On Monday, I painted two plein aire oils from the uppermost level of a parking garage. On Tuesday I attended a crit session with some other painters that I meet with regularly. OF course, I showed them the paintings.
I managed to remember to photograph the first painting twice — once as it emerged from the garage session, and then again after I had been through the critique and had tweaked it in the studio. I didn’t do a lot to this painting in my second go-round, but when I finished I was concerned about the loss of some of the “naive” quality of the red building. Here are images of the two versions:
Library Parking Garage, View South (first draft) 12 x 16, oil on board more… »
The Jolly Roger Bar, 12th and Madison. Oil on board, 12 x 16″
As you know, I’ve been painting around Portland, here and there, returning often to sites to note what else is there, what I may have missed, what more is available for turning into paint.
These paintings have a certain “feel” to them — a style that fits with the record of my visits. I work on-site and then tweak and fiddle in the studio. I also find myself making larger, stranger, studio-begot contributions to the sets of pieces.
I am continuing to re- and re-read Schmid’s chapter on edges, because I’m not sure I have a decently full grasp of what he’s saying.
The book is Alla Prima: Everything I Know About Painting by Richard Schmid ($50 USD in soft cover from him; more from Amazon and more in hard cover).
Schmid begins his chapter by saying “Think about edges the way you would think about kissing someone…. Think of edges as exquisite subtleties, as the means to transmit romance, as ways to make your dabs or paint whisper or shout and reach nuances beyond the range of color. Think of them as visual poetry… but especially think of edges as you would the agents of expression in music….pianissimo (very soft), andante (flowing), allegro vivace (fast and lively), maestoso (majestic), fortissimo con sforzando (whamo!).