Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Crest Theater here in Sacramento is indeed a jewel of a structure. It hosts both fims and various live performances. This was a GREAT exercise in VALUE control. I worked from a reference photograph and painted on a half sheet of 140lb. cold press watercolor paper.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Go See Saul

I teach part time at a local two year college here in Sacramento, and yesterday (top photo) I posted my painting start of him (second photo). Today, you see my finished watercolor (third photo at bottom). In yesterday's post, I wrote that I was absolutely, positively not going to paint anything else in his semi-unfinished left eye. I did plan, however, to render his mouth more fully. Upon doing that today, I saw that Saul's left eye needed just a little more of a tonal wash to balance with his mouth detailing. I am  very happy with the result.

But what about that top photo you ask. That was watercolored about a month ago, and I feel it is not up to my standard of watercolor portraiture. I over painted it. Not enough value contrast No pop!  Here is a good case study of doing more than one painting of the same subject. It's like rehearsing a stage play. You deliver your lines with much more conviction and nuance after a number of rehearsals.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Dare I ask for comments on this California Vibe watercolor portrait?

Instead of shamelessly fishing for sympathy comments as I did in my previous post, I now am seeking comments in the form of opinions. This is one of my loose, colorful California Vibe portraits that I am well- known for. I worked on this last night (whilst listening to French Fry Radio on Pandora). I have fixed in my CA Vibe mind to not do any more painting in the sunglasses . . . zippo. But I do want to render the mouth and teeth more as well as his top knot of hair. That's it and nothing else. This watercolor portrait will have a partially unfinished look. What do y'all think of my plan? I really want some opinions, pretty please with whipping cream and a cherry on top!
By the way, that black thingy on the bottom left is the dangling headphone cord that was plugged into my iPhone that I was using to photograph this piece (I was still listening to French Fry Radio - love their music). 

Sunday, April 19, 2015

I poured my heart out and only one measly comment!!!!

I wrote in my previous post "OMG, my bicycle painting died!",  and all I got was ONE comment. A very complimentary comment BUT ONLY ONE!!!! Well, my blog readers, I tore up said dead painting into a zillion tiny itsy bitsy pieces whilst a steady stream of my tears rained over them. Here is my second painting. I beg you, pretty please with whipping cream and a strawberry on top, send me a comment, any comment -  good, bad, or butt ugly. Anything. Fingers crossed. :-)  :-)

Monday, April 13, 2015

OMG! My bicycle painting died!!

My racing cyclists watercolor painting started out ok, but then I decided that I needed more contrast between the cyclists and the background. I went over the background a second glaze to darken it a tad.  Sometimes one can get away with glazing, but sometimes it can make the painting looked over worked. Bummed out, cuts this is exactly what happened! So I began a second painting. This time I went with a blue background with more white showing through for pop and tilted the cyclists at a more dramatic angle. At this stage, I am very happy with the results and think it is a vast improvement to my first iteration. The painting is about 40% complete at this stage, so tomorrow I shall bring it to a finish. Pray for me.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Where The Wild Things Are

Every year there is the annual Where The Wild Things Are art auction here in Sacramento, Calif. It raises money for a wild life sanctuary on the American River (one of the two major California Rivers that run through the city). This year, I will be judging what paintings will get into the auction. The event will include a sit down dinner under magnificent old growth oak trees at the sanctuary. These are step-by-step photos of my contribution to Where The Wild Things Are. It is a full sheet watercolor highlighting some of the creatures who call the sanctuary home.