Saturday, January 2, 2010

January 2, 2010 - Day 145

Acrylic on 140lb Aquarelle watercolor paper

I started this painting by doing an under painting in lilac. I had done a few watercolor paintings of people and the purple color worked very well for shadows. I have to admit though that the under painting would make a really funky alien type person for a sci-fi painting. I really like it.

I then layered many many layers of thinned flesh color to create the skin tone. The first couple of layers were too yellow, then it was too dark, then it was too light but finally I achieved this result. I was very tempted to add more highlights to the skin but I quit while I was ahead. Originally I had her hair behind her ear but the ear didn't look right once I was done so I just painted the hair over top.

You may have noticed that both my paintings of people so far are of their left eye. It is not some artistic statement but rather due to the fact that I am right-handed and find it easier to paint detail on that side of the paper. I promise not all my paintings of people will be of their left eye (smile).

Friday, January 1, 2010

January 1, 2010 - Day 144

Acrylic on 140lb Aquarelle watercolor paper

First day in a series with people as the subject. This painting was inspired by the music video for the song "Miss Murder" by AFI. The video has a lot of very striking images and I love the look of the lead singer however this is NOT a painting of him but rather the end result of the inspiration. Here is a link to the video on Spike TV:

Miss Murder music video by AFI

I can't really describe this process very well. Sometimes when I watch something that has a lot of really awesome visuals it seems to stimulate my mind to create similar uses of light, action or feelings. One of the movies that will always stick in my mind is Batman with Michael Keaton directed by Tim Burton. Even 20 years later (holy crap Batman!) I still remember how dark it was visually. It seemed like the majority of the movie was shot at night and everything was black and form was shown by the highlights. There was very little mid tones. It just stuck with me all these years. It was so powerful.

I suppose that is what being an artist is all about. Being inspired, sometimes by everyday things, to create something that brings out that emotion in others. No, on second thought that's not right. It is more like the everyday thing fills the artist with such emotion that the urge is overwhelming to release that emotion into the world through their art.

Now that made me think. A lot of the paintings that I create do not come from that emotional inspiration. Most of the time I paint subjects merely because I think they might sell. Maybe for the new year I should focus more on what inspires me emotionally rather than worrying so much about being popular and successful. Maybe I should find a way to do both.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

December 30, 2009 - Day 142

Acrylic on 140lb Aquarelle cold press watercolor paper

I really like the way this painting turned out. I am finding though that I have been using a watercolor technique of saving the whites rather than painting over them. I don't know if that would detract from the value of an acrylic painting or not. In my mind, the entire canvas or support should be covered in acrylic paint and there shouldn't be any bare spots but does it really matter? I don't know - maybe I should just do what I feel and see what happens.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

December 29, 2009 - Day 141

Acrylic on 140lb Aquarelle cold press watercolor paper

Glass of red wine today. With today's painting I was torn between this background and having it much darker beneath the base of the glass. In the end, I decided to go with this one so that I would have something to compare when I create a much darker background. Maybe, if I have the courage, I will paint tomorrow's painting with a very dark (almost black) background.

I have seen paintings with backgrounds that have very dark and very light streaks or shapes. I would like to try that but I really can't visualize what it would look like. I was going for that effect with the margarita but I didn't have enough contrast.

Monday, December 28, 2009

December 28, 2009 - Day 140

Acrylic on 140lb Aquarelle cold press watercolor paper

Today's painting is of a Melon Margarita.

I ran out of the heavier watercolor paper so I had to go back to the 140lb paper. Truth be told, I just couldn't afford to buy any art supplies this month. Christmas just drains my bank account. I am so glad it is over.

The 140lb paper works just as well as the 300lb paper with the acrylics. I tape down the edges of these small paintings so they stay flat while the paint and paper dries. While the lighter paper works well, I prefer the 275lb to 300lb papers for acrylics because it makes it more like painting on a canvas. It gives it more weight and substance than using the light papers.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

December 27, 2009 - Day 139

Acrylic on 300lb Saunders Waterford cold press watercolor paper

Today's drink is a White Russian. It is very very hard to paint ice cubes in a drink!