Sunday, 22 January 2012

Refining the process

Well, hello everyone! I see you have all been very productive over the last few weeks. I haven't had the time to sit down and peruse all your work but I have watched as some of your lovely work has appeared on the feeds to Google Reader on my phone :) I hope to start catching up with you all .... soon !

I have been playing a little over the last month or so with various media:  watercolours (of course), but also Tombow brush pens, graphite (plain and watersoluble) and watercolour pencil. I tend to drift in and out of these easy to use media and although they are fun they do tend to distract me from what I really want to be doing, which is getting out there to sketch :) Hopefully the weather will start to get warmer here in the UK and I can get out there again with my watercolours and oils !

I'm also starting to play a little with oils again and have been using things like wooden sticks and paper towels to create marks and blends. This one was the result of that process. I started by squeezing a generous blob of Burnt Umber onto the palette to use as a mid-tone for a painting. I had nothing in mind at the time, but as I started to brush the paint across the canvas I decided that I would try to turn it into a painting. I suppose you could argue that it's only an underpainting but I like it just as it is, a finished monochrome painting or perhaps an exercise in learning more about values. Hope you like it.

Happy painting!

Out of the woods, Oil on canvas, 30cm/12" x 25cm/10"

16 comments:

  1. Hi Michael, I like it! It's so funny, the right half of the painting with the tree branching out over a lovely landscape, the left half straight trees. Must be a symbol of your left brain - right brain dilemma?

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  2. Hi Michael, good to see you back - you've been missed. Some of my favourite paintings are monochromatic. This one is great I particularly like the subtle tones on the left of the trees furthest away that push back in the space. I wonder if the trees on the right would push back more if their tones were a touch lighter? There is some beautiful markmaking in this one your experiments in application are working very well.

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  3. Hi Michael,
    So good to see you posting again. Absolutely love this, it's Brilliant.

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  4. Hi Michael, I don't know whether I've been here before, but I'm glad I stumbled in. I like it just the way it is too--sometime under-paintings have just the right feel and it's the wisest among us to sign it and walk away. I also think you're the second artist I've come across to use the word "fun" when messing around with the various mediums; I'm the first. "Messing around" with mediums is the joy in the process. Nice to meet you.

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  5. I also like monochrome paintings, particularly in these warm, earthy tones. I think it's great! And I chuckled at Judy's comment :0)

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  6. Wow.. this is so lovely, Michael! You are venturing into oils.. me too! Love the reflections and the monochrome. Value studies are so important, and you picked a wonderful subject. You also made the oils look like watercolours! Awesome!

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  7. Since it started out as a blob, a blank canvas, and no direction, it's turned out pretty well. Nice job. ;-)

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  8. Monochrome images are often so powerful. This is no exception to that. Lovely composition.
    And this encourages me to get back to my brushes too. Thank you.

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  9. Way to go for having nothing in mind! You've produced a lovely monochrome landscape. I really like it. xx

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  10. I like it Michael! Beautiful monochrome painting, particularly in these warm colors. Great Job! Ciao.

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  11. Nice to see you're having fun with the oil in a big way.
    I absolutely love the left side of your peinture but I wonder if the "trick" rigid and darker, down on the right is very wise

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  12. Very nice indeed Michael. My husband bought me oils for Christmas and as yet I have done nothing with them ... watch this space! :)

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  13. Hi everyone ... what a lovely welcome back ... thank you! Sorry it took me so long to reply to your lovely encouraging comments :)

    Judy - Hmm, you may have a point. However, I've just checked in the mirror and I can't see a tree growing out of the right hand side of my head LOL.

    Lisa - glad to be back! Yes, well done, I wondered when someone would notice the too-dark trees on the right ;-) Where's Roger when you need an eye for detail LOL :)

    Joan - it's great to be back. Hope to check out your last few posts real soon and to see if you've had any big snow falls on Long Island yet :)

    Linda - welcome! Hope you pop by again! Yes, when there's a lack of fun in art it will show through in your work. Hope to peruse your blog soon - lovely work BTW :)

    Sandra - it started as a neutral background, then an underpainting, then a monochrome ... glad you like it :)

    Rose - wow, way to go ! I hope you have an oily masterpiece to look at soon! Yes, seeing value is very valuable and often undervalued LOL. I don't use any textured goo - I prefer to work thin so it does produce more of a watery effect :)

    John - I wonder how many Van Gogh's started life as a blob of paint ? It could have gone the wrong way and ended up like a Jackson Pollock's LOL :)

    Vandy - I hope this was enough inspiration to get the brushes out and to post your work for us all :)

    Pat - it's often the way isn't it ? Clear your mind and let the heart take over :)

    Tito - it does have a nice warm earthy feel to it :)

    Lydie - yes I may lighten the dark strip a little. It's supposed to be a wall to hold the embankment, but you're absolutely right, it is too dark :)

    Sue - glad you like this one. Hope the new job is going well :)

    Ingrid - brilliant, have fun. Looking forward to seeing you post your first oil paintings :)

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  14. I like looking at artistic experiments and discovering new unconventional attemps to find new ways of expression... That's why I find this work so interesting and fascinating! Now I'm looking forward for the next steps of this intriguing process...
    Have a nice week!
    Lucia

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  15. Hi Lucia, so sorry I'm late at replying :( Thank you so much for your comments. I hope to develop this technique in the months ahead :)

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