Saturday, March 26, 2011

Working on the ladies and the background a bit

Karst Hills China - oil 2 x 3 feet

I did this in acrylic and posted in on July 13, 2010. I redid it in oil today and made it bolder. The "frame" remains acrylic undercoat of Venetian Red and overcoat of a hobby-shop type gold acrylic. It 2 x 3 feet on hardboard with base of triple-coated gesso.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Childe Hassam 1859-1935

Childe learned to paint in Boston. He started at age 21. He began displaying his street scenes at age 26. He spent three years in France and returned to NYC in 1889 [studio at 95 fifth Ave. at 17th street - wonder what's there now). He saw nature as still life. He felt the painter's first priority is to paint his own time. He used a low tone delicate palette. He was influenced by French impressionist but about 1889 realized there was an American school (after all we had George Inness, James Whistler and John Sergant). The US economy took a bad slump in 1896 (sound familiar) and he auctioned off 205 works which sold for an average of $47.00 (this was not considered a good auction result). His street scenes were great - cabbies and their horses - the stupid critics complained about his rainy days scenes and he switched to a sunlit palette. (Info from Childde Hassam - American Impressionist by Ulrich W. Hiesinger). I wished he had lived a bit longer - I could have met him.

Childe Hassam (1859-1935) at work

This is a photo of Childe Hassam in his studio in 1885 (excuse the flash reflection) Somewhat dark, definitely cold and cluttered. Is he dressed just for the photo - probably not. One window, up to the left. This photo always reminds me not to be a "studio wimp" just get to work. I painted a quick sketch for fun.
I'm getting visitors from China so I will briefly note my background as far as Chinese studies. I studied Chinese language at Stanford and University of CA Berkeley. I was drafted during the Vietnam war and signed up for Army Intelligence, hoping for Chinese language school. There were 20 in my intelligence class and we all had orders for language school (Spanish for me) but at the last minute they sent us all to Vietnam. I studied with a older Chinese scholar I found working in a watch shop in a market place. After Vietnam I spent a year in Germany and then went back to school at UC Berkeley. I studied with Kun Chang, Ch'en Shih-hsiang, Peter Boodberg, Tu Wei-ming and attended quite a few Buddhist sermons of Abbot To Lun in San Francisco. I finished the BA and then spent 5 years completing the Masters including several years in Taiwan at the Stanford Center and two years working for the National Palace Museum. I did Ph'D work in Seattle and by then I was married and had a child so I went out into the working world.....I have not yet visited mainland China. I would like to travel about China and paint. I find pleasure in learning and timely review (K'ung) but also have a distrust for the written word (Tao) and try to keep a sense of humor (Chuang). Excuse the old style ping yin.

After the wedding

So much rain I should not be using the flash but I need a photo at this point in case I blow the whole thing when doing the ladies. Using oil now.
I bought a half-inch filbert brush which I used for the oil layer.

Friday, March 18, 2011

After the wedding

starting to include the bride and two girls dancing about the lawn. I used white charcoal pencil to sketch in the ladies and their shadows.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Painting in process 2 feet x 3 feet

This is from a wedding photo that my daughter took and uses on her business card which you can see if you look close above the canvas. It's quite small. There are (will be) two girls and a new bride dancing about the lawn. I've started in acrylic. I am amazed how much moisture this surface soaks up (triple layered gesso on hardboard-masonite like board). I've sketched in where the figures will be but they don't show up in the photo. This took about 30 minutes. The focus is on establishing the values. If you get the values right the mind can fill in quite a bit. I will need to get the figures right though and dare not save them for last. Used only a one inch synthetic brush so far.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Landscape study 9 x 12

Study - after a painting by James Gurney.
Oil 9 x 12 on linen canvas.

Sister's Horse 2' x 2' oil on masonite

A bit of touching up on the face and hands and
I'll get off this bus. This is my first horse painting since I was a kid.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Landscape painting 9 x 12

Couldn't resist doing a James Gurney painting seen in the current issue of International Artist.
Just a practice piece of course - not for sale. Not quite finished actually.

Horse Painting in process

Moving on with oil -so much smoother and easier to apply.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Horse Painting in process

Enough acrylic
Moving it to the easel
and will now use oils

Monday, March 7, 2011

Horse Painting in process

Still using acrylic
Blocking in a bit more
I'll leave the background vague
Trying to keep believable values

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Horse Painting in process

Blocking in some color and dark areas.
Still using acrylic.
Plan to use oil for the final.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Painting in process

After Kareoki last night I darkened some of the sketch lines and put a layer of clear gesso over the sketch. This AM I put is some background color (deep yellow and UM blue plus a cheap not-very opaque white ). It's winter and there are trees in the back ground. My little sister raises Andalusian horses and I have always liked this little b&w photo of her with a new foul and mom.