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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Life Drawing - Self Portrait #2

Well I thought this one did not turn out much better than the first self portrait as things look so wonky....then I saw it beside the first self portrait, oh my! 

Life drawing is very humbling! But I think I am making good progress already, ahem, especially compared to the 1st one ;)  The proportions are definitely closer so hopefully  I am training my eyes to judge better.  I did try again to use a knitting needle for measuring but I am just so shaky and my eyes kept bugging out trying to distinguish the real needle from the reflection so I just did the width and length of the head roughly and went from there.

I am definitely spending way more time on the shading and building form because it is just so much fun! But I will keep trying to focus more on the blocking in as that is the area I struggle with the most. 

But I must admit, drawing from life is so much more fun when I can see the details.  I really struggle in the life drawing with a model as I can not see very far. So I am searching for a good set of compact binoculars for close range viewing.  I am really excited to try them out on Tuesday, assuming I can find something I can afford!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Life Drawing - Self Portrait #1

Ok, so the proportions are pretty off (I blame the model who kept getting up every 2 minutes to get a kid something...) but for my first self portrait from life, not too bad :)

This was a quick sketch, roughly 40 minutes and I used really cheap paper and only an HB pencil.  I actually quite liked how the graphite blended on the paper considering it is just cheap stuff.  I had to be careful though as I kept smudging areas by accident as my kid stole my mahl stick to use for a fishing rod.  It was actually quite cute as he actually asked for it by name, he is 4.5 so pretty funny, but it kept him busy so I could draw :)

I am super excited to be going to David Gray's Workshop near the end of November...but, my life drawing sucks. I go to life drawing weekly, if possible, but I can not see very far so working portraits is tricky as I can't make out the details. So I figured I better bone up quickly and what better way than drawing from life (or mirror) hopefully every day until the workshop. So I should really be able to improve my life drawing skills so that I can focus on painting not trying to fix a really bad drawing and I will have a nice little self portrait collection.

When I set up the mirror for this I put it right next to my easel and as close to me as possible so I could see clearly.  Of course after I got going I realized that of course I could not take great measurements so I just eye balled it for this portrait...if I could just move my right eye over more....argh.  For the next one I will plan ahead and leave more time so that I can set up the mirror with enough distance to practice my sight sizing....something I have never done but have always wanted to learn so what better time than now.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

FCA Small, Smaller, Smallest Show - November 15 - December 4, 2011

Ruffled Feathers - $460
16x20" Framed Watercolor
One of my paintings, Ruffled Feathers, was selected for the upcoming Small, Smaller, Smallest Show at the Federation of Canadian Artists starting November 15 and continuing until December 4, 2011.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Still Life Oil Painting - Cherries in Progress

This is one of the oil paintings I am working on right now and it is maybe at the midway point? I really have no idea so will see how it progresses ;)  I like to paint in layers so I need to let each layer dry before adding the next layer or I will end up with mud so I am working on several paintings at once. 

So even though by looking at my blog posts it may seem like I have been lazy and not getting much done....really I am doing stuff :)

I am starting to feel happy with the way the colors are progressing but am keeping this painting simple...well that was the idea.  The surface that the cherries are sitting on..can you guess what it is?...is turning out to be a fair bit more work than I anticipated but I think it is starting to take shape.

I worked on three paintings this morning so I should have a few more posting throughout the week to prove that I have been working :)

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Oil Portrait of Girl - Underpainting

Under Painting - Oil on 16x16" Canvas
Well I had planned on working on a few paintings today but this under painting ended up taking up the whole day! But well worth it I think for what I learned from it.  Several areas are off as far as the tonal values are concerned but I will have to fix it in the next layer as I did not want to wear out the canvas :) I also need to soften areas such as hairline, lips etc but I figured this is a good base to start with.  I am sure it is much more detailed than it needs to be for the first layer but hopefully will make the additional layers easie.

This is my second attempt at this portrait in oil as the first one got obliterated when I tried to add the second layer to it so hopefully this time will be much smoother ;)

Friday, October 21, 2011

I am so excited....

I may puke! I have been enjoying David Gray's works for sometime online and just registered for his upcoming workshop at Whidbey Island Fine Art Studio in November, so excited!

The artwork of David's that I first say is the Portrait of Forrest which was a finalist in the Portrait/Figure Category of  The Artist's Magazine.  I fell in love with his work immediately but never thought I would get to see it in person let alone take a workshop with him :)

I was actually searching around for online demos using the classical method when I came across the workshop listing by accident as I did not even know that the Whidbey Island Fine Art Studio existed....I may have opened up a big can of worms as they have some really amazing workshops scheduled throughout the year.   

Check out more of David's work at his website at his website http://davidgrayart.com  I stop by his website at least once a week just to look, just exquisite work, sigh :)


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Still Life Oil Painting - Pairs Underpainting

Under Painting - 8x10" Oil on Panel
This is a little oil painting I have been working on.  I wanted to work on something simple to get a feel for this process so I chose a couple of pairs rather than jumping in again with a portrait (see note below, ugh). 

I will be adding color glazes over top but have to wait until the under painting is completely dry first, I hate waiting.  But I have learned my lesson well as I tried adding glazes over top paintings I thought were dry and ended up with a huge mess so this little guy will be going on to the drying wall for at least a week!

Hmm, what's next.....

Saturday, October 15, 2011

4th Annual Winter Artisans Fair
November 26 & 27, 2011

I really enjoyed last year's fair and am looking forward to attending again this year.   The photo to the left is from last year's event.  Funny to read back on the posts to see what I was up to last year at this time.  Apparently I was overbooked with three shows and behind on my framing....who says we learn from our past ;) 

Oh well, I work best under pressure anyway.  If I have too much time I just end up procrastinating :)  I will be bringing several new pieces to the show and hope to see some of the vendors from last year again as they were a super bunch.