Saturday, March 02, 2013

Afternoon stroll

Still in Vilnius, I came across this older woman out for a stroll in the dappled sunshine.  It seems the world over the stance, hair and accessories remain the same.  These sketches are being completed in a 3" x 5" trave e logue sketchbook.  The paper is fairly substantial and holds water well, so I thought I'd take advantage of that fact.

If you'd like to add your sketches during March, go to the March Sketch a Day page on my blog (see the page tabs above) and use the button to to add your image and link back to your blog post.  Let's see how many people will join in this month!

Friday, March 01, 2013

March sketching

Drawing has always been my comfort zone, but painting does eat into that and I while I usually sketch something most days, I don't usually share it.

I've decided that I will devote March to sharing a sketch a day.  One, it puts a bit of pressure on me to ensure that I do produce and two, it continues to ensure I keep my drawing skills honed.

I'll be posting the sketches in a Facebook album and also sharing them on my blog on the March Sketch A Day page.  I'd love others to join in and share what they've drawn during the month. You can add a thumbnail of your sketch on my March Sketch a Day page which also links directly to your blog post. The basis of the sketch should be a drawn line, but colour always livens things up after you have the "bones" down.

I'll start the month off with a sketch of a row of sheds on the side of a road in Vilnius, Lithuania.  If you're looking for something new to sketch try The Virtual Paint Out.  You never know what's waiting for you there!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Glass continued

I like the methodical build up of paint when working on something that is transparent. The  subtle changes in values are easy to miss, but become crucial in pulling off an object in realism.

This is why I rarely use a photograph if working from a reference piece but leave it on the computer. That way I can zoom in and see detail and colour that no printer, no matter what the quality of output, can ever produce. Here is the current work's progress, using layers of oils on top of the acrylic from the last post.

There's still lots more to do and I want to leave it for a couple of day to dry a little then start some glazes over the glass surface in some areas.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Painting glass

glass 2 sm

I've determined that my love of painting water and fish and reflective objects is all down to that play of light and how it forms shapes so well.  Capturing the reflective quality is a challenge to me and a bit like a puzzle that I always enjoy tackling. Glass tends to be one of those perceived difficulties for artists who view the whole and panic, wishing there was a "glass" paint to achieve the transparent and reflective surface.

Reflective surfaces need to be studied carefully to understand just what makes up their form.  When you dissect a highly reflective object in bright light, you see that the lines between values are very well marked and break the general rules in painting and drawing of not having crisp edges between values.   It is that edge that defines what we see and interpret and shiny.  If the bright light was not reflecting off the surface, the effect would still be there, but less intense.

glass oil 2 sm       glass oil 1 sm

Yesterday I created the study of a glass bottle (top of page) using watercolour in a 6 x 12 multimedia sketchbook.  I love my studies as many of you know and wanted to see if this would be worthwhile to turn into a painting.  And I believe it is. 

The form and reflections work well and I've drawn the bottle again freehand with acrylic paint and blocked in some form with dilute acrylic washes.  Next I'll start adding colour in oils.   Acrylic backgrounds are almost another form of study, letting me block in colour quickly to set the stage for what is to come. 

This is on a 9" x 12" canvas panel.