Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Art in the time of COVID

Hello Folks,

I have not blogged for a long time.  Usually I am too busy. But all that has changed as the virus pandemic has led to the temporary cancellation of all my classes and exhibits till further notice.

As I regroup, I am thinking about what positive contributions I can make and am currently exploring putting up on this blog some painting demonstrations for adults and some simple projects for kids to do at home.  So bear with me while I attempt to learn how to do some form of teaching from a distance.  If some of you have the ability to take photographs of your work or have access to video conferencing software that may be another option for private lessons or critiques while we are home bound.   I am also taking on some commissions at this time.

I have been thinking lately about composition and color harmony in painting.  I have found that doing a value sketch on location to determine composition is immensely helpful.   While it is easier mentally to just leap into a painting without a lot of thought, taking the time to plan ahead can often yield some better painting results.

"Hurley Mountain Fields in Winter" 

The watercolor painting above came from a sketch I did on location.  That day I was actually more interested in a landscape on the other side of the road, but as I turned around, I saw the light on this field.  A warm yellow light at the end of the day was just hitting the edges of the silos and part of the field.  I sketched the composition in pencil and took some photos.  Here is the original sketch, it includes some color notes and arrows indicating the light direction.

The photos were very dark, so I relied on my drawing and memory and I took some liberties with color.  This painting emphasizes contrasts; warm colors versus cool colors and  shadow areas versus light areas.   I limited the palette to just primary colors, but I also used a little bit of neutral tint and opaque white.  I let the paint get very dark in the shadow areas to contrast with the lighter areas and used complementary colors to build interest.  More on complementary colors to come in future blogs.

Subscribe to my Blog to read future entries.  Hope this was useful!  Stay home, stay safe.

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