Thursday, January 31, 2008

#8, #9 and #10 One-hour paintings

Oil #8, Lamy Safari penI am learning that I have a lot to learn about oil painting.

Each of these paintings are 5" x 7".
I thought my red Lamy Safari fountain pen would be a simple subject to paint, only to realize that I was concentrating on detail way too early, then when I photographed the pen I realized how important the brush strokes are in oil painting, all I see is glare because of the direction the stroke went. Anyway, I'm assuming that is the reason, because I see it when I look at the painting also.
#9 1-hour oil, wooden bird
#9 is a small wooden bird that I usually have sitting in my kitchen window. In this painting I forgot about the shaded side of the bird and didn't allow for the light that hit the birds head and part of his back. Only one of the issues with this one ... whats with the pink back ground. It was sitting on a white counter.

I was starting to be happier with #10, a fresh pear. Yet I didn't block in the shaded side like I wish I would have. And again with the brush strokes .... I eventually hope to paint in a painterly style, which has so much to do with brush storkes, yet when I'm painting I find I'm still thinking detail and color. Color mixing is not coming easy for me.
fresh pear #10 1-hour oil
The last day of the month and I've completed 10 1-hour paintings. I think so far I'm content with working at the goals I've set out to accomplish.

I am working on my mailing list even though I've had major computer problems and had to completely start over with my address list because most were lost when the computer crashed. (I may have learned the hard way to back up everything) I should have it pretty well set up in an Outlook program before long.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

#7 One hour painting

oil, 1-hour painting
Oils are proving to be a bigger challenge for me than I thought they would. With each new painting, I have more question's, yet I know that the more painting I do the question's will probably answer themselves.

I thought this would be a relatively simple scene to paint, especially since I had painted it in watercolor some time ago.

Because I limit myself to painting each painting one hour only, (for at least 50 paintings) I may feel rushed and am not taking the time to make good decision's. I found that I didn't follow my own cheat sheets. Also, I didn't mix enough color for certain areas, then sunset photowhen I attempt to mix more, I end up making the wrong color choices. Tell me this will become easier with experience please...

The first photo is the oil painting. The second was my reference photo of a local scene and the last is a watercolor painted some time ago.

The oil is approximately 5" x 7". As you can tell I painted green trees 'cause I know trees are green. The trees were in silhouette and were just a dark image ... not green. I also find I'm concerned with my brush work. Should I be blocking in only, then covering with the more painterly thick oil paint? Now my oil paint hardly covers the canvas, when in reality I want a more thick paint in a finished painting (I realize that my time restraints are more than likely the problem there) watercolor.
Time to find another scene to paint.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

2 more 1 - hour paintings

I decided to do an oil and a watercolor today, both using a photograph I had oiltaken last year on the beach. It was a warm day, but on the gray side, with the wind blowing a little. This is the kind of day we see often. It is a rather unemotional landscape I think.

The first painting is a one hour oil. I was way off on my values of the tree's and bushes... well, the beach also.
I have decided I need to do my color charts if I'm going to continue to try oils. I can figure out my colors pretty well with watercolors, watercolorbut the oils are a tough medium for me to use accurately and not "waste" the oil paint. Geesh, I'm wondering if they even make enough white paint, the way I seem to use so much of it.

The second one is a one hour watercolor. I definitely felt more comfortable. The finished painting may not reflect it, so I think it was just because I was use to handling the medium.
This bottom photo is my reference photo.
original photo reference
So, tomorrow I'll tackle some color charts.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

It's proving to be an exciting start for my New Year

Since I posted my goals for this New Year, I feel a new excitement with my art. Being very happy with my watercolor's, I have never wanted to experiment much with other mediums, but, over the last 6 months I've gained a new interest in oil painting. I've been reading a few books on oils and with my New Year's goal of 50 1-hour paintings I thought oils would be fun to learn and if I did some of my one hour paintings in oils, I just might learn faster.
Anyway, that's my hope. These are four 1-hour paintings I've painted so far. Each of these are small, only 5" x 7 ". So far, I have not felt limited by the timer being set for the one hour like I thought I would. Given more time, I know I would do more to finish these small paintings, but I think I've done ok with the given amount of time.

Although I really want to paint more landscapes this year, I had these limes that I thought would make a nice still life. I just knew with my experience with watercolor's oils would be easy. After all, you can go back in and correct your mistakes easily right?

I am finding that with each oil I paint, I attempt to overcome what I felt was a mistake of the previous oil. In the first I should have cropped the image, and corrected or focused more on the shadow side of the limes. In the second lime painting (oil still) I remembered to crop the image when I drew my sketch but didn't do well with my values.

I enjoyed painting two different paintings of the same subject, so I decided to do two 1-hour paintings of a clove of garlic. I found this subject very hard to capture the correct values and the shadow side. There was a shadow side, but being so light, I had a hard time putting down the correct values. And with this first garlic, what's with centering it so well?

When I started the second garlic painting I thought first of all I would correct the way I centered it on the first painting and maybe set it at a different angle. When I was done I couldn't believe what I saw. The values are still
off and it didn't change much in placement. Go figure.

These have been so enjoyable to paint. I love the idea of the timer. I find it freeing and I think it is because I know I have an excuse if it doesn't turn out "perfect". What a concept! Also, I am really enjoying painting from life. And, I only have 46 more painting's to go for my goal of 50 1-hour painting's....... *wink.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

New Year - New Goals

As you may have guessed by now, coming up with some artistic goals for the New Year has not been easy for me. I would go to bed thinking about them and wake up thinking about them, and every time I come up with a list of what I thought was a list of goals I'd soon realize was nothing but a task list! What do I really want from my art? How can I achieve this? And, what will keep me from giving up before I reach this goal? All questions I felt needed to be answered before I put anything down on paper that was substantial yet obtainable.

To have a goal it needed to be SMART so that I could/would stick with it. It needed to be:






I want to become a better painter, paint more landscapes 'en plein air, and share my work with others. So, these are (after some considerable thought) the goals I will achieve (note the positive attitude here ;-)

1. I will paint 50 one-hour paintings by July 1st. If I do more than that, great. These will be small paintings and need not be elaborate. I will set a timer and when the hour is over I will put away my paints. These need not be finished paintings. The object is to collect as much information as possible for my support (canvas or paper etc.) to help me "see" better as an artist. Each painting will be dated and numbered consecutively. At the end of these 6 months or if I complete the 50 before the July deadline, I will establish another timed and numbered goal. (I realize that this may not seem like much to some of you daily painters, but I am not a prolific painter and this will take me way out of my comfort zone.)

2. I will paint 12 plein air paintings for the year on my own. I will paint 'en plein air at least once a month on my own. Right now I belong to a “Plein Air” group that usually meets twice a month. This group doesn't always paint outside because of the weather here in the Pacific Northwest. During those times we paint inside from a still life or portraiture setting. This could be a pretty tough goal for me. If it's too wet, cold, or snowy for the group, finding a day that will be better for me on my own, may be a huge challenge.
3. I will keep and maintain a mailing list by December 2008. I will research how others are doing this and find what will best suit me. I will break this list up into different categories, so that I can send specific information to those who are on the list.
So, these are the goals I’ve come up with that think I will definitely benefit from. The first two goals will help me become a better painter, the next will help me share my work with others. I feel comfortable with the deadlines I’ve given each of my goals and I also feel these goals will be tough work for me and I will be stretched and grow as an artist, yet each is realistic and obtainable.
Yes !... I can accomplish these!