Daily Painting Challenge, January 2015, Day 14

January 14, 2015














Twisted metal

oil on canvas panel, 6×6″

Arthur Stern is insistent on students tackling metal, wood, plastic, ceramic, textile. Their context includes reflections and shadows. Today’s doesn’t “read” particularly well because it’s a flattened tin can. It’s not the most successful rendering, but at least I’m daring to tackle it.











In reviewing the paintings of the last few days, I can only see tonal errors – where I know (from my memory of the light conditions at the time) areas ought to have been lighter or darker. I haven’t taken the time to convert my photos to greyscale, which I suspect would show up these errors even more.

I’m getting a lot out of keeping tabs on my fellow challenge colleagues. Particularly inspiring has been the dedication to the PAD concept by Craig Stephens, (http://craigstephens.blogspot.com.au/), who has 365 posts for the year 2014. It’s interesting to see what stays the same and what changes over that period of time.

Michele Clamp (http://binarycolors.org) is another whom I’m following on a daily basis; if I wasn’t gearing up for more oil painting at Art School starting in a few weeks’ time, I’d be working in watercolour as she does.

I am re-reading Fuchs on Dutch Painting and am constantly drawn to the work of Pieter Claesz (1597-1660) who painted greys and ochres: fish, pewter, glassware, often with a golden yellow. I find myself constantly reaching for Naples Yellow, hoping I can include it in a painting. Working the full range of (bright) colours, as attractive as they are, stops me in a way. In this respect, I love the way Randall Cogburn maintains his subtle dark backgrounds in his daily contributions to this challenge: variations on a theme of teabags (http://kirbysart.blogspot.com.au/)

My ‘soundtrack’ for the paintings of the last few days has been the lute concerto in d by Fasch; before that it was the ‘cello concerti of Leonardo Leo. I can’t listen to these just the once – I have to listen to them a dozen times a day.

A particular watershed looms: I am busy teaching one day later this week and will have to do two paintings the following day. The intensity of the painting experience is difficult to shake off: I am still analysing colour and light in my mind for hours after each painting; the idea of doing a painting before and another after lunch later on will be an overload of the senses!


Thirty Paintings in Thirty Days, January 2015, organised by Leslie Saeta (http://lesliesaeta.blogspot.com.au).

Reference: Stern, Arthur. How to see color and paint it: a series of projects designed to open your eyes to colors you never saw before. New York, Watson-Guptill, 1984.


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