Wednesday, January 21, 2015



Decided to try to squeeze in a painting today.... and ended up spending most of the day on this. It took quite a while to feel okay with a composition, almost 3 hours to paint, and about the same just to get a decent picture of it. Part of the trouble I had was that I wanted to paint in the dining room room today. 

To make a short story a little longer.... It was such a beautifully sunny day that I wanted to keep an eye on our koi pond in the front yard -- just in case the water warmed up enough for Bubba to surface for food. He, nor his 6 gold fish buddies, ever came into view. But the movement of the sun through the panels of the bay window kept the reflections, shadows, and highlights dancing around my silver props. It was a little more frustrating than normal. It's already tricky with shiny objects because a simple tilt of your head will move all the shapes and colors around.

All in all, I think I like this painting! I'll drop in some pictures below on steps I took to paint it. NOTE: One thing I noticed after I posted this is the way the reflections on the knife made it look "tilted" too much in the final painting. Yicks! So I tried to fix it, and reposted the next day. (first one is below)  :)

 Step 1: (After getting a still life composition and lighting that I liked) I sketched it in with a wash of raw umber, starting to define the range of values, but also finding the movement in the reflections.

Step 2: I loosely blocked in color, trying not to overly mute color or blend edges together. (This step really could've been broken down into two-three photos.)

3. I refined the painting by focusing on dark first, then on to highlights. This is when I really focus on the reflected light, and how it "plays" off the darker colors. Shadows are worked in towards the end (probably because I have a harder time with them).

After I finished and posted this, I realized that the reflection on the knife made it "bend", so repainted that portion and reposted it. (see above)

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