Saturday, June 26, 2010

Lion Complete

The final version, "Lion Cast on Table" oil on linen, 11"x14". I went in today not really knowing how long it was going to take me to do the table and background, but I was done by lunchtime. I'm very happy with the way this one turned out. This is my last cast painting at Grand Central Academy of Art. Thanks to my instructor, Nick Hiltner, who's seen me go from pencil casts to painting casts, every Saturday, over the past two and a half years. He's a great instructor and I couldn't have pulled off a painting like this without his guidance. I'm proud of the fact that as far as I know I'm the only one to tackle this particular cast and it was a good one to finish with. Next part time class in September I'm moving from objects to humans, yeah baby!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

More Morgan

I've added the hair, eye sockets, and neck. After painting the neck, I had the feeling that the face wasn't dark enough below the cheekbone so I went back in and pretty much re-painted the rest of the face. One of my fellow artists wanted to know how I could work on such a small portrait and I told her that I'm imagining that this is just one figure in a hundred figure composition. I can see that the drawing of the nose and shadow side has gotten away from me a bit, so I'm going to use my original drawing and white colored pencil to try and get back to it.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Two Casts

I'm just about done with the Lion cast painting (11"x14", oil on linen). Nick at Grand Central Academy of Art has done a good job of keeping me focused on the direction of the light. The base of the cast is unpainted and somewhat darker in tonality and of a warmer color than the plaster body. It almost looks like cement, so I added burnt umber to my pre-mixed grays to capture the effect. I think it'll make a nice segue into the reddish brown of the table top. This is to be my last cast painting at GCA, i'm moving on to portrait or figure, I haven't decided which yet.
For "Yellow Rose and Cast" (8"x10", oil on linen), I'm not using my tubed grays. As this is not really a cast painting exercise but more of a still life I'm looking for more variations in temperature and chroma.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Morgan Crawl

"Well we gotta new dance and it goes like this,
bop-shoo-bop it's the portrait painting twist".
I'm slowly crawling my way up Morgan's face. In the last three hour session I started at the bottom of the chin because I wanted to slowly roll up to the strong light on the cheek bones. I'm putting a little bit of color touches here and there, but even though I'm using a flesh palette I'm trying to keep it fairly mono chromatic. I'm avoiding, at least at this stage, chromatic changes in the flesh color because I'm concentrating on rendering the light on the subtle forms. It's a real challenge to not have the face look too sculptural or mask like. Once the basic planar structure is noted I have to look for the subtle weaving of related forms, "pathways of light" as Tony Ryder would say. The other problem is the primitive nature of the lighting setup. Because we're working in a space that also doubles as a gallery, there are rows of flourescent lights that can't be turned off. I had to light the model with a 150 watt outdoor spotlight just to cut through the ambient light. That being said, I'm pretty much conceptualizing the forms as per my cast painting training so I'm not strictly painting the light as it is. The next one I'm going to arrange in my studio with one or two other artists and definitely have much better lighting.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

"Morgan" Poster and Ebauche

Here is the poster and underpainting, 9"x12" and 4"x6". Both were completed in a single three hour session. Because of time constraints I feel like I'm not able to exercise the type of quality control that I might use on a still life. I'm probably missing a few errors that I'm sure will become obvious once I'm finished and it's too late, but I have goals set for how much I want to accomplish in each of the nine, three hour sessions, and I'm not trying to make a work of art. For this one I'm more interested in the process than the product. But in spite of that I feel like I'm off to a good start.

Monday, June 7, 2010

"Rose and Cast 2" poster and ebauche

Making some progress. The underpainting ebauche is complete and I did a poster as well. Next step is to just dig in and start windowshading my way down the canvas. I'm using earth colors a bit more than usual and reserving those cadmiums for when I really need to punch up the color.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

"Morgan" Open Grisaille and Drawing

Here's a new painting ("Morgan" 9"x12") that I started from a three hour drawing that I made at my Tues. night drawing group. I have eight more three hour sessions left on this. My plan is to make a poster study next, do a loose ebauche and then window shade my way down the painting. I'm enjoying this whole process more than words can express.