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Friday, January 30, 2009

Landscape Sketches


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10×10″, Gouache in my kraft paper sketchbook
As you can see, I’m still having way too much fun with gouache in my new sketchbook. I know the text can be difficult to read when I post these pages from my sketchbook. Here’s what today’s page says:
It’s not often that I paint from photos, and it’s even less often that I paint from photos I didn’t take myself! However, this weekend’s Wetcanvas WDE (Weekend Drawing/Painting Event) had some that I just couldn’t resist. Seeing them here now in gouache makes me wonder if I should have painted them in acrylics or oils on a more archival support, or at least so they could be taken out and popped into little frames. Maybe I’ll do another version of these.
Seeing how these gouache landscapes look on this paper makes me think that this could be a fabulous way to work en plein air. I did both of these with only a single, round synthetic brush and a pre-filled Mejillo palette. Pre-cut Canson boards, or other archival matboards with a a similar color to this, would also be lightweight and easy to travel with. They dry instantly, and could be stored in a plastic zip-lock bag for protection.
You can click here to see the reference images uploaded by Wetcanvas member “Upnorthtim”. You can see that I made a lot of changes to the photos in content and composition. Sometimes I do stay more true to a photo, but I never hesitate to change elements, leave things out, or move them around to create my own vision, or to change color and sometimes values. It’s where and how we use that artistic license that creates our individual styles and preferences.
Every Friday, a Wetcanvas member is host of a Weekend Drawing Event in which they upload 16 photos. Members have a week to create art from those photos and post it to the forum. They are not supposed to spend longer than two hours on a painting. Give it a try sometime! It’s great fun to see what so many different artists can do with the same set of images.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Hydrangea Sketch


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10×10″, Gouache sketch of a hydrangea for a future painting, coming soon!
My husband adores these colors. I’ve prepared a panel with a lighter, scrubby, warm yellow background upon which I’ll paint the blue vase and violet flowers, as my second in this little series of floral works for Valentine’s Day.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Rose Sketch for a Future Painting


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10×10″, Gouache in kraft paper sketchbook
Oil/acrylic painting of this sketch coming soon…Stay tuned!
I am having way too much fun with gouache sketches on this paper! I am thinking of ways to achieve this look with oils/acrylics on a more archival surface. I think I’m going to give it a whirl for tomorrow’s daily painting.
Edit: To see the final painting of this subject, click here.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Sunday Sketches


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I’ve always wanted one of these sketchbooks with the heavy, brown kraft paper. I have a huge roll if it, which I tear off into 24×36″ sheets for figure drawing. I was in Borders yesterday and saw this one on a “discontinued” rack for 50% off. It was “now or never”! It’s a great size at 9-3/4″ square. That’s too large to keep in my purse, but a great size for small gouache paintings, charcoal and pencil drawings, with room to write on the same page too.
Unfortunately, I don’t think this paper is archival, but sometimes the freedom to create something on “junk” leads to something special, which can then be recreated in the studio using better materials. This neutral background gives a midtone against which one can bump lights and darks very effectively. This was just what I needed to get me back into my grove of the Saturday/Sunday Sketches. I even painted my little “Bluebird of Happiness” to show how thrilled I am with the new book!