Thursday, 16 June 2011

Monthly Painters Challenge #1 Light

Yesterday we all have posted our interpretations of our first topic for the Monthly Painter's Challenge group over on Facebook and the results are just amazing. My collage, shown above, grew out of a tiny painting I had done to try to get my head back in a good place after a very very frustrating afternoon trying to capture the idea that I had been pursuing. I had this idea to paint or draw the shadows that form on the front deck in the morning sunlight. I love watching them and spent many mornings photographing them and playing with them to find just the right one, but then I just couldn't capture it the way I wanted to and was getting increasingly disheartened.
When I get to that stage I like to try to do a little painting, or even some doodling, just to get back to the right place, and in the back of my mind I had been thinking about the light in the outback, and the way the colours are so crisp, especially at this time of year. The blue of the sky is almost a pure cobalt and the oranges and reds are so intense. A little painting came out of that, and a collage from that and before I knew it I had abandoned the shadow idea and was headlong into trying to find a great collage that captured the ideas of light and space.

Everyone had wide and varied reactions and interpretations to the topic and their works are below and many of the artists have discussed their process on their blogs, which you can go to by clicking on their tabs on the side. And finally we get to welcome two new members to the group for next month and I will add their tabs as soon as I can remember how I did it last time.

Tracey Potter

Louisa Janke

Jaz Higgins

Sarah Wiske

Alice Jones

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Poppy Progress

The Poppies are progressing really well, and I am looking forward to getting the last flower laid in in watercolour so that I can get to the coloured pencil. I am finding that I learned so much from the last disaster with the rose, and it is saving me a lot of time and heartache with this one.

I am working at laying in the watercolour in a lot more careful way. I am working wet into wet for the first layer and making sure I take the highlights out and then adding a wet onto dry layer adding in tonal areas and some detail. I used to use the watercolour to primarily cover large areas, which the pencils don't cover well without showing a lot of pencil marks, or that will be very labour intensive, but I am now trying to use it more as a base that the coloured pencils can complete. Mentally this is great also because it speeds the process up so much, and there is a more immediate idea of where the work is going. The coloured pencil part is so time consuming when you do a lot of it, and can get quite demoralising when you work and feel as though you are making no progress, but this appeals to my impatient nature and means that it is achievable to create a lot more work in the limited time I have available. All I need to do now is not much it up from here!

Friday, 3 June 2011

The Disavdantages of Not Having a Real Tardis

Last day of the working week and while I may be fortunate enough to have a tardis usb port, I don't have the real thing, so while the week has been quite a productive one, I can't help but think I wouldn't mind revisiting some of the days. Firstly I would revisit Tuesday just before I started the second layer of watercolour onto the rose that I was well into, which became a mess and is now abandoned after showing so much early promise. I will have to start again at a later date, and while I must admit I learned a great deal from the mistakes I made on it... still to redo that 10 minutes would be just great. I wouldn't even mind if it was Matt Smith in the Tardis with me, though David Tennant would be my choice given one... still I was really happy with that rose in the early stages!

I would also like to have an extra half hour or so tacked onto the other afternoon to finish off the collage a bit more. I was actually getting a nice painterly surface building up, which is what I have been aiming for in my newer collages, but domestic responsibilities intervened and I just haven't been able to get the same feel back. I will get it back to it when I have been working on the next one, and have that feel with the paint brush built back up, but after the rose debacle I think I just need to give it some space before I put the finishing touches on it. This is the biggest disadvantage with trying to go between two different styles of working, and while most weeks they seem to complement each other, this has been a week when I perhaps should have been more focused on one activity.

Of course I also worked on my project for the Monthly Painter's Challenge, and it went really well, but I can't unveil what I am doing there until the 15th of June, so you will have to just take my word for it that it worked out really well, and I am pleased with the result. The project for the weekend is to continue to work up the watercolour layers onto the poppies. They are in such early stages, but I would really love to find the time to get all the watercolour complete, so that I can have it finished early next week and get it to the printers for scanning. I am getting quite a pile of work to scan and probably should have gotten down there this week, but that damn Tardis let me down there as well... just a few more hours in the day and I would have been right!