Wednesday, 22 March 2017

My first sold painting overseas...

It's been almost a month since I received a mail from my main art-selling pages that someone wants my picture!

I was so thrilled because it showed me that some can appreciate what I do and all of my effort is worthwhile and the idea of my painting hanging in someone's home is so exiting! So I'm happy to announce that my painting "Chill" have it's own place for chilling in California!! (on the picture right bottom).

It looks happy - isn't it?

After this success I managed to sold another painting "Delivery" this time to Massachusetts! 

I want to express unbelievable happiness of mine. Knowing that the pictures could last on these walls for god knows how long wherever in the world - What a lucky me!

Be grateful, happy and enjoy your day wherever you are.


Saturday, 18 March 2017

Importance of master studies

I think and many successful artist that I know and learn from have a same opinion. In order to get better it's not a bad idea to copy some of your favourite artist. You can observe their brushwork, colour mixtures, edge work and how loose or tighten they are/were. Since I love portraits and it's always a challenge to do them correctly I've decided to give a try and study one of the greatest - John Singer Sargent.

I started with his rapid studies of some people because this unfinished pieces can reveal the most of the procedure. I wasn't that cautious about to have the same likeness of the subject which you can see on pictures down below, but I was more eager to capture how the paint is layed out on the canvas, how colours are vivid/gray or his edge work.

On the pictures there's original on the left and my copy on the right - Under first comparison there's an example how I approached this copy for a start - I used raw umber for an underpainting. The rest two master studies were started as Sargent would do it - just lay in the proportions with charcoal...

Few things that I've learned:

1. My final studies are lot more cooler because my lightning in my studio is warm  - So I have to change the bulbs for neutral light (5000K) to get my colours truthful. Pictures of the studies are captured in day light (more neutral) so it's even more conspicuous. If I would make a shoots of the pictures under my artificial light it would be that vivid.

2. My darks are on some places little bit duller because I polluted them with white in order to lighten them a little bit - That is mainly in warm darks - So in future I'll try to lighten them with a mixture of yellow and white.

3. Sargent made me definitely more aware of the edges and I thing that was the most valuable thing that I've acquired from this lesson.

Sargent master study 1 

My tonal underpainting for my first master study of Sargent work

Sargent master study 2

Sargent master study 3

So my fellow artists please give me some suggestions/advices/tips how to improve my oil painting portraiture. From this comparison I can tell that I have lots to do.

Have you all blast! Petr

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Watercolour experience - tips and tricks that I've learned

It's been a year when I tried watercolour for my first time. I found a series lectures on this topic on youtube via a great artist by the name of Stan Miller:

The quality of the videos isn't the greatest but the information I think is top-notch. Stan himself is a master watercolorist and I think there's merely no one better...

The main difference between watercolour and oil paint for example is that watercolour is not opaque medium, it's transparent and you have to basically diligently start from the lightest colour and go step by step towards darks. So in watercolour planning ahead is crucial - once you put a darker colour than you've intended in and don't react within 5 seconds or so you can't really fix it. That is the reason why it's one of the hardest mediums to handle.

You always have to be careful and aware about edge work. You have to do it on the go every time you put the color, line, splash of mixture on the paper. There's no way how to fix the edges afterward.
That's the main reason I think that my picture of John Scofield lacking various edges - I was more focus on leaving the highlights untouched - nose, beard, forehead. Next time I'm gonna be more aware I promise!

So in my little step by step pictorial demostration I show you how I proceeded with the portrait of John Scofield - my favorite Jazz guitarist.

STEP 1. Reference picture:

I must admit this picture lacking various edges itself - that is the reason why painting from life is more accurate and you can add more of your perception of the subject. Unfortunately John didn't want to go the the bloody rainy England :-)

STEP 2. Lay in the drawing:

No cropping! I always try to do it freehand from observation. Sense for proportion is like a muscle and it is necessary I think to exercise it whenever you can - If I would be professional artist with deadlines maybe I would have to crop it but if you have all time in the world I suggest do it freehand. It's not perfect but I think likeness is almost there...

One most important thing - in watercolour it is crucial to have this lay in as accurate as possible due the properties we've discussed - no room for error.

STEP 3. Laying in the colours:

I'd stared with the most difficult area crucial for likeness - eyes and nose, then more compelled for completion I proceeded outwards the face. 

STEP 4: Finishing the painting.

- I definitely overthought the background and the three colour is to much. I've learnt from this mistake and I now now that the simpler background the better...

John Scofiel portrait (watercolour on A4 watercolour paper)

As you can see if you concentrate to much on one thing you can lost awareness of something else - I think I depicted the likeness in some degree and the colour and values (which is the most important thing) are on spot. But I definitely lost perspective and some sense of the form in the picture (feels flat) and as I've said edge work is not something to brag about also. 

It's been a year since I did this one so I hope that I've made a significant progress along past 12 month and my work is better now. Although I'm more focused on oil painting...

Have a lovely state of being, Petr

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Fantastic movie to be seen

I've found just hour ago this little movie about old master from renaissance and their discoveries.

It's a worthwhile movie to be seen, I highly recommend to you:

Have a nice Sunday Everyone!