Saturday, January 31, 2009

when all is said and done

Here it is, the big white rose. 40x30, acrylic on canvas. It isn't quite how I envisioned it turning out but I must stop and move on. I played with warm and cool hues and the notion that white is all colors combined, not the absence of color. I may tweak it a bit more in days to come but I have lots of other projects that I am eager to work on now.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

White challenge

While I am thinking about white as a subject I might as well address the topic of snow...and ice. This is not an item of urgent breaking news to anyone but...I REALLY hate winter. And as this winter in Chicago drags on, most everyone that I spend time with agrees that it is unpleasant. But I don't think there can be anyone who hates it as much as I do. What do I do about my chronic Seasonal Affective Disorder?
I decided to challenge myself and paint a winter scene. It might just be something out of my own window because I can't tolerate a moment of cold. Until I finish this challenge, here is a photo of myself and my trusty ski dog.

Friday, January 16, 2009

white as an idea

While we are all waiting for me to get the big white rose painting finished.(it is coming along, I promise) I'll show another painting that began with an idea of white, but as I worked in the pale greens and blues into the background at the end of the process, I started to call it a deep sea lily.
There is a quality to it that makes me think of sea foam, and swirling colors of water at the edge of a wave.

white flowers

For some reason, white flowers appeal to me. Maybe because I am not really painting a "flower".
I am using something with  the interesting contours and shapes that I want to paint and I like working with white as an idea. So the rose painting that I put up a day ago is supposed to be a white rose. But, it is more than a white rose, it is actually a landscape, a still life, an expression from somewhere in my self. Thus, not very realistic in a photographic way. Here is a white iris that I painted a year ago. I am pleased with this one for all the reasons that I gave.
This canvas is quite large, 48x48 acrylics.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

stuck in the ice

I was going to title this "stuck in the mud' but considering how bitter the cold is in Chicago right now, it is more like ice and snow that I am stuck in. Yes, folks, I have been stuck, artistically for the past two weeks. And since this is my journal, I will share how I got this stuck and hopefully, how I get out of it and on to other projects. So here is the first little pen sketch I did that was the beginning of the idea for this large painting. I wrote my thoughts, "white rose with black background, strong feeling of light and shadow". And then I did this value sketch,
and thought it would be enough to start a large canvas, 40x30. I like to tone my canvases with a deep red before I paint into them. The reason is that red is my favorite color, but I don't want to do all red paintings, however I like the red behind other colors. 
Now I am stuck with this painting semi-completed but I don't feel that I have reached my initial goal of the light and shadow. I get too involved with layering color and lose sight of the overall values. I have a friend who is color blind and sometimes I envy his ability to paint with very simple color schemes and such a strong sense of values. I am way too sensitive to the variations within colors and get lost in a sameness of value.
So I end this post with a shot of my studio, and canvas in it's unhappy unresolved state. I hope to display a completed painting soon!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

A New Year!

Happy New Year to all my family and friends and to all who visit this page.
Today I think it is appropriate to display this painting of a sunflower. 
Acrylic on canvas, 30x40, painted from life a couple of years ago now.
One flower face is looking backward and one is facing ahead to the new year. 
(my interpretation)
 I hope to finish a lot more paintings in this new year, some that I started and have waiting to be finished. I also hope to be able to do more landscape painting this year, in plein air, as I began to try to do last year.