Monday, January 5, 2009

Flower Composition

I got my favorite kind of email today from someone in the U.K. He was thanking me for writing the book and telling me of his plans to paint and exhibit his small paintings. It's a great feeling to be able to help someone with their artwork.
He also pointed out a weak link in the book (or I should probably say one of a few weak links in the book). So I decided to answer his query on line so if someone else was wondering the same thing ....
The continuity of color is off on the painting steps on page 65. There are two reasons. One is that the printer didn't do a good job in the reproduction; the images in this post are what I had submitted. The book version is really off. The second reason is that I had to paint all the steps separately for photography purposes. In other words I had three panels going at the same time. I stopped each one at different stages , let them dry and then let the photographer photograph them. It was easier to keep the continuity between the steps on some of the paintings but obviously not all.
I talk about spending a lot of time premixing my colors. I do think I've gotten faster at it but when I wrote the book I did spend probably 20 minutes on each color. And because I squint I would go for a darker version of the color. I would invariably end up with a few versions of each color that I was going for. For example, for the background purple I would end up with warmer, cooler, darker and lighter piles. then I would either use some or all of the versions in the painting. This comes in quite handy since more color variation is a feast for the eyes. It also helps describe depth and volume more accurately.
Hope this answers the first two questions in your email. I'll get to the others later!!


Jeffrey W. Phillips said...

Lovin' this painting, Joyce. Your brushwork is, as always, awesome. The color depth you've achieved here in such a small space is wonderful. Thanks for sharing you talent.

Mary Sheehan Winn said...

I was just reading Big Art Small Canvas last night and immediately recognized this series. I didn't catch the difference in the book.
Congrats on your new book, too!