Sunday, February 14, 2010

whistler and thumbnail color studies


You are probably thinking, oh she has done that one before...yes and no. I do paint the same idea again and again trying hard to create my idea. Both February 8th (memory painting) and February12 (plein air) were the same idea. I wanted to make this glow. My question was... how to make more light in a snow paintings: is it by contrast-dark against light (top row) or glowing lighter value complementaries? (bottom row)

I did many color thumbnails inspired by this Whistler quote:
"Nature contains the elements, in colour and form, of all pictures, as the keyboard contains the notes of all music. But the artist is born to pick and choose... that the result may be beautiful – as the musician gathers his notes, and forms his chords, until he brings forth from chaos glorious harmony."


 Next thought....Whistler always pre-mixed his pools of colors. They say he spent more time mixing than painting. Hmmmmmm. I don't lean towards being a pre-mixer, more impulsive am I. But I think I will give it a try. Long ago, in school, I remember mixing strings of color, like that way Sanford Gifford did. I will try to enjoy the meditative mixing.
So do you pre-mix or on the spot mix,  and why?

14 comments:

SamArtDog said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SamArtDog said...

I tend to like the thrill of high contrast, especially the vibrating low-value colors, "the deepest rumble".
As for mixing, acrylics demand spot mixing, but I can make that last a long time. Windsor-Newtons are supposed to dry true to original; anyone tried them yet?

loriann said...

Hey Sam, the thrill of high contrast... makes sense. I like the words"the deepest rumble, " what a visual! Are there extenders for acrylics?

SamArtDog said...

Yes, Liquitex makes one that's good for about 30 minutes, but the colors still change whenever they do dry. Rubber paint is just plain weird. One of many reasons I'm loving pastels.

Happy V Day to you, too.

Karen E. Lewis said...

(Oils) I mix large piles for my block-in (you might call that a premix) then spotmix each brushstroke next to the piles so as to create a fresh color every moment.

loriann said...

Karen, With the large piles, are they one color, or value strings of a color?

Astrid Volquardsen said...

Hi Loriann,
well you can't really pre-mix with pastels, but I do pick some of the sticks and check them out before I start. During the painting process I choose other sticks as well.
Well, that's part of the fun too, to add another color and see how it works.

I just did some oil underpainting. How do you survive the waiting time, when painting in oils? I find it very, very hard, that I can't be that impulsive as I am with pastells.
By the way:I love your oil paintings. They'r getting better and better.

Brian McGurgan said...

Great to see your thought process here, Loriann. What did you conclude? Judging from your post earlier today (Field of Snow) it looks like maybe you're leaning toward the lighter complementary colors but the strong value contrasts you explored here also have a lot of potential for getting that winter glow. Maybe you're finding that both value and complementary color contrasts make the glow happen...

loriann said...

Hi Astrid! I know what you mean about not wanting to wait. I am SO impulsive. It is certainly a learning curve.

Hi Brian,
What did I conclude? I think you can do it both ways...just different feelings. I prefer the color vibrations of small bits of color touching. What do you think?

Nika said...

I'm a little late to the party, but I have to say that this one is amazing and you certainly have reached your goal of making it glow.
Every inch of that painting is a dance between warm and cold, it really makes it dynamic and exciting to look at. That interplay between warm and cool makes it vibrate and is responsible for the glow effect, in my opinion. Great job, Loriann!

loriann said...

Hi Nika,
You are never too late. Thanks for commenting. You don't miss a trick those small pieces of color are warm and cool and yup that's the key to the glow.
Thanks!
Loriann

Jala Pfaff said...

Nice studies. And I'm continually impressed by how much thought you put into them.
Me, a pre-mixer? Not!

loriann said...

Hi Jala, I wish I could say I do that much work each time..not so. I am trying to do more of it though, especially as my paintings get bigger and bigger. I am finding that a start of premixing to determine my color harmony helps a lot and it's a little therapeutic. Sort of Whistler like. How do you think about your color arrangements?

Karen E. Lewis said...

The color piles are a single color/value mix. If I need a lot of that color in a different value, I mix a new pile. I vary the color and value both to the side of the piles.