Showing posts with label dry brush. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dry brush. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Virtual Learning

Work in Progress
After the Rain 14 x 18

I laid in this painting about a month ago in preparation for the demo I did last month. The lay in sat around in my studio, and then this week the rainy sky seemed to provide the right idea to finish it. This is very rough-just the initial dry brush under painting and a first pass on the sky. I seem to be a little bit obsessed with fence lines and windbreaks at the moment, so there will be more coming soon I'm sure.

I've been thinking this week about how the art world- and more specifically, my little corner of it- is changing. The most obvious change is how virtual connections have expanded our opportunities as artists to show and sell our work. But, all this activity in cyber space also encourages new ways of learning. My husband has been bugging me to organize some sort of virtual workshop for artists who would like to study with me, but are not able to make it to a class here in Texas. I like the idea for several reasons. Although face to face learning is undoubtably the best choice, I know that often a workshop experience- crammed into two, three or five days- can simply be too much information, too fast. A virtual class would give me a chance to provide more written material which could be read and studied on the participant's schedule and video demos which could be viewed many times rather than just one live session. Right now I'm thinking in terms of a blog that would be able to be accessed only by registered students and would have links to written material, video demonstrations and images, and where students could post comments and questions. This could be supplemented by video conference calls using Skype where work could be critiqued and discussed.

I'd really love to hear from anyone who has had any experience with an online class, particularly one involving visual learning. What worked, what didn't- was it a worthwhile effort and would you do it again? Or, from anyone else with ideas! Thanks!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Winter Field

Winter Field- 12 x 12 oil
Some of you may recognize this painting- a small version of this was posted a few weeks ago. I liked it and decided to try to size it up to use for the Panhandle Plains Museum show. I wasn't sure if I could recreate the texture in the field with the dry brush technique I mentioned in the previous post. I made a few changes but overall I think it worked out well.

I also got some good news late yesterday! I had two paintings accepted into the prestigious Salon International show at Greenhouse Gallery.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Starts and Finishes

Over the last couple of months I have gotten several emails asking questions about various aspects of my painting process. Since I don't have a small painting to post today, I thought it might be a good time to write about that... if anyone happens to be interested. First, I should say that my painting process has changed pretty radically over the last year, so what I say here isn't something I've been doing a long while or am even sure is the way I should be doing it. Previously and for many years , I worked in a fairly direct way- not exactly alla prima (except outdoors) but definitely direct. Now, I am painting in a more indirect method which involves using layers of paint - and more passages of transparent paint. So here is a typical lay in using a color made by Vasari called Shale. It is the workhorse dark on my palette- I like it because its transparent and has a warm violet undertone. I used to thin my paint with OMS for this stage, but now I often use an almost dry brush technique to put this first layer down because it will show through in portions of the finished painting. This is also why I like a linen with a little bit of texture so that I can also use that texture to describe elements of the landscape, like here, where the texture of the canvas and the drybrush help describe the field. I also use a rag to wipe out lights and a palette knife to scrape out finer lights.

Here is the next stage of the painting where more transparent layers have been added to the trees and also the field. When you are planning to use layers of glazes you have to be very careful not to get things too dark too quickly. Unlike a more direct method - where you can always adjust the value of a shape with another coat of opaque paint- if you want to keep that area transparent, you have to get it exactly right from the start (which is always a good idea anyway!). In addition, because successive glazes will darken the glazed area, you have to start a bit lighter than you plan to end up. I will also use a scumble occasionally( a thinned translucent layer of paint, usually containing white or some other light opaque mixture) to lighten an area, or to soften edges and create atmosphere. I use Liquin as a medium. I also use it between layers to "oil out" the painting- that is to bring the colors and values back to their original state so another layer can be accurately judged against what has already been laid down. Here, the opaque portions of the painting, the water and sky, haven't been laid in yet but the light value of the canvas "stands in" for that value. Using transparent paint in the darks and opaque paint in the lights is pretty standard procedure, but I like to mix it up sometimes, using mostly transparent paint for the entire piece like here or transparent paint in some of the lights, like here.

Here is the finished painting. The sky and water have been added with opaque paint (Naples yellow and Gamblin Brown Pink + a touch of white) and then glazed over with several transparent layers. More layers have been added to the trees and ground plane, creating what I hope is a rich color harmony. This painting is available at Ernest Fuller Fine Art in Denver, Colorado.