Jack’s Glass and Trash

Okay, it was a busy week painting (the house).

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Art-wise, we made time for collecting and practicing our design skills. Better than nothing!

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Collecting while fast-walking Jack makes for “multitasking”, although I prefer “collaboration”.  Always more fun with more than one!

 

Finally completed our smashed glass cube. Leftovers to the right, not all glass.

 

Good thing I have more than one cube. I get pretty excited when we find glass that isn’t clear. Pink is rarest, blue second rarest, brown is next, green, then clear.

In addition to the glass, we finalized the Yellow composition.

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There is an abundance of blue in trash. Not so, yellow.

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I am selecting for a dominant hue with complementary accents.

 

Bricks for scale. Compositions are 14×14 inches.

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It will take more time for purple and green, something to look forward to!

Food for thought: Collage is a great way to practice design and composition skills. Organizing magazine clippings, bits of collected papers, scraps of anything into arrangements that feel balanced and expressive is great practice, if not the final concept. Just look around wherever you are; plane, train, downtown, France, etc.

Never let time be an excuse for not playing with the elements (and principles)!

 

Lucky Purple Piglet

Continuing with the discovery of underused colors in the paint-box I find: Manganese-Violet-Reddish, Old Holland Blue, Hansa Yellow Light, and Brilliant Pink.

I know I can’t do all 4 this week so I choose the colors without white added and just one pigment because they tend to mix cleaner: Hansa Yellow and Manganese Violet.

Here is a model of the chemical compound 11-cis-Retinol and/or All-trans-Retinal, a form of Vitamin A, which makes vision possible (complicated). It is a challenge to draw-could be disastrous-but you have to try!

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I really don’t know which color to pick. I want to use purple but am hesitant. So I give it a rest and focus on something else.

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Even though it is Hotter than Hades here in Tucson, we still must walk the dogs. This enables the collection of smashed ground trash, an ongoing project correlated with dog walking.

I am currently going for smashed glass, it is so sparkly in the early morning light…Here see one mornings worth of glass, plus nifty glass photo cube as container.

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…and subsequent exhausted Jack on his floral matt.

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Smashed glass pick up requires some speed so Mr. Pepe stays home while Jack and I explore nether alley-hoods for most-best glass.

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Day two of glass collection-This is going to take longer than expected.

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At least now I know what color to use for the Molecule! Hansa Yellow Light; lemony and bright.

Now, for the little lucky pig.

Here is the drawing board so far. When I look at this, I get inspired to keep going. Making drawings is relaxing for me because color can be so risky…drawing feels safe compared to color. So, draw first to figure out what you are doing or where you are going and the more difficult stuff will fall into place, or do it the other way around-paint first and draw after!

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I am doing these paintings on SourceTek oil primed linen birch boards (drawings on Strathmore 200). 10×10 size is about $10. It is a good way to get used to painting on a really nice surface without a huge expenditure. All surfaces take paint differently and you should practice on what you want to know best.

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The Manganese is very dark. I can barely see the drawing through the tone, so I wipe it off a little, it stains nicely.

My set up under halogen lights. I am working mostly at night on these studies, so I don’t always get the values right, but at least I know that, now…

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Here is everybody so far, they are all 10×10. Interesting how the colors look together.

So, how about we put it all together and see what happens; all the main pigments and all the objects and a bigger canvas?

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See you in a week!

Food for thought. Find collections of things that have some similarity and paint them…it makes a series that you don’t need to think too much about and it can reveal memories tied to the objects…

Hint: You can also create similarity with a patterned fabric or hue or concept, like abstracting things a certain way or zooming in on something…as long as there is a relationship/continuation/building on it through each piece, it’s a series!

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Azo Coral…and Friends

This Summer, I’m thinking of short projects that explore drawing, composition and color.  My color-box holds many tubes (freebies, trades, impulse buys) that I wonder about but haven’t really seen in action. So, exploring these untried hues will be the driver for the following series of compositions.

Our first selections include: Kings Blue Deep, Golden-Green Deep, and Azo Coral.

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I’m captivated by this truck-stop-dime-store elephant and love to draw it. The funky Krewel pattern is a favorite backdrop subject

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Tracing the scene on clear plexi really helps figure out the best placement of the elephant on the square canvas format I’m working with. I use expo dry erase black marker.

Tools: Many sharpened soft charcoal pencils, rubber pencil eraser. I don’t like to stop to sharpen things when working so I prepare many in advance.

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The first drawing is compositional and drawn from looking at the dry erase trace. The second is its development working from the actual still life.

Below you can see I made the drawing the same scale as the canvas panel so I could transfer it directly to the canvas, which you can see to the right. I fix the canvas drawing with a fixative so I can paint a colored wash over it. (toes for scale;-)

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Now, for the big guns!

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I am pre mixing the palette so I don’t need to stop and mix the right hue/value/chroma with each brushstroke. I can just locate the pre mixed pile and plug it in. Believe it or not, this method gives you more choices plus, if seeing is believing, this will help you on your way.

That does it for the first day of painting. I want to finish it now…but much better to wait until tomorrow. Slow and steady wins the race.

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Above see the Azo Coral possibilities, with the hue plus ivory black and titanium white.  Azo coral acts a bit like cadmium scarlet. It could be an alternative, less expensive and less toxic selection.

Now, for Golden-Green Deep. Love this color!

Kings Blue doesn’t really stand up to prolonged mixing, as it is a mixture to begin with. But, gave it a try with this model of the plane Dad flew during the Vietnam War, since it is Memorial Day today. General Electric F-111D.

I tend to get wrapped up in the concept of things and rush them, as in the painting below. The background needs more evaluation in terms of temperature and contrast. I should have given the plane an overnight like the Elephant.

Continuing on, I shall slow down in general.

Okay, this is good for one week of practice. I think 2-3 days on each work is doable. I hope this gives you something to chew on!

We’ll see how many obscure tubes of paint I can dig out of the paint-box.

Paint on!