Thursday, May 24, 2018

This Will Have Ducks, Part 2

I've still been plagued with insecurity, so have just taken some time off. But then a couple of paintings started beckoning to me ("Finish me!" "Don't you want to work on this foamy sea water?") so after running around doing errands this morning, I got back to two pieces.

This one went remarkably well— the softness that I'd been looking for in the cloud edges finally came about. Not much left to do! The ducks and their watery trails, a bit of softening on the trees, a little ripply detail in the foreground, and that should do it.

Learned Pond, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
Moved on to this:

Finding A Shell, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
Believe it or not, I lightened up most of the purple. The garments are actually white, but in the reference photo, everything's violet blue. I guess I need to go lighter still.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Interruptions

I feel guilty when I'm not painting on a weekday, but there are things that come up that need to be attended to. Hopefully, I'll be able to spend tomorrow painting, and the entire eastern seaboard is supposed to be socked in with rain for the next week, so I won't have to do much gardening...Meanwhile, here is what I worked on last night:

Waiting At Le Diplomate, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Monday, May 14, 2018

Ocean And Pond

Over the weekend, I put in a few hours on these two paintings. The blue-violet on the woman at the beach is WAY too dark, but I've rationalized it by deciding it will be a nice under layer, and I'll just lighten it up here and there.

Finding A Shell, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
I'm happy about the colors of the sea and sky; they look natural to me. 
 
There's been some progress on the pond painting, too. It doesn't look as blotchy in real life as it does in the photo, and I did a lot of blending and glazing to soften the cloud edges. Still some work to do on the bottom half, but it's looking better.
 

Learned Pond, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Friday, May 11, 2018

Looking Forward To The Weekend

I feel kind of worn out, and have only managed to work on Selfies this morning. I might get back to work— it's a hot day outside and the Dungeon Studio is nice and cool— but then again, I might just loaf around. I do feel like I put a lot into the figure on the left and the area surrounding him:

Selfies, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Thursday, May 10, 2018

The Gauntlet

Mixing the greys for the top area is tricky. There's a lot of red in them, and they have to look transparent in some places, too. You can see the wet paint in the upper left hand corner; I put in a good solid hour on it and some of the mannequins, and the lower back wall this morning.

The Gauntlet, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Shallow Water

Talk about a tedious project— I'm looking as closely as I can (it's really boring) at the surf patterns and trying to sketch them in. There's going to be a lot of color adjustment, the water as seen through the foam is sort of a greenish grey in some places and light brown in others.

Finding A Shell, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Here And There On The Big Giant Hand

Skipped around the picture plane on this one; now time to let it dry.

The Hand Of The Artist, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

This Little Scene Makes Me Happy

With the shadowy figure on the left now visible, I think you can get a better idea of what I'm aiming for. There's another figure, too, on the right in the bar window: a woman waiter shaking a cocktail mixer. I can't wait to get to her, because the light she's in casts shadows on her white shirt that are a combination of violet and orange. What a challenge that will be, and if I can pull it off, what a visual treat.

Waiting At Le Diplomate, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

The Struggle Continues!

I decided the eye was too far forward on the first girl on the left, and some of the other drawing was off, so I'm starting her over. Also, I don't like the fact that she has the same expression on her mouth as the girl sitting opposite from her. They both look like they're pouting. Changes are in order, but now I must re-pot the little spinach plant and plant those dahlias. Hopefully there will be no more snake encounters.

The Chair, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
I did make some progress on Girl #4. And it turns out Cad Red Light, Viridian, and Ultramarine Blue make a nice shadow-on-skin mix.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Using Up The Roll Of Painter's Tape

I did get to work on the two I mentioned earlier, though having the TV on and listening to the political news was distracting. I stuck to taping and painting edges rather than getting too involved in mixing color and trying for the illusion of realism. But as it did this morning, I set a good foundation for what comes next on these paintings.

For Rent, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
Because this one is on a thin panel, it bends back against the wall and the dark detail on the right side looks distorted.
 
Next: I do like the way this one is coming along.
 
Chrysler Building, Dusk, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 

Taping Off, and Red and Grey

If you look at the previous posting of Selfies, you can see how irregular the black window frames are. I got tired of looking at them this morning and taped off most of them, then painted them in a standard Ivory Black (which I'll modify with other colors over time) to neaten up the edges.

Taped:

Selfies, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
After painting:
Selfies, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
Then I moved on to taping the top edge on this one and also working some detail in the lower left part of the window near the mannequins' feet: 
The Gauntlet, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
And finally on to Emergency, since I already had some black, grey and red mixed for The Gauntlet. After a break I think I'll tape off a few edges on the Chrysler Building painting, and For Rent. Seems like that's the next logical step with those two anyway.

In Case Of Emergency, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)



Monday, May 7, 2018

Squaring Off

The T-square is a very useful tool when it looks like your buildings are leaning a bit, so I straightened them out and then re-worked the color on the brownstones again. They are tricky, and it's easy to lose track of which plane is which.

I'm going to try to take the rest of the evening off. It's been a long painting day.

When I Woke Up I Was In Brooklyn, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

The Waiter

When I looked around at the paintings in progress, this is the one I really wanted to work on this afternoon. I'm not sure about the size of the head; it might be too small, but I just really wanted to get to the figure. I love the fact that the tiles will pick up the reflections in the room and the white shirt of the waiter.
Waiting At Le Diplomate, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Selfies Moves Along, and Wildlife I Do Not Like To Encounter

I feel fairly settled today as far as painting goes, and it was a pleasure to add some detail on Selfies this morning. What I like about Selfies is the fact that it's broken up (more or less) into twelve rectangular panels. (The area on the left is a little irregular.) So it gives me permission, so to speak, to just concentrate on one panel per sitting instead of working all over the place.

Selfies, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
This morning I painted what would be Panel 8 if you start at the top left and move from left to right; it's the one with the blue jacket sleeve.

Then there was this as I stepped into the garden this morning:

!!! 

The Week Begins

I'm hoping to get some paint on most of the works in progress this week; the yard calls, however, and there are many dahlia bulbs that are sprouting and in need of a nice bed in the soil. So we'll see what happens. Meanwhile, I tried some sand color in the foreground shallow water and painted in the horizon on:

Finding A Shell, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

One thing I can tell you right now, though, is that shoulder on the left side of the painting has to be fixed; she looks too hunched over.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Trying Out Some Color

The beach scene, as I mentioned, needed to be adjusted as the colors were far too light. I'm trying out some darker tones today. I've asked my cat what he thinks, but he has absolutely no opinion.


Finding A Shell, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Progress, Or Just a Great Big Mess?

I need to soften the cloud edge reflections in the water. There are only a couple of places in the foreground where they're actually sharp. The colors slide into each other more gradually in the photo than they do in my painting, and I've got to figure out how to make it work. But I do think it's better than it has been.

Learned Pond, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
One more: I worked on this last night, mostly on the first girl on the left. I think her nose is too short, so will have to fix that the next time around. The lighting was from an overhead natural light lamp, but it gives me an idea of how the painting might look if I graduated the background.
 
The Chair, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Friday, May 4, 2018

This Painting Is Taking Forever

I think I started this in 2016. There's a huge amount of detail, a lot of lines that need to be painted absolutely straight, careful gradations, etc., so it takes a lot of time. If I work (like I did this afternoon) on multiple places on different areas of the picture plane, I have to stop and let everything dry for a few days so i won't smear the wet paint.

Evening Star CafĂ©, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
Once it's done, I'm going to have to find a good home for it. Should I approach the restaurant owner? Should I offer it to one of my galleries? I don't know what's the best way to find the place where it will be most appreciated. Sending paintings that you've loved and worked on for a long time off into the world is like sending your kids away to college. Except you know you'll see your kids again.

Waiting

Here's this morning's work. I discovered a measurement error where the tile meets the right side of the bar window, so corrected that. I'm much happier now that much of the white space has been covered. Painting the tile is going to be fun!

Waiting At Le Diplomate, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Trying Out Color

Got to sleep late last night, as Michael Avenatti was on the Stephen Colbert show; then around 6am helicopters started buzzing the are for about 20 minutes. On top of everything else, I had a medical appointment this morning, and got back later than I would have liked. As a result of all the disturbances I just haven't been able to get into the painting zone today; this is why I hate having any kind of claim on my time. If I don't have a whole day free from any obligations, it's hard to get my head into gear for painting.

This is all I've been able to work on so far. I'm trying to mix the correct colors for the ocean. The entire figure, by the way, has to go darker— when I look at it against the white background, it just looks too pale.

Finding A Shell, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
I did, by the way, stretch the canvas for that atmospheric beach scene, and will be starting that one soon.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Slightly Impressionistic

After a break late this afternoon, I felt like picking up the brushes again. This is just a start: I think the shadowy areas of the skin need to go darker; there should be more contrast between them and the areas that pick up some light. But I like the colors.

Finding A Shell, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
There are two more paintings I want to start. One is an atmospheric beach scene, and the other is a rooftop hotel bar with some unusual color lighting. That one is waiting for me to decide on the size and format. It might be 12"h x 18"w.

Tomorrow: Evening Star and The Chair.

Two More

It seemed like a good time to make the two parts of the building below the window— in front of and behind the woman walking— consistent. The right side looked unfinished, and I wanted to bring the two sides together. That's pretty much all I did on this painting, but it makes a difference. Next time I'll get back to the window decor.

 
The Gauntlet, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Then I moved on to the fire extinguisher painting, which seems to be coming along pretty well. The painting session went a lot easier than I thought it would; the blending didn't give me as much trouble as usual. I have to start thinking about the "white" color of the label— what other colors should I mix with the Titanium White to make it look realistic?

In Case Of Emergency, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 

Tiling The Wall

I'm painting the initial, experimental layer of green on the back wall of the restaurant, leaving spaces around the tiles for the grout, which will be a lighter color. The tile itself has a shiny glaze that reflects some of the lights and it also varies slightly in color from light to dark. So there's plenty of work to do.

Waiting At Le Diplomate, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Good Afternoon

After a break I got back to painting; below is a detail of Selfies; I worked on a lot of tree reflections in the window in front of and around the girl's face. To her left— eventually— there will be some distorted brick from the building across the way.

Detail from Selfies, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
Here's the big picture:
 

Selfies, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Grey and Red

I'm limiting the number of colors on this painting, especially with the neutral colors, in the hopes of keeping the gradations on the glass and the cabinet consistent. So I'm leaning heavily on Sennelier's Gris Froid, and much of the red is Winsor & Newton's Winsor Red Deep. It's beginning to get easier to work on it— the more detail I put in, the easier it is to figure out where the next lines and shadows are supposed to go.

In Case Of Emergency, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
And I broadened the figure and added some more detail here:
Waiting At Le Diplomate, © 2018, work in progress (click on image for larger view)