Wednesday, January 31, 2007
Monday, January 29, 2007
Friday, January 26, 2007
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
Its been a cold winter, hey I thought this was California! What's up with that? I'm hoping it warms up soon so I can go out plein air painting. This is an oil sketch, about 8" x 10". This is a basic composition of 3 horizontal lines: foreground, middle ground, background. A focal point that has the most contrast and form, with a counter point: that little church. The sky is probably too saturated, but it was really cyan that day. I like how all the color variation occupies a thin strip across the center while the top is essentially monochromatic blue and the bottom is almost monochromatic neutrals. Imagine all of that thought in such a simple little composition.
Monday, January 22, 2007
Figure drawing workshops are generally unclothed, which is great for studying the figure, but I enjoy studying folds and fabric on the figure too. Inventing convincing folds from the imagination is very difficult, and even harder if an artist doesn't study real folds.
Friday, January 19, 2007
Some watercolor sketches where I used warm tones as the foundation to create an emotional response with the viewer. I like trying to capture melancholy, it is one of my favorite emotions in music and art. Something about that feeling strikes a deep chord that is both pleasant and just the slightest bit sad. It makes me think of lost childhood memories and forgotten places and people on the fringes of memory.
Thursday, January 18, 2007
For a while I carried around this really tiny sketchbook, I think it was like 2.5" across. It was great for when I was at the airport waiting. It turns out the airport is a fantastic place to draw people since they are sitting around for extended periods of time and you get to see all types of interesting people.
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
Tuesday, January 16, 2007
Most of my professional work is done in Photoshop, but I do dabble with Painter. I love how organic Painter looks but I get frustrated with the interface. I wish they'd adopt more Photoshop-like interface, or that Photoshop would adopt more of the way Painter mixes color. Ideally Photoshop would just add a "smudge" effect to their brush controls, where you could introduce an amount of smudge to the brush from 0% to 100%. Currently the only way to do it is to use the smudge tool, but it is very limited and it doesn't add color when smudging, it only smears around existing pixels. Anyway, I try to practice everyday, sometimes it is in my sketchbook and sometimes it will be something digital. This is a quick little portrait I did in Painter, but I confess I ended up in Photoshop with it.
Monday, January 15, 2007
This was a little watercolor study done near Redwood Shores, near the PDI studio. I recall struggling with the color of the shadows to keep them from getting too muddy, it was getting later in the day and the shadows were getting dark and hard to read the color. Generally the perspective is working and the composition is okay though the focal point could be better and the color isn't as pleasing as I was hoping for. The main point I was going for, capturing the light, works well enough that I'm posting it here. :)
Sunday, January 14, 2007
Since art school I have generally attended weekly figure drawing workshops to at least maintain or hopefully improve my figure drawing skills. As an experiment I did these sessions with a gold colored marker and a sepia ink pen just to get a different look. Sometimes just using unique mediums or colors can add some pizazz to routine drawings.
Saturday, January 13, 2007
John Singer Sargent said he carried watercolors "in case of emergencies". I have a love/hate relationship with watercolors. On one hand they are immediate, portable, and make beautiful marks on the paper. On the other hand I find them unforgiving and nearly uncontrollable! I often carry watercolors for "emergencies" and they can be fun until they become frustrating. I've long since given up the notion I'll ever master this medium, but I do enjoy sketching outdoors with them occasionally.
While I love oils, I work naturally in acrylics. The reason I take to acrylics is that it forces me to avoid some bad habits: over blending and noodling. These were done at a figure painting workshop, each of these is 20 minutes! I used techniques I learned from Craig Nelson's quick studies class. Craig is a great teacher, he has a way of teaching artists to overcome their fears and just going for it. His book and video on quick studies are good lessons for anyone interested in painting in oils or acrylics.
This was another acrylic quick study done on location in Sausalito.
Friday, January 12, 2007
Its been years since I touched oils, luckily Maria was a great model! Late '06 we found a figure drawing/painting workshop on Saturday mornings at a local art store. Very cool! Some of the guys from Molly's work (LucasArts/ILM) also attend, so it was very inspiring to paint next to such talented artists. I plan on going a lot more in '07, I guess you could call that one of my New Year's resolutions. :)