Saturday, December 12, 2015

Snow Fence at Bluewater Beach

This is another quick one, based again on the pictures that I took at Bluewater Beach last week.

Acrylic on 8x10 gallery canvas
While I do say this was a quick one -- it took me about an hour and a half to two hours to complete -- it was a bit of a challenge, in that I based it on a photograph that I had not only taken, but also applied an Instagram filter to (see here) so I was not only capture the scene, but work the vignette into the image as well.

I'm finding I really enjoy working with the soft body acrylics on smaller pieces, even if my palette is limited with that particular medium (although I seem to do well with the starter set).  They seem to work better with glazing medium and retarder.   To keep the colours really pale and almost watercolour-like, I used a shit-load of glazing medium. 

I have a piss-poor quality house-painting brush that I got from the dollar store for reasons that escape me, and it turns out it is really good for dry-brush blending (if that's a thing).  It's what I used for the vignette in the sky and gave the darker blues a nice, kind of feathered appearance.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

It Was Unseasonably Warm for December.

It's been a lovely few days, these last few ones. You'd hardly think this was December in Central Ontario, what with the temperatures sitting between 5 and 10 degrees celcius.

Yesterday was a balmy 7 degrees, so the Well-Travelled One and I took a drive out to Bluewater Beach and went for a walk along the boardwalk as the sun began to set.

The sky was an ethereal haze, with no discernable horizon, just a orange/blue gradient.  I snapped a few pictures with my phone, hoping I could catch even a fraction of the atmosphere.

Surprisingly enough, I was able to snap a few decent shots of the shoreline, and later that night I chose one of them and within about 2 hours I had come up with this:

10 x 8 Acrylic on Masonite
I'm pretty stoked about it, to be honest. Getting sun to look right was kind of aggravating, and when I started adding rocks I was worried that I just completely blew it, because at first they refused to look like anything except flat blobs of the wrong-color of paint floating in space.  Once I started adding some highlights and shadows they looked more like the clusters of rocks that they were meant to be.

My favorite part is the bottom left-hand corner, where the orange of the sand blends into the blue of the water where the wave is supposed to be pulling away.

I did this using Liquitex soft body acrylics and a fair amount of glaze and retarder to blend the colors.  I used a primed Masonite board as my support, which I sometimes find easier to use than canvas when I want smoother looking colours.

Desert Sunset - (Video)

I found out a while ago that my iPad has a time-lapse video option, thanks to a recent upgrade. I figured this might be fun for creating videos showing my painting process.

I made a first attempt at this a few months ago when I was painting this piece, but the result was very haphazard, as my daughter, who was manning the iPad, kept moving it around while I kept picking up the small canvas board and putting it down again.

This time I set the iPad up on another easel and aimed it towards my working easel and set to it.


My final result is here:

8 x 10 acrylic on Masonite.
 I went back the day after and added some red and orange glazes to bring out the colours around the sun a bit, but basically this was just a fun exercise.  I caught up on my works-in-progress last week, so I wanted to keep in the habit of painting even if I didn't have any ambitious projects in the works.

Indestructible

The other night I decided to try working with some watercolours.

10 x 12 (ish) watercolor on paper

I do not like watercolour.

I like how it looks in the hands of someone who knows how to work with it, but as a medium, I do not like it.  Acrylic is much more forgiving and requires less planning.

This is an image based on the song "Indestructible" by the Matthew Good Band.  The original idea was going to incorporate a lot of destroyed vehicles and police lights (hence the vaguely purplish background.. red, blue, night-time scene, etc), but drawing cars is bad enough, let alone trying to draw damaged cars.