Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Thanks Sharon! Sorry Sharon.

A Day Off With Sharon Wright

Sharon Wright and I Skype.  When we spoke  last night, she was kind enough to mug for the camera and I took three shots of her.  I spent today attempting Sharon alla prima.  She was a great break from color charts and provoked an epiphany. I will live well past a hundred.  I need the time to get this painting thing right.

Alla prima is both a wet into wet painting technique and a  style of painting. It is the most difficult of the styles calling for a keen, articulate brushwork, brush work I haven't mastered. This was painted wet into wet using just four colors, three of which I have charted--Ultramarine, Terra Rosa and Viridian. Cobalt mixed with Alzarine, three steps down on the Cobalt chart was used for her shirt.

While I have a good sense of mixing from charting, I need as much practice as I can get  developing the lively brushwork that characterizes the Alla Prima style.  Today's effort, thanks to Sharon's mugging that excited me enough to put  the charts  aside, was a delight, if not a disaster. Sharon's face and nose are too long--not in life, not in the photograph, but on this canvas. I did get her fabulous cheekbones though. Sharon hasn't seen the last of me.

"Bue larger compositions must mature gradually, and for a drawing with, let's say, 3 seamstresses, one might have to draw 90 seamstresses. Voilaacute; l'affaire."
  
Vincent Van Gogh from The Letters of Vincent Van Gogh, Penquin Books Ltd.



 

11 comments:

  1. This one was a surprise, a very haunting, spooky and expressive portrait, very interesting.

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    1. I haven't heard from Sharon yet. She might be insulted, but she was making weird faces for me so, I got a weird looking portrait. I think I like it. It reminds me of the movie Misery with Kathy Ates who plays a sociopath. Maybe I was actually painting myself thinking about making one more color chart? :-))

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  2. OMGoodness, Linda! You just made me laugh! your comment to Roger was too much...I don't think you'll hear from Sharon again...HOWEVER, this is an excellent portrait.. beautiful shadows and expression!!!

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    1. I hope you're wrong. She did a portrait of me that wasn't flattering and I thought nothing of it. The problems of portraiture painting are likely to get in the way of favorable ( to the sitter) results, but that can be rectified by doing several studies as Vincent pointed out to his brother. My sketch was she tech one, what I call a get acquainted sketch. From this one that pointed out the proportions and determined a palette, another could be done more accurately. I will probably give it a go. I love her expressive eyes, her cheekbones, her long English nose. The photo was interesting too. It had my reflection in the background. I liked that. This was just a part of the photo; the whole composition required a square format. Thanks. I did enjoy the day, the portrait study and most of all the break from charting.

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  3. OMG....it's brilliant! I love it! No messing, just you get on with it, Linda! I don't think my nose is too long, I think the nostrils are too small. Ha! Detail, no matter, it IS me!

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    1. I am thrilled I managed it. It was such great fun working with you. Your hamming it up for the camera strongly suggests you have quite a bit of show biz in you. How am I go to match that next time we speak?

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  4. Sharon loves it and so do I! Such energy and enthusiasm - and those eyes! Alla prima painting has the benefit of giving the artist only a short time to capture what is in front of her eyes and on her mind - and you did it! Love it, Linda!

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    1. Thanks Susan! I am so glad you commented. I was anxious for you to see it and opine. I'll keep working at this alla prima technique. It's difficult for me coming from a profession that dwelled on explicit details. An alla prima painting, however, does not need to be completed in a single session as I understand Richard Schmid. As long as you can keep the paint wet and pliable, it's still done in the alla prima method. Storing the painting in progress in a very cold place does that. (Right now I'm storing my palette in my freezer). Also using the slow drying mediums extended the paint's working time. That's why I bought Gamblin's slow dry medium. Haven't used it yet though.

      Sharon was a small painting, 9 x 11. It would have fit in the freezer had I wanted to keep it workable. Rain is huge by comparison. Alla prima is out with that one. Fast dry is in.

      It's been an interesting few weeks studying these different oils and the mixing mediums in addition to making those charts!

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  5. It is just brilliant! The expression is remarkable. You should be really happy with this. It is GREAT.

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    1. I am--and surprised. I feel like something is gelling. I'm working everyday. Painting has become my job--no that's not the right word, it sounds too boring and tedious--career is more accurate (even though no money is exchanging hands). :-)) I think Vincent and Schmid lit a fire.

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  6. I love this very expressive portrait , gorgeous in every way, Sharon must be thrilled !

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