Sunday, December 27, 2009

All I want for Christmas and the New Year is to Sell Artwork

I am becoming more and more obsessed with selling my artwork. As I have said before I can't eat them and I can't take them with me. I am a serious, hard-working artist and if I never sell another painting I will continue to paint until I drop. Now more than every I want to explore more ways to get my work to the public. I have paintings in eleven states but I want to greatly increase that number.

My paintings are complicated, sensitive celebrations of life that I want to share with the world. Please buy a painting. You won't regret it.

Friday, November 27, 2009

My Joy of Painting

It is wonderful to wake up each day and hope to have time to paint. Lately I have been painting on a very small scale(5x7) and having a great time. I think I am truely coming into my own with these small works. I can change my mind so quickly and cover the surface over and over again to achieve a surface that is so complex and sensitive that it is hard to keep from touching it.

I hope you will view these works at and

Monday, September 28, 2009

Mountain Lake Memories and Patrick Swayze

I have done and sold a number of paintings of the Mountain Lake Resort in Giles County and now that Patrick Swayze has died I am thinking a lot about these paintings. I have seen the film and my paintings are of several specific locations that were used in "Dirty Dancing". I haven't been to the resort in years but it is a very special place and I am glad that the water level is coming up again. I hope the lake will completly fill again soon.

You can view the paintings at Prints can be obtained from the ones that are sold. I hope you will visit the site and see these special views of a special place.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Small Gems at

I am so excited about my new small paintings featured at I feel like a lot of directions I have taken in the past are merging as I continue to delight in the process of painting. These paintings are based on various locales in the Blue Ridge mountains but there is a lightness to the brushwork and color that is happiness itself.

I wish some rich patron would find me, believe in my ability, sense my utter exhuberance and support me so I could work most of the hours of the day. I go to bed thinking about painting and I wake up thinking about painting. Please check out the site. I hope my joy will come to you through my work

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Color My World

I am obsessed with color. I stare at mixtures of colors in shadows that many people do not see. The interaction of warm and cool colors all around us fascinates me and is a large part of my artwork. I seek to bring out as many colors as I see and then I add color accents to further enliven the scene. I do not mix colors on my palette. I take up a number of colors and white and let the colors come out of the brushwork. The colors I pick up are colors I see in the subject matter and some I don't.

I thoroughly understand Paul Gauguin's statement that he wanted to reconcile form with color. It is a magic act to pull out form and get the colors desired. Oil paint is an elusive medium. I never get exactly what I want but I will never stop trying. It is a wonderful journey of the mind and soul

My colors are now on another site where viewers can experience what I love. Towhee Hill Studio is now on and I am very pleased with the set-up of my shop. Also, Towhee Hill Studio is still open to the public 3-5 Tuesdays and Thursdays or by appointment. Call ahead in case of emergencies. 540-257-3437

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Mountain Vista Oil Paintings

My artwork is more about color and texture than anything else but I am essentially a representational artist with personal interpretations. Patrons can find landscapes, still lifes, portraits, florals etc. but they are all about my personal reaction to the world around me. For some reason I am more dissatisfied with my mountain scenes than my other work. The complexity of color, texture, and atmosphere in these scenes is so complex that I struggle to achieve that complexity in combination with my personal reactions. Therefore I am currently working on three mountain vistas which are all locales in the Blue Ridge mountains. My photographs serve as sketches which I enhance with much greater contrast and stronger color patterns. I can see why Paul Cezanne painted Mount Victoire over and over again. The atmospheric changes are mind boggling and the textural complexity is overwhelmingly intense.

The three scenes are from Rock Castle Gorge, Arnold Valley, and Purgatory mountain. I have put on the initial layers and am looking forward to finding the enormous amount of time it takes to complete my paintings. I hope I can achieve more of the atmosphere and textural complexity than I have done in the past. Painting is not something one knows how to do. It is a lifelong learning process. I couldn't be more hooked on the experience and I hope I will continue to fine ways to better market my creations. My studio, Towhee Hill, is open 3-5 Tuesdays and Thursdays or by appointment. I ask visitors to call ahead in case of emergencies. 540-257-3437

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Fine Art America Contests

One of the sites that features my art,, is now hosting various contests among the members. I am enjoying this feature as it is another way to make my work more visible. Currently I am entered in the oil painting contest and I look forward to seeing how many visitors and other artists vote for my work.

I have been painting in oils since I was thirteen. For two years at Langley High School in McLean, Virginia I painted two hours at school everyday. I also put in many hours at home. Eventhough I consider myself competent in many mediums I am primarily an oil painter and I never stop learning about the medium. Many people think that painters know how to paint and they paint. Oftentimes the general populace does not realize that painters are always learning to paint which is what makes it such an exciting occupation. My surfaces have become so complex that every square inch is an extremely dense combination of color and texture that I cannot achieve twice in the same way. I balance between control and accident. I look forward to every moment that I can work at my style.

I hope you will visit my work at come by Towhee Hill Studio which is open 3-5 Tuesdays and Thursdays. I ask patrons to call ahead in case of emergencies. 540-257-3437

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Dream Paintings

I live to paint and I dream to paint. I have actually painted from some of my dreams. I have been having dreams about painting for the last ten years. The paintings are usually mine but they are different. There is a swirling movement in them and a lot of an icy blue that I use but it is more dominant in these works. Also, there are no dark colors, only light. Sometimes I dream about paintings that are done by students but, of course, they are done by me as they are paintings I have never seen before. It is a strange experience to dream up paintings. I enjoy the experience. "Swirling Colors", and "Contemplation" are two of these paintings and can be seen in my portfolio on Fine Art

I have come to a stopping point on the three paintings that I have been working on for several months and am ready to put them away before I become so involved that I lose what I have achieved. I am looking forward to my next endeavors which I hope I can start soon. I have to go in for a hospital procedure in the next week or so and I will be involved with the prep work for that so I know I am going to be grinding away until I can get started. I have three mountainscapes in mind. I am never completly happy with any of my paintings but I am most dis-pleased with my mountainscapes so I am going to be ambitious and work on three at once. One of my teachers, Paul Frets, once told me that paintings have to be arm-wrestled down. I should have great biceps after all these years.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Kendall Kessler's Home Oil Painting Gallery

I live to paint and my entire home is my art gallery. Eventhough I have sold many paintings I am extremely prolific and constantly see my efforts around me. I never get exactly what I want in a painting. I doubt that any artist ever does. I tell my students if they work very hard they can get close but what you want to achieve is always beyond one's present ability. Paintings either get worse with age or they improve. Most of mine seem to improve with age and the faults that seemed so devastating no longer seem significant. I have learned to let paintings live. I used to destroy them out of frustration but no longer. Now I have the burning desire to place them where they will be appreciated. I am now part of Round The Mountain which is an organization designed to attract patrons to artist's homes. I hope this will catch on when Radford has a trail on the site. The address is

Currently I am at a frustrating point in my development as an artist. I have found ways to make my paintings so strong that they look better without lights shining on them. I follow the impasto approach which dates back to the 17th century. I am frustrated because I have developed so many personal techniques that it is hard for me to just relax and paint. I remember reading somewhere that Renoir once said in so many words that his madness was to play with colors. I can certainly relate to that. I use so much white paint that sometimes I am inhibited by the cost of paint. All of the colors are so expensive now that I don't think I push a painting far enough. I do hope in these difficult economic times I will move more art. I will never quit painting or searching for patrons.

Friday, February 6, 2009

I Live to Paint

I live to paint. I sincerely hope that when I die I will die with a paint brush in my hand. I have many responsibilities that keep me from my work. My life seems to be a constant struggle to have time for what I consider to be my profession. I make part of my living selling my artwork and teach part-time at Radford University. I am married to an amazing poet, Clyde Kessler, who is also a self-taught naturalist and is working on putting out a CD on Butterflies of the Blue Ridge. We have one great son, Alan, who is the subject of a number of my paintings. Much of my artwork is about this beautiful mountain region, though I paint other scenes from other locales, figures and still lifes.

I am mesmerized by the continual interplay of colors in the mountains. I would have to agree with Claude Monet that all one can get is a "naive impression". It is impossible to capture all the colors and textures of one moment. My struggle is not to capture them but to use what I can capture in my own unique expression i.e. my emotional reaction to beauty. I am always being told that my work is like that of Vincent Van Gogh. My landscapes have the burning intensity that he has in his. I can understand why he felt like he was being "gripped by the throat" when he painted. He was expressing his reaction to what he was seeing and his inner expression.

Right now I am working on three medium sized paintings of an area near Rock Castle Gorge, an evening scene of Radford's Memorial Bridge, and some swamp flowers near Bisset Park. I base my paintings on photographs that I take and then interpret the colors and textures to express my reaction to each scene. I take pride in complicated systems of brushwork that are unique to me.

My dream, which I am sure I share with all artists, is for a rich patron to find my work and make it possible for me to work all the time. I can't eat them and I can't take them with me. I have paintings in private collections in eleven states. I hope to increase that number. Art agents are as scarce as hen's teeth. If you would like to view my work you can visit