Sunday, October 31, 2010

Jane's Lawn Plein Air

Today the Dirty Palette club got together to do a little plein air painting despite me being a bit under the weather. This was almost a year to the day we went out to the Brandywine and painted some landscapes last year.

This time we painted and our friend and fellow DPC member Jane's beautiful house near Villa Nova. the colors are just about in full blush so we rushed the sun and wrestled with nature in the cool autumn afternoon, the light dimming as the sky became overcast as the afternoon wore on. We had great fun and this was the first time I've gotten back to a landscape painting since my vacation this summer.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Week-9-Over the Hump

This week is the over the hump week of the fall semester at school--now it's the quick decent into the holiday season and the final weeks and crits. Honestly, though I am having an OK semester I can't wait for the break as I really want to just paint, and it seems I have been working a lot but not just on my own paintings like over the summer. It's frustrating. I really have senior-itis as a junior really bad, I just want to do my own stuff, not people on boxes. I had a group crit this week and I have to say, it once again reenforced why I don't like group critiques. I really get nothing from them as so many of the students just don't put much in or sometimes seem to just to want to be contrary and have those 'art school" discussion. Blarrrrrt! I don't have time to waste or patience for smugness.

The good thing was taking the workshop with Vincent Desiderio again. I didn't get to paint as much as the last time as I was one of the monitors, but i did take the opportunity to have Vincent give me a grit of my current work in my studio--which was great!

I finished up the drawing I had going in Pat Traub's class of the skull-and-bones still life. I think next time I will work under more of a controlled light situation just because the natural light id just to changeable in class.
I am also half way through my portrait class with Kerry Dunn at Studio Incamminati. I pretty much hate this painting, this week Kerry had us using the full on chromatic palette--blam!!! I just couldn't get the hang of it--everything stats out so saturated it was throwing me off. We have one more week of these one week paintings, then 4 weeks for the last pose. Maybe by then I can get the hang of it....

This is the painting I have going in Bruce's class, another very frustrating situation as the light is so low and very changeable--its so hard to see what's on your canvas in the darkness of Studio 1. I might hit it once more--or not--thank god next week we have a new pose.

Now I have to build a few big canvases to paint on, so that along with a lot of freelance will occupy the better part of the next week, then I hope to be back to putting time at the easel on my own ideas.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Vincent Desiderio Workshop-Day 1

This weekend I am once again taking one of the twice yearly workshops that Vincent Desierdio gives at PAFA. this time around I am one of the monitors, which is good and bad, bad in that I get less time painting, but good in that I get more time with Vince.
Vince is a great dynamic guy and artist and once again we started out with charcoal drawings that we sealed with amber shellac. Once we did that Vince gave his demo, showing how to mix optical grays and he then spent time going around to each student's work as they progressed.

During the lunch break I brought up one of the laptops with a projector and we all watched The Mona Lisa Curse by art critic Robert Hughes. Vince really wanted us young painters to see this film and it lead to an very impassioned discussion by Vince. It was a great but very sobering view on the current art market, something my DPC buddies have been discussing of late as well.

Here Vince gave his demo using one of the student's prepped drawings.

Alina waiting for her drawing to dry after applying the shellac.
Here is my drawing freshly shellacked, I drew on a sheet of rives BKF taped to a piece of heavy foam core.
I just started in on my painting when the timer went off for the last pose. Tomorrow is the second day of the workshop and i hope to really get in there and get to painting and I'll post a final follow-up on the workshop.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Quick Study

This is a quick study, about an hour, of the model who filled in for us this week as our regular model didn't show. Oil on Fredrix canvas panel.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Week-8-Mid Semester

This week hist the mid-point for my fall semester at PAFA and it finds me very busy and rushing about between commercial work and my school classes and teaching. The Vincent Desiderio workshop is coming up this weekend and I'll be one of the monitors this time. The drawing above is from my Monday morning drawing class with Pat Traub. I'm slowly working on it every week under natural light, so that creates obvious issues when the daylight is radically different, such as rainy days or sunny days. the fall weather has really been very changeable week to week. I'm doing this on the smallish side just to avoid the hassle of working larger in a classroom that really isn't very ideal at all for a drawing class. Its on a piece of rives BFK which I coated or toned with a neutral gray No. 6 and then I'm working with a selection of charcoal pencils , hard to extra soft- 6B. I'm also using a white charcoal pencil and spraying the drawing with a workable fixative as I go along. I figure i have a few more weeks on this drawing to bring it to finish. I just don't feel super energetic on Monday mornings and want to kind of milk the class a bit.
This painting I am working on in Bruce Samuleson's life painting class, and its oil on paper, again a sheet of Rives BFK which I taped down to a piece of foam board and coated with clear matt medium. This piece is a fight and the pic I snapped with my cell phone isn't the best, but its a real fight to deal with the natural light here, which is dim in the afternoon in Studio 1. Some day I can't really see my values well after about an hour or so as the sun just fades and on cloudy days--ugh! I understand the challenges Bruce is setting here but honestly I am just not digging this too much. I would want to go at something like this for longer stretches many days in a row and pick better more consistent lighting. I do like oil on paper though--I love that surface.
this is a two class-though abbreviated painting from Scott Noel's class. Since i have to bug out early in order to teach class, i always miss at least an hour to an hour and a half of class, so i really get only a quick wind sprint that these paintings, this one is probably a little over one full class worth of work. Again Scott is really pushing me on these things to create a much closer envelope and relationship between all of the colors, so it's observational painting in only a limited or non-literal fashion and many colors as shifted or pushed in order to create a very specific envelopes of a specific atmosphere of light. details as all shunted aside in the quest for this and only painted in after the bigger issues have been addressed. Its a great--if very frustrating class at times, but Scott is just a fantastic teacher--the best I've ever had and while at times it feels as if some weeks he sticks his leg out and trips you up, he's always there to help you back to the palette.

I feel real growth this semester and also frustration, I don't feel I am painting enough of "my paintings" and I was disappointed my portrait was rejected from the student show. I had a feeling it was likely to be based on the esthetics of the judges and the overall esthetics held in some quarters of the school, but in the end rejection is as much if not more than acceptance the process of being a working artist, and I feel the painting was a new high point for me, and thats the most important thing. I am honestly in many ways looking forward to the semester being over and the winter break to do more of my own work.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Week 6 -Fall-Self Portrait

This is my self portrait for the student show which will open along side or in conjunction with the Narcissus in the Studio: Artist Portraits and Self-Portraits exhibition. I painted this very rapidly over the last two days while splitting time between home and my regular commercial work. Now it just has to dry by Monday! I did use a good amount of Liquin Fine Detail in the mix so i think i should be all set.

It was fun last night as most of my Dirty Palette buddies were also in the studio painting their self portraits for the show as well. It's great painting with other painters as I feel you get a lot of energy flowing back and forth--you share and feed off of what everyone else is doing at the same time.

This is the first self portrait I have done since the small one I did over a year ago in my summer portrait painting class with Al Gury. I've learned and grown a lot as a painter since then, I also think taking the portrait class at Incamminati with Kerry Dunn has helped too.I also looked at a lot of work by Velasquez, Sargent and Zorn to study edges, paint applicaation, etc., I didn't want to get too tight and kill the energy, yet I did want to get in good details.

We have reached the halfway point in the semester already- it's cooking off fast--which is really fine by me, I really think I just want to be done with any more classes and just do my own thing. We are going to be picking our Spring classes in the next week and the spring will be easier schedule wise for me since I won't have as much teaching. All-in-all a very good week!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Super Sad Study

I finally hopped back on the Super sand train, here is a study for a new painting I will do, it will be pretty big, maybe 80 inches. the study is about 17-18 inches on museum board in oil.

I have to build the canvas for this so that will take me a few days to do.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Judge Parker--Help Support Breast Cancer Research

This weeks all of the King Features comic strips including Judge Parker ran in Pink and placed a ribbon to help support breast cancer research. Someone very close to me is suffering from this horrible illness and so I was more than happy to see such a big support for this cause.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Fall Semester 2010 week 6

Week six has blown by--zip-pow--it's come and gone in a haze of work.

The painting above is from my class with Scott Noel on Monday afternoon. I did most of it live but snapped a pic to finish later as I had to teach in the High School program and that cuts the last hour of my class off. The sketches below are from one of the two drawing trips I took my storyboard classes at Uarts to on Thursday. I took both classes down to Rittenhouse Square to do some gesture drawing in the park as I feel its really one of the best exercises you can do to train your drawing and thinking skills. It forces you to not only to look, but to really see, to try and in sometimes only a few second get do the gesture, essence of a person down on paper. It also loads into your memory banks the endless variety of people, motion,--nature that you can draw upon later when drawing from invention. i used pencil and also the Tria brush pen for a while until it kinda clogged up on me. next week i will be back in the studio more to work on some of my paintings as I feel I have been away from that too much lately.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Portrait Class Week 3

>This is my first portrait from my class with kerry Dunn over at Studio Incamminati, the atelier founded by Neslon Shanks. It's located just a few short blocks from PAFA and I have wanted to take some classes there for a while, In fact I looked into going there before PAFA, but they don't offer the student aid or a degree.

This was the second session of a two-week painting where we are doing an open grisalle using a chromatic palette of Cad Red Deep, Cad Orang, Van Dyke Brown, Ultramarine blue and white, I also added a little Cad Green to the palette. You can see my first week's block in on a post below, and this week following Kerry's talk we went straight in using this pretty dam intense color palette. In fact that is one of the areas where the approaches between between PAFA and Incamminati really stand out . Nelson Shanks paints with a very chromatic palette compared to the more earth tone based or classical palette mostly used at PAFA. As always I wish I hand more time to work in more transitions on the face and work on the eyes more and the mouth, but I'm still fairly happy with this one now.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Fall Semester 2010 week 5

The fall semester has entered the full force stream this week. I had my second week of my evening painting class at Studio Incomminati, I'm taking a portrait class with Kerry Dunn. The painting above is last week's work, the burnt sienna rough-in, next week we will continue with the Open grisaille, we'll add colors to it.
This is the final state of the painting from my class at school with Bruce Samuelson. man this was a bit tough, I needed more time and the light was very inconsistent from week to week since it was natural light--which changed fast on the shorter fall afternoons.
This was the painting I did last Sunday at the PAFA Sunday open painting which is hosted by Scott Noel and Peter Van Dyck. This was about 3 hours work. I seem to be doing a lot of faster one-shot paintings which are good for training and working out big concepts as well as always honing the good old 'observational' skills.
This is a painting I had to attack quick in last Monday's painting class with Scott Noel as I also had to start teaching my illustration for the After school program at PAFA. The classes overlap, so that means I loose the last hour of the class, so I did go back and work on this from memory. the idea, or concept Scott is pushing is to get very clear areas or domains of color. Inside or outside, warms against cools. And to push those concepts beyond just what you see to make this idea the main emphasis of these smaller, faster paintings.

So it was a very heavy week between the teaching, painting Judge parker and laying out a Captain America storybook for Disney and laying out Magnus for Dark Horse. The pace won't really lessen till November so I hope the momentum will just keep me building week upon week.