Saturday, January 19, 2013

Trees as Subjects for Color Mixing

Orange/blue and red/green

yellow/purple and red/green

yellow/purple and orange/blue

Notes From My Tree Painting Journal

I mentor a group of 10 painters. I give them weekly assignments and we have a meeting once a month to talk shop. Their latest assignment was to study various tetradic palettes. The above tree paintings are my own paintings from the assignment.

The one on top was done alla prima with oils, and the other two were with acrylics. The second painting was started on location at Fair Oaks, where I am an artist in residence. 

The third painting was done on an aluminum panel. That is a bit more challenging with acrylics because the panel requires more paint layers to start before the paint begins to grip the surface well. I use a medium tinted with pigment for the first layer and the problem is that I am impatient in not leaving it alone to dry. Once I get further into the painting it is easier. I do enjoy the challenge of painting on metal now and then. It is great fun to see the little spots of sheen from the metal as you walk around the painting. Copper and tin work as well and it has become a fad with some painters to use copper, though  the technique has been around for ages.

I am starting to get my technique with oils back again. I noticed with the top painting that I felt quite comfortable with the medium again. I used to be an oil painter exclusively for about 40 years before I discovered the advantages of acrylic. I studied with acrylics for 18 months exclusively and just went back to oils last summer. Now I try to do both each week to keep the skill level up. 

The Loft Studio is full of tree paintings for 2013. I have moved my coastal paintings onto the stair well to give the trees their just due as the celebrities of my year. Come on up to the loft and enjoy them.

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