Monday, February 29, 2016
A street scene on a pleasant, early-autumn day. I think of this painting as a "happy accident". This is a term I most often hear used by watercolorists (since the medium is so hard to control many things happen by accident, some happy and some less so). In this case I was recently at my local art supply store stocking up on canvases and other supplies, and accidently bought some linen when I intended only canvas. I've used linen before, several years ago, and decided I liked the working surface of canvas better. (canvas comes from the cotton plant while linen comes from the flax plant...to me linen seems to have a smoother, less toothy, faster surface but also seems to require more delicate handling in order to get a good paint layer) Anyway, weeks after I got my supplies home, I unwrapped one of the canvases and noticed it was linen...I painted on it anyway and unlike a few years ago I loved its surface. In fact I painted 2 paintings on the accidentally purchased linens, each one a real pleasure. Next time I need supplies I intend to include linen in the mix, even though it is more expensive than cotton canvas.
Thursday, February 18, 2016
Sometimes I like to do a minimalist composition, one where there are really very few, simple shapes and a small focal point. In the case of this painting almost the whole scene is made up of one large light area of the wall and one shadow area. The challenge is to allow each of the 2 shapes to have enough variation so it is restful but not boring. The diagonal line of the shadow's edge is interesting to me, and especially the shadows of the plant.