Third Note to Self (Friday Debrief)

It’s been a busy, productive week. So busy that I didn’t do a “regular” post this week. I’m only here for my debrief. I’ve been working on the picture above, whimsically begun, based upon some little drawings and a dream. It measures about 38 x 40. Dimensions are not exact yet because it’s unstretched. The canvas is very rough and thus very well suited for dragged colors. It’s experimental. We’ll see what direction it takes.

I’ve been making little drawings to think about what the dream lake of shining light and clouds should look like.

Preexisting paintings have been coming along too. The suite of paintings of “hills,” all based the same composition photo collage, slowly evolve. Each one has a reference drawing that treats the motif a little differently.

The second hills picture is the one I’ve worked on the most this week. The painting measures 36 x 48 and the drawing (in neopastel below) measures about 22 x 30.

I began exploring a new motif. So far the images are not clicking. But it has been interesting to be back in R&D mode using neopastel. The two drawings are in the 18 x 24ish range, below.

Some of the color difference in the drawings comes from the radically different paper colors. The one above is drawn on a fairly dark maroon colored paper. The one below, on the contrary, is drawn on bright cream.

Maybe it was using neopastel again that got me thinking even more about dry pastel again. They can be really impractical in my small studio. But I have wanted to use them so much. I decided to just do it. Had to rearrange things a little bit, but that reorganization was more easily accomplished than I had expected. So I have done one small pastel (12 x 18) and started a second one. Below.

These pastels are made on sanded paper (UArt 500 grade) and I love the surface. What a delight it is to work in this medium. And the colors have a marvelous intensity.

I’ve decided to make dry pastel a staple. Since I’m doing paintings from drawings now, it would be simply crazy to eliminate a medium that I adore. So I have figured out a way to control the dusty pigment. I think another version of the “hills” theme would work nicely in pastel. I fished out a larger sheet of UArt 500 grade. Making this next pastel is near the top of the “To Do” list.

I took these photos. That’s a significant factor in one’s time management. Also took some photos that are not included at this post. It was a good photography session. Beautiful light outside.

A squirrel visited the window sill. Should have grabbed the camera, but don’t even think about such things. For some experiences words seem like the proper medium. The squirrel and I had something like a little conversation while he sat on my window sill. He was certainly aware of me and somewhat curious too.

Since the last debrief I also worked some on the two paintings below. Sometimes hopping from picture to picture is the way to get things done. Sometimes you have to be a bee.

The first measures 36 x 48 and the mountain below measures 30 x 40. The goal for the second painting is to bring it closer to its reference drawing. So I reworked it to make it less painterly and more linear. I think there’s more in that direction I would still like to do.

I got a lot done. I’m calling this week a great success! If you have enjoyed hearing me talk to myself in my Friday review, please share the post with your friends. Or feel free to leave a comment. And thank you for reading and sharing my art adventure.

the many moods of the blue compotier

compotier with three lemons

The dark blue compotier has been the subject of many drawings lately — this because it occupies such a prominent place in the Big Painting that’s in the works.  However, I wasn’t aware how much I’ve drawn it.  I think I must be drawing it in my sleep, too.  It seems to border on obsession!

Well, I suppose there are worse things to be obsessed about ….

compotier with three lemons close

I love the lattice work in this object.  It totally fascinates me.  I particularly love it in the form of a cast shadow, but the light wasn’t coming from the right direction in the latest drawings to observe the shadows.  In the drawing at the top, of which the above is a detail, the widest part of the basin measures 15 inches across which is two inches wider than the actual object.

compotier with three lemons arbitrary color (2)

compotier with three lemons close arbitrary color (2)

compotier with lemons drawing (2)

a seriously studious student for studying

limoges compotier with lemons first

As perhaps you surmised from the title, I have been making studies.  These are paintings that you don’t paint to finish — you just paint them to paint.  I might finish them.  I might not.  They might be sketchy.  They might be overdone with paint.  It can be anything at all.  (Which makes working on studies a blast.)

The only point of the study is to have rich visual contact with the thing being studied.  So this is the first pass at the large blue compotier with lemons.

Limoges compotier bird frog teapot

I made quick first sketches of some other objects as well.

frog teapot porcelain basket bird

I’m not sure at this stage where anything will go in the actual painting.  And I don’t plan to be fastidious with it either.  I hope to work on the large painting with as much freedom as with these little studies — though I will have had many rehearsals of various sorts to inform my painting when I get to the big canvas.

In the lower corner of the study above, you’ll see the beginnings of a porcelain basket.  You can find the actual basket at the link below.  And, if you want to buy the basket, you can!  Better still, if you decide that you want to buy the basket so that you can send it to me — leave me a comment and I’ll provide my address and hire the security guard ….  It’s just a little bit pricey ….

100_1404

Link to the basket:

https://www.1stdibs.com/furniture/decorative-objects/sculptures/figurative-sculptures/decorative-basket-bow-porcelain-factory-circa-1760/id-f_9878641/?utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=criteo&utm_campaign=display_us-pdp-criteo-non-exclusive&utm_content=d

 

 

first flowers

flowers study first pass

First marks of paint for the flower study.  I set up the still life somewhat late in the day and didn’t begin painting until quite late.  Here’s how it looked on the first pass.  It’s really fun to begin flowers this way.  From the outset, there’s a riot of color.

This is the beginning of the first of what will be several studies of flowers for a large flower painting that I’ve just begun on what was formerly the beginnings of a koi painting (a couple posts previous).

My studio looks like a gypsy caravan these days.

corner of the studio

pine tree drawing

pine tree drawing

I’ve pulled a 30 x 40 inch painting of a pine tree out of the rack.  I began it a while back but I’m ready to finish it now.

Made this drawing above to sort out some questions I have about the top of the tree.  The drawing measures 24 x 18 inches so the image is just a bit smaller than the related section of the painting.

The pine tree is an oil painting so I’ll be switching gears from acrylic to oil.  The studio will soon be filled with the wonderful aroma of linseed oil.  Soon!

keen scribbles

corner crepe myrtle drawing

I feel an unabashed love for the material appearance of oil pastels (Caran d’Ache Neopastels to be precise).  I love to describe somewhat “loopy” forms with them.  I love mixing colors by abrasion.  I love the way that you can drag one color across another and create as it were almost veils of color.

So even when the situation is stalled (as I make drawings for a painting that I’m unsure how to complete), I can nonetheless love the act of drawing because the materials themselves are so beautiful.

I have rehearsed these forms many times and they still hold my interest.  Indeed, it’s stronger than that. They hold me captive.

rainy day

crepe myrtle drawing rehearsal no 1

I continue to resist going forward with my crepe myrtles painting so I make more drawings.  The drawing stops on the right because I ran out of motif — would have to invent more landscape to fill that space — which might be an interesting exercise.

So it rains outdoors and rains a little in my head where I lack some of the pizzazz that propels a painting forward.  But it’s better to draw, if you’re stuck, than to do nothing. The drawing paper measures 18 x 24 inches.

Here’s the painting I’m endeavoring to unstick:

https://alethakuschan.wordpress.com/2018/01/17/crepe-myrtles-are-the-best/