|Jordanna, oils, 11 x 14"|
Four things can go wrong with a paintings, says Schmid: color, values, drawing, edges. One of these or several in combination.
Usually the cause is working too fast and trying to get too much on the canvas all at once, carelessness measuring for the drawing, making the little shapes of color the wrong shapes and lastly, too many interruptions from the outside world that broke concentration. This painting of Jordana went through all of those errors this past week and is probably still in a state of error, but times up.
CONCLUSION OF THE QUALITY OF MY WORK THIS WEEK: I HAVE A LOT MORE HEADS TO PAINT TO MASTER THE LOOSENESS THAT LOOKS EASY, BUT ISN'T.
Today, I have a big interruption from the outside world. My grandson is celebrating his HS graduation. To mark the milestone, Ellis and I got him a tandem skydive jump complete with video, still shots and tee. It's not a gift he'll forget. I hear it takes your breath away, but while it was never on my Bucket List, it was on his. It's nice to check it off while you're still young and invulnerable. Happy graduation Darling.
I journaled the phases Jordanna went through this week and my thoughts about her development.
If interested do scroll through. Meanwhile have a lovely weekend and do paint if you have no interruptions to throw you off.
HEAD #1; Day #1; Tough Tilt Tiny Surface.
|Initial Draw-in. Interesting, but poor.|
|Resulted in a scrape out. |
I didn't get the tilt of the head due to my poor drawing.
Why do I choose to show you this 'failure'? Because it wasn't. My discoveries put me on the right track. Today's results will lead to tomorrow's successes. Cliché? You bet. True? Absolutely, or it wouldn't be a cliché.
DAY #2; Second Start Head #1
I ADMIT IT! I AM A RICHARD SCHMID GROUPIE.
|Book Two was delivered at the right time.|
|Family Dolls oil on canvas, 24 x 48" by Richard Schmid. Now this is a still life|
that turns me on to still lifes. It's anything but static. I might have to round up some dolls.
The day started out with a bang. Late yesterday Alla Prima II arrived. It's a 2013 expanded version of Richard Schmid's Alla Prima Everything I know about Painting, 1998. Morning coffee was spent reading the introduction and seven pages of 'Good Ideas and Free Advice,' chapter one. Schmid's words--like 'analytical grasp' and 'working circumstances'--urged me to put down the book and get back to work. As Richard Bach said in Jonathan Livingston Seagull, the book fell open to the right pages. My errors yesterday were not analyzing my subject enough to catch that tilt of her head and working in a size that I already knew from Max and Trevor was too small and too uncomfortable. Before descending the stairs to my workplace, I measured a small portrait by Sawyer we have over the sofa. It was nine by eleven, a size I didn't have in stock. Eleven by fourteen would have to do for a fresh start.
(When I said a head a day, I didn't mean a different painting a day. Fine art painting doesn't work that way. Some heads go fast; others take longer. At this stage in my development there will be repetitions for I am more interested in building my skills than cranking out a lot of pictures).
|At the end of the day, a reasonable likeness was achieved--I think?|
|A mirror image is a good way to check out the accuracy of a drawing|
(When I said a head-a-day, I didn't mean one you never saw before. I did mean one would be painted everyday. Today, yesterday's needed major drawing corrections).
DAY 3, HEAD #1; HALF-DAY SESSION; ERRANDS
After reading Choices, an insert before Chapter 2 in Richard Schmid's Alla Prima II, published in 2013, I made a journal note:
It is refreshing to me to have finally found a genre that demands a knowledge of structure on a par with architectural design and construction--accuracy of measurement; color selected according to its spacial effects; tools well cared for to give their most precise performance and an artisan who is capable of being diligent, thoughtful and calculating on every stroke of her brush. Add to that the wet-into-wet technique, the direct painting method, and gestural portraiture absolutely suits my temperament, a gifted child who could always draw raised by non art loving parents who nevertheless found her way to Lautrec, Van Gogh, Picasso, Nevelson, Hess, Sol Lewitt, DeKooning and Pollack and finally back to Van Gogh, Richard Schmid, Holbein and the Dutch Masters. How lucky I am to have found the best path for a time when I have the time unencumbered by earthly concerns.
Ran out of Cobalt Violet. Turned out I was right including it in my twelve color palette. Nice to know, but the lack of it stopped me cold. Jorgette's skin tones fall mostly in the Transparent Red Oxide family with a tad of Cadmium Yellow Medium, Alizarin and yes, Cobalt Violet. Her hand is not going to be a walk in the park--maybe it's not a walk at all. Paint what enticed you to paint in the first place. Leave the unimportant go. Her thumb and index finger is about it for the hand and a suggestion will do.
DAY FOUR: SCARY
Resemblance is starting to take shape, but a misplaced dab did give her what looks like a wandering eye.
Tomorrow, early AM, the fix? Only if I work slowly, accurately, with lots of squinting, backing up and checking the mirror image.