Wednesday, November 28, 2012

"Sip and Sketch"

Thank you everyone who wrote to me 
regarding my "painters block!" 
As much as I know we all go through it, 
it's great to hear how others deal with it! 
To help move things along,
I hosted a small "Sip and Sketch" last night in my studio.

There is nothing more cathartic than sitting around 
with talented artist pals 
chatting and sipping wine 
while doing blind contour drawings of each other 
(and Cello!)  
 I think it reminded all of us just how important 
(and fun!) sketching is! 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Edouard Vuillard

 My pal Sally and I found some great art books 
at a Church Fair recently. 
I am thrilled with this paper back
published by the Museum of Modern Art, New York in 1954
in conjunction with an exhibition that summer.  

It is a real treasure; 
a chronological look at the artist and his work, 
filled with great colored images.  

Lilacs, 1892

Self Portrait 1892 

These two are not his most famous paintings,
 but they represent his interest in pattern painting! 
(See my previous Pattern Painting post) 

Note: I'm having significant "painters block"right now.
Change of season. Full moon. 
Whatever it is, I am trying to accept it, so am spending time 
looking at art, reading about art, 
and complaining about it to my friends and family.
Sorry guys.  
This too shall pass. 

Friday, November 23, 2012

In the Style of Van Gogh

Our challenge this month is to do a painting 
in the style of Vincent Van Gogh.

I've been spending a lot of time
walking in the woods lately
(with Cello!) 
 so I thought I'd do something with trees. 

"Color in a painting, is like enthusiasm in life"
Vincent Van Gogh 

I love that quote! 
I saw it in Haidee- Jo Summers's fabulous new book! 

I did this quick sketch on my I Pad 
first to experiment with some color! 
Such a fun tool. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

"Back To Basics" continued

I'm trying out a few exercises I may do with the 
"Back to Basics" class I'm teaching in January.
I'm starting with one from Peggi's Value and Color DVD.

 I took the drawing of the sphere and block,
and massed in everything in shadow in one color.  

I adjusted the shadow values, 
then moved on to the masses in light.

The whole time I reminded myself about 
cast shadows, form shadows, 
shadow core, reflected light, 
half tones and accents. 

Then, I took two objects similar to the sphere and cube; 
a yellow cup and a red box, 
and painted them in color, using the same approach. 

This is an incredibly valuable exercise.
A good drawing and a clear understanding of those terms
(and how they help suggest form) 
are the foundation for strong paintings. 

I need to get really comfortable with this. 
before I have to demo it in front of the class! 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

"Back to Basics" class

Recently, I was feeling like I needed to take a  
"Back to Basics" painting class.
A "refresher" course of sorts.   
So when the SSAC proposals for winter classes were due, 
I decided to teach one instead. 
That way, I would be sure to re-learn everything!
The brochure came out this week:  

"Back to Basics"
 for Stronger Oil Paintings
Nancy Colella
 Do you lack confidence in your drawing skills? 
Are you confused about “shadow core” or “reflected light”? 
Do you struggle with the difference between color and value? 
This six-week course will put you back on track. 
We will practice simple techniques for better drawing. 
We will explore light and shadow on a form 
and do exercises to help us see value in color. 
Classes will include demos, exercises, discussions and critique. 
This class is suitable for beginners, 
as well as experienced painters who need a “review” of the basics. 
Tuesday am 9:30–12:30 
$175M $215NM 6 classes 
South Shore Art Center 

Practice Drawing
(Measuring with a brush) 

this summer and finally got to play with it today. 
What a valuable learning / teaching tool!  

Taking a class is a great way to warm up the winter blues! 
And they make great gifts. 
To yourself!   

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

It's Not A Face

I brought my failed attempts at painting faces 
to the GJWP meeting this week
hoping for some advice. 
It worked! 
Paula V. looked at me and said,
"Stop thinking of it as a face.
Paint it like any object"!   
Thank you Paula! 

This time, I approached it the same way I do all my subjects.

I did my map, 
blocked every thing in shadow in with dark shapes.
From there, I added the lights, 
adjusted a few things, and stopped. 

My figurative work is less about portraying a likeness, 
than it is about describing a moment in time.
So I want to get really good at 
 simply suggesting facial features accurately.
This will take LOTS of practice!
Any one want to come over and model?

Monday, November 12, 2012

One More Small Works Show!

Barefoot Lunch 
8 x 8 

This painting and four others 
will be showing at the 
158 Newbury Street 
until December 23rd. 
The opening reception is this Thursday evening 
5:30 - 7:30 pm

To give a gift of original art 
is many times more meaningful (and lasting) than a gift card,
 don't you think?  

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Win Win Situation

Every year the 
holds a Holiday Art Sale.
Artist members can submit up to 25 pieces 
and are encouraged to keep the prices low. 

I've submitted some of my old favorites,
that have just been in the studio too long. 
Older work that I'm fond of but need to let go. 
They are all in one-of-a kind distressed wood frames
and are priced to sell!
Like these: 
9 x 12 

"Happy Hour" 
8 x 8 

The buyer gets a great bargain, 
and I get the paintings into new homes!  
(and NRAS makes some money!) 
It's all GOOD.  

Opening reception this Friday 7 - 10 pm. 
Don't miss this OR the opening at SSAC the same night! 
Looks like a busy night for Small Works bargains!   

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Simple Gifts

These three small works  
(and many more) 
will be available at the 
"Simple Gifts Show"
opening this Friday 
Nov 9  
6 - 8 pm
Through December 23rd!  

You Talkin' To Me? 
6 x 6 

6 x 6

Double Trouble 
6 x 6 

This is a great opportunity to purchase fine art at great prices! 
Hope to see you there! 

Friday, November 2, 2012

Painting Faces

8 x 16 

For years I have avoided "doing faces" in my figurative work.
For all the obvious reasons.
I've decided to finally make that a personal challenge.  

Thought I'd post some of my disastrous attempts.
I tried to just focus on the planes of the face
Not the details.

No. This is NOT Angelina Jolie!

A little better, but the mouth is still awkward! 

Tried a different angel for this one, thinking that was the problem. 
Now she looks like she just had oral surgery!  

Too much botox!!! ? 
Boy. This is difficult.  

The slightest little move of the brush changes everything!
I clearly need to do A LOT more work on this
and I'm not giving up.

Stay tuned.  

Note: I did these for the GJWP "HAT" Challenge this month. 
Needless to say, none of them could be be posted!