Thursday, January 21, 2016

a study in values: "serenading miss rachel"

i'm not sure i will get to any painting today so i thought i would check on the values of the painting. when i looked at it this morning while drinking my first cup of coffee, it just looked off. i wasn't worried about it, this early on i the process, but i wanted a handle on what the problem was before moving on. since most problems lie in the values being incorrect i decided to take a better look at them.

how to do this? i think a good way to do this, and one a lot of artists are resorting to, is to simply take a photo of the painting and change it to a black and white copy in whatever photo editor they have available. when it do this with the current photo a couple of things pop out that i didn't expect. to be absolutely transparent, i thought that the large shadow that falls across three articles of clothing on the "right" (his right) side of the figure would be several disparate values (and there in would lie the problem).

i was surprised to find that i had actually gotten these pretty close and the lapel part of his jacket was the thing that was too light. therefore i concluded that the shadow was pretty cohesive and i could make it more so with some unifying glazes that would also bring it up the correct overall value. additionally, i will need to darken the lapel and his right sleeve. then i think, hope, that it will take care of the nagging  issues that i felt this morning.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

"Serenading Rachel" continuing with a WIP

just a bit more on our Seattle busker. I doesn't seem like much, but I thought and experimented for about an hour before I figured I knew what I wanted to do for the large shape over his head.

I knew from the get go that I wanted it dark. I experimented with a number of dry glazing, wet glazing (charging in color), direct painting, and any number of primarily complement combinations. I got as far as deciding that I liked the combination of burnt umber and ultramarine blue which I figured would read optically as a dark gray or black. I then could dry glaze over it with other colors already present in the figure and bring it up to value with black............yep, you heard it. I can't think of anyone who advocates the use of black out of the tube except maybe Charles Reid. Good enough for Charles, good enough for me. Besides I like the contrariness of the idea. I did enough on a separate sheet of hot press paper that I know it will get the effect I am looking for. Now whether anyone else will like it, is another at eleven.

So here are two shots, before and after, of the painting in the process of the first dark wash. I also put. A bit of modeling on his clothing since yesterday.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

"In the moment" and beginning of "serenading Rachel"

I know, I know, been along time. No useful excuses, just pure sloth, I guess. Hopefully this may make up for it.

"in the moment"
I started this first painting almost 3 months ago. I changed tactics on the background several time and finally settled in the glowing sort of gold color you see here. A bit more on the Daniel sprick influence, I guess. The hair in these portraits always give me trouble if it is a big piece of the puzzle. I am fairly happy with this combination of detail and blur. Although many may think them superfluous, I rather like the stay strands of hair that everyone seems to have except maybe for the "buzz cuts." Anyway I enjoy painting them so unless someone can come up with a cogent reason not to do it, I probably will continue. In the reference Ashley actually is barefoot, but I gave hr a red sock and then made part of the painting ground in the upper right hand corner red as well. Seems rather simplistic in concept, but I like the unexpectedness of the gesture. I absolutely loved this blouse when she put it on and I hope I did it justice. I have several more reference shot in which she wears it so I definitely will be getting another shot at it.  Today I reached the point where nothing I was doing was adding anything so, it be done. Please enjoy, "in the moment" (21"x14").

this second one that i started a couple of days ago after we arrived in borrego springs is taken from a reference photo i took of a busker out in seattle. kudos to those who figure out the reference for the title. "serenading rachel", a work in process.