Class Notes – oils 3/16/09

the demo that is turning into a painting, about 90% complete

the demo that is turning into a painting, about 90% complete

underpainting from yesterday's demo

underpainting from yesterday's demo

Concepts presented: 

  • most important stage is the underpainting–get the values and composition right and the rest will follow
  • underpainting allows you to think in terms of values independently from color
  • begin with wash of burnt umber or burnt sienna and turpenoid (or use acrylic for your underpainting layer)
  • work from dark to light, focus on the relationship of adjacent values and their forms
  • composition can be contemporary or traditional (in this case I’ve gone with a more contemporary overall design with objects running off the sides of the canvas as opposed to a formal arrangement)
  • think purely in terms of abstract shapes and place them in a balanced manner throughout the composition
  • look for repeating shapes, values, colors–this will create a sense of movement for the viewer’s eye as they make visual connections between related elements in the composition
  • begin working in color on top of the underpainting once it is dry (acrylic dries much faster, that’s why it is sometimes a good choice for the underpainting)
  • use painting medium of your choice (linseed oil/turps mix or Liquin, either is fine)
  • work from dark to light, focus on color harmonies and balanced distribution of color in the composition
  • use complements for shading dark areas (ie., use blue on an orange object, etc.)
  • work with limited palette mixing colors whenever possible as opposed to directly from the tube (this painting’s palette = cobalt blue, alizarin crimson, yellow ochre, cadmium barium yellow, titanium white, burnt umber)
  • this piece is about 90% done, I will post the final alongside the one above when I have it finished, will bring it to class next week as well
  • I will bring in another still life next week, if you prefer to work on something else, that is fine, just bring in a reference or set up of your own

Have a great week!


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