Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Catching Up

I have totally enjoyed the past 13 months that I've been studying with Noel Robbins. His teaching methods work well for me and I've gotten so much better as a result of listening to what he has to teach. I still need to test what he's taught me, though, and will often work on something at home that I don't bring to work on at studio time. It's not that I'm ashamed of it or afraid of his criticism. I work on it away from studio time to prove to myself that I have truly learned enough to stand on my own. And when I no longer feel like I need the training wheels that his guidance provides, then I can paint at home all the time. So far, I have not accomplished any magic at home. I've done some "fun" stuff, but I don't stretch myself with my home projects as much as I do with what I do in Noel's studio. I work hard, nonetheless, and every day look for a sign that I've figured out how to make the magic happen. It happened the other night at studio, but I've yet to see it with this current work at home. I think the only way I'm going to be happy with it is to give up the photo and go with my memory and with the knowledge of how I know things must look to have the atmosphere and distance and light that I feel in the photo. Crossing fingers that I can get this piece where I will be satisfied instead of confused.

Monday, April 13, 2009

More on Aloe Painting

Due to some issues with my AOL, I have spent way too much time being frustrated and dealt with it mainly by painting and staying off the computer. So, here's an update of the process with this painting. I worked hard to get the contrasts true to the photo and then began to realize that the photo wasn't true to nature, so then I tried to get the flowers to come forward and become more 3D. I don't know why that should be so difficult, but I'm just not getting it yet. One more try today and then I'm going to let it "sit" for a bit. You may also notice that I kept messing with the lower background, unsure as to whether or not I wanted that much detail. In the end, I think the changes in light help to convey the bright sunny day. And, because it was such a bright day, I may have to come back and lose some of the intense color. Boo hoo! I was really enjoying it for a change. But then this whole painting has been a departure from my usual toned down palette and knife style of late, so maybe I ought to let the brilliant coral tones stand as they are. We'll see.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Aloe Flowers

After visiting the San Antonio Botanical Gardens, I came home thinking that the first painting I'd do would be the very cool poppies, but I was totally drawn to a photo I took of an Aloe plant's flowers. I love the brilliant corals topped with very cool greenish gray. So here are a few pics of the start. I'm so messy in the blocking in stages. Hopefully I will finish soon and have something fun to look at in my dining room until it finds a show or a new home.