Monday, August 26, 2013

Realism vs. Abstraction

I believe that many people are afraid to make art because they haven't mastered realism. Two of my favorite artists Andrew Wyeth & Chuck Close are known for their realistic paintings.   When you view their work from a distance the realism is striking.  But when you get really close you'll see that their images are very abstract in some areas.  It took them many years of practice and experimentation to develop their individual styles.  They also spent a lot of time exploring different ways to represent their subjects.  One day I'll write a blog about different methods to capture realism.  But for now we're just going to play around with images and media. And we'll let a little serendipity help us out.

Last week I wrote a blog post about being inspired by trees. These images are still in my mind so I'm moving on from sketching in pencil to creating a mixed media piece on a large Gesso Board.  I'm not going to finish this lesson in one blog post.  There are too many steps and I'll need some drying time between layers.

Gesso Board, canvas board or 140 lb. watercolor paper whatever size you'd like I'm working on 24x36
Sharpie - dark color (I used navy because that's the one I picked up!)


1.  Choose you're image (You're welcome to use one of my photos from: trees)
2.  Lightly sketch your image onto the surface with a pencil.  Draw large and fill the surface from top to bottom. Go over all the lines with a dark Sharpie marker.
3.  Add some trees in the background

4.  Add a pattern to the ground.  I used small circles close to the horizon line and larger ones as I got to the bottom.
5.  On the background trees I used closely spaced hatched lines.

The finished drawing is another abstraction of my tree photo.   But I'm not finished yet.  Tomorrow I think I'll add some acrylic paint.      

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful Karen.

    I am from UBC, so nice to meet you. Come and visit me some time

    Namaste with Unity "Love" Consciousness,
    Wendy Baudín
    Self-Love Sherpa and Wisdom Guide