Thursday, February 12, 2015

New Year New Painting

There's something about December.  It seems to take us offline, for so many reasons. And January is a wake-up because we can be ourselves again.

Back in the painting studio and the year's magic begins.

"Just keep painting"  I kept taking out those 10" x 8" gessoed canvas boards that I use to limber up on, one after the other, and discovering image, love and process, color, new ideas and new abilities.

Painted ten canvases over the two weeks,  two were discarded.

Wrote a bit about process and want to share it here.

I sketch the figures directly onto the canvas with a brush and a bit of oil paint.  Mostly a dry brush.  Working too directly or too literally from a drawing or photo does not really work.  The figures benefit from movement and from abstraction.

Build form using color.  Discover volume and space.  This happens in the process of the painting. There should be some meaning and sense in what is being built.

Tune my senses to my own personal experience and observation and let that guide the discovery.

Know when to stop.

How do I know when to stop?

A. If the painting seems complete but is not satisfying, step away and look away, then look at the painting and note the very first thing that catches attention.  If this is not the very essence of the image then it must go.  There will be marks that are too dark, light, bright, dull or which inadvertantly create a volume or space unintended. Keep doing this exercise until all impressions that don't belong in the painting are obliterated.

B. Notice what your eye does when it looks at the painting.  It will move around. It will stop.  It should be moving across and stopping on the right things in the painting.  Your moving view of the painting should find the sense in it.

Here are the paintings in backwards order of when they were painted.

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