Monday, January 31, 2011

back in business...soon

"high plains rider"
photo for "high plains rider"
well, we made it with out incident on our cross-country trek and are out here in borrego springs just before the storm is set to attack a large part of the rest of the country.  lucky timing. just to get back in the swing of things i think i will do some paintings using historical photos of figures in a landscape setting. i have included a couple i had done earlier to show you what i mean. i picked up a photo of a cowboy on the way out and i think i will just paint him to get warmed up.  i'm pretty sure it is not in the public domain and copyrighted so i will state emphatically that it is being used as an inspiration and strictly for educational and demonstrative purposes.

this first photo of the horse and rider was originally facing the other way but i scanned it into photoshop elements and spun it 180 degrees along its vertical axis to get the shown image.  i added some prairie and the tetons to finish it off. i like these because there is a ready supply of material and the model can't go running off if you just want to stop for a while...even a day or two. also one can play with the color scheme as the ones i use are black and white.

"teton buckaroo"
the second one is "teton buckaroo" which i painted at a workshop with charles reid out in jackson.  the original was okay but he made several suggestions at the critique which i have incorporated (fading the mountains out near the bottom to avoid some unnecessary detail and made the "cloud" of dust a little more prominent to suggest motion. i'm not sure of the copyright status of this photo so i will state it is for educational/demonstrative purposes.

the next is "roughrider one" taken from a photo of teddy roosevelt and his steed.  i made the figure a bit too large and ended without much in the way of background to add any type of landscape.  this could be a fault or an advantage depending on the actual intent...figure or landscape.
this is definitely older than 100 years so should be in the public domain. i initially wondered about the size of the horse's head but after rechecking it is coming out  (and therefore foreshortened) of the plane teddy occupies and is really that big in the photo.  i think if i were to do this again i might use a little artistic license and made it smaller. the shadow on his trousers needs simmering down a bit so that it doesn't look like our chief executive had a bladder control issue

i have included this next painting to hopefully show that doing paintings from photos (at least in my hands) doesn't have the same presence that painting from life.  this painting of "emma and her cowboy boots" was from a live model done in a workshop in jackson with charles reid.  i think it feels more "alive" and "real". it does suffer, however, in that emma dissappeared after the session and a photo will not.

"emma and her cowboy boots"

i hope this has shown that doing these types of paintings is fun, can be done from a wealth of readily available material, but is fraught with potential copyright issues. this latter would probably make me only use these for my own personal growth, educational purposes and never for a competition/show or for profit.

please feel free to post comments, etc..

1 comment:

  1. Wow Bob, the cowboys are just beautiful, you have a real eye for color. I especially love the texture you are getting in the grass.