Saturday, April 28, 2018

Frustrated

I suck at plein air painting. I suck at alla prima. I spent a good chunk of time this weekend on a landscape, and it looks like crap.

Sometimes my walnut ink or pencil landscapes look pretty nice, so maybe I just can't handle the colors. This makes me think I should try painting with a very limited palette--whenever I try it again.  Some day.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Hopper

I've been unintentionally engaging in a behavioral pun by looking at a book on Edward Hopper just before Easter. I wonder if he ever painted rabbits?

I have always really enjoyed looking at Hopper's artwork. I don't know how much he has influenced me--I don't know if I have liked him because I enjoyed similar subject matter, or if I have drifted toward similar subject matter because I liked his work. But I find him an artist whose work is easy to like but difficult to love. His compositions are gorgeous. I love the way he uses architecture and angles. I love the spareness of many of his paintings. But he's also very cold and lonely in his subject matter. The people are isolated; they seem as aloof and alien as the inanimate objects around them. The only thing that really seems to engage the viewer with its personality is the light moving across landscapes or playing through interiors. This coldness also appeals to my introverted side. If you want sentimentality in your artwork, you better look somewhere else.

But his drawing skills, the way he applies paint, the unity the forms in his painting by color choices...all of them look so great.

 

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Oil Portrait: Boy, Dog, and Poppies

 Finished last night. 8 x 10 inches on panel.

None of the photographs I took show the subtlety in the skin tones, but you get the idea...

At the end, I was putting the tiniest amounts possible on the tips of sable brushes and making small adjustments to the shape of the eyes and the highlights and colors on the cheeks, etc.  I am very pleased with the end results, anyway.