Oil Painting Favorites

My Painting Galleries link is not up to date , there is a technical issue.  For some of my recent paintings,  please click on the Plein Air Outdoor Paintings Page. My home page  always has the most recent news of shows and events, as well as both studio and Plein air paintings .

 I have had many inquiries from those who are interested in purchasing my work and as a result I have recently started to sell my paintings. Take a look at the PleinAir and the Gallery sections and if see something you like send me an email for pricing at:       Alfred.shamble@gmail.com

I now have capability to accept PayPal, Visa, and Mastercard and would be glad to work with you to purchase an Original Oil or Watercolor painting

Yosemite January 2020
East Garrison Chapel

Plein Air Painting Convention Monterey

Hi, I have added several 2014 paintings into the Oil Painting Gallery , please take a look. ( use the Gallery tab in the header).

NEWS: For the very first time I displayed one of my paintings for sale. During the Convention there was an opportunity to purchase one of 200 available easels to display your work. I submitted one of my favorite Plein Air paintings : La Jolla Breakers. The minimum price the Convention had set was $500. Some of the paintings were from the Master artists who did the presentations, and they charges up to $3000, and some with established names, sold.

Here is my La Jolla painting with a selling price of $550. Strong brushstrokes and colors, reflecting the surge I experienced as I stood atop “Boomers” beach, keeping an eye to the sea to physically avoid the chance killer rogue wave. What fun !!

La Jolla Breakers, Plein Air , oil on canvas 11 x 14 in

Fall 2013 Update

Here are a few new paintings. There are also more that I just added that you can see in the Oil Painting Gallery tab.

Santa Cruz Cliffs,  CA.  oil on canvas , 16 x 20 in.

Santa Cruz Cliffs, CA.

This is a studio painting with glazing layers to give atmospheric perspective, and then heavy impressionistic paint in the foreground .

Sea Tunnel, San Mateo Coast , Ca. ; Plein Air, oil on canvas , 8 x 10 in.

Sea Tunnel , San Mateo Coast , Ca.; Plein Air , oil on panel, 8 x 10 in.

The challenges of Plein Air painting are many. In a few hours the painting is finished, otherwise the changes in light and casting of shadows increases the difficulty. At the ocean, the weather can change quickly and the tides are moving.

Big Sur Ocean, Ca. , PleinAir , oil on canvas , 11 x 14 in.


I had to stand right at the edge of the cliff for this one. I really enjoy this location just south of Carmel.

Earlier Posts

Granite Cliffs at Echo Lake, Ca.   oil on canvas,  16 x 20 in.

Gateway to Desolation Wilderness. Echo Lake is in the Sierras at over 7000 ft. and is at a higher elevation than Lake Tahoe. Some of the trees are over 2000 yrs old and almost seem to tell you their stories. This painting is from one of my photographs. It is painted in the classical style allowing each layer to dry for a week before adding layer upon layer; darks first, then lighter and lighter values.

Granite Cliffs at Echo Lake, Ca.   oil on canvas,  16 x 20 in.


Half Moon Bay Ocean Meadows,       oil on canvas,    18 x 24 in

La Jolla Cove Breaker, oil on canvas 11 x 14 in, Plein Air

Painted Plein Air on the beach, wet on wet.  I painted in the shade, by setting up on the beach   just below a small observation gazebo. The tourists had fun peering over the edge to see me paint. I had fun painting and watching people flirt with these large waves.

La Jolla Cove Breaker,     oil on canvas,    11 x 14 in, Plein Air

Ancient  Sentinels of the High Sierra,           oil on canvas, 16 x 20 in

This was painted from one of my photographs, using the classical oil studio approach: Applying an underlayer of the dark tones. Waiting a week for it to dry, then adding another layer of medium values. Continue for several more weeks of painting and drying, using an oil medium to smooth and glaze layers. Finally scumble on thick paint to add the lightest lights.

Ancient  Sentinels of the High Sierra,           oil on canvas, 16 x 20 in

Point Lobos: Early California Coast, oil on canvas, 16 x 20

Point Lobos is a magical place , visit there when you are near Carmel / Monterey. I made many photographs this day, but this one was special for converting into a painting. Anyone who knows this view, would realize that I left out the Carmelite Monastery nestled amongst the far trees. This is the beauty of being an artist. I wanted the scene to look like early California, before the European  explorers.

Point Lobos: Early California Coast, oil on canvas, 16 x 20
The Jung Frau, Switzerland Alps   oil on canvas , 18 x 24 in      (see below)
We were fortunate to visit Switzerland in 1999, when I photographed several views of this famous mountain from our cliff clinging hotel window. A mountaineers paradise !  This then is a painting that I have worked on in the studio for some time, using the classical style of painting layer upon layer. Prime colors are Cobalt Blue, Magenta, Burnt Sienna
The Jung Frau, Switzerland Alps   oil on canvas , 18 x 24 in
Echo Lake and Flagpole Peak  July 2000      oil on canvas,  30 x 40 in             (see below)
( Appears darker here than in Reality)
This is a clip from a painting ( 1/3 of the actual height) that I started on location at the Echo Lake Channel  in July 2000.
This is a very large size painting to attempt outdoors PleinAir. I worked there for 5 days for 3 or 4 hrs per day PleinAir . Most of the mountain was finished then , but I needed to work on the trees and bushes in the foreground back in the studio. Sometimes its intimidating . Needless to say I am still working on this after 11 years, but making excellent progress. The top of the mountain is called Flagpole Peak.

Technique :   Color Mixing Secondary Triads

When matching colors in nature, most often a muted complex color mix is required . Purple from shadows, blues from the sky, greens from foliage, etc all combine to create the visual dialog.

Recently I have experimented with a simple Secondary Triad 3 color palette plus white: Dioxane purple, Thalo green and  Cad Orange. These are called secondary colors because they are mixed from the primary colors:  red, blue and yellow.

Basic Stuff:   Red + blue = Purple,  Yellow + Blue = Green , Yellow and red = Orange

However it gets interesting when mixing these 3 plus white . Various shades of blue, violet, sea green,  brown, ochre etc. See color chart below

What I did here was I mixed the 3 together on the top line then added some white in the second line, then mostly white from the square above it for the final third line. The resulting “light whites” are beautiful alternatives to regular white. I was particularly pleased and surprised with the combination of purple , green and white revealing a beautiful slate blue, and then small amounts of green added make for great Ocean colors.

Secondary Triad color chart
Secondary Triad color chart

Top Row :  Dioxane Purple , Thalo Green , Cad Orange, Dioxane Purple

Rembrandt and Texture

I recently read a book that analyzed Rembrandt’s painting methods. He was known to be an innovator: experimenting with different grounds, mediums to slow or speed up drying times, and obviously applying generous applications of paint. Since everyone made their own paints, there is proof that often sand and other substances were added into the oil paint to give it texture and body. Rembrandt and a few of his Dutch his contemporaries also appeared to use various gauze, textiles and implements to emboss textures in the painting. Take a close look, its hard to believe that brushwork alone could create such random but gorgeous treatments, although he was a master with the brush.

I’ m trying to get more texture into my Plein Air paintings by using thicker paint. I have a tendency to paint thin , but have been encouraged by my recent use of thick paint for highlights and lighter colors. No turps or medium, just straight paint.

4 Responses to Oil Painting Favorites

  1. Laura says:

    Al, congratulations on the Tahoe Plein Air competition! I hope the weather cooperates and that you have a great time. I love your website– it is wonderful to be able to keep up with your work, and to see the lovely things that grew out of your Wyoming visit. I have to tell you how much I admire the gorgeous 2012 Half-Moon Bay: such a sky!

    • Al Shamble says:

      Hi Laura,
      Thanks for your lovely comments!
      I have plans for 3 or 4 Wyoming oil paintings based on the Plein Air sketches I did while there.
      The Half Moon Bay is one of Helens favorites too. Hi to Rone and take care

  2. John Benbow says:

    I just visited your website & galleries. Great stuff! From the Jungfrau to LJ Cove, you’ve depicted some of our favorite places. I really like the energy of your plein-air oils. Thanks.
    Our love to all the family.

    • Al Shamble says:

      Hi John
      Thank You very much for visiting my website and taking the time to send your kind message.
      I always enjoy talking with you, and am happy that the images have nice memories for you !
      I will be posting new paintings more frequently. Hope to see you again this summer in La Jolla
      Best Regards,Al

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