Wednesday, October 12, 2016

New Abstract Landscape Painting

Here are the first few steps in the first week of work on a new landscape painting. I’ve worked with only 4 mixed acrylic colors, a dark but transparent violet, a deep but transparent crimson red, a transparent tint of cobalt blue, and a deep but transparent emerald green. All of these colors have been painted into a very wet surface, and often I used a wet brush to go over edges of painted areas.

I must emphasize that this painting is experimental. It is very different from any artwork I’ve made in the past. I have made landscapes but none that weren’t based in realism. While I have worked with many different techniques over the years, oils - graphite and pencils, watercolor, acrylics, mixed media distressed painting, graphics and computer graphics – these have always contained realistic images even when abstracting and/or also containing nonobjective passages. Instead, this painting is to be made up completely of abstracted washes and opaque passages of acrylic paint.

If this landscape works the way I want it to, I will create a new body of work based on it. If it does not, I will not pursue the technique any further. I’m hoping that upon completion - in addition to the obvious color transparencies and abstracted nature of the work - there will be an abstruse spiritual quality that projects to most viewers. There will only be one way to find out if that is so. I will have to make a questionnaire and poll viewers.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Finished Mixed Media Distressed Christmas Card Painting

The 10” x 10” mixed media distressed painting has gone through 6 stages with about 6 layers in each. While not completely satisfied with the painting, I’m done. However, this is not the final image for the Christmas Card. In order to make the 5 x 7 image I will have to crop out some of the various components in the painting. That will necessitate making copies of the various components so they can be pasted back into the 5 x 7 inch image using photo shop. That will not be as easy as it sounds. I will have to move things around, and possibly change the size and attitude of some elements until the entire composition comes together. I will make a comparison of the mixed media distressed painting and the card image on this blog when the card is ready to go to the printer so the viewer can see the differences between the two.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Harrison Ford Portrait Finished and Installed September 18, 2016

The 3 x 4 foot painting looks small next to the larger portrait of Leonardo DiCaprio. In the second image above changes in style and technique are also readily apparent; 1) the image is more fluid without damaging the likeness, 2) the fluidity is a result of the purposeful curvilinear shapes, 3) and the blended opaque and transparent passages. These last two techniques are different from the patchy chunks of opaque color used in the past though I continued to use that technique in this portrait as well.

I’m sad to say that Windows On Queen, our Goddaughter’s banquet facility at Character’s Restaurant in Lancaster, PA now has its complete compliment of character portraits. So, if I continue making these I shall have to find another venue for display. At the same time, I would like to move on to another body of more abstract work based in landscape. Perhaps I can continue to do both as well as doing more mixed media distressed paintings for the LGBTQ Pictionary. Good grief! I need to clone myself in order to do all this simultaneously!

Monday, September 5, 2016

Harrison Ford Portrait – One Week To Go

The details are a (BLEEP)! As I wrote in earlier posts, I’m working with a more complex technique on this portrait. Instead of working with all hard-edged patches of color I’m working with transparencies in some areas, and blending opaque areas in others, with both these techniques set against the hard-edged patches of color. Because of that I spent 3 hours on Harrison’s left eye yesterday, a small area of several square inches. In the flat opaque areas I am having to do two coats because the acrylic is drying transparent. So, I guess it is time to change brands of paint, or look for one that is labeled, "thick and opaque." Most acrylic paint colors should be opaque until thinned with medium and water to be transparent.* So, I am having to paint with the smallest of brushes in order to keep small details even and crisp, making sure the second coat is perfectly aligned with the first. Never the less I am extremely pleased with the painting, and I should be finished the week after my 72nd birthday.


* exceptions are magenta and pthalocyanine blue and green.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Ten Days Progress on the Harrison Ford Portrait

I am working hard-edged opaque passages of paint against soft edged blended opaque passages both of which are interspersed with transparent passages. Interestingly, there are sections of hard-edged passages in which I'm creating the appearance of transparencies. All of that marks a departure from the way I've worked on these over sized iconic portraits in the past. Because of this complex technique the work is slow, but I'm enjoying it tremendously.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Over Sized Harrison Ford Portrait For Characters Restaurant

Finally, we’ve landed in Rehoboth Beach longer than a week, and I’ve had time to work. I’ve played with Adobe Photoshop - inverted, colorized, reversed, polarized, cropped, tilted, turned, stylized, cropped, painted, transformed and combined the many images I found of Harrison Ford. The final manqué has been put on a grid and printed out in sections. I also made a grid on the 3 x 4 ft canvas and finished transferring the smaller image onto the larger canvas with pencil. I’ve mixed many of the main colors, and I’ve begun painting. I am also experimenting with a different technique for this portrait. All the other over sized portraits at Windows on Queen were done with distinct hard-edged patches of color. This time I will mix passages of blended color with the usual hard-edged color, and I hope I can make the two of these work together stylistically.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Sixth State: Five More Layers on This Years Distressed Painting Mixed Media Christmas Card

I continue to write about the many steps involved in creating our 2016 Christmas Card. It is a process that I return to over time as I also work on other art projects.

Just five layers to go and the painting will be done! However, I’ve several other projects in progress so will not return to the card until August. It should be done toward the end of that month.  The final steps will include; 1) decide which portion of the painting will be photographed for the actual card, 2) Photograph and crop the image, 3)  the card design (inside and outside) created and sent off to the printer.  Unlike my usual mad rush to finish, this card should be done well before mailing time for the holidays.