Friday, September 12, 2014

Daydreamer

Daydreamer.  I like the hand, the watch, the earring; the broad looks like she's been around the block.  I hate what's out the window.  Might have to move over my baker's rack filled with plants to obliterate that siding and downspout? Or enough is enough?  I obviously have my photographer's hat on. This is a pretty clean shot.  I'll know for sure when I have it blown up to 18 x 12, big enough to draw a grid.
I increased the exposure to get more details in the neck area. The hand is clearly defined and so is the watch.  I noticed that return students had a number of photographic blow ups so they could see the details.  This one is logical--and would make a good painting on it's own. I think I'm ready for class on Monday.  I'm not going to blow these up till after I get Todd's input.  He's the one with Photoshop. Maybe he can make the adjustments I think should be made?


I spent the morning reviewing Colormunky, that device I told you about a while ago that standardizes the color between photographic devices--camera, computer, printer, smartphone, ipad.  My printer prints two steps darker than what I see on my monitor. My monitor shows the camera's images two shades lighter than they are on the viewer.  This drives me crazy.  That Colormunky is definitely on my wishlist should I pursue portraiture as a business. 

Also on my wish list is Photoshop Lightroom 5. It looks to have enough photographic play in it for me at this time.  While I am happy with the pose in this photograph, I would like to darken down the doorwall in the background and I would like to put natural greenery in the window area instead  of that wall of siding.  I have no idea if Lightroom can do that?  I do have lots of questions for Todd on Monday.  Had I known the importance of color photographic know-how in this class. I would have taken that class first. 

Way back in the late sixteenth century, the Venetian Technique didn't call for using a camera or a grid system. Todd Burroughs likes both for they facilitate an accurate contour drawing with minimal errors. Richard Schmid, as expected from his prefered loose, alla prima technique, likens the Line and Mass Technique, (another description of a start that involves a detailed line drawing),  to coloring in the lines in a coloring book--and he shuns the camera, but does own a Hasselblad view camera.

Which method we prefer depends on what we want the final painting to look like.  For myself, I like the alla prima style of going right for the color with expressionistic brushstrokes, but for commissioned portraits where, in my experience, the client wants an rendering of their decrepit,  deceased mother, the Venetian approach would have thrilled them--they would have paid up instead of stiffing a highly impressionable teenager thinking about a future in fine art!




 

6 comments:

  1. You are so right, that Joe Public wants traditional, realistic looking pictures rather than expressive abstracted work. Every time! As for the technical stuff....never noticed if the colour differs on PC, camera, printer. Good photo, so I'm jealous.....wish I was so photogenic...and youthful!

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    1. You flatter me lady, but I do see the hair on my nose and the cottage cheese upper arms. No fooling the camera with equipment limited to just the camera. I know a lot more fancy stuff would be needed to set up a photography corner where subjects can be dressed up and posed properly for the fifty some odd shots one would need to take to get one worthy of spending weeks painting. When I modeled a hundred years ago, the photographer had a proper studio, an assistant who adjusted the lights and a stylist who kept fixing my hair, make up and the folds of whatever I was wearing. Proper Portrait painting is really two professions requiring skills in two very different disciplines.

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  2. LOVE THE LIGHTING! can't beat natural light... u captured the watch just right! :-)

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    1. Thanks Chris. That means a lot coming from you. You are the best at the hardest, macro photography.

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  3. I think it is absolutely wonderful. I am truly jealous. I have traveled so much, yet my photos all stink. There is so much to it, and I never took the time to learn. Your work is terrific, and you keep improving it. I cover photography in one of my fine art courses, but so many of my students come to class with the pre-conceived notion that photography is merely a mechanical process. It takes an entire semester to change their minds. I wish I had more first-hand knowledge. In any event, your work is great!

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    1. Thank you so much JJ. It has been a week of hurry up and find that owner's manual, read it and then put the info to use. I was very pleased to read that the camera had a high resolution pixel count. That's what this caliber of photograph requires. Then f stops. On my old very reliable film camera the f stops are right up front so you can bracket manually very easily. In digitalis, they give you cute pictures of possible lighting situations. Okay, so try fooling around with those. One was for portraits; it had a sylloette of a woman with a hat on. I tried that. I didn't like the results. Obviously set on Auto let the camera do it's thing which was better than mine. Then in the computer, adjustments had to be made. My Photoshop program only has four choices: color, exposure, vividness and sharpness. If color stretch is sometimes okay; it's just enough. I usually decrease the exposure--that could be due to how the computer translates the I for from the camera---lighter than it looks in the camer's viewfinder--a lot lighter. Vividness usually punches up the color too much for this tyle of photo, but I use it sometimes to correct the colors in a painting. It's not the greatest on very light areas or blues/purples. As for the sharpness, I used that for this since sharp is what todd would like to see. What you see is as sharp as my software would let me go before distorting the very lights and the patterns in the fabrics. The ColorMunki would be a great help I think. Unfortunately it's $509. Another help would be Adobe Photoshop Lightroom I guess? That sells for 144 at Amazon, but the description of it's features wasn't elaborated and it said that price was for a Mac. It's more money for a Windows PC. Iboth items are too much money for this student for this could be one time class finish that painting or not.

      Now the instructor said he has the equipment to fix the photos and how does that help me when I fly solo? It's rediculous. Hopefully I am jumping to conclusions. I'll see the next class when I take these in for his opinion, which I hope is as good as yours.

      After all this, I must say hp's semi-gloss paper made a beautiful print after all that. That paper is costly too. This class is a real pip! I wish I was getting college credit for it; it's costing me the same.

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