Today I sold one of my favorite paintings. It's hard to let a painting go, but it feels so good to know that it will be on someone's wall and not in my painting rack. And this painting couldn't have gone to a better home!
Filtering by Category: Nightscapes
After about a month's break from the studio, there are couple of new Oakland nightscape studies in the cooker. I'm also planning a slightly new approach to the paintings, stay tuned!
Just a quick update on Rockridge Nightscape. I diminished the contrast of the tree's shadow in the foreground. Pushed back the lights on the horizon line and increased the contrast; alluded to windows in brownstones (town houses?).
I've become particularly interested in documenting my work, in tracking the development of a painting over time. In an effort to study and share the many lives a painting lives, I will post the history of a painting at the point when I've decided it is complete.
Below is the source photo, the study, the underpainting, and the finished painting of Claremont and Forest.
I've been working on Rockridge Nightscape AKA Liquor Video for 4 weeks. Because I only work on it during class - twice a week for three hours - each time I paint I look at it with fresh eyes. I made several major changes (at least major to me) this past class. Although the painting may look worse for it for now, the changes are for the best. The tree that was dividing the canvas virtually in half is gone and I've brought back the green leaves in the foreground. Next up: bringing back the depth in the sky and foreground.
And you may recognize this painting. It's a larger version of a study I did several months ago. I'm really happy with how the foreground is shaping up.
This painting is from a photo I took with my phone this past Friday night. It is the intersection of MacArthur and Park Boulevard by the high school.
And the latest iteration of "Liquor Video". I've been trying to paint only with 1" or larger brushes to keep the stroke loose and painterly and force myself not to fall into my old habit of overworking details.
Latest iteration of Rockridge Nightscape, AKA Liquor Video.
The last month was a whirlwind. After EBOS I spent a amazing week in Bend, OR with my husband Ben's family. During the last three weeks of June we made an offer on a house, went into escrow, closed, and moved.
My new studio is not functional yet, but will be soon. I will share pictures of the studio's progress in my post.
In the mean time, I've been taking classes with Mel Prest at 10th Street Studios. Below is the painting I am currently working on. For those of you familiar with the Rockridge neighborhood of Oakland, you may recognize the glowing sign for what I affectionately call "Liquor Video" aka Eddie's Drive In Liquors.
With the first round of Nightscapes nearing completion, I've begun working on a new series of studies. These ones are more abstract and less architectural than the first round. It's tough to know if they actual look like anything or if they just color blobs. They look like something to me, but of course I know what they are. I'd love to hear your thoughts!
I've been continuing to work on my Oakland Nightscapes series. It's been somehwat of a challenging venture, I'm not particularly good at working from photographs not to mention low-quality photographs taken at night.
One of the particularly challenging aspects is the inability to fully understand the physical structures. Edges and relationships between shapes are indistinct. However, and I think I touched on this in an earlier post, this may be a good thing. The nature of these images is forcing me to try a new style, too keep my brush strokes loose.
Additionally, because it is not my traditional way of working I'm allowing myself to work using different techniques. Specificially, introducing charcoal and sandpaper into the mix.
I've begun painting the fourth large painting in my series of Oakland nightscapes. The reference photograph (below, middle) was one the first that I took in the series and the color study (below, right) was the first in the set of studies that I created last June.
The new painting is in it's *very* early stages - it's just an underpainting. I've probably only spent about an hour on it. BUT I really like the gestural quality it has and am afraid that I will lose that quality and by continuing to work on it. It's that fine line that I continue to search for - mixing looseness and gesture with line and fully realized form...
Now that summer is over and a certain normalcy has returned to my life, I've been able to get back into the studio and start the full-scale Oakland nightscapes in earnest. These paintings are based on photos that I took in the spring that I turned into studies (you can see both the photos and the studies in an earlier post here http://www.larahoke.com/larasblog/2010/6/5/reference-photos-to-formal-studies.html).
The goals is to create and ethereal space - something that feels not quite safe but is at the same time very familiar. To produce that effect I am developing the paintings slowly over time by applying lightly tinted semi-transparent layers of glaze. I use the classic 1/3, 1/3, 1/3 recipe to make my glazing medium - linseed oil, damar varnish, and turp. I am also working to loosen the brush stroke and am introducing line in the form of charcoal and graphite.