Bird & Sunrise photo

Bird & Sunrise photo
Because "someday" is today!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

One Year Later...

A good test of what I have learned in a year was to try and do another painting of the little fox and compare it to my experience of painting the first one last year.

First of all, I knew that if I started with a grey value underpainting, I should make that painting accurate to what I wanted the finished artwork to look like. I spent a lot of extra time on the first fox trying to cover up problems with the value underpainting.

Second, I knew what colors to mix to get the fur tones I wanted. The first painting, I wasn't very familiar with the oil paints. After a year of working with them, I was a lot more confident.

Third, I did learn something about the anatomy of foxes from all the drawings I did last time, and that did help me in getting a better drawing in less time.

Overall, it was a happier and less stressful painting experience. I did struggle with getting the eyes right because I couldn't use an exact photo reference, but I learned from that too. Mostly to trust myself when the painting seems off. I learned that painting is just like anything else, practice, practice, practice makes all the difference. I often have a faulty belief that I should just be automatically good at something just because I want to do it. Rats, all my teachers were right about having to work to master the skills!

Jeff's Corner: She couldn't find Carnegie Hall on the first try either...

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Twilight Zone

I have been working out of town for the last three weeks. It has only been for three days away from home each week, but I have to say my schedule feels completely turned upside down. I have been helping to develop new ideas for sculptures for the fall show for the artist I work for. This is surprisingly tiring and some times frustrating work. I think I know what she wants, but then after spending all day on a concept, it isn't quite what she was after and I have to change the shape of the piece again.

I tried taking some of my own drawing and sketching work with me, but I didn't make much progress. When I got home, my extra time went into catching up with all the garden plans that needed to move forward. Growing plants insist on more space and sunshine! The cute little seedlings I have been starting inside the house are wanting more permanent accommodations, and I don't have all those ready yet.

I did manage to get two underpaintings in grey tones started. One of Muffy, the Disdainful Kitty and one of a baby fox. I had an interested buyer for the original fox I did last year, but she expressed a desire to have the fox looking up instead of at the ground. I delved back into the world of trying to get inspiration without copying someone's photo. I think I have made a good start, but something looks a bit strange around the fox's eyes...oh well, just more time in the twilight zone.

Jeff's Corner: Jeff is at home and I am away, so we STILL don't get to enjoy his witty remarks! Believe me, I miss them too.