Saturday, February 8, 2014

Rudbeckias I

This is the first of two rudbeckia paintings done recently. I started with a fairly abstract dark background with a couple of lighter areas and then had fun slashing on greens with a palette knife and other implements. When I worked out the placing of the flower heads, I sketched them in with chalk and then painted them white- so the yellows, especially, would show up. Yellow is always a weak pigment and I wanted the flowers bold enough. Leaving dark underneath would set me up for a losing battle. I wanted a garden-bed feeling but not a photographic rendering. I also wanted it sunny and uplifting. I then developed the flowers and started cutting in - both with lights and darks- on the greenery- trying for some definition but not having it too precise. I wanted the greenery to be complicated and varied --- so that there is always  "more" to see.  Recently, I was looking an an "app" that a friend showed me- how to turn a photograph into a "watercolour" without lifting a brush. Interesting - but is it art? I think a painting has to have the artist's spirit in it. But, obviously, this app will be popular with those who just want to fill a wall space. I just hope it doesn't lead to more cheating in art competitions - like the infamous national watercolour contest scandal a few years back. At any rate, the paint is thick enough on this painting and the colours and effects complicated enough that there is no way it could be duplicated by an app.  I'm on a bit of a "floral kick" right now and may have a number of new paintings by the time DoorsOpen occurs at the beginning of June,

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