This painting has been “finished” for a couple of weeks now. However, I’ve tweaked it almost every day for the past two weeks, each time thinking “ok, now it’s finished”. It’s finished:)
It may be spring, but in my neck of the woods, Mother Nature takes one springy step forward and then two frosty steps back. A crocus or two have emerged, but nothing much that’s green has appeared yet. In the swamp however, the migratory birds are back, and all of our bird population is busy with checking out mates and real estate.
All of the photos I’m bombarding you with, were captured yesterday or just a few days prior.
Oil on Linen 24×24″
A product of my recent exercises in backlight and line. First in a series.
Oh, and I’m pleased to share that my work and links are now included in the directory/gallery of the curated site, Figurative Artist.
I’ve often found myself frustrated while trying to realize form within a backlit subject. The bright back round light tends to flatten the planes of a figure or face, making it difficult to read the values necessary to create the form of the features. In a situation like this, the values are darker and often not as varied as one might hope. I painted this portrait with the intention of improving my skills in working with backlight.
As you can see, I started with a recycled canvas (covering an unsuccessful painting), and a charcoal drawing. The painting is essentially alla prima (if we can excuse the start in charcoal).
Oil on Linen 24″ x 24″
Lots of reflected light, on a sumptuous linen surface=so much fun to paint! Below you’ll find progress images.
When not working alla prima, I generally begin with a value based underpainting- blocking in the entire painting to create a first layer. As you can see, with this one, I started with charcoal and worked the painting bit by bit.
Oil on Canvas 12″x12″ Alla Prima
In this piece, I’ve mixed mindful linear accents with an even focus of hues and values.
I’m working furiously at the moment, so please forgive my lack of attention (for the time being), to all of your terrific blogs. I’ll move back into blogger mode soon and enjoy catching up with you. I so appreciate you insightful comments and kind support. Thank you!
Acrylic and oil on canvas 18″x24″
For this piece, I followed the same procedure as “Active Resolve” . I’m finding it a satisfying process, at least for the moment;)
A welcome surprise, “Betsy” won Honorable Mention in The Human Figure competition at Exhibeo Art Competition Magazine. In addition, Jonathan Raddatz, from Exhibeo has written a lovely review of my “Young Series”, in which “Betsey” is a part. You can find the review here.
Thank you, Jonathan and thank you, Exhibeo!
*Many of you will remember my husband’s tradition of saving the stump of our family’s Christmas tree every year, and carving it into the form of a creature. Each creature represents a sustaining memory of something significant to us in that year. When he has completed the carving, he cleverly inserts a penny with the year’s date into the bottom of each little sculpture, to document its year.*
The painting above is a still life of some of his creatures, that I painted as a gift for him.
This year’s carving honors the memory of Lillith, our beloved feline hellion . She recently passed on at nearly twenty- one years of age. We miss her very much.
Below is sampling of carvings from years past. So far he has created one piece for every Christmas we’ve been married-thirty one in all.
My handsome model’s presence and a challenge from my son, inspired a painting whose kinetic energy moves directly forward, from movement to quiet resolution. Articulating that movement required an approach that differed from my usual.
I began with an energetic acrylic abstract painting. Over top of the acrylic, I drew my subject with willow charcoal. To prevent the painting from becoming too muddy, I sprayed the drawing down with “SpectraFix” (a much healthier fixative to work with than the alternatives). I proceeded with a very quick and incomplete grisaille underpainting of the figure, and then began painting in oil with color. Over top, I played with oil sticks and pencil.
I’ve got to tell you that I really enjoyed the spontaneity of this process. I found the energy to be contagious. More paintings are in the works, experimenting with the same procedure.