Wednesday, December 26, 2012

"La Rambla"

Here is my new painting, a scene from a street in Barcelona. It is in oil and on a 24 x 18 inch canvas.

Here are the notes I've taken while painting it:

My goal for this painting is to be very loose and free. It is not about detail, it is about indications. For session one, I laid in the under-painting. I debated whether or not even to do an under-painting, but I did after all. The whole thing was laid in in one session. People and figures are only indicated. The pigment used here is van dyke brown, which is between a cool brown and a warm gray.

For session two, I moved in with some color. For the shadows, I used a mixture of cobalt blue, alizarin crimson, van dyke brown, and titanium white. For the lights I used a mix of titanium white and naples yellow. The trees I did at the end and I'm not real satisfied with them.

For session three, I added some color to the background figures. Most of my time, however, was spent on the buildings in the background. I used a palette knife to add chunky paint. I'm not totally satisfied with it, but it will have to do. The painting is almost done.

Here are links to images showing progress over time:

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Final

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Under-drawing

Here is the under-drawing for my new painting, a scene from Barcelona. It is on a 24 x 18 inch canvas.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

"Hair of the Dog"

Here is my new painting, in oil, on a 24 by 30 inch canvas. It is a scene from a wine tasting room in Paso Robles, California.
Here are the notes I've taken while painting it.

For this painting, I decided to do a monochrome under-painting using the pigment terra rosa. I chose this because it has warm shadows and cool lighter areas naturally. I also chose this because most of it will be covered by opaque paint, unlike many of my other paintings that have much of the under-painting come through.

For session one, I started on the face of the figure and the dog. I chose these to paint first because one of my art instructors told me that you should do the most important things first in a painting. I struggled a bit with the face, because a woman's face should show soft features, and the pigment was showing some of the "grittiness" that can sometimes happen with transparent pigments. A fan brush solved those issues.

With Session 2, I finished the under-painting. Now I'm going to move in with opaque pigments.

With Session 3, I started on the face and hands. I used a mixture of cadmium red, yellow ochre, and cerulean blue to mix up the skin tone. Used that in combination with transparent oxide brown, titanium white to create the gradations in the skin tone. I some cases I used straight cerulean blue and cadmium red to cool off or warm up the skin tone as needed.

Session four: Finally, some cooler colors. The blue of the shirt was a combination of cerulean blue, permanent green, cobalt blue, and titanium white. The black for the dog is a mixture of transparent oxide red, alizarin crimson, and ultramarine blue. I used titanium white mixed with the black I mixed up, and a little transparent oxide brown for the white areas of the dog. I used a fan brush dipped in solvent to make the transitions between the black and the white of the dog.

Session six was both successful and frustrating. Right away I nailed the floor, door, and boxes. I think they look great, along with subtle changes to the hair and highlights on the clothing. After that though I really struggled. First, with the purse, I kept laying in paint scraping it off and laying it is again. I finally settled on leaving the under-painting, but darkening up the shadows a bit. Second, I laid in the bottle, pushed it around, adding more and more paint until it was a muddy mess. I then scraped that off. I'm not sure, but I might leave that one the under-painting too. Finally, at the end of the session, I painted the table. That looks okay.

For session seven, I laid in the print on the paper, darkened the bottle a bit, and did a bit of touch up. One thing that was bothering me is that the bottle was at a different angle than the corner of the wall behind it. I moved the line of the wall to make them a bit closer in angle. Lastly, I tried to add slight darkened cores to the clothing as well as some slight cast shadows. Unfortunately, it did not do much except make the clothing look a little "dirty." It is going to be what it is going to be.

Is it done? It might be done. I'll sit on it for a bit and see.

Here are links to the images showing the work in progress over time:

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4
Session 5
Session 6
Session 7
Final

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Under-drawing

Here is the under-drawing for my new painting, a scene from our trip to Paso Robles last May.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Thursday, August 23, 2012

"Wine Thief"

Here is my new painting, showing a scene from a trip my wife and I took to California wine country. Here, someone is taking a barrel sample from a barrel deep in a wine cave. The painting is in oil on a 24 x 36 inch canvas.
Here are the notes I've taken as I've painted it:

For session one, I started on the under-painting. I began laying in the dark areas with a mixture of transparent oxide brown and ultramarine blue. My goal is to lay in the under-painting with transparent pigments, and then move in with opaques.

For session two, I worked on two things, the barrels and the figure. For the barrels, I used a mixture of transparent gold ochre, raw sienna, and transparent oxide brown. I mixed that with my mixture of ultramarine blue and transparent oxide brown for the shadow areas. For the figure, I used terra rosa and transparent oxide brown for the flesh areas, mixed with my mixture of transparent oxide brown and ultramarine blue for the areas in shadow. I really struggled with the face. In fact, all the flesh tones will have to be revisited when I move in with opaques.

With session three, I started on the barrels going off into the distance. It was a real struggle to not put in too much fine detail. In addition, I started on the concrete floor. Again, all the pigments used were transparent.

Sessions four and five: barrels, barrels, and more barrels.

Session six and seven: I did not take a picture after session six. Basically, I finished the frame of the barrel structure. Session seven, I finished the under-painting and went in with targeted cool opaques. Mostly, that was a mixture titanium white and ultramarine blue. I'm finding that I use less and less opaques and spend more time on the under-painting with transparents.

I think it might be finished. I'm going to sit on it a week and see.

Here are links to images showing each painting session:

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4
Session 5
Session 6 and 7
Final

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Under-drawing

Here is the under-drawing for my new painting. It is on a 24 x 36 inch canvas.

Friday, August 10, 2012

"Vintage"

This is my latest painting. It is a landscape depicting a vineyard. It is in oil, on a 24 x 18 inch canvas.

Here are the notes I've taken while painting it:

For session one, I laid in the actual vines of the vineyard. I tried to indicate rows, and showed the perspective as they went into the distance up the hill. I used sap green, naples yellow, transparent oxide brown, permanent green medium, titanium white, and a touch of cadmium yellow light. Oh, I also used van dyke brown for the dark areas.

For session two, I added some darks: the trees in the distance, and plants in the foreground. In both cases, I used a mix of van dyke brown and terra verte. I'm hoping that when I add the yellows for the sky that the highlights on the distant trees do not look out of place.

Session three, I did two things: the sky and some of the foreground. For the sky, I wanted a warm yellow gradient from top to bottom. There, I used titanium white mostly mixed with slight traces of Naples yellow, cadmium yellow light, cadmium red medium, and ultramarine blue. I added patches of each one, and then blended with a dry brush.

For the foreground -- the red flowers -- I used a combination of van dyke brown and cadmium red medium. There I used both a brush and a palette knife to add thick chunky paint.

During Session 4, I really struggled with bush in the foreground. I added paint, scraped it off, added paint, scraped it off, and so on. I finally got it to a point that I'm resigned to. One thing that did go well, however, is closing up some of the big gaps on the trees in the background.

Below are the photos I've taken showing progress over time:

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4
Final

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Under-drawing

Here is the under-drawing for my latest painting, a landscape from our recent trip to California wine country.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

"Red Roses in a Ceramic Pitcher"

Here is my new painting, in oil, on an 18 by 24 inch canvas.



Here are the notes I've taken over time as I have painted it:

For session one, I did the under-painting. Unlike previous still-lifes, where I've primarily use transparent oxide brown as the main pigment, this time I used a half and half mixture of transparent oxide brown and ultramarine blue. I like my under-paintings warm, but I felt that the straight transparent oxide brown was too warm. I did use more of the pigment in the wooden table, however, because I felt that that was appropriate. For the roses, I used terra rosa.

For session two, I wanted to do the background. At first, I mixed up cadmium yellow and ultramarine blue, and tried to cut that with transparent oxide brown. That, however was too yellow, so I mixed some permanent green medium to pump up the green a bit.

Next, for session two, I worked on the pitcher and bowl. I got that to a place that I am satisfied with.

Session three brought me to the roses. The trouble I had with the roses is making them light enough. I used cadmium red medium, and I wish I had a cadmium red light. I tried to use titanium white to lighten them up, but that made it too pink. I tried to use cadmium yellow to lighten them up, but that made them too orange. They are the way they are, I guess. I just wish the value was lighter.

For session four, I added a reflection to the table, added the missing legs for the table, fixed one of the leaves that was too cool, and that was about it. It might be done. I might sit on it for the rest of the week and see if there is anything I want to change.

Here are links to images for each session to show the progress over time:

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4
Final

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Under-drawing

This is the under-drawing for my new painting:

Thursday, April 5, 2012

"Suppli"

This is my newest work. It is another painting from our trip to Italy last May where we took cooking classes. In this one, the two women are making suppli, which are basically balls of rice surrounding cheese dipped in breadcrumbs and fried. This is a large one for me at 24 by 30 inches, and is in oil.


Below are the notes I've taken as I've painted it:

Session one was the beginning of a long process. This painting is complex because there are two light sources, a cool blue light coming from the left, and a warm yellow light coming from the right. For this session, I wanted to lay in the the dark shadowy background. It had to be graduated because of the two light sources, going warm to cool from left to right. I got carried away, though, and threw in the appliances on the right, which to me was the weakest part of the session. Those will have to be redone.

With session two, I started on the first figure. This one is tricky because even though it is closer to the warm light source, the face is also in shadow. I used two warm pigment for this, transparent oxide brown, and terra rosa. So far, I'm still using transparent pigments, and will continue to do so until the under-painting is done.

Session 3 was an emergency repair job! I looked at the image the next day, and I noticed that the jaw line right around the ear was messed up. Unfortunately, the paint had dried, so I could not just remove the paint. I had to go in with some titanium white mixed with terra rosa and transparent oxide brown. That, of course, being opaque rather than transparent, did not quite match up with the rest of the face, so now the jaw line does not match my nice transparent face. Argh! It need to be repaired though.

In session 4, I finished up the first figure. I spent a lot of time on the hands trying to get them right, after that I started on the table and the towel in the background. The towel turned out nice and painterly, I will likely have to put a glaze over it to send it further into the background, however.

One thing that I also did in session four is that I added white paint to the face of the figure in the foreground. This is because I tried to patch it up last session, but I did not like how it turned out. I am hoping that when the white paint dries, I can cover it with the same transparent pigments as the rest of the face and seamlessly blend it in. If that does not work, I will paint over the entire face and redo it. I hope that it does not come to that, because I like the rest of the face.

For session 6, I finally got the face patched up the way I want. My next problem spot: I did notice that the shadows under the bowls are too dark and too warm. Those will have to wait though. I will go in with opaque paint when the under-painting is done.

I took some time off from this painting for personal reasons and I'm now getting back to it. For session 7, I worked on one of the figures. The only thing left is the face for that figure, and then under-painting is done

Session 8: The under-painting is done.

With session 9, I starting indicating the two light sources, a cool light coming from the left, and a warm light coming from the right. This was done with titanium white mixed with cerulean blue for the cool light, and Naples yellow for the warm light.

Session 10 was not the best session. I kept putting paint down and then taking it right back up with a paper towel. I did get the shirt sort of put together for the right figure, as well as work on the face a bit.

Session 10.5: I tried to correct something on the face of the right figure and then simply scraped it right off. It is going to be what it is going to be.

Session 11: after two frustrating sessions, I needed a success. I did the table, including the light and shadows under the bowls. The cool light from the left adds some light to the cool shadows created by the warm light from the right. All in all, it worked out pretty good.

Session 11.1 was not really a painting session. However, I got a new flash for the camera, which I can bounce off the wall or ceiling. It really makes the cool blues pop without washing out the yellows or reds.

Session 14: It might be done.

If you want to check out the progress over time, check out the links below:

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4
Session 5
Session 6
Session 7
Session 8
Session 9
Session 10
Session 11
Session 11.1
Session 12
Session 13
Session 14
Final

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Plein Air Class, Week Seven

This week, I completed my painting in one session. It is a desert scene. I do not paint a lot of desert scenes, even though I live in the desert southwest. This is a rare exception.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Plein Air Class, Week Six

For two weeks in class, I worked on this painting, of a plant with white and purple flowers in a terracotta pot.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Plein Air Class, Week Four

Here is the painting I did for week four for my plein air class. It is in oil on a 11 by 14 inch canvas. It was painted at the Tucson Botanical Gardens.

Since I was not there for week three, I had only one session to complete this painting. I went as quick as I could with no under-painting, finishing it in about three hours.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Plein Air Class, Week Two

This is last week's panting completed. It is in oil, on a 11 x 14 inch canvas.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Plein Air Class, Week One

I'm taking a plein air class at the Drawing Studio. For week one, we went to Agua Caliente Park, on the east side of Tucson. There we had a scene of reeds in water, with palm trees and vegetation in the background. Below is what I painted. It is using one color, a mix of transparent oxide brown and ultramarine blue. Next week, I will add color.