Sunday, February 24, 2008

Autumn Gold

This is a larger painting done during the week. The larger size was definately a challenge with all of the interruptions that keep happening when your are painting in a public space. This was a scene that had an overcast sky that made everything warmer. It presented alot of opportunities for orchestrating compliments. Tried to push the variety as much as possible to keep interest in the larger format. Another reminder of why it is important to work from life as the camera change the values in the light and dark areas.
30 x 40 oil on alkyd primed canvas.

Cool Creek

A new one from the show. It is an experience to put together a piece while keeping an eye on the traffic moving in and out of the space. I have had to capitalize on bits of time when I can focus on the more challenging passages of the painting. I have painted this area before and was drawn to this area because of the high content of Iron in the creek bed giving it a warm red glow. The other piece was horizontal and I had wanted to do a vertical piece to increase the drama.
18 x 24 oil on canvas

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

A couple of new ones

18 x 24 oil on stretched canvas.

I have had and itch to do this one in a larger format. I did a plein air study of this originally and found that it didn't quite capture the inviting feeling of the scene. The more subte I made the transitions in this piece, the more natuaral it began to feel. The camera dropped out the subtel pink tones in the canopy of the tree, but still communicates the general idea.

24 x 30 oil on stretched canvas.

I had this piece sitting around the studio for a number of months now and really liked the composition. In the process of painting it, I lost my way and missed the depth of the canyon behind the junipers. I have been concentrating on narrowing my value range to better communicate my ideas. When I put it on the easel again it was more than obvious what direction this one needed to go. I premixed my pallett to harmonize the energy of complimentary colors to create the depth that was lacking and better unify the idea. I get a little anxious to start moving the brushes and overlook the importance of premixing my pigments. When I take the time to set out the colors I am planning on using, it is more than obvious the importance of slowing down and planning the harmonies. When I just mix on the fly, I tend to lose my way.

Here is the version before the rework.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Devil's Bridge Vista

18 x 24 oil on stretched canvas.

Another painting from the show. Some type of a juniper species that I am not familiar with. I took a quick peek in some Audobon books that I had laying around and could not find it. Oh well, it caught my attention anyway.

I have a bit of fun painting these scenes where the lighting in indirect and diffused. This was on the back side of a mountaing that was in shadow. The light that was pouring out into the valley was filtered. It makes everything soft and subtle. It also warms up the already red soil and shadows. I thought that made for some fairly interesting contrasts of warm and cool. Got much tighter than I had planned. Fussed with the lighting to the point of overworking it.

I met Mick McGinty at the show for the first time. I find it very cool to chat F2F after meeting on the web. Another fellow painter from my home state. He commented on how much different my work looked in life vs. a photo. It pretty much solidifies the line of thought that it is imperitive to work from life. A camera only records what it sees. Our eyes are so much more sensitive. That dovetails nicely with the old addage, "Don't just paint what you SEE, paint what YOU see."