Thursday, March 19, 2009

Getting Started on a new commission

Just wanted to make a post to the blog to update everyone on what's happening. Mainly just wanted to talk about the process that many artists go through when doing a commissioned painting and take you through the early stages. I hope this will help many of you if ever faced with the same issues.

I recently had a request from a decorator to produce a painting (yes to match the living room couch) of a Tuscan style landscape. I don't often get commissions like this where someone has something so specific in mind, but welcomed the challenge of seeing what I could do with the assignment.

The first and hardest part of the project was the 2 weeks of phone calls and emails working out the details and getting the basic information together to quote the job and work out the terms. That ended well, meaning the client agreed to the terms of payment, and specs of the painting.
Basicly a 1/3rd deposit, 1/3rd COD and 1/3rd net 30 arrangement was agreed to by all parties
with ownership of the work not transferred until final payment is received. I've found this arrangement to be best in my experience due to the fact that it keeps all parties involved in the process and gives everyone time to give feedback at critical points in the development of the painting.

The 2nd step was to produce a color study (comp) of the art. I chose to use photoshop to produce a color sketch because it was easily produced, emailed and modified if need be.
This is a great help for everyone because they could visually see what the painting was going to be like. This is a common practice for illustrators and commercial artists and I find it helpful
with every assignment I produce. In the long run, the time I take producing the comp and working out any changes at this stage, saves me many hours of frustration and valuable time as the assignment develops. Once approved by the decorator and client I am free to proceed in producing the final painting.

The size of this piece is 68" X 30" which I stretched on heavy duty stretcher bars. I bought a primed fine weave cotton duct canvas material for the paint surface. Shown in the photo below is the initial layout of the painting. I've just concerned myself with the large blocks of values, movement and proportions of the various areas of the painting. This will give me a solid base to begin blocking in the large masses of shapes in the work. For now this is where I'll stop until I begin the block in of the color. At that time I'll make the next post showing the color being laid in.

Till then, Keep well, productive and Happy Painting.

If you should have any questions about the process till this stage please contact me.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

New Music and Art and Classes offered posted

Hi All,

Just wanted to post a notice that I've been a little busy on the blog site posting new art, new music and also to let you know I'm offering classes both privately and in Woodstock at Roomscapes Gallery starting Wednesday March 18th 2009 from 4:30 to 6:30pm. The class will cover a traditional method of painting, building an under-painting and adding color in thin glazes to build up the color keeping it luminous and fresh. Cost for this class is $185.00 for 8 weeks.

On the music front check out the new tunes in the play list. I've added about 50 new songs many of which you've heard and many you probably haven't. What was a pretty eclectic mix has gotten ever more so. Just take a listen and enjoy.

On the painting front, you may have noticed that I'm creating a wider variety of paintings and drawings of late. Maybe because the weathers getting warmer and I'm getting out to paint more.
I've been working plein air a great deal of the time over the last month and a half and I've done a few really nice pieces. I've posted some but will put more up later this weekend. It's a bit rainy so I'll be staying in for the most part this weekend with brush in hand.

Happy Painting to all, and to all I wish you the best.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Springing forward!

OK, it's March already and we are springing forward which means we get a bit more light to play in for the next 7 months or so. It is time to get out and paint, draw, and make art and new friends along the way.

So here is just a little about what I've been up to the past few weeks. First of all I've been keeping busy, happy and for the most part letting the stress go. Things seem to be picking up in the Art Market, people are a least thinking about and talking about buying or commissioning art which brings some real joy to my heart. As things develop and projects are confirmed I'll let you know.

I've been staying busy lately, lots of drawing and painting recently and here are some of the things I've done over the past week or two.

These are a few of the drawings I've done lately. I try to draw from life a couple of times a week now to sharpen my eye and skill. The images above are from Shane McDonalds Figure Drawing Group on Wednesday evenings. I've also been trying to make Suzy Shult's Group as well and the Atlanta Artists Center Monday morning group that I book models for. I have a student that attends that group as well and I'm encouraging her to draw from life more and more. The progress she is making is nothing short of amazing.

View of Kennesaw Mtn. and Little Kennesaw Mtn. painted Plein Air this last Friday. What a perfect day to be out painting. The light changing was the challenge here. It kept shifting back and forth as the clouds rolled over the mountains for most of the day till early  evening.
Another view on Saturday earlier in the day.
A tree study from Friday afternoon.

These are studies I did of a shell as a demo for my student Katina. I'm starting her off in paint and showing her how to build an under-painting in oils. The top image I did later for myself,
just because I really enjoyed the process and they would make nice little pieces for a gallery. 

After I did a demo I had her do this study in my studio. I know this looks deceptively simple but if you've ever tried something like this you'll discover it is not as easy as it looks. This is a good first attempt but I can tell you for certain that in 3 months she will see much more subtle change in the value than she perceives now.


These are some of my painting buddies out doing the thing we love.
Above is Rick Paller,  The photo above him are Shane McDonald and Marge.

Crazy weather right, what follows are a few shots I took while enjoying the show and dramatic skies lately.  Not what you think of when you talk about Atlanta.

The third and forth windows from the left is my place. I look out them facing north when I'm working in my studio.

This looking down the railroad tracks just across the street from my place where the Belt Line will be in about 10 to 15 years. Believe it or not this is all suppose to be a sculpture park and walk way along the tracks.  For now its a great scene to paint at times like this.

An earlier sunrise shot that morning.