Friday 26 January 2018

How to DOUBLE your artistic output

'Topgun' (Logan), my great-grandson and the sitter for my current portrait (see last two posts), has let me in on his secret for doubling artistic output. I always like to pass on any tips I learn, so here we are:

Wednesday 24 January 2018

Underpainting - Stage 2

Not a lot different to last posting, just strengthened the 'darks' and introduced the 'lights.'

For those who don't know me, I am in reality a pen & ink artist who was seduced into painting by my friends hereabouts. Quite unexpectedly I feel the urge to do a bit of drawing again ... wonder if I will and wonder what I'll draw.

Tuesday 23 January 2018

Underpainting stage 1

I have made a start on my latest, and here is the first part of the underpainting  using only raw umbra. 

27 x 19.5 inches
Oil on stretched Italian linen

I always rely on the eyes to make my portrait work, here the eyes aren't visible so quite a challenge for me. As if the lighting wasn't tricky enough.

I'm letting it dry out overnight before completing the underpainting tomorrow.

I really do love the Pre-Raphaelites and am trying to paint under that influence. The two paintings influencing me here are Holman Hunt's Light of the World' E R Hughes's Midsummer Eve.  Hughes was Holman Hunt's studio assistant .

Saturday 20 January 2018

The Light of My World

You have probably seen the Pre-Raphaelite painting 'Light of the World' by Holman Hunt, in which the light source comes from below, casting unusual shadows on the subject. It is my intention to paint a portrait of my great grandson 'Topgun' (Logan) using a similar light source, from below, that all but blots out his image with shadow.

To complicate the issue I shall use oils, and paint it in mono - yes black & white (ish).

I've made a start by sketching out the basic image, in which a nighttime scene shows Topgun  holding a bright light in his hands and looking down on it. I have used the grey (gray) grounded canvas I showed you in the previous post.

I have set myself an impossible task here, but at worst I will turn a grey canvas into a black canvas and nobody gets hurt in the process. If it works then it will match the portrait of his dad, Max, that I painted last year

Why I have to complicate life with next-to-impossible tasks I don't know ... it must be pre-programmed into my DNA. For example, I am about to turn-over the wooden Maine Lobster Boat (Seagull) I am building: 

The easy way to turn it over is by using 10 strong men! I want to do it single handed next week. I don't have the foggiest idea how though ... I can't wait to see what I do. 

Monday 8 January 2018

Paint on Canvas

It might not seem a lot to you, but the canvas shown here is, "One tiny step for mankind, one huge step for me," as it is almost 12 months since I last painted, for many and diverse reasons.

This 27.5 x 19.5 inch (700 x 500 mm) Italian linen canvas now has a thin wash of light umbra acrylic on it. I have also marked in the vertical and horizontal centre-lines with a pencil: my portraits tend to end up off centre without this aid.

That's it folk, that's all the news... but heck ... "mighty oaks from acorns grow", "Rome wasn't built in a day", "slowly, slowly, catchee monkey" ...................!!

Who knows, I might just remember how to paint a portrait.