Thursday, April 16, 2009
Continuing with the big olive grove painting. I mentioned before that my house and studio was undergoing some construction projects. We put in some industrial grade bamboo flooring throughout the house, and took out some walls and installed can lights and fixed some major structural problems along the way. To make a long story short, the construction is done, and I moved my studio into one of the bedrooms in the house and set it all up so it was like, an inspiring artist's environment. Like. Right? Well, after all that, I discover that I can't work in there. The ventilation is completely inadequate, and I started having painful coughing fits. Art is important to me, but I'm not willing to die for it, so I moved my stuff back out to the garage where I can open the door and let light in and air flow. A junky environment, what with having to coexist with typical garage junk and washer/dryer and bicycles and a weedwacker and just... stuff. But I'm much happier painting in the garage than inside. If ever I build a real studio in the back yard or rent a space, I would need minimum of 500 sq. ft. This I am sure now. My old studio was 1400 sq.ft. and that was a little too big. Anyway, I'm in the garage now and painting furiously.
I am recording my progress with this painting, (duh) but the sheer size of the canvas makes it impossible for me to have even and correct lighting on the entire area at once, so these photos aren't very accurate. In these photos, there are warm spots where my halogens are spot-illuminating, and the top is much lighter and cooler than the actual painting because it's about a foot away from my flourescent tubes. They're marketed as accurate color tubes, but you should know, there's no such thing!
Still, I think it's rather interesting to see the progress laid out sequentially. For this painting, I am channelling Claude. I don't think I've ever really delved deep into the process of impressionist painting till now, and I have to say, I like it. I'm getting into the groove now, and my brush is faster, (I am using a single beat up No.10 filbert bristle) and I'm even getting the hang of optical mixing. This is fun stuff. I am appreciating Monet like never before. And you know when scholars talk about Impressionists, particularly Monet, they say things like "the impressionists used pure colors and by juxtaposing them unmixed on the canvas, created optically mixed colors" ? All I have to say about that is, Bullshit.
Here I am holding the study in my left hand. Notice the temperature difference between the areas where my right arm is casting a shadow onto the canvas compared to surrounding areas. That's how much color influence my "accurate color" lighting has. You can see that it's nowhere near accurate.
This is what I have at the end of the night. I'm pretty happy with how it is progressing. Up to this point, I only used the study as my reference. Tomorrow, I think I'll put that away and look at some photos to get a better sense of the structure of the foreground tree.
Thanks everyone for your comments - I'm still not responding individually, (had to file for an extention on my taxes!) but I appreciate your taking the time to look at what I'm doing!
Posted by Terry at 10:04 PM