Thursday, August 15, 2013

Working in series

Producing a series of paintings, even a small series, can help focus the mind and let you explore a subject in-depth and push further into ideas, composition and painting techniques.  Repetition is how we learn and each painting is different, even if similar material appears in each.

While I know I can jump all over the place with subject matter sometimes, I always drift back to the water and fish and reflections, whether aquatic or hard surfaces.  That play of light continues to draw me as well as challenge me.

I've completed three pieces in a series of paintings of people and the water.  It started out with the capelin fishery in June after watching children and adults wading out to catch the little fish in buckets and nets.  I am continuing to explore that with more paintings of people in the water waiting their turn at the easel.  I continue to go down that avenue, accosting people at the beach and asking if I can photograph them or their children.  Everyone I have asked has been very obliging and quite interested in what I'm doing.  No arrests yet. :)

I have other ideas of water-related paintings and need to set some up with models or patient friends willing to head into the water for the sake of art.  And the Atlantic can be cold!  However, last week when I was in it, it was surprisingly warm, after expecting it to be breath stoppingly cold, so there may be hope for models for me yet.

One of the paintings I wanted to do was of a baby at the water's edge.  I will be working on that and made a sketch of a possible painting from a photo of my daughter and grandson.  I enjoy working out compositions and pulling in aspects of more than one reference to create what I need.  Taking the time to draft out a plan helps solidify ideas and work out concepts before investing time into a larger piece that you discover won't work when you're half way through it.

There will be some cohesiveness beyond the subject matter as most of the pieces will be on the same size canvas - 12" x 24", except for the 12"x 12" capelin painting.  That may need a companion to go with it for balance.

You can see the other pieces in the series on my website:

The Capelin Catcher
The Bounty Hunter
Capelin Scull


laura said...

Really love this--the combination of graphite line and color is wonderful: it looks both sharp- and soft-focused at the same time.
Also a great pose, beautifully observed and drawn!

Christiane Kingsley said...

Very interesting post, as always, Jeanette. I certainly agree with you concerning the benefits of working in series.
Fly me down to your beautiful part of the country and I will walk into the cold Atlantic for you:-)

Jeanette Jobson said...

Hi Laura. This study has a b it of everything in it :) Graphite, watercolour, ink and a touch of pastel. Call me indecisive!

I liked the pose, complex as it is with all those limbs, so I hope I can pull it off as a painting.

Christiane, yes, even the same object painted over and over and over reveals a lot of information and learning.

I'd love to take you up on that offer Christiane, but cold doesn't have to be part of the deal. :)

Katherine Thomas said...

That sounds like myself. I always like to make a very detailed drawing before I commit color to paper and invest my time in a large piece. I read that many well-known artists do that too. This painting you have done of hte mother and child is precious! I hope you find some willing models, as you said, and create a whole gallery full of beach scenes. There is something so compelling about sharing a day at the beach that everybody can identify with. Congratulations on a gorgeous painting!

Jennifer Rose Phillip said...

better get those models quick,going to be winter soon ;)

2 years ago at college when all I drew where horses, helped me a lot with their anatomy, so know I can draw them very abstract but they still look like horses

i really like this sketch :) and the finished painting of it should go well with the others

Jeanette Jobson said...

I think you've hit it there Katherine. There is something quite identifiable with beach scenes. Pretty much everyone has been there or seen something similar which provides the connection to memories.

My detailed drawings and studies are what I need to help me work everything out. I don't often work on a piece without doing something prior to it, even if its a sketch.

More beach trips are in order I think!

Jen you're right! It will be cold before you know it. The season is so short and many beaches here aren't exactly for swimming with either cold water or strong currents. I think I'll have to bite the bullet and hire some models or get a few lifeguard friends to cooperate. :)

Work in anatomy is so beneficial and it stays with you.

suzanneberry said...

i am really drawn to this jeanette. i have always loved the combination of line, color and blocked shadow! beautifully drawn, amazing touches of color. one of my favorites and i'm pinching it to go in my inspirational folder right now!!

Jeanette Jobson said...

Suz, I'm delighted that it inspires you. Drawing is what I love most of all and sometimes I just throw everything in there for colour too and get a bit carried away. I loved the contrasts in this and the shapes of the figures.