Sunday, January 31, 2010

Not so good Cherry Pie

Joanne's website    Every painter has his day; there are good days and not so good days. Good days mean you painted a great painting and you know what happens on the not so good days. My painting buddy, Phyllis Ray, came over so we could both paint this appealing cherry still life that I had set up in my studio. BUT we had limited time so instead of relaxing and really working out the problems before beginning the painting, I dove in and now it doesn't work. When you paint alla prima which means "freshly done, all at one time", it's no fun to go back to a dry, half done painting the next day and try to bring it to life. I'm as persistent as they come so I'll keep working this till I get it right but hear my Message for the Day; Always carefully plan out your paintings and never rush. If you're short on time, paint a smaller canvas...or you'll be eating crow instead of cherry pie.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Oranges and Blue

Joanne Shellan Fine Art    Getting objects to glow is a single skill in an artist's big bag of tricks. It comes after you've covered the big guns part of a painting; creating a solid composition, making sure you have a strong value pattern of lights and darks, choosing a star or focal point, etc. The list of big guns isn't short but if you get that basic list down, you've built a structure upon which to paint a successful painting. Too often I've rushed in to paint and my painting falls apart. My chosen star in this painting is the orange slice that is standing up. It glows because its super warm, light yellow rim is the highest area of contrast in the painting against a very cool, super dark background of blue/purple. Tricks...and you thought only politicians used them! This painting is oil on a 12x16" board.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Humble Eggs

The humble egg takes the stage as food still-lifes continue to end up on the canvas. We see the egg but do we really "See" the egg? In my humble opinion, you only really see it when you try to draw it. Then you figure out it's hard as hell to draw that weird eliptical shape with the slight point on one end. I intend to try this subject several more times in an effort to make it look wetter, to clearly show the eggs as uncooked, to work on making the egg shells appear luminous. Unlike taking a math test where there are actual right answers, painting is ambiguous with many roads to doing it right and twice as many ways to do it wrong!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Fried Eggs

   Still lifes have a justifiable spot in the world of 2-D art. Within the parameters of four sides of a board, the artist can highlight a group of items that can are usually passed over quickly. The artist has the challenging job of elevating the features of our daily lives to something to stop and examine. Look closely. See the beauty of a fried egg. Notice how a pleasing composition can pull you into the painting. What are you quickly passing by by that might deserve a closer look? Just drawing out what is in front of you is challenging enough. I often draw it out on the board with a piece of pastel chalk then draw it out again with my paint brush and a warm color paint. There are always corrections to be made on the second drawing! Another life lesson-
measure twice, cut once.