Friday, October 19, 2012

The Where, The When and The Why of a Painting

Cormorant Rock - 10x10 - Oil on Linen Panel

Leo Carrillo State Beach
I've been going to Leo Carrillo State Beach to paint often lately.  It is almost always nicer there than in the very hot Valley where I live.  It seems, however, that each time I go, it is a bit different and I find another beautiful scene to try to capture.  I am continually amazed that no matter how often I paint in the same area, I capture it a bit differently.

Continued Learning
One of the the wonderful artists who has been commenting on my FASO website blog posts lately, Russell Black, often reminds me that I'm painting a painting, not a photograph and that, while I should know and employ the "rules" I should also ignore them when I want -- pirate style.   This is very true -- and I need to work on not really TRYING to capture the scene as a camera might, but, well, I guess more as I FEEL it.   Truthfully, even if I WANTED to be photorealistic, I couldn't, but what he and others have said is to move things around to improve a composition, and basically do whatever is necessary to make a pleasing piece of art.   The artist I study with, David Gallup, is always reminding us to use "playful" color -- especially in dark areas.   From a distance darks all read as dark anyway, but close up they are definitely more interesting with colorful passages of paint and complex surfaces.  David talks about obfuscating strokes and edges to create mystery and let the viewer's imagination kick in.   He says paintings should be seductive, leaving things to discover and things to be revealed by further viewings.   David is always saying that there should be a play between contrasts and harmonies and that highlights are often more important in describing a form than draftsmanship.   To make a painting believable is more important than making it accurate.

It's not that all of this great advice is lost on me... It just takes me a long time to really make it mine so that I can paint and enjoy and be the best painter that I can.  

Last week, by a happy stroke of luck (and a GREAT FASO website) I sold four coastal scene paintings to a person who lives far from California.  They were all plein air pieces and most were painted right there at Leo Carrillo State Beach.

California Coastal          Carrillo Splash Zone          Splash Point          Cueva Valdez

I know selling isn't main goal of painting, but it IS a nice bit of validation.    

Next week I'm off on a painting trip with my friend, Sharon Weaver, up the coast to Northern CaliforniaI'm really looking forward to it.

Comment on or Share this Article >>


CrimsonLeaves said...

Gorgeous crashing wave caught, Marian. Congratulations on your sales. I agree that it is validation of your passion for painting.

Pam Holnback said...

I love all the thoughts in the "continued learning". So right, we are painting paintings!! Congratulations on all of the sales!! The do so motivate us.

Susan Roux said...

Great post! Your words are so true and a great reminder of things we've all been told, but often forget while in the act of creating. I really like the colors you're using in your ocean scenes. Not a surprise you got a great validating sale! Congrats.

Marian Fortunati said...

Hi Sherry and Susan and Pam! Thanks so much for leaving a comment!!

I find that when I write down things that David and others say that are meant to help me grow, they become just a tiny bit more engrained in my feeble brain.

Also... Good news... just found out that this painting one a first prize in a local show. YAY!!! Color me happy.

Marian Fortunati said...

There is a person who is leaving anonymous comments on this blog. They don't show up on this blog, but I get a copy... not sure if anyone else does. (At least one). To the one who leaves comments that make sense.... regarding rss feeds... You can "follow" this blog on blogger by looking at the right hand column and signing up. If you want the rss thing, then you can go to the same blog on my FASO website...
and sign up via rss.

To the commenter who leaves comments that DON'T make sense. Please stop wasting all of our time with gibberish. - Thanks.

jennyfer black said...

Wow! What an amazing painting. The waves looks like its moving and crashes in to the rocks. Its simply a moving art.
adelaide search engine optimisation

Marian Fortunati said...

Thanks, so much, Jennyfer!!

It's always great when a painting turns out the way you envisioned it, isn't it??

Please Enjoy Some Of My Paintings

or subscribe by email

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner