Saturday, January 3, 2015

Keeping Colors Bright

6 x 6     Oil on Panel

January 3, 2015 is the first day in the new year for me to complete a small painting.  Having finished a large painting from a photograph a few days earlier, I wanted to paint from life today.   It's my preferred way to paint, but it was rainy and cold outside   Since that wasn't going to work, I painted from a vase of flowers in my studio.  I chose a small square canvas because I knew I wouldn't have a lot of time to paint and I enjoy painting the square canvas. 

On a white canvas, I loosely scrubbed in the middle values of the flowers, finding the location and a very general shape for each cluster of flowers.  There was no detail but only an abstract design.  With the dark background color, I found the edges of the flowers.  The shadow in and around the flowers was painted next and the flowers seemed to emerge from the canvas.  The last thing added was white to the flower and leaf colors to paint the lighter areas and highlights.  By following this order of events and saving the addition of white until last, I can keep my darks dark and my bright colors bright.     

Thursday, January 1, 2015

The Last Painting of 2014

The First Colors of Fall
30 x 40    Oil on canvas

I had to walk a little bit in a West Tennessee park before noticing this scene.  The reds and golds in the trees at the bend in the road attracted me to this landscape and begged to be painted.  Since I was walking with my husband and dog and without a paint brush or canvas, next best was to take a picture.  Pictures never tell the whole story so I just tried to keep my brushwork loose and put in as much color as I remembered in the original scene.  Painting it was a nice way to end 2014.