Sunday, June 30, 2013

Pet Project #13: Pleaser

This was the most challenging pet image to date. The photograph was tiny (not many pixels to paint from) and furthermore, the image was black and white. I decided that some of the lighter areas in the photograph should be highlights or shine on the fur and that this dog's local color was black.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Iris Study #10

Iris Study #10/oil on board/ 6" x 6"/ $125/ available at Suttons Gallery
The pet series continues. However, this painting is a break to allow the owners to "catch up". Also, the pet today is painted from a black and white image and needs more time to "imagine" the colors.

Artist Note: the background is the visual compliment of purple and seems to work as well as a similar iris with a black background (link).

Friday, June 28, 2013

Pet Project #12: Completed: "Focused"

Focused/ oil / 10" x 8"/25% of the proceeds donated to AC
Here is the painting finished. I completed all of the changes noted yesterday. I especially like the "pops" of green.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Pet Project #12: Step 2....3

I didn't stop and photograph while I was painting today. Here, this painting is almost done. I will change the top background color probably to flat blue, darken the highlight on the left side of the dog's back,  add some indication of lettering on the tag and soften or break up the strong dark line under his chest (thanks, Lydia, Maria and Kat!)
Once those corrections are done, I'll reevaluate.

Artist Note: I especially liked the olive green in the blacks of this particular dog instead of the blues that I usually use to highlight the blacks.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Pet Project #12: Step 1

I decided that another underpainting of vivid green would help as I painted this beauty. The colors in this animal are amazing: oranges with brown and yellow, black that is blue-black, purple-black or olive green-black and all the wonderful browns. Stay tuned!

Artist Note: Often with these step-by-step paintings, I photograph the stages and I know the finished painting works because I have it done before I publish the steps. I like to paint all in one session. I find that day-to-day, mood-to-mood, I "see'" and therefore paint different colors even with the same reference. Tonight, my light is failing and I can't continue this so we will all see whether this painting makes it, as it is evolving in real time.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Pet Project #11: Green and Blue

Pet #11/ Green and Blue/ oil on board/ 8" x 8"/ to be gifted
This was the painting that was "wiped" yesterday. Yesterday, the face was all wrong, the composition was poor, the colors were muddy, it was just a total mess. The background of this then, is the "wiped" toning of the canvas. Today, I love this: the "sketchy, unfinished edge that allows the head to be pushed forward, the thick "fur" strokes and the beautiful glass-like eyes... Life is good!

Artist note: Joseph Fettingis taught me to paint animal eyes. He  started with a cool yellow outer rim to the eyeball and then defined the pupil and the iris leaving a hint of that initial yellow. This seems to make the eye protrude as a round object.
See whether it works for you.
I repainted this painting. See July 9.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Iris Improved

Iris Study #10/ oil on board/ 6" x 6"/ $125
This iris titled "Orange Beard Study" from May 25 seemed to have a problem with the dark large leaf and the foreground fall (see image lower left). I had completed and love the color transition of the foreground fall of Iris Study #9, so before painting today's subject, I decided to improve this iris.
Now, I love the subtle color passage on the new foreground fall. In addition, I broke up the dark mass of the iris leaf by adding some lighter color strokes to it.
Together, these are now wonderful companion pieces!

Unfortunately,  my pet today was a "wipe".

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Pet Project #9: True Beauty

Pet Project #9: True Beauty/ oil/ 10" x 8"/ SOLD: 25% donated to Animal Crackers
To complete this painting, the background was overpainted with subtle light grey yellows to allow the beautiful darks to show.

Capturing this painting in a photograph has been a challenge. The subtle background color shifts are more evident in person.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Pet Project #9: Step 3

The eyes are in as their first pass. As I look around to decide which area on the dog requires alterations, the eyes act as magnets and I am drawn back to them repeatedly.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Pet Project #9: Step 2

This project is helped by the fantastic photograph. The photograph is well lit so it is easy to see the shapes and the color temperature changes that make the form of the dog. In addition, this pet owner provided me with different exposures of the same image. This allows for attention to different parts of the dog.

Artist Note: The shine on the coat is created by placing warm darks beside cool lights. I usually leave the eyes until last. Otherwise, my attention is directed to the eyes and I have trouble looking at the other parts of the image, being repeatedly pulled back to the eyes.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Pet Project #9: Step 1

This beautiful boy began with a pthalo blue and grey acrylic background. The outline of the important shapes on the dog were placed on the dry background and the darkest darks were painting first. The dark browns were a mixture of turkey umber and asphaltum. The blues were mixtures of shiva ice blue, cobalt blue and white. The redder browns added burnt sienna. The blue underpainting was allowed to peek through also adding an interesting dark.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Pet Project #8: Kitten in a Basket

 Kitten in a Basket/oil/8" x 8"/ SOLD 25% donated to local animal rescue
This little kitten was caught in a flower basket.

Artist Note: The colors in this kitten's coat were very interesting to paint: a mixture of browns, greys, red browns and then patches of white. I wanted the suggestion of the basket texture but I didn't want it to compete with the multicolored cat coat.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Pet Project #7: Happy, Happy, Happy!

Happy x3!/ oil on board/ 8" x 8"/ SOLD
This wonderful image arrived for the pet project and seemed to paint itself. The little puppy is so palpably happy that it almost bounces out of the painting!

Artist Note: I painted the background in short brush strokes (reminds me of a pixellated image) to add to the "movement" of this delightful animal. This one makes me smile every time I see it!!/148954

Monday, June 17, 2013

Pet Project #6: Tuxedo Cat Study in oil and watercolor

Pet #6: Tuxedo Cat in oil/ oil on board/ 4" x 4"/ sold
I painted this little cat in response to a request for black and white cats. Although this is not the size of the pet project, it will still generate 25% of its sale to Animal Crackers

Artist Note: I set this as an exercise to compare the same painting as an oil and a water color (below). I have come to believe that watercolors painted with layering can achieve the same depth of color as an oil painting. I also believe that watercolor is better at "describing light" as it passes through things (e.g. backlit flower petals, irises (of the eye), glass, iridescent shells). However, that may be biassed as I have more experience with watercolor.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Pet Project #5: Summer Days

Pet $5: Summer Days /oil / 8" x 10"/ $185 (25% to local animal rescue)
This beautiful dog is even more interesting in this fabulous background of yellow flowers.
This is Pet #5 for the Animal Crackers Charity.

Artist Note: The warm shadows on the dog seem to bounce the color from the warm under growth.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Pet Project #4: Watercolor Budgie

This is a small watercolor painting of a budgie. The source is a photograph I took recently at the fabulous "Landing Zone" (the latest addition) in Sylvan Heights (link) Waterfowl Park in Scotland Neck.I am hoping this bird looks like someone's pet, so it will help the "Pet Project" fundraiser.

Artist Note: The challenge for this painting (which did't work on the first little painting) was to allow the white of the bird to merge with the white of the background: to have the bird be both the foreground and to disappear into the background) (look at the back to "see" this). I am home later today, so I can start to post photographs again.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Pet Project #3: A Study of Fur and Eyes

This is a beautiful dog that loved to play with this pink sock. I painted this painting as a "warm up" for the pet project, so it is a small 4" x 4" study.
Artist note: I wanted to work on the roundness of dog eyes and the softness of fur. This painting preceded Gentle Patience (link) and helped with both.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Pet Project #2: Gentle Patience

I could hardly wait to paint this image, when it arrived. The shine on the black fur, the softness of the white, the perfect contrast of the bright red collar and the beautiful, gentle eyes.

Artist note: the shine on the black is achieved with warm against cool colors (blue and magenta in this case)

Again, I will post this to DPW next week and 25% will be donated to our animal rescue (Animal Crackers).

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Pet Project: Dog #1: Cucumber Anyone?

To complete this painting, the background was added, the eyes detailed and small lighter areas were retouched. To me, the blue sets off the orange in the dog's coat and makes the painting more of a summer day.
I will post the pets to DPW starting next week. This will allow the contributors of the original photographs first chance to see each
painting. For any painting purchased in the Pet Project, 25% will be donated to our local animal rescue: Animal Crackers.
Starting tomorrow: a pet a day for AC until the images run out!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Progress of a Painting 3: Pet Project

This is step three: the dog is almost done (needs detail improvements esp of the eyes) and then the background with the treatment of edges.

Artist note: For me, one of the advantages of painting on a darker ground, is that as the subject is painted, it is easier to imagine where it will fade into and come out of the background (plan the lost edges better than by "sticking it" onto a white background").

Monday, June 10, 2013

Progress of a Painting 2: Pet Project

This is a continuation of the painting started in yesterday's post. Painting in the body (because it is not the center of interest) is done with a large brush and alternating colors: cool and warm to give form.
Artist Note: I usually paint the eyes last, even when they are not the center of interest. As soon as the eyes are recognizable, the viewer (including the painter) is draw to them. Also, once painted, the person (or in  this case, the dog) becomes alive  and I find this distracting. The colors for the fur included Shiva ice blue and cad orange, transparent orange and brown oxide and white in various mixtures.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Pet Project Begins: Progress of a Painting

I am out of place for the next few days, on a borrowed laptop. Prior to leaving, I painted like a fiend and I loaded images to keep my blog up to date. However, keeping this blog up to date will be challenging. My limited "mastery" of blogger's editor and the images that are not accessible if I accidentally delete them while adding text force me to alter first, the format. When I first researched "blog writing, it was suggested that the format be consistent and the posting regular, so failing the first, I'll attempt the second. 

Artist Note: This is the first of the Pet Project. The photo I was sent had a "bright green" "feel" to it so I scrubbed in a layer of thalo green acrylic paint and then began the dog. I prefer to paint on a colored background because it allows me to see the "true color" of my subject. Varying the color of the background makes me paint more "freshly" as the colors are influenced and changed by the different background hue. 
I haven't done many teeth. In my human figures, I often don't even paint mouths. Many of the photos I have now as reference material have wide open, tongue -prominent, happy slobbery dog mouths, with teeth. Teeth are not white, even with the best whitening program. Dogs teeth are especially not white. I used unbleached titanium and some yellow. The muzzle is as light as the colors that set it off.
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Friday, June 7, 2013

Mostly Blue

Mostly Blue/ oil on board/6" x 6"/ SOLD
I wanted to paint only the "blues": the blues of the hydrangeas and the blues of the Ball jar. However, the hydrangeas were subtle yellows and yellow-greens and light lilac and  needed to be set off by the greens and green golds of the leaves. Therefore, this is a "mostly blue" painting...

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Iris Study #9

Iris Study "9/ oil on board/ 6" x 6"/ $125
I painted this as a companion to the other 6" x 6" irises. The plan was to frame them with Ashley at Sutton's Framing (link) using painted stretchers. The great news is that this series keeps selling, so there must be something else we can frame!

I love the way the orange beard is "warmed up" by the cool blues in the background. The blues included cobalt, caribbean and horizon blue, plus white.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Early Summer Flowers

Early Summer Flowers/ oil on board/ 6" x 6"/ SOLD
Hydrangeas and early sunshine were the inspiration for this painting.
I started this painting with a dark background of transparent colors but I scraped that off in favor of the bright opaque reds and yellows. The blue grey is my "must have" favorite color "Ice Blue" by Shiva. This color makes the most interesting mixes and is great for subtle grey-blue shadows on white.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Iris Study #7

Iris Study #7/ oil on board/ 4" x 4"/ GIFTED

My favorite irises this year were these bright orange with yellow beards. As I start my sketches and preliminary paintings for the pet project, here is my favorite iris.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Daily Paintings: May

Using picmonkey (link) to create this, here is a collage of daily paintings done in May (plus a baby quilt from an awesome pattern by Keri Designs (link)).
I completed many paintings of my favorite flowers, now are almost gone from my garden for 2013. However, I always have something blooming.My cosmos and zinnia seeds are set and the geraniums and hydrangeas are almost ready to "pose" in their ball jars!!
Since I almost have 30 images, I am also just about ready to begin "Thirty Pets in Thirty Days" to benefit Animal Crackers!