Saturday, April 26, 2014

First Blog Post

Here commences my first blog post (insert drumroll or sound of crickets here).  I've never felt inclined to write a blog as I've always felt everything that's been said about painting has been said and also that I have very simple ideas about painting and would quickly run out of things to say. Another thing is that I have not fully resolved myself to the nature of the times in which we live where someone, like myself, blathers on about their experience and someone else reads it at a totally different time and a real conversation really never took place. So without further ado, I have decided to embrace this phenomenon as I have been rather inspired by other artist's blogs and having learned a great deal of knowledge from them, am very grateful that they took the time to blather on! So I hope I can share some of my painting experiences and that perhaps it will be of benefit to others.

This morning's adventure.  So, I got this fancy new pochade box! And I love it. It's adjustable up to 15" tall or you can paint a tiny 5x7 on it. It has a glass palette in which I put a piece of gray palette paper underneath in order to see the values better.  One thing you gotta know about Oklahoma's windy. Cue the music.... "Oklahoma where the wind comes sweeping through the plains." So I probably should have sat in the car with my pochade, but then that would have defeated the purpose of getting out of the apartment and breathing fresh (or stinky cow) air. 

About 30 minutes into the sketch. This is an 8"x 10" speedball panel. I try to paint with the LARGEST brush I can on these smaller panels. This one was smaller than usual as my favorite brush was in the wash.

The finished sketch approximately 90 minutes. Usually I try to do 2 hours, but the wind was distracting and I finally gave up. 

My hands and palette afterwards.  I like to use a simple color palette when I'm plein air painting.  So I generally choose 3 primaries, raw umber and white.  The colors of the scene dictates which 3 primaries I will choose.  Today the colors seemed much more muted because of the thick sky (we have major tornado storms heading our way this evening...Aunty Em, Aunty Em) so I chose ultramarine, cad scarlet, cad yellow light. I added king's blue to my 3 primaries because the color almost looked exactly like the sky color and I used it also to gray down more saturated mixtures.  I couldn't have used it as my blue choice solely because it has white mixed in it and it wouldn't have worked for darker shadow mixes.

The scene that I was painting. Looking at this reminds me why I never paint from photograph. Wow, boring!  Even with all the distractions of wind, bugs, moving cows that just refuse to stand still so I can paint them, I would much rather experience it all for the chance of making some real interpretations that might have some "grit".