Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Bluebird - Painting from a Nature Photograph

Painting from a Nature Photograph

If you are choosing to paint from a photograph, there are some points to keep in mind. Shoot the photographs with the image of the painting you want to create. Capture all the details as a reference for your artwork. If it’s not the “perfect” photo, you can still take whatever you want from it. You’re the artist!

When photographing outside early morning or afternoon is the best time to capture your subject.

The example I’m showing today is a photograph of a bluebird on its nest at the Massabesic Audubon Center. With patience and a telephoto lens, I was able to capture this beautiful bird on its nest as the main focus for my painting. I left the background without “clutter” so it wouldn’t detract from my subject.

If you are photographing flowers, be sure to include the stems, leaves, buds as flowers as well as the back of the flowers for color and lighting references.

I hope you enjoy my work and look forward to continuing to blog more photographic tips to capture animals, people, etc.

Until the next time,
Shirley Perry

Blog note: Thank you Shirley for the guest post.  Shirley is an experienced photographer and a new painter. She is enjoying her painting lessons with Anthony Williams at Hobby Lobby.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Building Layers in a composition

Photos and guest blog by Stephanie Byrd, water mixable oil paints on canvas.

If you have wanted to work with oil paint, but were leery because of fumes or extra clean-up, you may want to try water-based oils.

These paints give the feeling of working with oils, are very creamy, blend well, and have vibrant color.  They remain wet a long time like oils, so you have time to go back and blend, remove color, add layers, or other techniques.

Friends of Art Manchester vice president Anthony Williams taught a class at Hobby Lobby on South Willow and provided a canvas with flowers already sketched as well as the paint. He showed me how to keep the paint wet while working using a spray bottle of water as you would with watercolors, and gave ideas on thickening the paint using oil mediums. I liked the flexibility of both types of paint in one.

As you will see in the photos, just like most paintings, start with the background ( photo 1). This is where you begin the color story and think about how the subject will pop when complete. I knew I wanted the eye to be drawn to a red flower at the end, so I chose a muted background with sage and ochre colors.

More detail and blending was added (photo 2) and an effect to make it look a bit like rice paper. 

Background detail and blending

I then began building layers of colors for the secondary yellow flowers (photo 3) and worked on the stems. 

Building layers on flowers

Finally, I added layering, highlights, shadows, and details in the petals,  stamen, and pollen elements (photo 4). 

I liked that I knew I could go back and play with the painting the next day if I didn't like parts of it. Clean-up was easy. All in all, a very enjoyable experience I highly recommend! 

Highlights, shadows and details

There are many brands of water soluble oils.  A good reference book is by Sean Dye, Painting with Water Soluble Oils. This is available at the city library, 2nd floor, Art & Music Room. ART 751.42 DYE. Local stores in Manchester usually carry the Winsor & Newton Artisan brand. Brushes and palette knives can be used with this medium.

Monday, November 3, 2014

November shows

Several of our artists will have their artwork in this show this month.  Last month, Rollande Rousselle, Judy Gelinas and Bea Bearden were included in the "Artist of the Month" group at Manchester Artists Association (photo below).

Linda Feinberg and Joe Smiga will be at Table 53b in the gym at the Memorial High School Craft Fair on Saturday.