Friday, November 14, 2014

Details, Details, Details.

 Architectural details can be frustrating at times. I get my sky just right, but when I step back I notice my lines are not right.  So I pulled out my biggest ruler and a water soluble pencil.  This type of pencil blends really well with acrylic paint so I can easily soften the lines.

Before #1
 After I redrew the lines I had to change some of the angles.  I did so by reworking the negative spaces around the railing.  I used a dark green and matte medium because I knew I was going to develop the sea grass in those areas later.

Before #2

I then lightened those negative spaces and began to add shadows to the boardwalk.  But it still didn't look right to me.

Progress as of 11/14/14
So I pulled out my ruler again and this time I drew my lines with white paint. All of these alterations required me to repaint parts of the sky and water.  Details require lots and lots of modifications and patience.

The boardwalk still isn't finished but the lines are better.  So it was time to attack the sea grass.  Using small brush strokes of  greens, golds and sand colors the dunes are beginning to take shape.

I think I'll take the weekend off.  I'll attack the rest of the details next week.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Painting is not always easy.

before # 1
before #2
Sometimes my paintings are created with relative ease. Other times the process is a struggle. I have to continue to work on the image by changing colors, textures, values and details. This creation hasn't been easy.

The under painting in "before #1" was too vibrant so I muted in in "before #2" by adding layer's of grays and greens.  But I still wasn't quite where I wanted to be.  So I began to re-establish the composition in my foreground by redrawing the boardwalk in charcoal and white paint.  (Don't worry the boardwalk isn't done - still has a long way to go!)

Then I started to experiment with different treatments on the dunes. I wanted to create the feeling of an early morning sunrise. I wanted to try different levels of detail.  On the left I tried a more realistic approach by defining individual grasses

left closeup

When I started to work on the right side I took a more abstract approach to representing the dunes. I blurred the sand and grasses a little more.  To me the right "feels" more appropriate for the time of day.  It still needs some more work, but I think this is the direction I'll be going on both sides.

Trial and error is my favorite way to paint.  I try to always keep an open mind when I start a painting session.  I experiment with colors and techniques.  At times I fail, wipe off paint, cover over areas and start again.  Underneath my acrylic are layers my creative journey.  Always learning. . . . .

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Time Bandits

Some nights I go to bed wondering where the day has gone.  While I start off with good intentions I seem to get sidetracked by so many things.  As a creative artist I tend to put my own work on hold while I take care of the squeakiest wheels.  Fall can be  the most difficult for me because I try to cram too many things into too little time.  Right now my life is full of Time Bandits

This topic came up when I was recently chatting with with my friend and business partner Hobby Parent.  She reminded me that everyone has the same 24 hours in their day and we need to start guarding our time. During this conversation we decided the best way to thwart these time bandits is to get back to setting goals, committing to daily actions and keeping each other accountable.

My list of time bandits:
  1. television
  2. social media
  3. email
  4. phone calls
  5. chores
  6. people
My list of things I really want to accomplish:
  1. daily creating
  2. writing
  3. organizing my home
  4. releashing weight
  5. increasing training
  6. high quality interactions with people.

So for the month of November I'm setting the goal to use my time purposefully.  I'm not going to let my time be stolen by insignificant activities.  I'm going to cut back on allowing Time Bandits to keep me from my goals.

So here's my plan:
1.  If I'm watching TV I will multi-task- crochet, doodle, sit-ups
2.  No more than 30 minutes of social media - I'll set a timer
3.  I'll clean out my email box every day for 15 minutes
4.  I'll make phone calls when I'm walking the dog.
5.  I'll spend 30 minutes a day cleaning/organizing my home
6.  I'll schedule time with the people I want to spend time with.  This could be a meal, a phone call or skype. 

And tomorrow I'll get back to my painting - - - -