Sunday, November 15, 2009

Updates on My Paintings

From the beginning I was not happy with the dark overtones of my first painting which I called "Luminous" . I tried again to lighten it and was much happier with the results. The photos do not represent the paintings as well as I might like but with practice I hope to get better.
The painting called "Whitecaps From the West" looked better in my opinion but the way the background behind the tree looked bothered me. I did some improvements on that too by feathering in some of the new background colors and the result looks less phony to me.
The one with the face started out as a perfect circle and was to be a moon study, behind clouds, but the face materialized and I decided to call that one "Storm Watcher". I deliberately left the background without defining a horizon so the viewers can interpret it any way they want.
I discovered that faces in acrylic are no more difficult than in the more familiar mediums (to me), so I plan to do more, as faces are one of my original passions.
Many of the shots I upload here end up being works in progress, as I'm teaching myself as I go.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Another New Painting and Another Changed Work

The painting "Whitecaps From the West" looked so dark to me so I decided to lighten up the sky and the reflected water. I may have lost the effect somewhat but this is just for myself anyway so I decided to post it and let my readers decide. I'm not sure if it is now hideous or lovely. It's hard to be objective about my own work.
The monochromatic one is based on mental images of lakes I've been to when the sky is lowering with clouds and both the sky and water look like polished steel. That was the effect I was going for so I left it rather stark to prevent visual distraction from the effect.
I adore painting lakes and ocean scenes and this is just the beginning.
I love to depict the raw power of rock too and combined with the wind and the steely water, to me it denotes a feeling of movement and the power of the elements.
The pattern that sometimes shows up on the canvas is the reflection of the weave of cloth in the sheer curtain I use to diffuse the light. I wondered about this and realized that's what causes that effect, not the grain of the canvas which is much finer.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Two New Paintings and One Corrected

I've been continuing having fun with acrylics and in one of my latest works I re-discovered wet-on-wet and plan to stick to that tried and true method from now on. The "Luminous" painting in the previous post bothered me because the sunset had the look of an explosion or maybe a raging fire, which was not what I was looking for. I added shots of blue and in my opinion the later one looks a little more natural to me. I also lightened the grass a bit but have discovered that once a dark background is in place, it is amazingly difficult to lighten.
The painting with the vivid orange sunset behind the wind-driven whitecaps is called "Whitecaps From the West" and is based on all the images of the Canadian Shield, in my heart, where I have spent so much of my time, both back east where I was born and in later years, in the Whiteshell park which to me is a second home. My husband, son, and I used to wilderness camp on a lovely little lake called Bedford Lake and this picture of the rocks, trees and lake could come from there.
The seascape with the pink sunset, done with the wet-on-wet technique, is based on breathtaking scenery from a remake of "Lord of the Flies" which was on TV the other night. As I watched I stored up a number of mental snap shots of lovely transparent turquoise waters, sunsets and the gnarled tree which was on the beach. The painting was drawn from my memory of those scenes and, to me, painting scenes takes me there in my mind in a most absorbing way, and is a wonderful escape into beauty!
One thing I have to work on is photographing my paintings. Whitecaps from the West is 16x20 inches and the other two are 11x14, so even if I wanted to, they're too big to scan. With time and practice I'm sure I'll improve, but in the mean time this is a handy way to show my family and friends what I'm up to.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A Study in Perspective, Done in Acrylic

I haven't painted with oils or acrylic for a long time and have re-discovered acrylic. One of the things I love about acrylic is the fast drying time. I also love that the clean-up can be done with warm water and a little soap which is so much more convenient than the methods for cleaning up after oil painting. Both oils and acrylic offer the added dimension of texture, which is so fun to play with and can be very effective.
I haven't done much work in either medium, but I plan to get more into actual painting. I find that doing a scene is very meditative and I like to create scenes of places where I want to be.
The picture here is a sunset and I wanted to re-create the luminous effect of the setting sun reflected on the surrounding landscape and the main tree. I call this painting "Luminous". It measures 11x14 inches so I had to photograph it and the tree, being painted in shiny acrylic, shows up less black than it actually is. Otherwise the colors are pretty well duplicated in this photo so I decided to upload it anyway.
This my first painted scene and I really enjoyed it.