Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Time Lapse

I want to do some time lapse videos of me painting like this one by Jos van Riswick but my digital camera is old and only holds 40 secs of video.  I don't have a webcam or a phone that can record movies, either.  I'm open to suggestions, keeping in mind this month I can afford about $20 to spend on anything like a camera.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


If you ever wanted to learn to draw but thought it would be too hard to learn or that you had no skill, then you probably haven't ever read Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards.  This isn't one of those cheesy "draw two circles, now fill in some details and voila! da Vinci's masterpiece."

No, this book takes you into the science of how your brain draws.  Then it walks you through step by step exercises to help retrain your brain to draw from the right side, the image-based, creative thinking side, instead of the analytical, language based left side.

So if you ever wanted to learn how to draw, to really learn how its done, this is the only book you need to start.  Go buy it, or borrow it, or steal it, whatever.  Just get it if you want to draw and think you can't.  And even if you think you can.

More info at their website.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Alla Prima copy of William Whitaker's Spring Tree

Today's art (disaster) is a pretty poor attempt at an alla prima copy of William Whitaker's painting "Spring Tree."  Mine is painted on canvas board in oil.  The canvas was primed with light gray gesso.  Starting out I coated the whole canvas in a yellow ochre ground, then put in the hill/mountain area and the first pass on the sky.  Then painted in the sun lit field in the background, then put in some of my green tones.

I'm unhappy with the foreground, mainly because by the time I started putting in detail, I'd already been painting for over 2 hours and decided to rush through so I could clean up before it got too late.   Start to finish was about 3 hours, that includes preparing a palette and clean up.

I think my biggest problems with this attempt was that I failed to capture the same feeling of sunlight, the sense of depth, and I let myself work some areas of the paint far too much.  I'm still getting used to alla prima and mixing colors not only on the palette, but having them mix as I paint wet into wet on the canvas. 
This is going to be an attempt at a daily art blog.  I mostly paint in oil but I also am working on my drawing skills so I'm hoping that I can use this to develop some discipline and make some kind of art every day.

I might be a little slow starting out since I have to go across town to access a scanner and my only digital camera at the moment is some crappy Nikon Coolpix, mostly because I'm poor as hell.  I understand that's important if you want to be an artist.  The starting poor part, not the crappy digital equipment.

Anyway, I'm currently copying this painting by William Whitaker for practice.  If it turns out ok in a few days I'll post my copy.  If not, I'll probably paint over it because canvas ain't cheap.