Understanding objects through painting

January 5, 2013

Classic still life, January 3

Not done yet! Just working patiently on developing areas across the painting. The glass, the fruit, the bowl, the cloth, all have their own challenges. It is a process of understanding something through painting it.

I’m aiming for a luminous, colourful whole and especially trying to avoid muddy greys, using instead short colour strokes to visually mix grey on the canvas. It is close to the way I work in oil pastels, and when got right, the areas glow as if with their own inner light.

One is always adjusting the various ovals in a painting, the bowl keeps morphing in and out of perspective, but that ‘s just ongoing and should pull together at some point.

I’ve left a lot of the original under-painting showing in the foreground, I may add some glazes over it, but hope to preserve it.

I’m still enjoying it, but it is hard work at this stage, trying to keep the original freshness and not get too finicky, while still developing the volume, depth,  and colour.


6 Responses to “Understanding objects through painting”

  1. I never, ever realized all the layers that go into a painting. So impressed!

    • thanks annie, there are other, more direct ways of painting, but usually it takes careful layers and observation to get it right, at least for me it does.There is also a quote I really like from a Dutch painter called Martin Tissing about each layer of a painting being part of a story, and the end story couldn’t have existed without all those albeit invisible layers underneath. We don’t see them but we sense them.

  2. Thanks for liking my blog your comments were very kind. I seriously like the direction this piece is going and it’s always fun, interesting and informing to get a look at someone else’s process

    • Thanks for dropping by, Richard. I so enjoyed discovering your blog. I’ll be doing some collage work with my drawing students and once again will refer them to your work.

      I’m glad you like the direction of this piece and I agree it is always good to get a glimpse in someone else’s ‘kitchen'(taken from a Dutch expression meaning behind the scenes).

  3. decorartuk Says:

    I think it’s going very well. I love the composition and the colours, although they might change a bit in the end. It reminds me of Paul Cezanne’s still-lives! I’m looking forward to seeing the end result – your bottles series have evolved into something very special.

    P.S. It has been interesting to observe the whole process.

    • Thanks K. Yes, they are constantly changing and have gone through their predictable stuck and sort of ugly stage. It seems like every painting goes through that -after the high of beginning and just before you get a handle on it enough to make it sing.

      You are right on there, I read Rilkes Letters on Cezanne and got reinspired by him (C). I’d seen several of Cezanne’s original still lifes on recent trips and wanted to do more fruit, cloth and flowers myself, but always having him as a model. Funnily enough, close up, his canvasses are very neat- his strokes are precise, there aren’t globs of paint everywhere but yet he achieves that loose quality. Will be posting the current stage soon.

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