Friday, July 3, 2015
Thursday, July 2, 2015
Monday, June 29, 2015
Thursday, June 25, 2015
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Many interruptions this week... Rain a lot of the week, and some urgent personal issues that have required attention.... But, I have managed to get out and work on painting - and start adding color to this from last week. I have more to do - its only about half done - but it's a good start!
Friday, June 19, 2015
I'm about a week into my online painting class. We have been learning a lot about optics and what we are seeing with reflections in still and moving water. This is today's work.... An oil sketch really just recording values rather than color.
This was a very fast stream - muddy, churning, bubbling! I stood on a bridge looking down upon it as it rushed underneath me. Let me just say, painting water has proven to be quite a challenge, particularly moving water! Perhaps I will put color to this - I think it has promise for something more than a sketch!
Monday, June 15, 2015
Some plein air drawings with notes from the last few days
Now that school is out - I get to be a student! I started taking a class in painting water a few days ago - and we are working plein air (meaning working from observation, not photographs). The first assignments have been to do drawings focusing on value changes that we see in the landscape and and in the reflections. We've also been delving into a text which is more than 100 years old written by a Scottsman. The first few chapters focus on the physics of reflected light. It has been challenging, to say the least, and it has required quite a bit of re-reading and taking some notes to let it all soak in.
So, I said that the act of seeing is hard work! And it is. Seeing what is happening in the surface of still water is challenging enough. It's, after all, a fluid surface. The way things reflect depend on the angle of view, the light, and the distance between the shore and where the distant object starts. And the value and color are somewhat altered in the water too. Understanding the laws of optics and observing them in real life make for much more complete understanding. And capturing that on paper is work! It requires diligence and persistence.... its hard work! The way things are reflected in moving water is even more challenging! What you see one moment will be different the next. The way light is reflected is much more complicated, the way objects are reflected is also more complicated. The work of observing and recording that is more intense and more exhausting!
I'm not complaining - just reporting on the origins of these little drawings (which are really only very rough value studies to see what happens with watery reflections).
But all of that has also led me to another observation; this one of a spiritual nature. The beauty of the natural world is also a reflection. It is a reflection of the absolute glory of the Creator! One does not sit in silence while observing nature --- far from it! What I am taking great joy in as I observe carefully is the background chorus of birdsong, the jump of a fish, the extending ring of ripples, the feel of a light, cooling breeze, the smell of water, the scent of blooming trees, the variety of colors, the cast of moving light... It is all of creation exuberantly participating in God's world. And being there, myself, observing - recording - enjoying is also participation, and it brings me to celebrate His worth!
Ps. 24:1 -- The earth is the Lord's and everything in it!
Ps. 24:1 -- The earth is the Lord's and everything in it!
Friday, June 12, 2015
Wednesday, June 10, 2015
I think I'm on the home stretch here! I have a few more small adjustments, but most of this is in it's final form.
I've learned a lot as I've worked on this one. Mostly, I've learned about creating an interesting array of greens in various values. I've also explored the differences between value and chroma (saturation). I've thought about composition and placement of components. I have also considered the under structure created by values.
I still have much to think about as I self-critique. I'll post the final version in the next few days!
Monday, June 8, 2015
It's been a few days since the last peek at this - and I've been adjusting some values and working on the foreground a little more. I've mixed many varieties of green for this one!! ( I think the photo looks a little too violet in the background - its far less noticeable in reality. )
Also, summer vacation has begun! My last final exam has been graded and grades have been submitted - I'm looking forward to some rest!
I hope this will be completed in the next few days. More adjustments may be needed, though. This is definitely a painting that has required that I work slowly and "listen" to what it's telling me as I go. I hope I've been hearing correctly!
Friday, June 5, 2015
Tuesday, June 2, 2015
It would be just great if every painting somehow just flowed from the brush.... Alas, that almost never happens! And it isn't happening with this one either! Sigh... So I undid just about everything I did earlier this evening.
The values need adjustment. And working with the color green can be - shall we say - intense! It's very easy for greens to become acidic on the one hand or insipid on the other. I've been shooting progress pictures and converting them to black and white to try to see where adjustments are needed.
I will have to return to these questions and probably more tomorrow. It's time to clean brushes and get ready for a day of final exams and grading tomorrow.
Saturday, May 30, 2015
If you look closely, you can see some subtle color added to the farthest tree line. Then grayer tree trunks for further trees and finally the trunks of nearer trees.
I'm not working from any 1 reference picture, but from a variety of references. So I'm constructing the shape of the trees as I go. They have a rather upright habit. Perhaps most like elm trees.
Next- more waiting for paint to dry! Then some scant foliage and the foreground!