Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Too Little Time? Don't Paint.




No sense painting, if you have too little time,says Schmid. I didn't have much time today. I had two doctor appointments nearly back to back. But I did manage to squeeze in an hour in the AM and a half hour in the PM. With a painting that's well underway, that's enough to define a few things, work out a few values, scrutinize how it's going. Steve and Zac was just the painting for today's schedule. I made a little progress, but had to keep a lid on it. Working too fast in a short a period of time is the biggest reason we make mistakes and have to spend unnecessary time making corrections. Schmid's warning makes a lot of sense.

Tomorrow, I have another appointment, but it's in the morning. Steve and Zac will get a  session of reasonable length in the PM. I schedule all my check ups in September or October. I do not like being dragged out of the house/studio when the temps fall and the snows come. With a reasonable number of hours to spend, Zac's shirt will become more of a shirt, his hair more hair-like and Steve should become more Steve.  

23 comments:

  1. That's the worst thing about life, it gets in the way of painting.

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    1. It sure does Mick--but only if we try to do more than our time allows.

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  2. I read somewhere that a painter needs at least four hours in the studio to get in one good hour of painting! You use your time well. Good for you!
    Not matter what is going on in my daily life I will spend some time painting!
    I very much enjoy your blog Linda.
    You hang in there.
    Be well.
    Your art buddy,
    Michael

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    1. Thanks Michael. I think four hours is a good amount of time. But yesterday I only had an hour in the AM before I had to get ready to go dross town to the next doc appointment. By the time we got back, a half hour was all I could muster and I noticed I had to pull away. I was making mistakes. My hand wasn't as steady as it is in the morning,my favorite time to paint.
      Not this morning unfortunately. One more doc to see. This afternoon I'll see if I can't do better by Steve's skin tones. If not I'll read. Thursday is totally free.

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  3. It takes so much patience not to give into the temptation to rush. That is why I am so bad at sewing. I wanted to finish everything so fast.

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    1. Yes it does Margaret and I'm short on it. I used to love sewing. You can't go fast with it. I learned that right off. I was the kind of sewer who hated repairing clothing, but loved to make my kids their Halloween costumes, myself weird outfits with plaquet pockets cut on a bias; toss pillows, table runners. I was fascinated with how you made drapes with full linings that hung right. It was the drapes that taught me to go slow and through all the steps, no short cuts there. Ironing was extremely important too. Today, I've only met one dressmaker who does go through all the steps. Everyone else was in a hurry and their work showed their impatience. I left them. What do you sew?

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  4. My controls wiil be in the days of difficult climate, with snow and ice,dear Linda ... in November and December!
    The important thing is that everything goes well! I know from experience that, if all goes well, nevertheless constitute a form of interference in the activities and days... I hope that the enthusiasm of the workshop will be able to soothe the discomfort of follow-up checks.
    You're doing great!

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    1. My white cells, my red cells, my whatever that starts with an M are just fine. Going along for a year and seven months more on Arimidex and then I will be finished with the total cure and a full fledged BC survivor. Although I'm surviving very well these days. Follow up checks are just part of the routine. Ellis had a tiny heart attack when he was fifty four. He is still considered a heart patient. I guess I'll always be considered a cancer patient too. What a drag. It's like toilet paper sticking to your shoe. You can't shake it and be who you were before. When I'm painting, working, I don't think of any of this.

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  5. Luck with your next doctor appointments.
    ;)

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    1. Have to do what you have to do to stay finely tuned. But what a drag.

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  6. Painting looking good. Hope all's well at the docs.

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    1. That's. Just normal check ups--dentist,dermatologist, oncologist. I've but one complaint: my damn knee. I see that guy in November for a cortisone booster. I'd love to get a replacement over the winter, but I'm a sissy. "They" say it's the most painful of the replacement ops. Takes twelve weeks of physical therapy, pain killers and having to figure out how to paint sitting down and get up and down flights of stairs. And will I be able dance to rock and roll on a phony knee that may not pivot? I am getting pretty sick of limping along. Other than that, I'm great, actually a boring patient for all these guys. Even the knee isn't as bad as others talk. The painting is actually a little lighter than this reproduction.

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  7. Smart scheduling. Good luck with the appointments.

    Your painting is getting stronger everyday.

    About the still life, I meant that it is beautiful, and that that doesn't just happen, there are choices you made--many--in painting "what was there."

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    1. Thank you. I should hope so. I'm throwing myself into this arena fully. Something has got to come of it

      I understood. Have you noticed that the choices we make while painting, we rarely actually realize we're making them. My decisions seem to be made mostly intuitively. When nothing comes to me, then I have to back off and think about it. That's why I immediately like this guy Schmid. He boiled what I had to think about down to four elements (words): color, value, drawing, edges. Now I have to say edges never bother me; I know what should be soft, what should be hard. Drawing/measurement sometimes goes askew, but I can get that right off. It's color and its value that usually stumps me. You don't have that problem. You are an excellent coloratura (to borrow a operatic term) :-) I do think that he left out composition.

      With still life composition is a cognitive set up. With yesterday's, the set up was what it was. Nothing was staged. The composition could have been heavy on the left side and petered out on the right. Then I would have had to improvise for balance and continuity. I would have had to make a choice. In art class years ago, what looked like a good set up from center stage easels, could have been off key for the stage left and right easels, but improvisation was never talked about. Students who didn't get the two or three prime spots, usually came up with weak paintings. I hated that class. In figurative drawing, those problems don't exist. The figure looks good all the way around.

      Well look how you got me started--and on a day where painting time is limited to the afternoon when I'm not so fresh and enthusiastic. I should paint more at night.

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  8. Wow they are really filling out. Great colors and values. I had a correction to make the other day and should have been done with a watercolor then. Little time and a wandering eye and I began playing with another part. Not ruined, but it would have been better had I left it alone.

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    1. Schmid also says when repeating the same brush stroke in the same area over and over again, that's a sign to walk away. I do that sometime. I think I'll publish his list today. You'll find it interesting Dan. I'm guilty of quite a few painting faux pas.

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  9. Good advice from Schmid. I know I have hurried through paintings and very much regretted it! I like how this is looking....the eyeglasses, for one thing, are impressive! accurate!

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    1. Thanks. Took a teeny, tiny brush and a steady hand going slow. In the PM, my hand isn't as steady as it is in the AM. What is happening with my study of Schmid is that I am getting more and more particular about keeping my palette clean and workable as well as my brushes in their original forms. I like laying out the paint in worm shapes (Vianna Szabo) and I'm using my palette knife all the time, where once I used it hardly at all. I'm soaking in the techniques. I like it. It's about time I shaped up and quit some of my sloppy ways. This is a formative year for me.

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  10. It's looking so good already, Linda. Steve's eyes look so warm. And I love how you schedule your appointments. :)

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    1. It's a pain in the arse to go, a disruption, so why not put all the disruptions in one month and be done with it? I have one more to go next week (dentist) and I'll be thoroughly examined and poked and prodded and totally through. I like that. Then I get my flu shot at the drug store and hope no colds come my way over the winter. I they do it's tea and B&B, not a totally unpleasant way to suffer.

      Thanks. I was a bit rushed/flustered yesterday. I do not like painting interuptus. Makes me nervous. Makes me make mistakes--like botch up Steve's skin tones. I should know better.

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  11. I know all about the "lack of time" factor, living it right now, but I think the painting is coming along nicely.

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    1. Me too. I'm getting steadier. And I'm learning a lot about handling oils that I had forgotten--the constant cleaning of brushes, the importance of cleaning the palette mixing center regularly, mixing values only with a palette knife, freezing them to prolong their life, and the best: when the paint worms are nearly gone, mixing them all together to form a most luscious gray to carry on to a freshly set up palette of the same format. No paint goes wasted.
      I was so happy to read Schmid who said painting fast will come with lots of practice going slow and calculating the shapes). As I watch you all turn these paintings out daily, I was feeling a bit like a snail. Schmid, a man with a respected reputation, okayed proceeding cautiously. He calmed me down.

      But you have adjusted to your lack of time quite nicely by adjusting your sizes. In so doing, you are also training yourself to up your production. When you do have more time, you can paint two instead of one per day. Not a bad move.

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  12. Sometimes books and workshops came into my life as a revolution!
    All ... in the air, all for my own good ... But then there decanting, then reconstruction of everything, just like after the war.
    Who I am and what I really feel my inside all this painting-action ...
    I paint my emotions, the photo is an input, but I do not stop there.
    The color and move with the water the color, is closer to the feeling.
    The fact that the paper will never return as it was white invites you to stop in action today, and ... make a new tomorrow!
    The watercolor is a way to see and hear HERE and NOW
    I'm passionate about so much for this.
    Everything flows and changes
    with my thoughts ... I archive the paper yesterday in favor of what I am / I will paint today.
    Tomorrow is still different.
    Go in the wind as the lovely trees in your garden,feel you free..You are a strong woman and already a strong painter,Linda!

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