Archive for March 12th, 2008

So, it look likes it’s finished. I piut some finishing touches on this evening and I can’t see any more work that needs doing there.

A few comments on techniques. As I pointed out in my first post on this painting, I set out using “vectors” – lines that descibe the dynamics of the pictiure and then painted in by feel from there. This is rather than setting out by grid, that I think gives a more static feel to the finished picture.

I painted from the top down. The top represents the furthest object, so this is logical. I think the important point here for this painting is that I didn’t build up in layers, but rather started from the top down and just kept going. Relative to some other pictures I’ve done in the recent past, I laid most of the paint on more or less neat and only used a small amount of water mainly for lubrication and not in order to create a wash.

I was also a lot bolder with color. Right from the start I decided to go for the rather extremely purple shaded cliffs and to reproduce this in the path at the bottom. It followed from here that I needed to make the trees and the other colors bold. The backlighting on the trees that starkly contrasts the cliffs both in hue and in color value is what really makes the picture.

I am really happy with this one. A great start towards my exhibition (still dateless).


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I did some more work on the Nahal Kziv picture last night. I am really excited about how this picture is coming along – which makes it more frustrating that I am having trouble (as ever) finding time to work on it.

Sometimes there are pictures that when I am working on them, I keep saying “I hate this picture”, “it’s not right” and worse curses. The creative process just doesn’t flow and the birth is hard. Generally they come out OK or even better in the end and often after a cool-off period I can even get to like them.

And then there are pictures that just seem to flow out of the brush. I don’t know exactly what it is that makes the difference. Is it me? Is it the subject? Is it the timing, the combination of mood and subject? If I could work out the formula then not only would I enjoy myself more (that’s a goal), but we would benefit from better paintings. More importantly the paintings would be more me.

What is that elusive element that makes all the difference? Hayim at Nofim says that he can see it in the paintings – I certainly can as well. You can see it in labored overworked finishes, that even when they are finished after multiple reworks still just don’t look right. They don’t sing.

This one sings.

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