reduced in size when compared to seeing the large originals.  All I can say is thanks to everyone who voted for them.

Denise:   You obviously enjoy portraiture?  Is that your main focus with pointillism or do you do other subjects, themes, etc?

Max:   I enjoy highlighting people who have inspired me and others, and find that pointillism is a great way to do express that.  Certain people and their ideas/accomplishments should be remembered and revered more than others.  For instance, I am a fan of people who create or who live with real courage and I am a distinct non fan of those who hate and destroy, especially on a large scale. So those who love on a large scale, if appreciated more, can inspire and remind us all of what it means to be a true champion in life.  I have some new ways to use pointillism in my mind so we’ll just have to see…

Denise:   Where do you display and/or sell your art other than Fine Art America?

Max:   I’ve had showings at coffee shops, night clubs, pool tournaments, book stores, and even the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.  Right now 4 of my big works are on display at the Vanguard Nightclub in Hollywood, CA.  I’m currently looking for a nice venue for the next big show or permanent exhibition.  I’ll be putting my stuff up on my site as well at

Denise:  Nice!  Very impressive!  What’s next for your artwork?  Do you have any upcoming events or competitions?

Max:   I’ve been focusing on my professional pool career lately yet have been getting the itch to do some more art projects; a show in China would be really cool.  I may get more political in the future; we live in an age of mass deception where those who have been trusted to act on our behalf actually do just the opposite, and find no problem in lying about it.  This bothers me and while I find art to be an outlet to create beautiful pieces, it’s also an opportunity to reveal some truth and make a statement.  I like combining elements of life and society into a collage of images, this may be where my art is headed as I’ve already created one drawing like this which I’ve yet to release as a print.

Denise:   Thanks Max for taking the time to share your creative world with me.  I wish you the best with your art.  I am certain you will achieve all your goals!  No problem.

To see more of Max Eberle’s art go to


Once again, I have created an online art contest on Fine Art America!  This contest is for pointillism artists entering their best portraits of famous people.  Take a look at the 40+ images and vote for your favorite three.   I, of course, have entered 3 portraits:  “Kissing Elvis”, “Judy”, and “Billie”.  But, don’t feel like you need to vote for my work.  Each portrait is amazing!  Other participating artists are from all over the world and have a special talent.   There are both paintings and drawings in pointillism.

The winner will participate in an “Artist Interview” with me and will be published on this blog as well as several other sites.  Enjoy!

To vote go to: Click on the “Vote” tab and you’ll see each entry, one at a time, just click the “arrows” to see them all.  Enjoy!

Crafthaus has chosen me and my art to be one of this week’s featured members on their online website.

Crafthaus is an excellent choice for professional artists, designers & craftsmen/women to display their work, and connect with each other across all fields of interest.  A variety of art and craft media are represented on the site, such as jewelry, metals, ceramics, glass, wood, paper, polymers, fibers, plastics, painting, music….

The site was created in May 2008 to foster social interaction and a sense of community. crafthaus currently hosts over 1,700 artist members from all over the world, as well as a number of art/craft related institutions, such as SNAG, The American Craft Council, The Society of Contemporary Art & Craft (Boston), American Craft Magazine, Lark Books, various Metalsmithing and Furniture Societies, as well as galleries from across the US, such as Sienna Gallery, Velvet da Vinci, Gallery Loupe, Luke & Eloy, and many others.

All members in good standing are encouraged to post images, videos and blogs of their work. crafthaus features 7 different artists every week, and monthly changing online exhibitions curated by a member from member’s work.

There are a number of discussion topics and other resources available, such as Calls for Artists, Workshops etc.

Membership rate is $20/year or $35/2 years payable via paypal, cc or check.

Check it out!