Now that the partying for the holidays are over, I've been getting back to the brushes and testing out a few pictures that I have wanted to paint.
I am also working on a self published book on plein air and trying to see if I can organize a couple of classes to give to students.
Its so easy to get complacent and read everyone elses' postings on facebook, instragram and twitter and just keep looking and seeing and wishing, but that won't make my paintings become a reality.
So, working on a piece for the upcoming "Tasty Colors" show for January 15, 2016 at the Creperie with the Lake Chapala Painting Guild. Our opening reception will be 4pm to 6pm. I will be displaying the watercolor I completed for the PAINT OUT AJIJIC and also, I am working on a picture of a truck on the side of the road with mounds of watermelons for sale. I am trying to capture the light coming off the rinds of the watermelons - the yellow (Daniel Smith quinacridone gold) is a bit too strong for the undercolour. I tried mixing a veridian green with it and because I did not make a strong enough wash, I found my watermelons, literally, starting to get mushy and muddy and I couldn't capture the light. I also had too much competing with the melons.
I was excited to work on the truck perspective, got it really looking 3d and then I added to much separate interest with the vendors on the other side of the melons....it became two pictures with a divide and the divide was the tent pole holding up the makeshift tarps. I took a picture of it on my tablet, took it to be critiqued at my Guild meeting and had everything confirmed that I didn't like, the same info I had already heard from my inner art critic!!!!
So back to the drawing board yesterday, erasing and redrawing the image, trying to get a good solid composition without taking everyone's eye off the page. When I used a vanishing point at the edge of the paper, my surrounding sky and road were becoming too large and my melons were disappearing rather than being the focal point. I have to take the vanishing point off the page and further into the distance to keep the perspective, but to bring the watermelons into focus. I've just now gone back to one of my favorite art books, "Art Class" copyright 1999 by Harper Collins Publishers, printed in Italy and distributed in Canada by Raincoast Books. It has a little of everything and once I have picked up on something new, can easily go back to this and find reference material and suddenly, its not new, I just didn't know anything about it. How usual is that! There is an excellent page with lots of visuals on composition.
Another artist, Anita Lee, who has painted since the 1970's ( a member of the Lake Chapala Guild) lent me here book on "Carlson's Guide to Landscape Painting". It is originally copyright in 1958 and has less visual and more written word by John F. Carlson. I am trying to work through this as well.
Never a dull moment...so rather than continue to bore you with more of my errors and frustration, I will stop now and get back to my painting.
I have noticed recently that I am up to 30,000 hits in a month on this blog. However, I get few comments and would love to hear from some of you reading this where ever you are!