At today’s meeting : Za, Jerry, Tim, Diane, Theresa, Thomas, Loretta L, Jeanie, Elo, Vicki, Sydney, Tricia, Jim, Annie, Nancy, Tom, Eunice, Judith, Kay, Kristina, Joanne T, Joanne K, John, Carrie, and me Celeste.
Today’s suggested table topic: the expression “paint or draw what you see not you know “…what does this mean to you? Can you help explain it?
Celeste: I have told this story before about standing next to Jim King at studio 30. I was suffering through a painting because the model was in an unusual pose. Jim asked me what was wrong and I told him I was having trouble. He responded: “Well, For God’s sake Celeste it’s just shapes! This shape next to that one and that one next to this one!” (laughter)! His words helped me to not become overwhelmed. I am showing two recent paintings from the facebook challenge “Painting October”
Jim: When you look at an arm and you go to paint it if you paint from other arms in your memory you're not using observation. You have to look at what is in front of you. It is not enough to know how to paint an arm you have to paint THAT arm. Observe what is right there in front of you.
Tricia: I am back because you inspire me (but not to go outside)! (Laughter)! Not yet, anyway. I made a comment recently on Instagram -- I said something about needing to know color theory and someone came back saying “I've seen lots of great art from people who don’t know anything about color theory”. I don’t know if I agree with that. I am showing you three recent paintings
Vicki: I took a workshop with Elio Camacho. At one point he said to me “you’re painting a painting you’re not painting life.” That sticks with me! I presume he meant that I was not engaging with what was in front of me. I am showing a recent painting.
Elo: I read the book “Drawing on the right side of the brain” and I think there’s a lot of valuable information there. I am showing you five paintings that I did
In the facebook October challenge. It is a challenge to be sure to find enough time in the day to do this to paint daily! This is a painting I did of a friends dog she liked it so well she’s going to buy it! (Applause)!
Tom: This is a huge subject- it is a gigantic subject and I am sure I could talk about it for a long time, about the philosophy behind it. But thank God Thomas Kitts is here! (Laughter)! I’m limited by what I can see and what I do and don’t know! I am showing a recent painting that I did where I tried to observe closely-- the shapes and colors.
Joanne T: I do know this ---some things don’t have to go into the picture. Even though they are there you can leave things out. I showed my paining to Eric Jacobsen recently and he told me I should have put in a dark foreground. I wondered why exactly because there was no dark foreground there! It would be for the sake of the painting…to make it better. I did the Strada 30 days challenge and it was tiring. I am showing you an older painting.. I would add more warms and cools now because I have learned about that. I have to change things up all the time now in order to not get bored. I am showing two other recent paintings.
Kay: What I think about in regard to this subject is figures. I need to get the foreshortening correct so I need to think in terms of is that a triangle and so forth. When drawing the figure you definitely need to observe closely. But when it comes to landscape I am trying to corral myself into a color theme. I have to think
about color harmony. If you paint exactly what is there you might just get a hodgepodge of a whole bunch colors that don’t make a good image. I am showing a recent painting.
Jeanie: When I was in school our teacher projected just a strip onto a screen and we were asked to draw that. Then she projected another strip and another and another and we would draw everything that she showed us. In the end it was upside down but the image was a man seated in a chair. What she was teaching us was that the right shapes together will create a drawing that reads. I’ve done 10 small paintings recently. I am showing one of them.
Loretta L: I have just started a class at PCC with Mark Andrus. Value is important and that is what we are focusing on now. Andrus also teaches us about the importance of including the background with the figure. I am showing a recent painting from class.
Nancy: I do have trouble! I wind up with trees in the distance that are too dark because I haven’t receded the values and colors properly. Another problem I have have is driving around for half the day trying to find what I want to paint! (laughter)! I mean sometimes you can drive around so long and then finally find the place but the place is then closed (laughter)! I’m showing two recent plein air paintings.
John: I am taking a class with Cliff Smith. I am working in colored pencil. I'm working with a photo reference. I'll work on an area and then something else changes then I have to change things I originally thought was right (laughter)! But I am handling it and I promise I will have something to show you when I am further along.
Judith: (Editors note: So sorry, Judith I couldn’t read what I wrote that you said)! It was something funny because everyone laughed!
Tim: What I see might not be what you see. Here is a painting of what I saw when I was on the Sandy River on Tuesday. This is a painting of the boat ramp at Rooster Rock with enhanced colors. And this is a painting of a turtle talking to an alligator (laughter! Laughter laughter laughter)
Jerry: I wanted to show you this book that I have read called “seeing as the forgetting of the name of what one sees. The best way to see is dispense with nomenclature. Don’t name things. I am showing a painting that I did where I could see later there was not enough differences in the values. I will work on this and correct it. To be able to see and translate is a discipline. You have to look at what the negative shapes are and to remember that the negative shapes have as much significance as the object itself.
Kristina: I remember Kevin McPherson talking about the time that he had painted the boat and someone who knew a great deal about boats came up to him and said “that boat would sink right away”. (Laughter)! I am also showing my painting of a boat that won’t draw a remark like that…because in it not in the water. (Laughter)!
I’m showing a Nocturne that I did recently that is a study. Nocturnes really help you in a big way to see things because it takes you out of what is the norm and you have to really look carefully.
Za: I love the subject. As many of you know I teach young people. People who have not really painted it before. I will take them to paint in the park. They will paint the scene and I will ask them is it really that blue!? Then they see that they have made it too blue. After hours and hours and hours under your belt of practice you can start to see and translate what you see. There are three ways to see: 1. See what is there
2. See the abstract 3. See the ideal. (the ideal for you). When you paint long enough you can see and paint your own ideal. I am showing a painting that I did recently with the limited palette. This is just with red ochre black and white.
Joanne: I have just spent the last few days moving my studio finally to my new studio in the OSA building. I have been painting outdoors all summer long having lost my previous studio. I did the paint out in Troutdale in the paint out at the AIS. I am looking for freshness and joy. I have switched over from filberts the flats. I am showing three paintings.
Diane: Lisa Marshall and I have watched the Quang Ho still life DVD. We both fell asleep. (Laughter)! But I finally got what he means and what is meant by not painting the “thing”. In this painting that I’m showing you, I did not draw anything --I painted the shapes. I did not draw linearly. I like this method and I am going to do more of it.
Teresa: I do mostly portraits from photographs. No to outdoors! I just don’t know! (Laughter)! I am at ease inside. I am showing a portrait and a landscape.
Annie: To compose a picture --how do you teach it to someone else!? I have been in a class where they put orange behind the model so that you could easily see the negative spaces. The negative spaces to define what the positive spaces are. To me the reason for painting is always color. But color is also the culprit! I will cover up the blue and say all it is better without the blue. I have discovered why people paint plein air and it is certainly not because there are so many things to haul around (laughter)! It is because when you were out there you hear all the wonderful sounds and you also experience the quiet. I think possibly the best thing that is ever been said to me about the idea of shapes etc. is this:
Don’t do a color inventory …instead decide on a color concept.
Eunice: I’m in the midst of my series. I am doing 13. This is my painting of a llama.
Thomas: I took classes from someone who painted exclusively from life. So I got off on the right foot there. I don't call myself a representational art artist I call myself instead an observational artist. One time I was at Eric Bowman's studio and he said something I’ll always remember… he said “paint the shape not the thing”. That really stuck with me. I also like Quang Ho so much but all DVDs are a challenge…they put you to sleep. Quang Ho’s voice is so soothing. I can only watch 25 minutes at a time. He has things that he thinks about in a painting: shape value color edges texture. You run into problems if you name objects.. I brought a friend’s painting to show you how few strokes and shapes are necessary to see what the painting is about. This is a painting by Oversmith. Don’t over complicate the painting.
Thomas Kitts at the Brian Marki first Friday, October 8, 5 to 8
Vicki Zimmerman and Stephanie Cissna Medley Tead first Friday 6 to 9
Oleg Ulitskiy Art on the Boulevard first Friday, October 8
Joanne Kollman OSA demonstration 7 PM tonight
Portland open studios this weekend and next
Lake Oswego Plein Air Exhibit and Awards Ceremony at the Arts Council of Lake Oswego , 510 Museum & ARTspace, 510 First Avenue, Lake Oswego, Oregon 97034
Beaverton art mix reception Friday 7 PM
Joanne Mehl will do a portrait class if there is enough interest in December
Sequoia gallery Hillsboro plein air
Congratulations Yong Hong Zhong, Bill Stanton, Nancy Zhang, Kristina Sellers, Susan Kuznitsky and others Washington county plein air
Watercolor Society Fall show (meet Francesco Fontana, juror from Italy) click to enlarge
Max Ginsburg will give a workshop at OSA February 20 contact OSA
More classes OSA:
Next Meeting Thursday, October 13 9am OConnors suggested table topic: Unusual format/size canvases/supports. Have you tried narrow, extra small, extra big, round—what are your "findings" let's discuss!