Sunday, January 29, 2012

Still More Julia

I'm getting a little closer to the finish on "Julia". The hardest part is getting used to painting the model in daylight while using daylight as the sole illumination on my canvas. I'm used to painting in pretty glaring light so this has been a bit of a challenge. Sometimes I'll turn my studio light on after a session and the values will look a little off. I want to resist the temptation to retouch under different lighting. What I think I'll do in the future is put the studio light on every once in a while, have a look, and then do the retouching back in the daylight. I'm not going to beat myself up about it, I haven't painted a portrait in daylight before so I know it's going to take me a while to get it right. I'm loving the daylight setup so much that I'm using it for still lifes as well, that's one of the reasons why "dome" is being finished as a drawing because I'm doing it at night after work.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Monday, January 16, 2012

More Julia and Jug

"Julia Back From Moscow" oil on linen, 11"x14", "Jug, Pan, and Vase" oil on linen, 9"x12". I'm at a stage in Julia's portrait that I find very exciting. Blindly windowshading my way along, using my study to stay on course, and watching the portrait slowly reveal itself. I'm always hoping to get everything exactly right the first time, but that almost never happens. As I was telling one of my students the other day, you don't want to have a half-hearted stage, planning to be bold later on because that first stage will carry through. It's better to go for broke and then if you have to make changes at least they will be over something worthwhile. The painting is, as I had hoped, starting to take on the mood of the sitter, even the background, so I can't wait for the next session. "Jug..." is finished. This one took a lot of hard looking. I'm painting in north exposed daylight and I'm really paying careful attention to textures and edges. I'm pretty happy with this one and I think it's pointing the way that works best for me; simple objects, well observed.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Year, New Photos

I've been alternating between these three works, "Dome with Bottles" 11"x14", "Julia Back From Moscow" oil on canvas 11"x14", and "Jug, Pan, and Vase" oil on canvas, 9"x12". The jug is my sunny day painting, the background in the portrait my cloudy day, and the drawing I've been working on at night with artificial lighting. Eventually I will turn "Dome" into a painting but for now I've decided to complete it as a fully rendered drawing, pulling out all the stops. It's been a while and I'm prepared to stay on this one for as long as I need.