Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Painting the Still Life

I have recently begun painting still lifes again. I had forgotten how wonderful they are to paint. They don't need a break as a model does, The light doesn't change when using a spot light, and If you are one to spend lots of time on a painting, you don't have to pay them an hourly fee. One caution though, just because you can take a long time to paint a still life does not mean it would be the best option. There is such a thing as over working a painting. You have to know when to stop, when enough is enough. I found that as long as I can stay focused on my original idea I'm ok to continue, but after a few hours when I begin to lose focus, I know I'm approaching that time to stop, start a new painting or call it a day. It is a good idea to take breaks though even when your subjects do not need one. Just as if you were painting a model and needed to give them a break, You need a break too. Set a timer and when it goes off, stop what your doing, step back and maybe even leave the room. At times I've found myself staring at my painting close up, As if it would magically fix itself. I'd forget to take a break and step back. You want to be able to look at your painting with fresh eyes. Sometimes it's more beneficial to just put your brushes down, squint down and look at your subject (not your painting) and study it. What values are you seeing, what kind of edges are you seeing, What shapes are you seeing? Then look at your painting and see if you are capturing all that you see when you look up at your subject. I know its hard and exhausting to stay so focused, but as you begin to train yourself you will be able to stay focused for longer amounts of time. In the end its all worth it.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

An Evening of Art and Entertainment

One Night - November 11th

Two Locations - The Tavern Club and Marwen Gallery

1st Location

The Tavern Club on Michigan and Wacker. This show entitled "What Exactly is Plein Air Painting?" is sponsored by the Plein Air Painters of Chicago- South West. This is a group I paint with on occasion and will have a few paintings on display.

The opening reception is on Friday November 11th from 5:30 - 7:30pm. There will be wine and cheese and a jazz guitarist. The show will run through January 1, 2006.
333 N. Michigan Ave., 25th floor. 312-263-1166.

2nd Location

Marwen on Orleans and Institute place, one block north of Chicago. This show is Marwen's Annual Alumni Show. There will be a variety of works, from installations to oil paintings. Marwen is a not- for-profit organization which offers free art classes to under served youth. I will have a few paintings on display.

The opening reception is on Friday November 11th from 5:00 - 8:00pm. There will be wine and cheese as well as music by Madrid. The show runs through December 7th, 2005.
833 North Orleans. 312-944-2418.

Hope to see some of you at one or both events. Feel free to respond with any questions.