Thursday, July 12, 2012

I'm Ready.




I had every intention of following Jean Spitzer's advice to give JD a rest. I was going to pick up where I left off in my pastry series. The canvas has been prepped for months--maybe six? While Ellis hates my chocolate mice, I adore them. They're weird.

 After my morning coffee, I went down stairs with purpose and never got past the watercolor station set up on the bar. It was a mess. I had left brushes scattered about. The paint tubes hadn't been put back in their slots. Yesterday's garden painting was just laying there in harms way. I looked at it and thought,"You know, that corner should be lighter." And the morning was shot. Not only did I lighten the corner, but I tore off a third of the painting. That top part wasn't very good. Sloppy.

 As I was putting the altered piece away, there was a remnant piece of 140lb paper. From memory--and because I hadn't emptied the water container from yesterday and the water was relatively clean--I soaked the paper, mounted it and did a wet-on-wet sketch of JD. Who else? It came out resembling a smaller boy with an extremely homely face. I kept trying to make him better looking, but with no luck. I went for lunch while he dried. He didn't get any better looking when I came back. That's when I noticed on the reference photograph  that JD's face was really red oxide/with a tad of burnt umbra. I gave the ugly kid's face a swipe. I liked it. I made a mental note. I cleaned up and went on to the studio where I completed--or as I think of it--went as far as I could go with JD's charcoal drawing. I'm satisfied. Now I can rest and enjoy some pastries over the weekend.


28 comments:

  1. The crop worked very nicely. Well done.

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  2. Cara Linda,hai tutto!Un carboncino molto incisivo,un acquarello con i colori giusti e sei riuscita a rendere brillante il giardino con un crop!Buon fine settimana con i dolci che ti sei meritata,dopo tanto lavoro duro!

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    1. It did click today Rita. I'm feeling pretty good. For a while there though, I was choking on how much I had bitten off. I do have a dogged ambition that keeps me chasing what I want to catch.--Maybe it's called stubbornness? You have a good weekend too. Tomorrow, I'm going swimming and dining with friends who don't give a hoot about art. Poor souls.

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  3. I admire your stubbornness! I need some of that for my cows.
    I like both watercolors, the crop of the flowers looks great! And you must dream JD by now!

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    1. I do have JD on the brain. I thought I'd take a break and paint pastries for a bit and let what I learned percolate. Maybe you should do that with your cow? If you'd rather not, you could try making a copy and cut out the cows to see if adding more cows is closer to what you're after. Thanks. Cropping is a valuable tool.

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  4. The drawing has everything that you would want, great gesture that reads true and charming features that I'm sure are a good representation of the young man who is your muse. Love the looseness of the other two.

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    1. Thanks Mick. It's about time. Watercolors are nice fillers considering my lack of skill with the medium, but I was getting a bit concerned when I wasn't getting anywhere near to a likeness. Today felt good.

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    1. Me too JJ. I'd thought I'd lost it. Thanks. May the force be with you.

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  6. A very smart face is looking at us.
    A good outcome!!

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    1. Thanks M. I hope the kid is smart, for sure he's cocky. He's twelve and a looker. There's trouble ahead.

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  7. Excellent - charcoal and watercolors! I love that you seem to know when to keep redeeming and when to stop. And it seems like you always get to that final ta-daa moment when it all comes together! Now you can have your pastries - and make a batch to eat as well:-)

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    1. Well I don't know about the watercolors, I really feel inadequate in that realm, but the charcoal did come out--not as quickly as the others I've done. It was a struggle. I'm sure the painting is going to drive me up the wall as well.

      I'm not going to eat pastries; I just like to look at them, photograph them and paint them. I had a trip-tyke going before I decided to give this year to portraiture. I thought I'd squeeze panel two in over the weekend. I'm not a fast painter. As much as I say don't think, react to what the painting tells you to do, I am deliberate and do like to give the paintings I'm working on time to rest so I can get a fresh eye.

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  8. These both pieces are beautiful, Linda. love the colors on the flowers!

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    1. Thanks Hilda. Keeping an eye out for the possibility of cropping, is not a bad idea. Just because we painted the whole piece of paper, doesn't mean every passage was a good one. That upper portion was very weak. Being able to SEE your work clearly and unemotionally is very important in this work.

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  9. You are too kind to me! I am sure you have so much sensibility that you are a fabulous photographer too. You do something unique,what I do - everybody does. love your paintings, I am studying them well,and they are so nice!

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    1. But you do it better than everybody else. You have an eye for the shot. I shoot a lot, I figure there's got to be a decent photo in there somewhere. I really do enjoy photography. I used to have a black and white darkroom and develop my own film. I spent hours looking at negatives through the enlarger, a Bessler that's still in the basement; I can't bring myself to get rid of it. They were so many good hours of pure joy. This digital age, I'm lost. I used to like to set the camera manually, every which way--you know bracketing, trying different exposures. Those SLR were a lot less susceptible to hand/bodyshake. If there were computers then, I would have had blast. Enjoy your Maria craft. You're good at it.

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  10. Here you have got a very good works. they ar very beautufyl. The hands of the child are very well, I think that the hands are very dificult for painting. Congratulations

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    1. Thank you Eva. Hands used to scare me off till I did my hands. I did a lot of hand drawings, all of my left since I draw with my right, Then I modeled them out of Plasticine and made a plaster mold. From there I made paper sculptures and grouped them all together in a single piece. I called it Tenacity. I haven't been afraid of hands since. Bottom line draw them and draw them till you're sick of them. By then, you'll understand the structure and a hand will never scare you again.

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  11. Linda, I would definitely paint from this sketch. His left arm is such a good lead-in to the rest of the sketch, and you stay there with the face and his right hand doing the thumbs-up. If you don't paint it, I will. :)

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    1. I am going to paint from this sketch with the aid of the others. In the little, ugly watercolor, I was looking as the colors he was wearing and considering will I keep to them? I don't know, but I do like the white stripe down his left leg.

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  12. You are a very brave woman, Linda! For starters, cropping…? Is more likely to crop my hair than a drawing. But, it worked and the painting is wonderful! So, I’ll keep that in mind. Drawing and photographing pastries but not eating them, that’s another act of bravery. I have a special affection for pastries.
    Your handsome young muse looks beautiful in both charcoal and watercolor drawings. I specially like the colors you used; they make JD sparkier –if that’s possible.
    Warm regards.

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    1. Cropping is just a tool. Why not use it when there are parts you like, and parts you can't believe you painted? The world doesn't have to know you messed up on a section.

      Thank you. I think I may stick to what he's wearing. I like the colors too.

      As for pastries, I do love to look at them in display cases in the bakery. The colors are luscious, worthy of painting.

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  13. Wonderful.

    Sometimes just saying "I'm done" is enough to give one a fresh eye.

    Definitely worked here.

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    1. I am feeling really good. The success of that drawing energized me. It was getting me down.
      Today, I'm cleaning the studio, organizing my reference photographs and painting banana dream pie--having a grand time. I forgot how much I like to paint pastries.

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  14. Man I love the way that drawing turned out! I see why you initialed. Superb! I also like your watercolor study. Now that I am doing more work on canvas, lord knows what I am going to do, I am so prone to cutting down my finished product on paper!

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    1. Aye, there's the rub Dan. After I posted that watercolor, I "played" with it again--lightened the upper right corner some more to fade it out into the background. I found a flat course bristle brush very handy for light scrubbing and learned a new technique. I'm glad you mentioned that picture and I saw your comment now. Yesterday, I was going to look up how much to mat and frame the thing and forgot all about it.

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