Monday, September 30, 2013

20 Favorite Paintings #3 - Cezanne's Mt. Saint Victoire

I will be very straightforward, Cezanne's work is rather hit or miss for me.  His work that I like I really like but there is also a good bit that I just really get into.  I tend to prefer some of his earlier work as well as the work he did near the end of his life.  I think his still lifes show his skill as a draftsman.  It seems funny then that I would selelct a painting as one of my 20 favorites that is from a period of his that might be my least favorite.  I could have selected one of several Cezanne's to be amongst my 20 favorites, all from this time period!  Granted, I do really like this piece.  It has great lyrical movement in the tree branches which contrasts nicely with the organized farms and linear elements in the midground.  Normally, I shy away from a design element which is not visibly grounded in the picture frame, i.e. the tree and most particularly the branches coming from outside the frame on the right.  In this case, these elements are not so terribly intrusive to me and contribute well to the design.

But really, it is Cezanne's doggedly relentless pursuit of this mountain that I really like.  It is reported he painted it more than 60 times in one decade!  That is admirable no matter what one thinks of the result itself.  I have places I would like to explore in such a prolific manner.  Hopefully, one day I will have the opportunity.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Getting Away

Getting Away
16X20, Oil on Canvas
I believe I have mentioned here that I am avid cyclist, both mounting and road.  So I decided while back to merge the two interests and here is the first product of that.  

Monday, September 9, 2013

Falling Water Falls, Summer 2013

Falling Water Falls, A Wet Summer
8X10, Oil on Panel

It's rare that any waterfalls run in August in Arkansas but due to a fairly yet summer I was able to take a trip to a few a couple of weeks ago.  This one and another are more apt to run year around but another that I was able to visit is typically very dry.  Did all but a few minor touch ups on this one on site.

Crescent Bay Bronze

Cresent Bay Bronze
12X16, Oil on Panel
Since I'm probably going to shutter my other blog, or at the very least put it on a long hiatus while I finish this project, I thought I'd add some of older work from non-Arkansas locations.
This is Cresent Bay in Laguna Beach.  Love Southern California!  Hope to get to go back often.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Dan Schultz Workshop in Colorado Springs

Right about a month ago, I went to Colorado Springs for some mountain biking and a workshop with Dan Schultz.  The workshop was a 2 day event with the first day covering plein air landscape painting and the second consisting of portraiture from life.  I was mainly interested in the landscapes but figured I couldn't go wrong by extending myself with some portraiture. I really admire Dan's use of color and he typically paints higher key than I do so I thought some exposure to this would be good for me. Dan took us to Bear Creek Park in Colorado Springs for the first day.  He did his demo then turned us loose.  I had previously been trying to paint some on my own in the days before the workshop and found myself stymied and frustrated.  I think the lack of humidity played some role in that as I could make out detail on mountains I knew were several miles away.  I usually respond well to watching people paint and I think this day was no exception.  I don't think I did anything stupendous but it was a huge leap over what I had been doing the day or two before!

The painting above was my first of the day and it really leveraged on Dan's demo.  I am unaccustomed to seeing purple in mountains here in Arkansas.  You really only see that during certain times of the day.  Dan likes to isolate color using a pinhole technique and when I did that I clearly saw the purple.  The pinkish purple here is what I thought I saw but it is probably weighted quite a bit too far to the red.  I thought about changing it but decided to stick with what I thought was really there.

Dan challenged me with the notion of painting clouds and as I studied them, I became entranced by the idea.  I really like some of the work here in this one.

Late in the afternoon, I decided to go down to the creek side and try to tackle this.  I knew it would be hard but I've done scenes like this before.  I only had about an hour to work and I got a decent start on the stream.  I finished the rest from pictures in the studio.
Not surprisingly, I didn't produce anything the next day I feel like showing off.  But I did learn a lot and hope to give portraits a try again in the near future.