Saturday, March 17, 2012

Revealing - update

I've done a little more work on this clementine.  Its a fine line to keep the light in the fruit and make it believable.  Citrus has such a high water content, light shining through it is almost the same as water, making it translucent and reflect colours.

This image was taken earlier this afternoon and I've added more detail to the piece since.  However, I find it really difficult, even with good lighting to get true colours of this painting.  Some colours just don't seem to photograph well under certain light conditions.

This afternoon the symptoms of a cold suddenly arrived out of the blue.  I hope it moves past quickly, as colds can sometimes knock the desire to paint right out of me.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Revealing - in progress

As usual, and likely the same as many painters, I have several paintings happening at once.  While one dries, I do some more work on another.  Its the necessary evil of oil paints, but also helps increase productivity. There are times that I want to rush things and am itching to put some glazing blues over the Calmer Waters piece, but I have to wait and let nature and oxidization take its course.

So I've started another clementine painting.  I took some photos of clementines I had around Christmas.  The season of them is fleeting usually and I wanted to make sure I had some extras at hand.  I was experimenting with the shapes of the peel and how much could be unwrapped without the peel dropping off.  That and strong directional light helps make a composition have more strength.

Here is about an hour's worth of paint in oil on a 10 x 10 inch canvas.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Calmer Waters

I'm letting the little boat sit in a corner and consider its transgressions for a few days before tackling it again.  Its often good to put something to one side if its not working for me then come back with fresh eyes at a later date.

Meanwhile I pulled out this piece that I had started previously of a fairly calm water surface.  The nuances in a body of water are one of the things that draw me to it. Perhaps the challenge in getting the shapes and values just right satisfies the detail freak in me.  It becomes a meditation of sorts and I can easily lose track of time while I create swirls and gentle curves on the water surface. This painting is in oils, 11" x 14".

My entry into the gallery world once more is off to a good start, with two paintings being sold today that had only just been put on the wall.  That will go towards my late birthday present to me of a load of Kama oil paints. I'm justifying the purchase as necessary art tools.   Besides traditional tubes of paint, I ordered a few oil sticks as well.  I haven't used oil sticks before.  I'm presuming they're similar but perhaps softer than oil pastels, but should be interesting for making marks.  I'll have to experiment a bit.  Tips are welcome if others have experience with them.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Boat woes

I've fought with this little boat for three days and still its not doing as I want.  The colours are ok, the shape isn't and I'm about to wipe it for the umpteenth time. 

Its likely because I'm tired and stressed from work and general busyness.  Daylight savings time play havoc with my body clock and it takes me a week or more to get over it, rather like jet lag.  I wish they'd just leave it all alone, it serves no purpose to me - and many others by the sounds of it.

So when all the factors combine, the construction of art seems to suffer.  I don't know if I'll continue to beat this piece to death or admit defeat while I'm ahead.  Its looking more like the latter right now, but you never know what a new day will bring. 

Tonight, in a moment of weakness, I ordered a dozen tubes of handmade oil paints and some oil sticks from Kama Pigments in Montreal.  Like all artists in moments of despair, I believe that the tools will be the saviour or the destruction of me.  Either way, quality pigments made traditionally cannot be a bad thing, can they?

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Flight Path completed

The funny puffin coming in for a landing is complete and on his way to the gallery tomorrow. 

I quite enjoyed painting this bird and perhaps will try another seabird in the near future.  A gull maybe if I can get the right composition and light, not that there's any shortage of gulls around here!  They're brazen and would snatch food right out of your hand given half a chance.  It always amazes me at how large the gulls are, mostly herring gulls that I see here, but there are other varieties around.  I'm just not up on them.

But for now, this little clown will head out into the world.  Its 24" x 30" in oil on gallery canvas. Gary Jones has kindly provided the reference image for this piece.