My students wanted to paint garlic this week and I thought it would be a good subject to work on for greys and whites. I visited the Chicago Art Institute yesterday and the American wing has a few Sargents. His whites are gorgeous. And Sorolla's also- all those colors in the shadows- an inspiration.
Another jelly beans and a slice. Painted this one in class with my students. I think this theme needs to be painted large, so that I can really explore all the value and color richness in the beans and the shadows.
Jelly beans and a slice. The lesson of this one is that the slice of apple is perpendicular to the light source and so is the highest value in the painting. It's actually pretty hard to see that because the paper is white and if something is white our brains automatically see it as the lightest value. I think making the slice the highest value gives the painting it's sense of light
I started this little series yesterday- apple slices and jelly beans. I did these as demos for my students for a lesson on edges. The shadows of the fruit and the jelly beans provide an opportunity for lots of soft edges. And because the beans are translucent it's a chance to see a lot of color in the shadows.
I painted this one for my class last Wednesday. I usually let all the students find their own subject matter and lighting. This last Wednesday I thought I'd make the suggestion that the new students try this set up. I created it to demonstrate a light against middle value, a dark against middle value and two dark values against each other with the corresponding lost edges. All the students decided to do this pear against a blue background. A very successful class with the students leaving with a better understanding of values and edges. They would like to do it again-maybe this Wednesday we will do apples with cut edges.
I find pears to be the most human of the fruit. No shapes are parallel, the curves are better expressed with straight (ish) lines, and they are bigger on the bottom than on the top. I also love the negative shapes that form betwixt and between.
I've been trying to paint down my stash of oils so I can switch to water miscible oils. I came across some alkyds and have been using the white. Wow, it dries so fast, paint it in the morning and by evening it's pretty dry. Don't really like it. I'm finding my edges are too tight. At least I'd like to blame on the materials.
I haven't posted for a week. I've been doing 3 days of teaching this fall and have many figure drawings done but less painting. I need to figure out how to better maximize my time in the studio when I have so many classes to teach. And I forgot to sign it.
I'm starting a pear series-the recipes to follow. I find the composition on this one a little uncomfortable. The pear feels a little crowded in the upper left corner. I'll do another one with a different layout. The scarf is from my friend Martha who passed away last week. Wish she were here to see it.
Part of the beet bondage series. Painted this one three times. Played with the placement of the tops of the onions and the values of the bulbs. Decided on a swingier line for the middle bulb tops and darker value for all three bulbs, especially the far left. I also started the painting as a 10x8 but decided that it needed to be cropped in. Mitch Albala in his landscape book talks about a flexible picture window. Basically you paint on a larger canvas that you think you will need and have the ability to crop in and out as the composition demands. And it's often quite demanding.