Leonardo da Vinci

Where the spirit does not work with the hand there is no art.

--Leonardo da Vinci

Friday, October 28, 2011

Study in Light

Dining Room Treasures
All summer i have seen the afternoon fleeting light come and go on this one teapot of my wife's on our dining room table and have wanted so much to paint it. Now that our bright sunny days are coming to a not so consistent time of year, i knew it was time to put up or shut up. So, recently i took a couple afternoons that were nice back to back and once again invaded our dining room with the vengeance of a Linebacker stuffed in a Ford Pinto.
One thing i strive to put in my work is atmosphere. To do that, i let the composition and subjects tell me how they want to be portrayed in that moment as i problem solve through the painting. Now, it goes without saying that color notes/values are critical to a painting, but just as important is the application of that paint. This piece i found myself dipping my brush in a mound of paint and creating long stringies that were strategically placed for a certain effect. Long skinny lines were the result that added a shimmering effect.
So, much of the time i don't have a detailed master plan of how i am going to paint something, and i think it really helps create that spontaneous, atmospheric feel that i am looking for.
I have lately found myself entering a strange phase of my painting process; I have been using intense natural light to paint my indoor still life's, while venturing out into the not-so-pleasant weather to do my plein air work. Just the opposite of what the normal person would do. Maybe its time for a cat scan......
In any case, i am thoroughly enjoying my contemplative journey in search of creating deep soulful and inspiring art.


  1. Hi - From your description of how you take each painting as a new start, and see where it takes you, I would like to say that I really like the way you seem to follow a fluid line with the direction your work takes. So many artists seem to pigeon hole themselves and stick rigidly to their goal, which can make the work they produce feel almost as if its done to a formula. Your attitude is one that I respect and (hopefully) have lways tried to use in my own work.

  2. haha...a cat scan, that's funny--but I agree that it is a little (uh) different to paint indoors on a sunny day and outdoors in the bad weather. I agree with the poster above, however, that it's great that you are like that. I know a (good) and successful painter whose paintings look very much the same. She's got it all "done to a science" but I prefer the search like you've described. It makes for such a more interesting painting. This is a great piece....the composition, colors and light are beautiful

  3. Thank you both for the wonderful comments! I am super glad that you enjoy the piece as well as the post. Experimenting, pushing the boundaries and searching couldn't be more invigorating.