Saturday, April 09, 2011


It's only four weeks till the ASE at school so I am now trying to finish up a few more paintings for my wall. I have been posting a little less frequently and feel bad about it but time is a precious commodity around here these days. But I'm actually in really great shape, I have plenty of work to choose from for my wall and my two big anchor paintings are done. Now I am just trying to do a few more things to add to my wall, smaller paintings that I think will balance out nicely my variety and range as a painter. I knew this semester would fly by, but it has flown even quicker than I imagined.
I am posting a few pics of the last painting in the rough stage so you can see my process. Big shapes first as always and working with the rustoleum on the cardboard seems to aid me in this way of working. I am doing a very large painting on panel with the rustoleum and don't like the feel as much as on the cardboard.
here are my paints and I find paper plates are really the best palettes for this.the rustolem tack-up pretty quickly, not as fast as acrylic and certainly not as slow as regular oil, but the fact that it will set up dry to the touch in maybe 10-15 minutes allows me to work wet-into-wet and even re-wet or rework certain passages as the terps will loosen it back up.
I also like working with this limited set of colors right now. Some artists find it very inhibiting and this semester I have experienced a few ways of working with really very different palettes. From the uber-chromatic palette that Nelson Shanks uses at teaches at his school Incamminati, that has direct ties to the palette and color theory of Henry Hensche. There is a lot of cumulative info here from a Facebook group of former students and fans of his work. There is some more historical info Here and Here.Then I have employed with these paints something closer to the Zorn Palette which is a palette that is a low chroma palette. It was composed of a blue derived from ivory black, a low chroma yellow (yellow ochre), and a high chroma red (vermillion, or cad. red light). It is said Zorn didn't use a blue but it was clear that he did employ a blue as many tubes of cobalt blue were found in his studio upon his death. I am not a huge teckkie when it comes to palettes, some people really go crazy for it, but I think it's great to experimnet with ways of working like this, The Rustoleum yellow is more chromatic than a yellow ochre so it allows me to get a much more vibrant yellow. I think I am learning more about color, building and mixing, about temperature vs value and it is great for "keying" and certain light or atmosphere in a painting. The downside is the gloss which can throw me off when painting at times and like this week in class, make seeing the painting a real battle because of the glare. I think I will have to employ a matte white or non-gloss when working on wood vs canvas or cardboard or paper.
And at the same time I am cranking away of the Judge Parker Strip and a few side comic projects to keep the wood in the fire to pay for it all. Here is a stack of work from the past two or three months.
I have missed going to the Sunday Sessions at school which are run by Scoot Noel and Peter Van Dyck who has a nice interview up on the paints Perceptions blog. The drawing by Scott Noel above was done at one of the last sessions i was able to attend. It's a great chance to work alongside both Scott and Peter and see how they employ the ideas and concepts they teach in class. It think it's honestly such a rare occasion for teachers and artists of this level to openly work in such an open and jovial and communal atmosphere.

This is one of the many teaching drawings Scott does in his first and second year drawing class. I love these drawings so much.
Here is a shot of Scott's palette and rig from the current painting he's got going on the 4th floor at school. I love seeing the path of an artist's thinking on their palette, especially when you can relate them to the work they have going. I think this is one of the things that makes PAFA so great, to be able to see and share the experience of an artist of Scott's level building his painting almost day-by-day before your eyes. I definitely directly employ the ideas and concepts I see both of these painters use along with the ideas I get from the Zorn palette and what I learned at Incamminati. I say mix it all up and make a stew of you!

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