Thursday, July 22, 2010

Jul 22 - The Twilight Painting Begins (for the DVD)

Artists are sensitive. We react, because to do less would mean we are less than full artists. I know this from the spiral of feelings associated with recent events, and it took the helping of another artist to see it in myself. I really wouldn't want it any other way, though. Would you?

I offer the stages of the newest painting for the upcoming DVD for your pleasure this week. Here's the first pass--the toning of the canvas and the initial sketch for this twilight scene of wolves in snow. This is a 16 x 20 linen canvas, and I'm painting it in acrylics for those of you wanting to perhaps explore this medium, or already use it. The Color System crosses all media, and this DVD will do that, too!

The initial layer to get rid of the white is a composite of primary yellow (a neutral, pure yellow) and burnt quinacradone orange (going warm). I painted the initial sketch with raw umber. NONE of these colors are in the Color System, and ALL will be completely hidden with the upcoming layers, so I use these "leftover" pigments to do these early stages. When I am thinking about it, I do tend to put a warm layer under my final pigments because the contrast of temperatures helps me make decisions about what percentage of the Cool Box I use. And most of my paintings (with the dominant subject being landscapes anyway) tend to be over 70 percent Cool Box. This one will be even more--perhaps as much as 98%!

We have to use our logical mind in creating paintings--the rules and structure of design are the foundation of creating good art, and those who ignore those (or never learned!) struggle so much in this endeavor. And it ought to be fun and relatively easy. I talk about design constantly in my lessons, because it is such an integral part of the creative process. On that note, do you see the location of the wolves? Ha! I mention that in the film.

On other notes, the Cooper's hawk is now free--moving from the smaller cage as he became stronger to the covered dog run. There he gained strength and more coordination (and ate more chicken!). His mom came down to the pine tree behind the pen, calling to him, so I opened the door. A squabble of a reunion, and they both flew off to the sycamore in the canyon below the house. I've heard them since then, and saw one of them sitting near the chicken pen yesterday. Sigh. Save a hawk, maybe lose a few more chickens. So it goes! I didn't get any pictures of the hawks together or the dog pen days, so here's mom looking over her boy earlier in the week. They truly are magnificent.

As ever, thanks for reading this far.

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