Thursday, June 28, 2012

Life as an art student | Day 15 & 16 of 20

Don't have very much to show of yesterday other than how I finished...

Yes. It's very dark and (in all honesty) I took a LOT of artistic license because the tree looked pretty much nothing like that. The goal was to focus on the larger forms of the tree though and also learn how to use the tool that is omission when making decisions during the creative process when painting. As far as that goes, I did both of those items and so I feel like this is a successful painting. I definitely took an abstract approach - and that is something I have REALLY been trying to avoid as much as possible but I'm learning to accept that that approach isn't just OK but it's also necessary sometimes.

The funny thing about this one is that while I feel like it might be my most successful piece from this week, nobody else in my class liked it other than the professor and the two advanced painting students. The other beginning painters (like me) kept offering suggestions that maybe if I painted the leaves more individually or striped in grass then it would be "better." Kind of amusing to me that despite the fact that I said what my goals were, they still insisted I make it look more like what someone thinks a tree looks like versus what it might really look like. So, there's that. Oh well.

And then today this is what I did...

I moved spots and fell in love with this particular place that allowed for me to use more than just greens, yellows, and browns. I happened to have a whole bunch of small canvases in my studio and so I grabbed a bunch because my professor suggested it would help me with my one personal goal to stop painting everything larger so much that it doesn't fit on the canvas. I am so delighted to report that working this smaller size has been so helpful for me to think more carefully about proportions and scale. I would say the canvas is probably about a 5x7. (I don't remember and don't feel like going to measure it. Sorry.)

Because my canvases are/were so small, I was able to knock out not just one but TWO pieces today and for my next one I simply swiveled counterclockwise where there was a great view of a blue shed against some trees and houses.

For this one I used an even smaller canvas. I think it might have been 3x5 but (again) I don't know and don't feel like measuring it to give you exact info. It worked up really fast because of how small it was and gave me a huge boost of confidence that maybe I can paint enough to hold my own. I tried to take a picture of the canvas by itself but it's actually so small that my camera phone wouldn't let me so here is a shot of it with my other finished piece from today.

Next week there are only two days left for painting and while we were going to be assigned to do self-portraits, the professor has changed his mind and decided to allow us those days to continue doing landscapes. I'll be honest, I have never been a fan of landscapes or doing any kind of art en plein air but I am getting it now and I am absolutely loving it.  That being said, I am thrilled to have two more days to do some more tiny paintings that can eventually all be hung together somewhere in my house. I have some larger canvases that I could definitely dig into but I don't know. I'm loving the small canvases so much that I think I might just stick with them for the remainder of the class.

Our last class (next Thursday) will be spent doing a little bit of critiquing amongst ourselves that also will require each of us to present all of our work and explain it - basically, we are expected to make artist statements.

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