Tuesday, November 21, 2006

The Direct Bear

I've painted this sweet little bear a few times, and have enjoyed each painting. He's a reliable little prop when I need something simple for a quick study - which is the only thing I had time for, today.
I love the raspberry colors and the rich halftones the lighting causes. The halftones I'm referring to are created when the angles of an object are turning away from the light source. Usually right before the darkest dark of the shadows is a deeply saturated color. That's where I can get away with adding a punch of color - sometimes straight from the tube. What fun.
I started painting when the sun was on it's way down, and knowing that I had very limited time, and I had a simple subject, I decided to bypass all preliminary drawing and go right into direct painting. So, my sweet, yet direct little friend was painted rather hurriedly.
It seems that the less time I have to dilly dally, the better and stronger my paintings turn out. I must get right down to business. I must get the values, angles and shapes right the first time, or the piece will be lost.
About an hour after beginning, the sun was gone, but I had enough of the subject and lighting established, so I pulled a lamp over to help me get the shadow shapes correct. I continued painting until my husband came home. (with a beautiful collection of bright orange lilies for me, by the way - how I'd love to skip work, tomorrow so I could stay home and paint them.)
The pattern had been left out, but at my husband's suggestion I put it in loosely, and I'm very glad that I did. As Richard Schmid states, it does take two people to paint a painting. I need Ben to help me know when to stop, and what to add.
Maybe I can steal a few hours after work to capture the very strong lilies that are sitting in my kitchen at the moment.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Pennypacker Park

They said it was going to be sunny and warm. I believed them, and was not disappointed. In an effort to take advantage of the fleeting days of autumn (and thus the fleeting days of bearable weather), the Pennypacker Park on the Cooper River became my studio, today. My arrival was later than intended, and with only 3 hours to paint, it became clear that a rushed pace would be mine for the afternoon.
It was a decent study and a good practice for me.

After parking, with camera in hand, I took my ritual walk about to assess the landscape and decide the best location for the painting. After narrowing down the spot, I returned to the car for the necessities.

Apparently the rain from last week was a little overwhelming for the soil as much of the area where I wanted to set up resembled a swamp. I found a slushy island to set up camp where my bag,( poor bag, there was nowhere else for it to go than on the ground), became soaked through on the bottom - along with my camera and business cards. No harm done, though.

During one of my breaks, I took a few photographs.
This will definitely be a park that I will want to come back to in the springtime.

The view from my easel.

I became inspired by the dried leaves. What a beautiful way to die.

There is great potential for a beautiful spot in the spring. I love the character that is revealed in trees when the modesty of the leaves are gone. Such intricacy.

The sun passes through the leaves as though they are stained glass. The Master Artisan created living stained glass. Something we humans can only attempt to imitate.

Canadian Geese apparently have a very popular hangout. Aside from their personalities, they are really very beautiful birds. I wonder how much longer they'll be around before flying to warmer places.