Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Still Life

The still life is an opportunity to bring out your favorite colors and shapes. Selection comes from within yourself; maybe a flower, a doll, a lollypop, the items are endless. I am mostly traditional, especially in the piece above. I love the spout on the vase, the yellow and orange flowers. I picked the background; a mauve grey t-shirt because it seemed to work well with this arrangement. I also tried blue, pink and green-none of these worked as well as the neutral gray that I ended up with. Arangement of flowers. This is critial--try to place them in various directions, all away fron the viewers eye. In other words, right and up, left and down, middle and slightly left. Lighting is also critical. Have it to the side or backlit, not head on as it will flatten out. Show the table, put in objects at differing angles.

Unlike the landscape, this motif for the artist allows you to completely place and arrange all the objects. Put in things that are meaningful to you.I try to paint loose but your technique is your own. In either case, don't tickle a painting to death--that is stroke it all smooth, covering up your intial brush stroke. I recommend loading up the brush, making one stroke and leave it. Of course, if it is not correct, you can scrape and redo it but the point is many amateurs go over and over, obiliterating the paint, smoothing it all out. That makes for a boring outcome.

Why onions and garlic? I don't have a clue. The basket was there and I thought the onions have such an unusual color--that white yellow, green pastel type colors make for a challenging oil painting. I played with greens, gray, pinks and various shade. I like the russian painters who painted garlic that I have seen in Carmel. The red orange flowers were exciting for me to paint, along with their sense of light. Look for my new U tube movie on oil painting. Should be out by July 15th.

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