Sunday, December 8, 2013

Critters on the Couch

A quick sketch. I used a Pentel brush pen filled with Noodler's Cayenne water soluble ink for the line work.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Roaming Radish

Here's a few sketches from our Whidbey Island Sketchers meet a couple weeks ago at the Roaming Radish in Freeland. Having eaten there before, I knew they had fantastic food. All organic and local grown. It was delicious! And I really appreciate their numerous vegan selections. 

First I sat at the bar...   

Then huddled in the hall next to the kitchen.

Later got in a few more sketches of customers and wait staff.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Figure Painting, Session 4

In my fourth figure drawing session our model was scheduled to pose for 3 hours so I thought I'd tackle it with oils. I went into the session with a plan to keep it simple by focusing on basic shapes of light and shadow and not worry about details such as a likeness or individual toes, etc. And also to release myself from the outcome and simply play. I've practiced that through regular sketching on location and have become a process junkie. It's the experience. That's the gold nugget. The real pleasure. And if something works it's frosting on the cake. Letting go gives me license to explore and allow a drawing or painting to become an individual as it evolves. I'm creating to seek understanding through questions. I read an interesting blog post at Roz Wound Up by Roz Stendahl, one of my favorite blogging artists. She wrote about drawing and the questions that motivate us to draw and what drawing leads to. It made me wonder what questions artists and myself ask while creating. What do I seek to understand? These questions are very individual and I think they define our personal styles. It's a form of truth seeking. Personally, I'm not interested in flashy and stylish brush strokes. I like grit and directness. Playfulness. A raw, immediate response to what I'm seeing. It's easy to be seduced by techniques, yet we can't escape them, so it's a dance. In the end the picture contains the whole experience and all the questions that lead to the decisions that made it.

Angela in oils... 

The Questions
While painting Angela, I'm in a room with other artists engrossed in their own questions and understandings. There's a synergy in the group that's fueling. Model, artists, drawings. My internal conversation: How is the model sitting? What's her attitude? Shoulder angle opposed the hip angle? She's looking up a bit, I see under her nose. I try to feel the action. What color should I draw with? Where do I want to place the figure in the picture frame? What happens when I thin this blue oil to a watery consistency and apply it to the background? What happens when I paint another thicker color on top, scumble it, drag it dry? How does the model's leg move toward me? What kind of brush stroke conveys that? There's bone under that flesh, a structure, remember that. How does the light and shadow fall across the figure as a whole? And in parts? How do I depict that so it reads? What's that reflected color? How can I punch up these values? Don't let mud happen! This area is unfinished, how can I keep it consistent with the rest? Does that edge move this way? No, that way. Those are just a few of my questions and I've only scratched the surface! What are yours when you paint and draw?