Friday, May 24, 2013
Found this hibiscus-like flower in a hedge on the way to the Asian Grill and Donut Shop early this morning. I used my green thrift store polo shirt and my mouse pad. Also, I have been using medium so the paint is more slippery, trying to have the paint application be more fluid.
Thursday, May 23, 2013
Boy o boy, thanks for the kind comments. Props a girl up. Today I made it to Lowe's and back without killing anybody or getting lost. Bought another clamp lamp and regular bulb and spent some time on the ladder in the temp studio trying to figure out how to position the lights. These lemons are from the tree in the back yard here, and there is a tree next door loaded with grapefruit, owners absent. And all sorts of strange succulents in neighbors' gardens.....
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Made it to LA.
Am working temporarily in a dark place (physically, not noir-ish) and so have bought a $35 LED bulb. Noon light! But the shadows are very dark and sharp, so I have to think on this, what to do.
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
These paintings will be used on the labels for Farm Girl Orange Marmalade and Red Pepper Relish.
(All these products, delicious.)
Am in the studio breakdown stage for the move and having anxiety, Oy!
These may be my last two until I am rooted somewhere again.
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
This time I tried more color. I'm working the flowers first because they jump all over the place like tulips, then doing moving stuff, then going back to do a different section of the painting, etc. I am using an led lightbulb ($14!) which emits very little heat so the flowers don't wilt and move as much. This will be a great light to paint a chicken by, which is fun and I haven't done for a while. The incandescent bulb pretty much cooks the chicken so you have to race.
Sunday, March 31, 2013
Thursday, March 28, 2013
Been gone so long.
I am in the middle of moving from Texas to Los Angeles, and oh, moving is hellish.
I stole a morning to paint the bluebonnets, which I have done every March I have lived here.
I have 6 other panels prepared and hope to have a little run of them if I can manage it and don't get caught.
Thursday, February 21, 2013
I currently have a student who is interested in painting African American celebrities, so we are working our way down a long list of them. Hence, 2Pak. We have been looking at Marsden Hartley and other more primitive painters to look at some of the ways a painting can be made and accepted as successful art. Also Bill Traylor and Mose Tolliver for ideas about paint handling, mark making and general fun with color and image.
The photo of 2Pak has been up on my wall for weeks and finally I had to paint him. He's so beautiful.
Monday, February 4, 2013
I have been so impressed with the paintings of bloggers who did the 30 paintings in 30 days challenge. The paintings are very interesting and there is the sense even for the viewer, me, of the momentum building, and then it looks like more risks are being taken and fun is being had! Something light hearted enters the experience and also the finished painting. Cobwebs gone. Besides, it's more better to see a group of paintings from one person than one good painting from same, in my opinion.
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Looking at Freud regularly these days. It sort of puts you in a gray frame of mind. This one was more difficult than I expected, that cow mask required some real investigation. I painted it first and as I adjusted it to the nose mouth ratio (correct relationship of nose to mouth) the horns went off the top and Elmo went off the bottom. So back to drawing on paper to get the image accurate, kind of. Second try, this one, I managed to get some of everything on there. A subconscious part of my interior engine wants to make everything, everything life size. Sometimes I see painters who use calipers to measure the head, and I want to run screaming into the street.
This mask also moos.
Friday, January 18, 2013
Ok, ok, it's NOT primitive. I used the term incorrectly. I have long lamented that I CAN'T make a real primitive painting because my brain is already too trained. But in this painting, I did it in a very short time, two sessions of about 40 minutes each, and I didn't worry about stuff, just worked fast and put the paint on thick and sort of mushed it around where I needed it to be. I'm looking for a different way to work, to put the paint on the surface and I don't know what that way is. I think I did this guy so often my head already knew where things went and I could concentrate on other stuff. All in all, the process of this one was the most satisfying.
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
On to the second one, above the blue one. I tried to keep it mournful. Meh. Not so interesting. In the third one, the top, I lightened the background some so his hair would come forward and gave myself over to the color in skin. Lots of yellow and yellow green, although I tried to keep it to a purple/yellow range mostly. So now I'm sick of the whole thing. However, today I decided I would try ONE LAST TIME and paint a primitive painting (a la Marsden, my man) in which I did not worry about likeness or anything else but just whacked it in for the pure fun of it. I am halfway done with it, will finish up tomorrow. The thing is, this guy has such a beautiful mouth, it is so exciting to paint it. Maybe in the last painting I can do it justice.
Thursday, January 10, 2013
OK, so this one is a present for the 40th birthday of the sitter who may or may not be a family member.
I did it a million times trying NOT to get a likeness so she would be unrecognizable to her children and of course, I couldn't help but get her exactly. If only you could make that law work FOR you rather than against.
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
This is from a photo I lifted off the internet, I think it was on someone's facebook page. It has been sticking in my mind, the full frontal pose. So in the early morning hours I think of it, would it go in the middle, to one side, could it bisect like a cross, etc. And then, could I use a lot of color just because I want to, entirely arbitrary -- on and on, so I finally did it. I am reading a book on Picasso by Mailer, and it's so good, with lots of insightful art commentary as well as gossipy anecdotes about P. and Matisse and Stein, Braque, all the Big Dogs. In addition I have stumbled on some guy on Youtube who paints copies of Odd Nerdrum and gives a tutorial!!!! Fun to watch, such a different way of putting down the paint. Surely the way you put down the paint is as important as any of the rest of the pieces. Except maybe for drawing. Nerdrum is using the Zorn palette I think - probably now called the Nerdrum palette, he is a fine painter. It is 40 minutes, so I have only seen half of it. I may be a much better painter then.
Friday, December 14, 2012
This one was fun to do, the straight gaze. I photographed the live Scott in my studio with lights so I could control the amount of shadow on his face. Control is good, I want more of it. Still, I spent a long time messing with the drawing, the part of it that I always think I will speed through and then get to the painting part, the fun part. Also regarding background, I started with a viridian/winsor red base from which I mixed all the skin tones, then used a grey with predominantly viridian in it - trying for some overall color integrity. I mean, I don't know how you get there....I'm just taking a whack at different ways to do it.
I uncrossed his left eye and re-shot this so am re-posting.
Saturday, December 8, 2012
Friday, December 7, 2012
Since I have always had small jittery terrier type dogs, greyhounds seem like ghost dogs, or maybe (not to imply death) angel dogs. Vogue dogs, maybe. They look elegant and tranquil, although this dog had a lot of puppy still in him and wanted everything on the dinner table. Such sweetness in their faces. They don't look like they could cuddle up with you on a bad day, though. How would you fold up all those legs?
Monday, December 3, 2012
Upper painting - Belle, an English bulldog I think. I tried this painting twice, the first time mostly grays and yellows and it didn't feel right, it wasn't light hearted enough. This was not because of color, who knows why, I'm sure Wayne Thiebaud could do it. Also I have been looking at other peoples' backgrounds.... as usual, it is another world all to itself. I lifted a lot of paintings out of Catherine Kehoe's Powers of Observation site and made them as large as possible on the screen of my Mac, so every time I sit down at the computer, there are ten of them to look at with various background treatments. Bielen's backgrounds are the most stunning -- both there and not there. How to make the background the perfect surround for the image, integral to the painting of the dog/baby/sugar bowl? How not to see the back ground as separate -- In this case, there was so much baby pink in the dog's muzzle, I had to go for the quinacridone rose, and then the cadmium red light was not far behind.
Lower painting - a student's work. I think it's so nice, good color and positively iconographic.
Thursday, November 29, 2012
Saturday, November 17, 2012
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Just a little break from those tough babies...maybe good to do one painting that is a stretch and one that is simply fun. This donut is pretty old and starting to collapse in on itself. However, I love all donuts and anything else that is full of sugar. Love that sugar.
Monday, November 12, 2012
On the last two babies I used a winsor red/viridian combination for the basic dark out of which I worked all the other flesh tones. In this one I used a purple/yellow combination just to see what it would look like. Pretty much the same overall, but I kept all the colors in the purple/yellow range for continuity. Also used a paler background this time to see if the color in the face is stronger (not so much) and to see what the softer color overall looks like. I think still the color could be stronger in the skin, more pigment. There is SO MUCH gray, a million pearly grays. I think more experimenting...
Saturday, November 10, 2012
Same deal with this one, fast and as direct as I could make it. I was more aware in this one of the vast and subtle range of half tones -- that if I could identify the tone that ties the dark and light together and then get that patch of paint in the right place, the form will bend. Just that there are so many half tones. And half/half tones. These last two babies were less than 10 minutes old.
Friday, November 9, 2012
This was quicker and more fun and resulted in more muscular painting. It takes the pwessure off if I think I am going to do it fast and have fun with it, even if it's no fun and I get stuck. Also, I was looking for a way to reduce the sweetness - I mean not to have it be sentimental. Thus, the black. But it is what it is, a sweet newborn.
Thursday, November 8, 2012
I have recently acquired new progeny.
It's fun to paint these mashed heads. I was allowed to be in the delivery room so I could get shots immediately at birth. It was so exciting though, that I was just wildly shooting everything hoping I got something good. This is my first go at it and it's largish, 10x16 inches. For the next one I'm scaling down because I want to work toward getting it down really fast, by which I mean getting the planes of the head and large masses established with a big brush before I get any detail in there. Maybe I can get everything with the big brush and won't have to stoop to the little one at all. Also, I want to get strong values stated immediately, so if I do smaller size and greater number I might practice my way into doing it habitually. Hoping for this.
Saturday, September 29, 2012
He looks so mournful because he has - as everyone eventually develops in Texas - allergies.
This makes for lots of pink and red around the eyes, fun to paint. I made a good effort to get the skin color full of lots of pigment, and it was easy because I could see it. I photographed him backlit and in shadow, so everything was pretty dark and close valued. Also, still big bristle brushes for the most part.
Thursday, September 27, 2012
I went to the Meadows Museum in Dallas to see the Velazquez show. There were only a few paintings, I think the show specified they were early court paintings. The jewel of the show was the Phillip IV, I'm not certain of his number, and he was painted when Velazquez was 24 years old. When I compared those early paintings with what I know of V.'s later ones, I could see and understand the difference. The early paintings, although beautiful and ambitious, were without the poetry and breath of the later ones. I did turn a corner though and stumble on my friend, Queen Marianna, and so I got a little shot of the two of us.
Thursday, September 20, 2012
I am holding the camera out in front of myself, thinking and figuring in my head what the light will do, etc. Not being cynical. I used big and little bristle brushes, none of my flats or brights which give me more control, so everything is rougher. Which maybe I like. But maybe not. Also working to get more pigment into the skin, not necessarily more colorful, although this shot had some amazing pale lavender lights around the eyes. I just want to get the skin darker and it seems that the longer I work the paint, meaning more than one or two brush strokes, the lighter and more amalgamated the whole thing becomes, which I do NOT like.
Friday, September 14, 2012
I have been working and reworking the same painting for the last three days and just cannot get it, so I have wiped it one last time and put it away for awhile. A girl just needs to have some fun.