Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Ah . . . I can see the light in the piazza! Actually, I guess I can see the light in the cloister. Nearing completion of this one now. Only that noodly balustrade is left and some touch ups here and there and here and there and . . .

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Slowly, yet inevitably, this piece moves forward.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Going to try and get a couple hours at the drawing board in this afternoon after running around earlier today doing this and that and the other. Managed a few hours over the weekend on this one, so here it is as of now . . .

Friday, March 26, 2010

'Construction' has been lagging the last couple of days but there is some work to show for the time. Before I sit down to work today, here it is as it stands now. I guess I can squeeze in a couple of hours at the board before dinner time.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

More black . . .

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

As noted previously, there's a new work taking shape on the drawing board. And also as noted before, this one is going to be heavy on graphite. Not much showing as yet, I have basically been building up the strong darks in those shadow areas, layer upon layer of graphite.

Since this work is going to rely upon the subtleties of shadow as well as the intensity of strong light, I have to make certain that all those different surfaces move backwards and forwards. To that end, I am making strong use of the softest of my pencils, at the moment using a lot of HB, 2B and 4B, to lay down my sharpest darks at the first as I will then work away from those and use ever harder grades of graphite to render softer, lighter, less intense shades of black.

Unlike my painter friends, who will use cool colors to make objects recede and warm colors to make things move forward on their canvases, I can only make use of shades of grey. Layering subtle variations of black and grey tones one on top of the other, will produce the needed distances.

One thing I have always maintained when offering a critique on a young artist's work is to never be afraid to go dark. I think in a lot of instances, what might otherwise be a very fine work, can be just that much off as a result of the artist being afraid to go dark and using intense tonality to define shadow and light. Ten minutes worth of sparking a work with an HB or 2B where needed can make the difference, I feel, between a pleasant work and a really striking, inviting and well defined work.

Monday, March 22, 2010

After a couple of days that felt like early May, a bit on the chill side today with rain. A very good day to be sitting down to the drawing board after a few 'days off'. This next work will be headed up to the Bennington Center for the Arts later in the summer for a June through August hanging of this year's edition of American Artists Abroad. I dug into old material from my time in Europe over 40 years ago to find a nice bit of inspiration.

I will post the beginnings of this one in the next day or two, once there is something (other than a LOT of dark graphite) to see. By the time this one is completed, there is not going to be but a tad of the Bristol Board showing through some really dark, dark shadows. Curiosity up? Stay tuned.

Friday, March 19, 2010

My daffs are enjoying the warmth and the sun.
So am I!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

I'm wearing my green, are you?

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Completed fifteen minutes ago and now ready to head to the work table for matting and framing, this one weighs in at 11" x 9".
Requested yesterday, here below, is a close-up detail of the foreground horse.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Yesterday's work . . . I think I am seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, or better put, the light on the other side of the blinkers?

Friday, March 12, 2010

Where this one stands as I sit down to work this afternoon.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Studio time is about to begin but before I sit down to work, wanted to post yesterday's bit of work. A lot of 'stuff' going on in this one now. Not sure what all that rigging is but trying to be as specific to my reference as possible as I know horse folks are going to know every strap and buckle and detail. For me, as an artist, it is not as important to detail and copy every single little piece of leather as long as, in the end, the overall final image has enough of the details to allow the viewer's eye to fill in whatever missing pieces there might be. The important stuff is going to be there.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Life, as it often does, intervened yesterday and the studio was dark for the day. With thoughts of taking advantage of the gorgeous weather (just over 60 degrees) I headed out with an artist friend for some afternoon roaming, looking for anything interesting to reference. It was, also, a pleasant way to spend a few hours in the company of a good friend! We did not come away with a great deal of interesting material but did manage a few stops along the way. I wonder, can you figure out what might be coming up as far as subject matter for works in the near future? Your first two guesses don't count.

I'll post an update on the current work tomorrow. Now it's time for me to get to the drawing board.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Something new on the board.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

As noted earlier this week, deadlines are looming. So, with that in mind, midnight oil was burned in the studio yesterday and then two early work hours this morning and this new work is done. The image is just shy of 9" square, but I don't have a title for it yet. If any of you looking in have a brilliant idea for one, let me know.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Yesterday's bit of work. Early into the studio today as deadlines loom. The importance of getting the softness of the feathers is key now as that soft quality is going to be what separates the bird from all that rough texture of the tree and really pops it off the background.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Something new up on the board. Working for 'gallery things' in the next couple of months now. This little nuthatch perched and posed on one of my big, backyard gnarly barked trees last summer. I just stuck my head out of my kitchen door and took a dozen shots before the little creature had enough and flew off. Sometimes, the best material is just right outside your back door!