Thursday, February 28, 2008
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Monday, February 25, 2008
Friday, February 22, 2008
Instead of painting this morning, I took the time to do some reflection and writing about my artistic vision and purpose. This was prompted by many things, but the time presented itself to me because I left my easel at home. One of the things I realized is that there are so many things I want to do and learn. Oh, for more time!
I have discovered a great blog, Virtual Voyage. Give yourself a visual treat and have a good read.
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Friday, February 15, 2008
I have noticed in several paintings from tops of hills or cliffs that creating the illusion of height is pretty difficult. In this painting, the sand is not nearly this yellow so it looks a little further away, but I have still not created the sense of standing on a bluff looking down quite a way. Part of it is the lack of objects on the beach. Part of it is the size of the sea stack, perhaps. This is something I would like to learn to do better. Any suggestions about paintings where this is done well would be appreciated.
The setting for this painting is the Oregon Coast. There are several places along the coast where these grand sentinels stand just off the shore. They are millions of years old, according to the geologists. Some are alone and some in small groups. All of them are quite majestic.
I will be working this weekend, so won't post again until Monday. Thanks for visiting.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Monday, February 11, 2008
I didn't finish my painting this morning and didn't want to post this particular work in progress. I did, however, get a couple of sketching breaks during the day. I have had this photo of a dragonfly on a rhododendron for ages. It was on the top of the pile of photos I keep in my portable studio, so I grabbed my pastel pencils and had a go at it. It was great fun to do the gossamer wing thing. I also enjoyed doing the crumbled paper. I was preparing to throw away last months cafeteria menu when I decided I could draw it before I tossed it. Another fun piece.
Saturday, February 9, 2008
Friday, February 8, 2008
Thursday, February 7, 2008
When I picked up my pastels, I wanted the overall feeling to be a bit looser, but retain some of the crispness in the house. I wanted it to contrast with its surroundings in a fairly strong way to show the contrast between what we create and the natural world. I have done other plantation style houses in a much less structured way, and I have enjoyed both methods.
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
The reference photo for this painting was taken on Oahu's north shore. These trees are quite common along the shorelines here. I am sorry I don't know what they are. I was initially intrigued by the negative spaces created by the branches. I thought the focal area would center around the area where the trunks all come together. As I painted, I realized something else was happening.
Thinking about all the "rules" of composition, I was trying to get my lightest whites and darkest darks together. What happened was the lightest whites became much more interesting.
I started working on the small shore break by adding the shadows and highlights. I worked the wet sand next. All of a sudden, I realized the center of interest had
changed to the white water to the left of the trunks. That was fine with me. I worked until I had to open the library, and then some. I finally took some photos. I decided to photograph the detail of the focal area. After I saw the results, I realized that my eye is not as developed as I thought it was. I think this detail is much more interesting than the bigger painting. I am concerned that the water does not lay down but appears to crawl up the picture plain, but I think that if I only painted this area, that would be painted differently.
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Monday, February 4, 2008
Saturday, February 2, 2008
Friday, February 1, 2008
Once I had all the colors in place, I took my turpenoid and soft brush to melt the pastels and create a toned surface for my painting. While I don't have a great deal of experience with under-paintings, I have tried water and alcohol, but I really like the surface created with the turpenoid. It seems richer to me. I also get a much more even cover. I really have fought this method for a long time, but the last couple of paintings I have done this way have ended up looking deeper and richer. I just wish the Wallis paper wasn't so expensive.
Once the underpainting completely dried, I started developing the painting. I often start with the sky and that helps me establish the values in the distant plane. When I do the sky later, I almost always have to redo any distant mountains I have included. This time, I worked the mountain next. It is hard to tell in the photo, but I seem to remember it being rather washed out, faded. It was a hot summer day, late in the afternoon, when I was there. The next thing I did was work to really establish the water path and small falls, followed by laying in the tilted rock slabs. I am happy with the depth I established in the river at the bottom of the falls. It was rather shallow and the gravely bottom had tones of gold. I have much to do still before this one is finished, but I like the direction it is taking.