Sunday, August 30, 2009

Commission: "Snow at Sunrise"

This weekend I put the finishing touches on this commissioned work. The painting is loosely based on a photograph provided by the patron. The scene depicts a portion of their country property after a heavy snowfall. In order to make the project a bit more challenging, I decided (with the patron's blessing) to complete the piece in a panorama-styled format using three 20 x 16 inch canvases. Since I knew that the work was going to be placed above an entertainment center in the patron's home, I also thought that this format would work best.

"Snow at Sunrise." Oil on three 20 x 16 inch stretched canvases, total size 20 x 48 inches. Completed August 2009.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

"Main Street" Update

Here is an update on the large canvas I began a few weeks ago entitled "Main Street" (see August 1, 2009 post). After two more long work sessions, the canvas stands in this current state, still unfinished. In general I am satisfied with its progress, although I have some question regarding the sky and the brick structures in the far left side of the work. I still need to work up the structures along the right side, add highlights and shadows, and then decide any further refinements that might be needed. Comments are always welcome!

"Main Street" (tentative title). Oil on stretched canvas, 36 x 48 inches. In progress; begun July 2009.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Dormer Windows

I typically arrange my studio painting sessions so that they allow extended periods of time to work on a piece (usually 6 to 8 hours). However, sometimes I find that I am unexpectedly motivated to paint after hours or when I have a small time frame available. The canvas above is an example. It was completed in less than an hour late one weekday evening, using leftover oils from the past week's pallet. It was also created strictly from imagination, without any specific source material. The idea of attic-level dormer windows just kind of came to me one evening, and I decided to take an old, used canvas and quickly paint an impression of the idea. Here are the results.

"Dormer Windows." Oil on stretched canvas, 8 x 10 inches. Completed January 2009.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

In Progress: "Main Street"

When I originally created this artist blog back in December 2008, it was my intent to post works in progress as well as finished pieces. Unfortunately I haven't been very faithful to that intent, as I have primarily posted canvases after their completion rather than in progress.

Today's post returns to the original intent. I began this large (36 x 48 inch) canvas last week and have allowed it to sit since then as I considered its next metamorphosis. The composition is based on a photograph I took over the Independence Day holiday weekend while visiting my sister and her family in Mount Airy, Maryland. It depicts an intersection of that town's Main Street. I loved the unusual flat-iron shaped building that stands at this intersection, so I quickly snapped a photo of it as we walked to lunch.

Last week, I developed the composition using the original digital photo as a resource. Prior to beginning, I primed the canvas (which I had stretched myself) with an abstract collage of acrylic colors. That is the underpainting one can still see in this stage of the work. I like working on top of a confused color field - I feel that it encourages me to work more loosely. Then, I sketched my composition using a soft brush filled with burnt umber oil paint slightly diluted with painting medium. From there, I began to build up the painted surface.

Because this is a large canvas for me, it will likely take several extended sessions to complete this painting. Once it is finished, I will post the final results.

"Main Street" (tentative title). Oil on stretched canvas, 36 x 48 inches. In progress; begun July 2009.