Friday, February 27, 2009

Ongoing Work...Some more progress shots.

Here are a few more shots showing progress on my current painting. This painting is 16" x 20" and I really want to get it up to that next level so am putting in the time. I really want it to evoke that 'anything is possible feeling' we have each Spring when the days get longer. So the atmosphere, light etc. have to be just right.

I am using viridian green, titanium white, raw umber, cobalt blue, cadmium yellow and hints of other colours, cadmium orange and medium green light, to create various colour mixes.

Each of the shots above are a few hours apart. How long does it take to paint an average size painting? That's something I have been pondering for the last while. I guess it all depends on how good you are at planning, choosing the right colour mixes first time and avoiding all the errors which make us have to redo an area of the work. To this end I have been researching other artists who are painting somewhat similar subject matter to me. Currently I spend between 10-30 hours on paintings between 12"x 16" to 16"x 20". I am now realising it doesn't really matter so much how long it takes. What is more important and will pay back all extra time involved is to take whatever length of time needed to paint a work to the best possible quality. That is what hopefully will produce a second look from the viewers and lead to more recognition. So I am researching technique and brushwork and hope that I can put what I learn into practice. Also I am trying to be more disciplined in painting regularly. When I drew portraits in pencil, I found that as I kept drawing, after a few weeks I was getting more 'fluid' at drawing. I was getting it right quicker and first time with no mistakes in the likeness I was trying to draw. I hope it will be the same as I begin to paint with more regularity. Regular followers of this blog, feel free to comment if you can see an improvement hopefully in my work. I sure hope my efforts will begin to bear fruit. Hopefully I can focus and not to rest on my laurels over the following while. That's it for now. The next post might be a revisit to poetry corner. I think it's about due...

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Latest Work -- Le Mer de l'Herbe

Here is a few more photos showing progress on my current painting. It is 20" x 16" and oils on canvas. I have taken each photo about an hour apart. I am working from a photo. The girl and the little dog are from my imagination. I spent a lot of time on getting the drawing accurate as I felt I wanted to stay true to the photo and not lose the overall feeling that it gave. The photo is from copyright free photo gallery.
The colours I used for the sky are cobalt blue and titanium white. I am mixing the greens from various combinations of cadmium yellow with manganese blue or cobalt blue, and adding titanium white as necessary.
All of what is shown here is really the underpainting, and there is quite a lot to do beyond that stage as anyone following the blog will have seen in previous demonstrations.

This is where the painting is at at the moment, about one third of the way I would think. It's shaping up reasonably ok, although I am not sure I won't change the name, and the green seems a bit too emerald - so will work on that. I think this image has a lot of potential to be a beautiful painting, reminiscent of all those lazy summer days we all have enjoyed at some stage in our lives, so I will enjoy putting in the effort on getting it just right. There is still a lot to do - hope you will enjoy seeing the progress and check back during the week when I will be updating...

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Clare Island Finished - Gallery Sales - New Work

Clare Island -- finished painting.

Clare Island -- at underpainting stage.

The above image is of my most recent painting which I have just finished. It is from a photo taken by my parents on holiday in Mayo last year. Although I have never been there, Clare island is apparently a quite popular destination for tourists wishing to experience the quiet and remoteness of the islands off the west coast of Ireland. You can stay overnight on the island, and really get that feeling of remoteness. I went to the Aran Islands some years ago and it's like stepping back in time. There are very few places in the world that have the same aura about them as these places. I hope they never change too much.

As for how I am doing in the gallery... I am very pleased with the outcome so far. I have sold four paintings since I submitted them at the end of January. I also sold one original outside of the gallery from my studio. Sales of my prints in the real world as opposed to internet, has also been reasonable. That said, I am beginning to think spending time trying all the various ways of marketing on the internet is not as profitable as just marketing in your own locale and striving to improve your local recognition. My sales through internet methods, ebay, etsy etc. are still insignificant compared to the alternative.

The below is a first sketch of my next painting...I will post more as I progress it further -- so don't forget to drop in from time to time to see.