Sunday, May 31, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
I've been forced to take a five hour drive home from my Tuesday Atelier class in Seattle due to the temporary closing of the Hood Canal Bridge. This usually brings me to the Hamma Hamma River and the adjacent salt marshes about sunset (we have long days here in Washington now). I haven't had my camera with me but I've pulled off the road and tried to take some mental notes that I could translate into a small study. Here's my first one. The water looks a bit greener here than in the actual painting. I guess I need some work with photoshop.
Thursday, May 28, 2009
My walking buddy, Jer deigned to sit for me today so I could get some practice on some of the principles I've been studying in Atelier Class. While it looks (to me) a great deal like Jer, I'm sure she has some other less flattering things to say about it. But for a 1 1/2 hr study from life, with a few short adjustments from a photo, I think I'm on the right path. The purpose was to get as close as possible to the color temperatures that I perceived. I checked myself againt a photo taken and corrected in photo shop and found I wasn't too far off. However, as far as a likeness goes, I think I need to make the face a bit longer. I'll give it some more work this week. I'd also like to try a good tonal drawing and see where I get. Hey...the model's free.
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Hooray! I'm finally working out some of the kinks in photographing my work with my digital camera. This never used to be an issue but lately it seems I've had a horrible time getting a good shot with it. So today I spent an hour or two figiting with the manual mode and the (OMG) user's guide. It's a good thing I have a Master's Degree. I needed it. Anyway, the research helped and I have a much better image to show for my time.
Most of you will recognize this Tea Pot as it's been the subject of many paintings. I first painted it in pastel about 10 years ago. I've shown that painting here before and you can see it below as a comparison. I've never been able to capture it quite a well as I did in that pastel, but I think I've come close here. I've been working on this piece as an entry for the Oil Painters of America Western Regional Juried Show. I've taken it as far as I think I can. Now I'll just hold my breath. It's my first attempt so I don't have high expectations, but I can dream can't I? Here's the old pastel. What do you think? Did I do a good job with the oil? The light is, of course, different. In the original pastel I used warmer artificial light and in the recent oil above, I used natural north light. Additionally, the cool green against the warm red cloth and background do make the pot appear a bit brighter and more colorful although I've done my best to play that down a bit. Groan...I'm perseverating.
Saturday, May 16, 2009
On one of my morning walks I spotted Lilacs growing beside the Hwy. I believe this empty lot was once a front yard although the remnants of the home are no longer visible, there are lots of flowers that were once part of someone's garden.
I ran out of hardboard which is my preferred painting support and so this is on canvas panel. The pesky facets of the canvas make for difficult photographing. This is actually a lot clearer than it appears. Remember the camera is an extreme close up. Additionally, because I have to shoot in low light, the photo gets a bit of over exposure that is difficult to correct for on photoshop. All in all, however, it's not too bad a photo job. Enjoy.
Thursday, May 14, 2009
I locked myself in the studio today. After having been tied up with classes and teaching for days, it was nice to have the studio to myself for awhile. I started this piece the other day but had to stop in the middle because of other committments. Like marriage. While I'm happy with the jug in the back, there are still things that I'm not satisfied with. I believe I'm still at a juncture in my painting and not entirely certain of where to go to next. It's sort of like being at the edge of a cliff. Taking the next step is like a leap of faith. My classes are going well enough, but the pace is slow and it will be awhile before what I'm learning translates itself to my work. I think, I'll try for a stronger sense of realism in the next substantial piece. In the meantime, you may see a small one or two. I have a couple of weeks before I go back to class. I'll be staggering for a few weeks until the end of the June session because of the Hood Canal Bridge Closing here on the peninsula. It takes an extra two hours to drive to and from Seattle so I'll be taking it easy on myself by skipping a couple of classes. School is out then from the end of June through mid September. I'll be glad for the break. Heavens! It took me five hours to come back from school on Tuesday.
Friday, May 08, 2009
I spent a few days in Albuquerque soaking up the sunshine this past week. Part of my trip included taking in the Oil Painters of America National Juried Exhibition in Santa Fe. What an incredible show. I got to see so many beautiful pieces of work. I didn't enter this year as I didn't have anything prepared to send out. But I'm busily working away on some entries for next year. I'm inspired!