Thursday, June 28, 2018

'Hanging at the Shipyard' in 3 Acts.

'Shipyard'  12x24

Ever Since Reading 'Wind in the Willows'....
.....I've loved messing about with boats....except now I don't sail them.  I just paint them whenever possible.  So, when the weather cooperates I drive up to the largest working shipyard in the area for smallish boats and have fun.  The challenge is consuming.  The twists and turns of a hull can be as challenging as the human form.  

Two weeks in a row the weather and my schedule were in alignment.   'The Shipyard' is only a small portion of the whole yard, yet I like hanging around these slices of working boats, shipwrights, fishermen, sailors, live-aboards, and the curious.  I painted it between about 11 and 2.  I figured I was done for the day but so many people stopped to ask if I was painting the 'Lady Washington' I decided better do it.

'Lady Washington' 14x14
This was the only other sized panel I had.  The rigging above what you see became considerably more complicated so it was easy to justify not doing it.  What a beautiful boat.  The rigging drove me crazy.  There was more there but it would have made the painting look more like a spaghetti plate than a glorious ship if I had included it all....even with the rest of it chopped off.

The previous week I did the 'Annihilator' and talked to a lot of people.  Everyone has a story they want heard.  So I listened and didn't paint so much.  Still, the painting turned out fine but I'll save you the story of the lost dog, the other painter who did the Annihilator, the electrician who suddenly lost his memory and the woman with no place to live.  It was a full day.

'Annihilator' 12x12

Thanks for looking!  Back soon.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Green Teapot Times Two

Playing around....
....isn't all bad.  Or maybe not bad at all.  Even good.

Here are two paintings in which I felt like playing around with the idea of just beginning in one spot on a painting with my best shot at the right color on the first stroke and then keep going.  No scraping, no drawing, just one stroke next to another....with some more paint piled on top if needed.  Some knife work.  Some soft brush work.  Some color pushes.

In the first one I began with the shadowed side of the teapot, the shadow it cast on the cloth and the cast shadow on the lemon.  On the second it was the light side of the teapot and the dark reddish and green cloth that led over and behind the the flower vase.

Short post.  I spent the day painting plein air and am 'talked' out.  Today is summer solstice.  It's going on nine o'clock and is still brighter than many winter days.  This has been happening for billions of years.  Here we are.

Later.  Thanks for looking. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

'J' Got a New 'T', 16x16

A Couple of Friends.....
....periodically fix lunch and invite other painters over for the day.  They are all excellent cooks and for some reason they ask me over to these European style luncheons, sitting outside, drinking wine, eating good food and exchanging painting tips.  How lucky am I?

When I arrived this bike was parked in the lawn and, since I have never painted one, it was an obvious choice.  It was both challenging and fun to work out to a semi-successful finish.  Much I like but, like usual, 'if I had it to do over again' I think I might have used some softer edges in places.

Probably influencing this writing is that I'm listening to a podcast from a very successful gallery owner on the topic of creating a consistent body of work.  It gets to the question of what an artist is trying to say.   It may not be a verbal 'say'; it can also be a visual one.

Some paintings, like this one, are for pure fun and experimentation....but at the same time I'm always asking the question of how it could be better and speak more clearly.  How could it appeal to a broad audience without being a cliche or too gimmicky?

 I think it would speak louder if some edges were subdued, letting the eye go more toward the bike.  The changes would be small and the color wouldn't have to be altered much.  That bush on the left has choppy strokes, for example, that draw the eye  If I give it a try I'll post this again and let you see what happened.

Until then, Thanks for Looking.....and if you have a minute post a comment and tell me your opinion.