Thursday, June 23, 2011

Summer Shore, 12 x 18

I just wrapped up this painting last night and wanted to post a few progress photos. When painting in plein air or working on studio landscapes, I usually incorporate some buildings or man-made objects. It helps me focus my attention on something strong and hard-edged and affords me the freedom of leaving the grass and foliage very loose. Not having that support in this painting was a big difference for me and makes me respect those landscape artists that do it so well.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Douglas Fryer

I love the outdoors, and painting in plein air is probably my favorite thing to do. I have always wanted to focus more time on painting landscapes, but have always felt that humanity, emotion and storytelling always speak louder through figurative pieces (plus, if you can paint an awesome portrait, chances are, you'll be able to paint a great landscape or still life too). That being said, I want to spend some time this summer and do a few landscapes, something more than just the little study that I usually do.

I have a couple favorite landscape artists, and Douglas Fryer is somewhere near the top of my list. I just saw this video produced by Marshall-LeKae Gallery in Scottsdale, and thought it was worth mentioning (the intro is weird and 1 minute long . . . just bear with it, it gets better).

You can check out more of his paintings on his blog/archive here

Some of my other favorite landscape artists are:
Scott Christensen
Dennis Sheehan
John Taft
Michael Godfrey
and many others

Who are some of your favorites?

Monday, June 6, 2011

New Painting with progress photos

I just wrapped up this painting for entry into the Salmagundi Clubs Annual Non-Member show. The source is from a Putney Painter session a couple months back, and my studies from that day were extremely helpful in keeping as much "from life" flare to this painting as possible. 

Above is my initial sketch done in pencil. Just a 15 minute placement of all the important features, making sure I had everything fitting in the canvas.

 I then went right into splashing some paint around for a loose background, and then started blocking in the head. I painted the head first in the two main values, the dark and then light side of the head, then slowly went into the details, trying to only paint what I thought was necessary.

 This is the end of the first evening of painting, probably 2:30 hours at this point

From here, I just worked my way out from the head. The photo source was very different from what I witnessed from life (you never notice this when just doing things from photos . . . when you paint something from life, and then paint the same thing from a photo, that's when you start realizing what photography robs you of). Some examples of the differences was the washed out highlights on the guitar and sofa, the varying texture of the scarf, and the color of the shirt (which in the photo was very grey, but in my studies, very purple/blue)

Here I moved into the details of the guitar and the hand (the hand is painted with only three colors/values -- the light side, the dark side, and then the middle value that can be seen in the angle shift of the fingers)

And here is the final painting
Song for Putney, 12 x 18 oil on linen mounted to board