Sunday, April 17, 2011

Describing your painting process

I picked up an International Artist Magazine. Actually, I got the Feb/Mar and the Apr/May issues. I have not picked this magazine up before. In the opening of these magazines is the feature of all the Prize Winners of the International Artist Magazine Challenges (#61-62). As fabulous the paintings/artists were, what intrigued me was how each artist was presented next to their painting along with their contact information.

The winning artists answered three questions about their work. They were: My Inspiration, My Design Strategy and My Working Process.  WOW! I really liked this concept. I have written down the colors and brands of paint; the size and type of paper; matted or framed; what shows the painting was entered and juried into; where its location is presently and if it is sold. All this placed in the paintings file, BUT  I have not written down why or how I painted a painting.

I really enjoyed reading these small peaks into these artists thought process. This got me to thinking....what would I say about one of my paintings. Would I be able to put into words my thought process? No one has ever asked me "how" or "why" I painted a painting. Briefly, my process is to take pictures of things that interest me. I then go through them and pick the one that I have a gut feeling/appeal to. Could I expand on that and put this into words ...say for a brochure/article or be able to explain myself to a customer or most importantly someone reading this blog?

To test this writing process using the three topics in the magazine I picked my prize winning painting Two Men and a Barge-
Gaylynn Robinson   Cincinnati, OH  USA    Watercolor    Two Men and a Barge   2009 Best of Show Java Jazz n' Art  
My Inspiration
I entered the first juried art show in my town called Java, Jazz n' Art. The show had two themes, Open and River (because my town is a river town). I had several pictures that I had taken at a park in town. I chose the picture of two gentlemen talking while taking in the views of the river. You knew it was river because of the barge going by. To me this scene represented what most people did when they were on the banks of the river - watch what floats by. 

Design Strategy
After choosing the subject, I wanted the focus to be on the two men and the barge (hence the title), therefore I put a lot of detail into the two gentlemen and enough in the barge as it moves through the painting. Everything else was props that supported the conversation. I wanted the painting to draw you into the men's conversation, so I choose the size 13"x17".

My Working Process
After deciding the size of the painting, I began drawing the scene from my picture. Once the drawing was completed I transferred it to 300 lb. Arches cold press paper taped to a board.  I like this paper because it can take the abuse of lifting. This is the process of pulling the paint back off the paper.  Next I mask of the areas that I want the white of the paper saved. I paint my watercolors on an easel upright like an oil/acrylic painting. With the painting upright I begin with my paper dry layering in the colors. I used the lifting process on the gentleman's clothing to help create the folds and creases. I finished my painting with a dry brush to put in the details. My palette is made up of paints from Winsor & Newton, Daniel Smith, American Journey and DaVinci on a Cheap Joe's porcelain palette.

WHEW! THIS WAS NOT EASY FOR ME TO DO! Even though I write on this blog, writing is not my strong suit. Did I explain each topic well? What could I have done better? Did I forget anything? Could I have used more adjectives?  Could you do this process and keep it to under 250-300 words per title? Yet, more than 150? As you can see I fell short on my word count. I got around 150 words in the description of the process and around 50 for the first two descriptions. I chose the number of words as a guideline. Are those numbers too many or not enough? Is it better to be long winded or brief in your descriptions?

I felt this was a good exercise and might do it again then place a copy in the paintings file.
Click viewers commented and let me know your thoughts.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Opening of the 118th Women's Art Club of Cincinnati Annual Juried Exhibit

Today was the opening of the Women's Art Club of Cincinnati Annual Juried Exhibit.

Congratulations to the 15 winners. There were 73 paintings juried into the Exhibit. There were many mediums represented. They were monotype, mixed media, batik, glass, pastels, colored pencil, watercolor, acrylic, fluid acrylic and oil.

This show has awards with names in front of them unlike the exhibits I have been apart of. In these exhibits it was broken down by mediums. In this exhibit they use names of past members and/or donors of the prize, such as F&W Publishing giving 1 yr. subscriptions for Pastel Journal, Watercolor Magazine and The Artists Magazine. These were given to a participant that used that medium. There was one other pastel award and the rest of the awards were given to Colored Pencil, Mono, Oil, WC and Acrylic artists.
Natasha Kinnari     Alisa     Oil     $3,600

The Georgiabelle & Larry Clark Gold Medal Award went to Natasha Kinnari.  I met Natasha several years back at the Miamisburg Annual Art Show. It was the first time for both of us to enter this show. Natasha won a prize for her piece back then. I really like this painting because it was a familiar scene since I have daughters of my own.
Deb Ward    Peony    Fluid Acrylic    $350

My friends, and fellow Greater Cincinnati Watercolor Society members, Deb Ward and Rhonda Carpenter, as well as, several other GCWS members that also made it into the exhibit. CONGRATULATIONS to all of them -Marilyn Bishop, Lorri Davis (winner F&W Award Watercolor Artist magazine), Susan Grogan, Shirley Knollman, and Barbara Zentgraf (winner Robin Imaging Award).

Rhonda Carpenter    And Your Point Is...?     Watercolor    $315

Gail Morrison    Art In Bloom     Oil     $2,800

I saw many new names (to me) under some very good paintings. There were quite a few landscapes, florals and still lifes that made up the exhibit.

One floral was an oil that was in the first painting you saw when you entered the building. These orchids were very well done and deserving of and award it received (Nova Davis Award).

Karen J. Pettit     Up Country     Watercolor     $2,000
Below is my favorite WC in the exhibit. I liked the colors and the way the paint was handled. She used many techniques (washes, dry brush, splatter) to create the texture that draws you into the painting. Very nicely done.

If you live in the Cincinnati, Ohio area, I highly recommend that you stop by The Barn to see this exhibit.

This exhibit continues through May 1st on Thursdays-Sundays, 1-4pm at the Woman's Art Club Cultural Center, Mariemont, Ohio.

If you go to see the exhibit let me know your thoughts, click viewers commented below.


Friday, April 8, 2011

Bramblitt Documentar part2


Here is part 2 of this amazing gentleman.  You Tube has several videos on John Bramblitt and several other artists that are no longer sighted.
Very Humbling.


Bramblitt Documentar part1


I got a tweet on twitter from OMG that told about an article on CBS news about a man in Texas, John Bramblitt, that is blind and paints. I was blown away with his body of work, his ability and his method.

Let me know what you think.
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