Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Now What

Now what….

That is one the things that voice in my head often will ask me. And usually it is when
I am staring at a blank paper or canvas. Now that I have shared that with you I will give you the latest answer I came up with. Grab a pencil, pick a spot in the room your in and do a quick sketch. If you are feeling brave do that sketch, but do not look at the paper you are drawing. Use very few lines just enough to capture the basic shapes of objects.
That sketch will be wild and strange, but that is good. That wild sketch will give you permission to go any where you want with it. It is not perfect to start with so you do not have worry about a perfect painting. (Love that line; think I will read it one more time just for a smile.)
Now grab about 3 colors, and make one decision do I want a warm or cool feeling.
If it is warm use two warm colors like red and yellow and one cool like a blue.
If it is cool use say, blue and purple with an orange. Throw in a black to help deepen some colors if you are using watercolor. If you are using acrylics also add white.
Paint the majority of the painting with the first two colors saving the last one just to highlight or add some spark to the picture at the every end.
This is fun and practice but also can be an amazing painting when you are finished.
Give it a try and see what happens.
By the way the pictures are from my bed room and my living room. And yes messing rooms are more fun to paint, now a reason to avoid house really is good.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Preparing to be spontaneous

Preparing to be spontaneous......

As weird, as it sounds spontaneity can be planned.

I do this is with acrylic painting. I often paint with acrylics on watercolor paper.

Most of my watercolor paper is 140 lb weight cold press. By the time I am done working it is usually at least twice as thick. This is because it is coated with gesso prior to painting.

I coat the paper for 2 reasons. I love texture in my art work, and blank white paper or canvases scare the tar out of me.

Gesso comes in many forms, thin, thick, grey, white, black, colors and clear. If you only have white, it can be tinted with a color, or you can get colored gessoes from Holbein (China red is my favorite), or Daniel Smith (gold is really fun to use).

A basic layout or composition plan can also be started using a couple of colors of gesso.

Using gesso with color knocks out my two issues right at the start. I spread the gesso thickly with a spreader leaving scrapes and ridges randomly and generally use a mid tone color so that all I have to focus on are my lights and darks when painting.

When one side is coated and dry, I flip it over and do the back. By doing the back there are now two surfaces for me to work on, and it helps to thicken and flatten the paper.

I have started making my own spreader. Plastic snap on lids from food containers work great, and you are recycling at the same time. Clean the top off, then cut it in half, I also trim the corner edges a bit and they are ready to go.

These prepped sheets are set aside until I get in the mood to start painting, or as it really appears, dive into a spontaneous mess of splashing paint around.