Friday, January 24, 2020

On A Dark Afternoon

Apologies for the darkness of these images; it's been dismal all afternoon and we're expecting a lot of rain overnight. I did the best I could with the photos.

Waiting At Le Diplomate, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
Above: Still struggling with the green wall color. Whenever it dries down, it looks murky. I tried to pep it up today with some Emerald Green in the mix, but it still looks dark. In the restaurant itself in the daytime, the color's lovely and bright.
 
L'Auberge Provençale, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
I managed to kill the bright, unreal blue on the porch and pillars, but now think I may have gone too far.

Minor Issues

The painting below is going to be entered into a contest, but the eyes looked weird so I repainted them. Then went on to the next one below, making adjustments here and there. I think politics is sapping all of my energy. Am going to take a break.

Protective Coloration, © 2018 (click on image for larger view)
 
Tuesday, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 

Yellows And Greens And Blues

I like working on foregrounds in landscapes. Right now this painting is at the stage when applying the colors is relatively loose and easy.

Variations on a Theme 2a, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 

Thursday, January 23, 2020

And One More For Good Measure

Picked out some details on the whipped cream and the brownie. Feeling at least a little bit virtuous for having gotten some work done today.

Two Spoons, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)




Smooth

As I mentioned in an earlier post, the second coat of paint tends to smooth things out.

New Year's Eve, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Some Sweets

Painted lots of oozy detail in the center of the dessert.

Île Flottante, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Back To Work

Have been inundated with all kinds of distractions; running errands, dropping off artwork, and even a little partying. But now it's time to get back to work.

I finished (finally) the repaint of the damaged painting and am letting the last coat dry. Next I'll varnish it and send it back to its home.

Received some good news yesterday: "The Gauntlet" has won 2nd place in an online competition that ha entries from all over the world.

The Gauntlet, © 2019 (click on image for larger view)
 
Meanwhile, I delivered it to my local gallery, where it is presently occupying the front window. 

Have been stretching a few small canvases in anticipation of doing some landscapes. I recently discovered Tonalism and am completely enamoured.

Last but not least; this morning's work. Mostly right side stuff, darkening of the quilt and curtains, etc.
 
The Promise of Evening, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 



Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Need More Americans

I finished Cheyenne just a little while ago, and she was the last person I had photo reference for in the America series. So now I have to get out of the house and talk to people!

Once I have everyone done— whether that turns out to be 25 or 36 or 49 people— I''m going to mix up a big batch of sky blue and do all of the backgrounds at once. I had been planning to use a neutral greyish-beige but now I like the idea of sky blue better.

Cheyenne, America Series, © 2020 (click on image for larger view)
 
Meanwhile: some detail work in the center of the painting today—
 
Tuesday, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

The End Of A Productive Day

Somehow I ended up putting in an entire day of painting, with few interruptions.

On the painting below, I reworked the grassy foreground. The blue on the porch is still too intense, so I'll have to knock that back next time around.

L'Auberge Provençale, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
Next: After reviewing some alternate photos of this image, I realize I need to add some more flesh color under the water to indicate the legs. My primary goal is to intensify the lighter colored water in a ring shape around the boy, getting darker outside the ring. Some redrawing is necessary on the right side.
 
Coming Of Age In The Year 2018, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
And last, since I was working with blue pigments anyway, I went back to this personal piece and brushed in the sky on the left side.
 
Variations on a Theme 2a, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
 
 
 



I Feel Like I'm Cycling Backwards

The spoon in this painting has a very lovely, lyrical curve to the handle. Today I thought I'd redraw the shape to show off that curve, but quickly started making mistakes everywhere, one of which was to introduce an entirely new color to the current palette. So now I have to work that in all over the tabletop. But there's some improvement on the spoon.

Mocha Treat, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Whipped Cream And Ice Cream

I'm trying to portray the sense of roundness on the ice cream ball. The colors are close to the ones used for the whipped cream, but the brushstrokes on the whipped cream are very different from the ones on the Ice cream. So it makes for an interesting painting session. Also trying to firm up the lines on the metallic areas.

Hot Fudge Sundae I, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Monday, January 13, 2020

Hot Fudge

Much reworking of the cone, which has strange pinkish tones to augment the golden ones. And a darkening of the hot fudge.

Hot Fudge Sundae II, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Another Pass

It's Monday morning, and I have a lot to do, but I thought I'd block in a little more color on this one since the thin layers are drying rapidly. Soon it'll start to shape up.

Also, I need to lean a little more toward the cooler side of the palette.

New Year's Eve, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Making A Mess

I'll never get used to the way the first layer of paint slides around on the smooth panel. I have no control. There are lap marks galore, and despite my good intentions, I end up with raised brush marks everywhere.

Over the next few months this will transform into a very lovely piece— you'll be surprised— but right now it's a mess.

New Year's Eve, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Friday, January 10, 2020

Something To Look Forward To

The new painting has cheered me up immensely; the tedium of finishing the last quarter of the pieces that I've been working on for the last year had dragged me down more than I knew. It's always invigorating to start something new. There's the promise, early on, that it will be a fabulous masterpiece, and the act of painting doesn't have to be as precise as it is later on in the process.

I did work on two of the spoons from the dessert series last night, but not enough went into them to justify an update.
New Year's Eve, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Multiple Projects

Sometimes work is more than sitting at the easel. Today I've fielded yet another art scam from a guy who claims to be living in Texas and says he wants to buy a painting for his upcoming anniversary (standard boilerplate scam text); taken the staples out of two sides of The Gauntlet; repainted the messed up green museum wall of The Villers; and gridded up a 16x16 for a new painting.

Got a shipment of panels yesterday as I was on my way out to the local gallery and completely forgot about them until this morning:

16" x 16" seems a good size for the painting I had in mind; had to buy 3 panels to get free shipping. Not sure what I'll do with the other two.

Here's the start of the new piece—

New Year's Eve, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

I just really need to start something new and fresh and exciting.

Meanwhile, while at the gallery yesterday I noticed that the upper right-hand corner of The Gauntlet  looked like it needed to be tightened. That corner has always driven me crazy anyway, and sure enough, when I peeled back the canvas this morning, I discovered it was still off square. How disappointing. I really don't want to spend my time squaring up the corner again, but that's what needs to be done.

The Gauntlet, © 2019 (click on image for larger view)

 Regarding The Villers; the spots that I'd repainted looked fine until they dried, when it became apparent that I'd dipped my brush into the glaze medium when working on them. So the surface looked shiny in those spots. I tried sanding them back just a bit but of course that didn't work so I ended up repainting the whole area. Hopefully it'll be ready to varnish on Sunday. Maybe I'll get back to the spoons tonight.




Some Spoons

This afternoon I figured, what the heck, since I already had a palette mixed for metal spoons, I might as well use it on a couple more dessert pieces. So here are three more paintings with more "polished" spoons:


Île Flottante, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Also did some redrawing on the bowl, above. It looked misshapen; still have some refinement to do on it once the paint dries.



Two Spoons, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Again, once the paint dries I'll be able to put in some of the tinier details on the spoons: beading, solid lines, reflections and highlights, etc.

 Pot de Crème, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

A Flood Of Sunlight

We had a sweet little snowfall yesterday, and now today the sun is out and it's so blinding it's hard to see. But I have my easel in a shady corner of the studio, and was able to work on the contours and structure of the bowl, plate and spoon:

Chocolate Mousse, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Monday, January 6, 2020

Fun With Paint

A good friend of mine, a realist painter, actually, has been changing things up by breaking away from his usual style and getting very loose. Lately I've been feeling drawn to a freer brush stroke, myself, so today seemed like a good time to pull the farm painting out from the shadows and start working on it again. I think the cows coming home for the evening will have to be black-and-white so they'll show up against the background.

A Farm At Dusk, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Meanwhile: am waiting for the delivery of some 16x16s. For the New Year's Eve painting.

A Step Closer

There's hope that I'll finish this little painting by the end of the calendar year, LOL; I'm currently satisfied with the face (though maybe the irises are too large?) and just need to work on the hands and hair.

Cheyenne, America Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Glass

It's a Monday morning again. I become self-indulgent over the weekends, which makes me feel very guilty; then Monday shows up and I try to marshall my forces and buckle down to work. This morning I paid very careful attention to the tower of light and glass, but my brushes are failing me. They're not holding a tight line where it's needed.

Anyway, here's this morning's work— I also brightened the waitress's lips.

Tuesday, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Friday, January 3, 2020

Retouching, and Knowing When To Quit

About a month ago, a treasured patron called to ask if he could bring over one of my paintings he'd bought several years ago. It had some questionable splatters on it; we deduced that they were probably food-based, mostly because of their stickiness and the painting's proximity to his kitchen. I've been working on removing them as best as I could over the holidays, and finally had to take some very fine sandpaper to the stubborn parts, but today I did the actual touch-up.

Through some miracle of organization, I'd written down the paint recipe for the green wall ten years ago, and by changing the proportions of the pigments was able to repaint the jeans, too (which had the worst of the sticky goo on them).

Now I have to see if the wet paint dries down to the correct color.

Point Of View (The Villers), © 2010 (click on image for larger view)

Meanwhile: more work on the architectural details. It was a very frustrating working session, as the brush I was using was uncooperative. The bristles were too soft, and wouldn't hold a line. Stopped after a while before I made any major errors.

L'Auberge Provençale, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Face Time

Feeling unmotivated today; dismal weather outside is probably a factor. Spent the better part of an hour reworking the face, again.


Tuesday, © 2020, detail, work in progress (click on image for larger view)


Thursday, January 2, 2020

Long Shadows

The cast shadows from the trees are very long this time of year, so it's hard to get a well-lit photo of this painting, but here it is:

Coming Of Age In The Year 2018, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)
 
I'm concentrating on making the water color lighter surrounding the boy as he moves into darker territory. 

And So It All Begins Again

It turns out that when I finished working on December 13th, I put the brushes down and forgot to clean them. So this morning I had to spend some time soaking them in paint thinner and washing them out with Lava, The Hand Soap.

It was a wonderful holiday season, and I really enjoyed it after getting over the Bah Humbug lead-up to the festivities, which were filled with more decorating and baking and gift-wrapping than I wanted to do. But now it's time to get back to work.

Two Spoons, Guilty Pleasures Series, © 2020, work in progress (click on image for larger view)

Worked mostly on evening out the base color of the dish; a little on the whipped cream and spoons. Taking a break now, but MUCH more to catch up on in the coming weeks. And I have a brand new, exciting painting image to start, as a result of New Year's Eve dinner out at a fancy restaurant...