Sunday, February 26, 2017

The Art of Study

I have been waiting out the wild weather by studying and  gathering supplies and resources to launch my big project. I have had to be patient as the delivery of the art supplies are often delayed due to road closures by weather and landslides. In the meantime I have been slowly making tools to do some serious study in the studio.

I have been inspired by Paul Foxton's Learning to See blog for quite sometime now. He has a wonderful blog on learning a methodical process for art study that is similar to how I was schooled. He is a big advocate and user of the Munsell system of color and I have become quite enthusiastic about it myself. I have dabbled in the method for a few years now but am buckling down and working through it.

The best site for serious study, in addition to Learning to See, is the Rational Painting site by Graydon Parrish. This site requires becoming a member to access it fully and I am grateful to have joined a few years ago. I have not been active due to several major life events but I am now working through it. Graydon and other members  have put in a great deal of time and energy into the exercises and forums. There is several years worth of information and processes to dive into.

I am starting with the Munsell neutrals. I am in the process of making my neutral value scales through precise mixing and matching of the Munsell value scale and am learning quite a bit. The above picture is of a set of value blocks that I have painted and will be using in several exercises. I just received supplies to mix and tube up my own set of Munsell values and will be working on that next.I could go on about this topic for quite a while, however, the two sites I listed above do a far better job than I can at the moment!

Finally, a note for those familiar with the Munsell system, I have purchased The New Munsell Student Color set (I have the 3rd edition) and a Munsell neutral value scale to work with. I am saving up my pennies to purchase the big Munsell Book of Color. It is quite a pricey tool, basically the cost of a good workshop, but I believe it worth the investment. Many of the exercises can be done with the tools I have but going deeper will require the big book.

I am getting close to starting to auction my small paintings and will be announcing the first auction and the links to it very soon! I have also been keeping busy working on our house and getting a new garden in. I am trying to be patient and productive while waiting out the weather so I can get back to painting on the beach and starting up my big project. I love winter but I am looking forward to spring.


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Leaping Off The Wild Edge

I am taking a deep breath and officially announcing a major project that I have been dreaming about for the past few years. I am both excited, and nervous. This is a very big project for me. So, here it is:

I will be spending a great deal of time painting every state park, scenic point, recreational site, national preserve, wayside, estuary, wildlife refuge, outstanding natural area, interpretive center/area, and more along the entire Oregon Coast to the WEST  of Hwy. 101!

There, I said it. Just a little project that will probably take me a few years!

So why do I want to do this? Of course, there are several reasons. Oregon has one of the most stunning coastlines on the west coast. Sorry Washington and California, your coastlines are beautiful but this is my humble opinion. I have lived in all three states along the coast so I feel qualified to express this opinion! The idea for this project has been rattling around in my head for a while and has become very important to me. With all the changes our country, world, and planet has been going through, I feel a strong sense of urgency. I will have more to say on this as the project evolves.

Of course, I don't really feel that I am ready but I do feel, very strongly, that now is the time to begin. I would probably never feel like I was ready anyway!

My main guide to start with is the Oregon Coastal Access Guide by Kenn Oberrecht. It is a "Mile-by-Mile Guide to Scenic and Recreational Attractions." It has a lot more than the spots I mentioned above but it pretty much the spots I am interested in. It literally goes from mile post to milepost and includes viewpoints and scenic pullouts. The second book, The Photographer's Guide to the Oregon Coast, list very special scenic places to pay attention too. It is mainly for additional information.

I will have a lot more to blog about as this project unfolds but here is the general outline:

-I will be starting with the areas closest to me of course. That will allow me to work out the logistics with the comfort of home to retreat to.
-I will show/exhibit the paintings completed for the year for as long as the project takes.
-I will be painting plein air studies, drawings, and sketches from life.
-I will create larger studio paintings from the studies.
-There will be a final exhibit when the project is complete.
-A few of the better plein air studies and the studio paintings will be for sale. I am not sure at this point if I will wait until the project is complete and a final exhibit created.

Which brings me to how to fund such a project!

I am not planning to use a crowd funding service such as gofundme. I really do not want to have a deadline and I don't think a project like this would really fit the crowd-funding model. I want to allow this project the breathing space it deserves.I am also all too aware how life events can interrupt such an endeavor such as this one.

To start with, I have decided to take a little time each week to paint small wave paintings, still-life, and landscape paintings to auction on my Daily Paintworks page or my website. There will be links for each painting on this blog and my website. I will also be donating a certain percentage of the proceeds to organizations that support and protect the wild coastline.

This will very much be a work in progress and I will be changing various aspects as needed. I will also be blogging about the project so there will hopefully be an interesting story unfolding as the project continues.

This is a bare outline of the total project. I wanted to get the ball rolling. I will be happy to answer any questions. The only thing I ask is that negativity and discouragement be set aside. This is going to be a challenging enough project as it is and positive encouragement, suggestions, etc. are appreciated.

Finally I do have a working title for the project. If you have read my tagline, it might sound familiar. This project is called:

"Painting the Wild Edge"

I am looking forward to growing and learning as an artist and to exploring and appreciating the beauty of this wild coastline.
I hope you will enjoy following my progress!


Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Day 31: Arcadia Beach Study

 "Arcadia Beach Study", 8"x10" oil on canvas panel, plein air, ©2017 R.L. Delight

Here is the final painting of the month! This one was a struggle. The light was beautiful but the breeze was a lot colder and a lot more mischievous than I had anticipated. I had to cut this one short for the sake of my health and sanity! I really loved the colors coming out in the rock. The painting shows a lot of the subtle color in real life that doesn't show up so much here.

Thirty one days hath January so 31 paintings. Here is a collage of them all:

A big thank you to all of you who have stopped by to take a look!


Monday, January 30, 2017

Day 30: Elements #30: Skuld

"Elements #30: Skuld", 5"x7", oil on panel, © R.L. Delight

This the third companion to the earlier paintings of "Urd", and "Verdani". I added a couple of colors to my usual palette for this painting. My usual palette these days consists of Gamblin's Transparent Earth Red, Hansa Yellow Light, Hansa Yellow Deep, Ultramarine Blue, and Rembrant's Permanent Red Deep. I added Phalo Turquoise (Gamblin)  and Permanent Rose (Windsor and Newton) for this painting.These little paintings are just rough ideas and all are elements for larger paintings.

Tomorrow is the final day in the challenge. The end of a turbulent month with more yet to come. I am hoping I will be able to get outside to paint. We have another weather alert about a weather system coming in on Wednesday with more cold and wet. It looks like Wednesday will be a good day to begin catching up on housecleaning!


Sunday, January 29, 2017

Day 29: Stone Elephant

"Stone Elephant", 7"x5", oil on panel, © 2017 R.L. Delight

Second post of the day but I didn't want to forget again! I am feeling much better but I do tire easy. I can see from my photo that I need to go back and tweak some edges. I will do that later. I have had this little stone elephant for 30 years or so and it is a favorite of mine. There are no politics implied or intended in any way in this painting. Given the state of our country, I felt the need to state that.

I can see the light at the end of the challenge tunnel! I am committed to painting through the 31st so there are two more paintings for me. I am looking forward to getting back to some deeper studies, being able to take my time on a painting, starting a rather ambitious painting project, to be announced in a future post, giving my house a thorough cleaning, and getting started on putting in a garden. Spring is around the corner!

I will keep this post short since it is the second post of the day.


Day 28: Wave Study Play

"Wave Study Play", 5"x7", oil on panel, studio, © R.L. Delight
Once again, while this did get posted on Facebook yesterday,  I forgot to make a blog post. I am very thankful to be feeling a lot better today. I decided to make another painting study from a sketch. I spent a lot of time pushing and pulling, working with new techniques and trying out "what ifs". That is what challenges are all about aren't they?

I am keeping this one short. Hopefully I will remember to post Day 29 today as well! It is still under construction at the moment.


Saturday, January 28, 2017

Day 27: Wave Study #98?

 Wave Study #98?, oil on canvas, 6"x8", © R.L. Delight

Whoops! I forgot to post to my blog yesterday. I am feeling a bit better today, at least the fever seems to be gone. The sun was out yesterday and it felt warm in the sunshine. I decided to go sit on the beach and sketch a wave study. I knew I didn't have the stamina for painting on the beach but at least I could sketch. I brought my sketch back home and made a painting from my notes. I use Strathmore's toned gray sketch pads and water-soluble graphite when I go wave sketching. Most of the time I also use white gouache for the breaker part of the wave. That gives me the structure and architecture of what is happening out in the waves. I also jotted down color notes. I don't usually do that but I knew I would be painting from the sketch so I made sure I had enough information to do that.

The waves were chaotic, which are my favorite waves to paint. They can be quite challenging. This time I noticed there would be a pop of this deep green color every once in a while. I was intrigued by it so put it into my sketch. The spot of deep green on the wave was a section that was concave for whatever reason (hidden rock, sand hole?). The angle of the sun hitting the part of the wave surrounding the concavity meant the area was not getting any light. It was interesting to watch. I don't think I quite captured it like I was seeing it but it is very hard for me to focus while under the influence of fever. I will watch for it in the future when I am feeling better.

Finally, I am experimenting with a new paint medium and technique. Trying for transparent effects. I used it in the sky and would like to try it in the waves themselves as well. When trying a new technique there is always this awkward messy period. Not something I would usually do publicly but I didn't want to wait for the challenge to be over. Almost there, four more days!

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