Thursday, October 02, 2008

New York Trip

Today I am sharing my work from the damp streets of NYC. I tried Ken's approach, which is an interesting one. If you look at his website, you can see a video demo of his work in progress (under workshops). You can see he starts with a black paint sketch and then builds up his color blocks. Now what really sort of threw me and the rest of the class was that he see light (sun) as "cool". Granted, when you lighten with white paint, it will cool it because white tends towards blue. And when you have cool light, you get warm shadows. That makes sense to me, but the idea that its always that... when I looked at the buildings before me and saw warm grays and ochres, etc. was very strange. He had convincing arguments, and its not my place here or anywhere to speak for him or represent him. But I am curious what other's thoughts are on "light". Does it change temperature? Is it always towards the blue or cool because of the sky? And if you see this way and paint it as such... do all your paintings look alike? Mine did! See below:

On Sunday, I decided to paint what he painted. Literally, I copied his painting. He thought it a good exercise.

This is our scene:

This is Ken's marvelous painting:

Here is my copy:

Here is a close up of his:

We used a limited palette and he used a LOT of paint. Definitely click on the image above to see it in detail. I want to try this myself. If only I could find the time to "play" this week. So far, everything at home is falling apart. Again, Ken is a fabulous teacher. I highly recommend him if you are interested in loosening up, painting lush cityscapes and creating art and not just copying a scene. And if you think it looks easy or unfinished, let me tell you, he worked very hard to create it.


Terry Rafferty said...

Thanks for the fascinating look into what you were learning! It Does look so easy, doesn't it? But even the issue of getting enough paint on is hard to master.... not to mention arranging those lush smears of paint into something coherent.

Mark Bridges said...

Yours are really great. Ken's are cool. Did he use the brushes that looked like chewed cat's tail?

Roxanne Steed said...

Yes, he does make it look easy....but that handling of lush paint is anything but. I've admired his work for a long time.....Yours is looking great there! Thanks for sharing the scoop on the workshop!

Alexandre Jay said...

Very nice! I'm loving the loose style of painting. Must try something like this myself.

Tess Walls said...

Cool sunlight is a a whole new concept to me as well! Wow! So, then according to Janice Hindes, if the light is in the cool blue range, the shadows would be in the complementary color range...warm orange?

Michael Lynch does sunlight better than ANY other plein air painter in my can feel the atmosphere, haze and gentle light in his paintings. What do you think...warm sunlight or cool? Looks like he thinks sunlight is warm.

You know you are the first person I know to come away from his workshop to even mention this. Strange. I'm going to explore it.


It feels kind of like cheating...I get to know this tidbit without attending the workshop. BUT you got to go to NY again! I think you win.

Kathleen said...

I read Bob Rohms book The Painterly Approach recently and found his writing on warm and cool colors page 52 to be the best I have read. I struggle with being able to see, What color is the light? myself- but sometimes I can determine if the light is cool or warm by looking at the color of the lightest leaves on the tops of the trees. Are they white or blue, or are they yellow or orange. I do most often find the warm light mainly in early morning or late evening when the reflections off of the sun are going towards red. I can usually see this to some degree.

I love the work you are doing. I miss my daughters youth with each of your mentions of your family. You are a great mother and a great artist. I hope my words are encouraging to you that is what I mean to do. Kathleen McElwaine

olechko said...

Looks great. I wish I was in the States right now to take up the same course.
It's so hard to get using lots of thick paint in my experience, sigh. You seem to ace it with today's pic (of the line).

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