Oil Painting Revisited

I am an associate member of the Arizona Artists Guild. To become a juried member, you have to be accepted into 3 of their juried art exhibitions. An associates only juried show is coming up, so to prepare for it, last Monday I attended a session that discussed artwork presentation and included a critique of artwork. I had brought along 2 oil paintings; “Monument Valley” and “Map Reading Gone Wrong”. To make a long story short, in the critique many problems were identified in both paintings along with suggestion for improvement. It was also stated that without making the improvements, the artwork should not even be entered. That left me in a quandary as the artwork was due today and that gave me only 4 days to make corrections on an oil painting, and the paint would need some drying time. I decided to rework “Map Reading Gone Wrong” and just not enter “Monument Valley”. My first step was to tone down the violet shadows with warm tones. I pretty much eliminated the violet hues throughout the painting. Next, I needed to dull the two figures in the painting to make it look more as if they were standing in the shadows of the hillside. The final adjustment was to bring some detail into the foliage that was close to the viewer. I finished these changes over the span of 2 evenings. Next, I bought a frame and today I framed the painting and delivered it to AAG. It felt like a whirlwind this past week! I also matted and framed a pastel drawing from one of my life drawing sessions to enter into the show. Below are images of the before and after “Map Reading Gone Wrong”. What do you think?

3-15-12, “Map Reading Gone Wrong” (original), 24″ x 30″, oil on canvas


9-29-12, “Map Reading Gone Wrong” (revised), 24″ x 30″, oil on canvas

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Another Series of Figures in Watercolor

This past Tuesday night, I worked in watercolor at the life drawing session. I did get a bit frustrated as I attempted to work in bolder colors. What I have finally figured out is that a 20 minute pose just isn’t long enough for me as I work at building the layers and therefore the intensity of the colors. What I did figure out is that this week I am not going to work in watercolor, I think I will go back to pastels/charcoal and see what I can make happen.

9-11-12, “Jesse 1″, 12″ x 18”, watercolor

9-11-12, “Jesse 2″, 12″ x 18”, watercolor

9-11-12, “Jesse 3″, 12″ x 18”, watercolor

9-11-12, “Jesse 4″ 12″ x 18”, watercolor

Life Drawing in Watercolor

This past Tuesday night, at my life drawing session, I decided that I was going to work in watercolor. I wanted to work more loosely than is typical for me. To make this happen, I did not sketch the pose in pencil first, instead I focused on painting the shadow/darker areas of her form. Because our model, Lisa, had short black hair, I also found it helpful to paint in the mass that was her hair. From there, I would add in the various values and tones to complete the figure. Each of the paintings was accomplished during the 20-minute pose.

Where Has the Summer Gone?

It has been quite a long time since I blogged….it has been a busy summer for me with lots of traveling and exploring the western states. On my travels, I didn’t make much art, but I did take hundreds of photographs that have the possibility of being used as reference images for future artworks. I have made a few collages based on places I visited. The ones below are just a sampling of the flora and fauna that fascinated me on my journeys.

7-1-12, “Deep in the Woods”, fabric and paper on board

7-2-12, “Berry in the Woods”, 6″ x 6″, acrylic paint, fabric and paper on board

7-3-12, “Pink in the Woods”, 6″ x 6″, acrylic, fabric and paper on board

More recently I completed a collage and a watercolor of a man surf fishing at Buccaneer Beach in California.

7-19-12, “Surf Fishing”, 6″ x 6″, acrylic and paper on board

7-20-12, “Surf Fishing”, 11″ x 14″, watercolor

I have another watercolor in progress and am contemplating starting an oil painting. Next week is a short week at school as I have meetings on 3 days. I have been making plans for the different classes that I will be teaching and am actually looking forward to being back in the classroom. I will have to make a point to work on art in the evenings once school starts. I need to get some better lighting in my studio so that I can make it happen.

Monument Valley – In Progress

Monument ValleyThis past March, over Spring Break, Mike and I took our travel trailer on its maiden voyage to Monument Valley where we spent a few days touring around the beautiful countryside. Of course we took a lot of photographs. I had hoped to do some watercolor painting while we there, but we never spent enough daylight hours in one location for an extended painting experience. Because of that, I am now working on a 24″ x 36″ oil painting based on this photograph that I took while we were touring in the valley.
In-Progress #1At this point I have been working on the painting for a couple of weeks. I am working from the background forward and just finished the section beneath the sheer cliffs on the right side of the painting. I am not a realist….I definitely work in a more painterly style, it is what I like to do the most. I like the play of bolder and brighter colors sitting side by side each other. Tomorrow is Mother’s Day. Mike and I are getting together with my sisters for breakfast. Afterwards, I know I need to do some more studying for my assessment center test because I have to take the test next Saturday. Hopefully, I will have some time in the afternoon to work on the painting as I would like to complete the hillside that is behind the man on the horse. I will have to wait and see.