Born in Wisconsin and raised in Montana, Ned Mueller has been drawing and painting all of his life. He graduated from the prestigious Art Center School of Design in Los Angeles where he also taught drawing while still a student. His love for life and art is reflected in his superb paintings of a wide range of subjects and done in several mediums. Ned worked as an illustrator for 25 years while building a solid foundation of professionalism and has worked as a successful full time artist since 1984. He continued to enhance his knowledge and skills by taking workshops with master artists Harley Brown, Richard Schmid, Bettina Steinke, Del Gish, and Sergei Bongart. He has written several articles on painting for the Artists Magazine, is called upon to jury shows, and is a popular and enthusiastic workshop teacher around the country and abroad. He is currently working on a book about painting. He is a signature member of the Oil Painters of America, The Northwest Watercolor Society, The Plein Air Painters of America, Northwest Pastel Society (Distinguished Pastelist), Northwest Rendezous Society, Laguna Plein Air Painters and Puget Sound Group of Northwest Painters. He exhibits his work in some of the finest shows and galleries in the country and has won numerous awards. He has been invited to participate in the Great American Artist Show in Cincinnati, Ohio and the American Plein Air Painters Show.
I love the challenge of painting outdoors and trying to capture a feeling, the changing light, the activity around me, and orchestrating it all into an interesting and beautiful arrangement of shapes and colors. I particularly enjoy painting figurescapes of people doing everyday things and in different cultures. The activity and color of a busy harbor, street scene or market can keep me creating new work for months. The feeling of being there, the sounds, the smells and the emotional connection make the freshness and spirit of plein-air painting very special. I approach my plein-air painting with two different treatments. Most often, with more time, I will try to make a complete picture, considering composition, value, color, and mood. I may do a few quick, small value thumbnails before starting my painting. Then working directly, I establish the large value, color and shape relationships and develop the overall tone of light and shadow of each form. Finally, I paint my half tones, work on edges, refine the shapes and finish up with dark accents and highlights. My second approach is used when the light is more fleeting as in a sunrise or sunset. Under such conditions, there is only enough time for a quick color relationship study. Regardless of the approach, I may make adjustments later at home.
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