Archive for October 2nd, 2009

GC Myers 2009 adding BlueWell, this painting, a 42″ by 60″ canvas, is closing in on what may be its final appearance, at least in my head.  I have the sky close to where I see it finishing, the village only needs some highlights here and there  and the landscape is basically set in place.

My next move is to move into the last large area that needs paint- the waterway and the land on either side of it.  I first go in with a manganese blue, a rich color that I can play off as I move along.  I often use blue for water even though it seldom appears that way in nature.  There seems to be a childish element that allows us to imagine or see blue as water.  For me, it goes back to how the color plays off the other colors.  The harmony produced is more important to me.  I also start adding color to the bridge at this point, although I see it changing in color over the rest of the process.

GC Myers 2009 Nearing the Finish LineFrom there it’s on to putting some color into the lower segment of landscape around the waterway and the structures.  I start with a dark Hunter green which actually darkens this space with a real earthy almost black green tone.  I like the way this sets everything off but am feeling it’s a little too deep and dark, almost flat in dimension.  I think that I probably lighten this soon but I first transition back into the water where I start laying in a lighter blue over the darker manganese underneath.  There is a bit of violet mixed with the blue I’m using which warms the blue just a bit.  I feel like I’m close to where I want this to be at this point but there is still a little work ahead, especially on the water and the bridge.

I start by lightening the bridge so that it has more contrast against the blue of the water.  I want contrast but not so much that the eye settles there.  I next begin adding a little depth in the green of the landscape with a mix of cadmium orange and yellow, once more put on with a light, dryish brush.  The  technique with the brush is as though I’m dusting something off the canvas with short, quick strokes, leaving only a residual of pigment.  This little bit of color atop the green makes a huge difference and I take this same color and technique into the water, really lightening the color so that it has a violet-slatey color, much less blue than it started.  Here’s where I am:

DSC_0106 smallSo I’m near the end and I really like the feel so far with this painting- but…  There’s always a but.

But I really feel it needs one more element beyond the village to bring it all together.  A real object of focus.  Like the tree or trees I mentioned in yesterday’s update.  Or I could take one of the larger, centrally located structures and put even more highlight, more brightness on it.

I’m leaning toward the tree but this is the part of the process where the painting sits for a while in the studio and I look at it over the next several days.  I’m consciously weighing all the elements in the painting to see if there is balance in the structure.  Does it hold together as a composition and do all the elements and lines make sense, not make me stop and wonder why this is here or that is over there?  As it stands, does it convey a wholly realized emotional feeling?  Lots of questions.

So, I’m at a terminus and just have to put in some mind time.  Soon it will be done…

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