I had the pleasure of painting a demo this afternoon for the art club at the Baca center in Round Rock.
They thought it it would be fun for me to paint a city scene. It was fun - but also a challenge.
What I wanted to focus on demonstrating was working large to small in order to simplify busy scenes like a city corner. But to get to the small, you gotta get the big shapes in. I finally did cover enough to demonstrate making the big shapes more interesting by adding more texture and breaking the shapes down into smaller interesting shapes.
I have a lot more to go on this but feel like it's a sound start. What is left is the fun stuff - adding those interesting strokes and spots of highlights or dark darks.
This weekend, I watched the bio/documentary of Gloria Vanderbilt and, while I've been fascinated by her history and the whole "robber baron" era of our country, I had no idea she was an artist. It seems that art was the one stable thing in her life and through it she has interpreted and documented decades of memories.
I was particularly moved because the stories are sometimes so sad, but so beautifully rendered. It makes me think about the work I put together. It is definitely not documentary in the same way. I paint scenes from places I've been, but I don't put my memories in them.
The other thing that I have been thinking about a lot is my level of invention. It is something I am struggling with. Gloria was creating things based solely on her memories and drawing without reference it seemed. I really need to push past rendering everything! What am I so afraid of?!
BUT, as I need to keep reminding myself, if I have even half the career she has had, I have a long time to work! Can you believe she is nearly 92?
I'm trying to get motivated. So I set up a still life outside and had a friend (V....) over to lunch with me. We visited and ate al fresco and then I painted the remains of our feast for about an hour. The sun moves surprisingly fast even in that time.
A Painter's Journal
Chasing the light. Capturing life.
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