Friday, October 16, 2015

one last tidbit before santa fe

end of work  10/15/15
i have been doing some dribs and drabs on the current painting whilst preparing for my ten days in santa fe with ted nuttall. far from finished even for this "sketch". i have just been putting some thin glazes on the background playing around with what the color might eventually end up being and doing some more sculpting on the face and shadows/folds on her white shirt. so far i like what is going on and her facial expression and pose are saying a lot to me. the eyes in shadow are a bit of a problem that i am not sure i have totally solved......maybe a question for ted?

any way, just some last minute packing and then off to the twin cities for wheels up sunday morning.

"it just suits her" (wip; 11"X15").

just to santa fe

Thursday, October 8, 2015 in progress......and especially for jane

i started a small (11"X15") exploratory painting using the photos with ashley as inspiration. it started out really as not much more than a sketch with a fairly quick drawing and palette choices. i often do this when approaching a new series of paintings. as i said in my facebook page, these early works with their raw, unfinished look often are more compelling than the later "real" paintings.

this brings me to a random thought about painting in general. we often hear the "advice" that we shouldn't stew over choices in (watercolor) painting as it's, "only paper." while this is true and they're not life or death decisions, they are make or break decisions with regard to that particular painting. many look at this "only paper" admonition as a license to go forward without much thought at all. i think this is a mistake. while it shouldn't paralyze the painter, each painting should be approached with the notion that one is going to attempt to paint one's best work to date. if it doesn't turn out that way, one shouldn't lament for too long. after all, the afterthought is that it's "only paper", not the mind set going in.

enough of that.

"it just suits her" (11"X15", wip)
after the drawing on 300# hot press arches (yes, i am back to the old stand-by....for me it just has no equal for these portrait/figure paintings) paper, i flooded all but the white shirt and parts of the background with a variegated high value wash of scarlet lake, brilliant orange, manganese blue, and raw sienna using a large squirrel quill mop brush. when this had completely dried i started on the large shadow under the hat brim, on her forehead, and beginning of her hair with the same colors with the addition of burnt sienna and ultramarine blue to the palette. this phase and all subsequent steps were painted with an escoda #14 versatil round brush. her left hand was modeled the same way. i started the background by trying to give it an underlying glow with a loose mixture of raw sienna, quinacridone gold, and carr yellow(cheap joe's american journey pigment named after the plein aire landscape painter betty carr).

that's it for the day.

Friday, October 2, 2015

if you're making omelets....... have to have eggs (before you break 'em).  early this week i had a photo shoot with one of the daughters of a good friend who was going to exchange some modeling time for a commissioned painting. i needed some fresh material and thought that the whole thing was a win-win.

i intended to shoot half outside in the sunlight but the rapidly approaching rain storm reduced our outside time to about a 10 minute session....some with umbrella! as it was the first time for her  modeling i thought that the whole thing wend fantastically with some really great shots for potential paintings.

here a few of the one's from which i am almost certainly going to attempt to make some art. as i work almost exclusively from black and white reference material that is what i am posting here. i am posting this to show some of the process that goes into my painting....please do not reproduce/copy/download any of these copyrighted images. thanks.