Sunday, 13 January 2008

Plan no 1

Conifers on hillside no 1, 20x15cm
Oil and oil pastel on paper



... for this year (and future ones?) is about oil paint. It's about technique and about taking time to learn things properly. Early last year I had dabbled in oil, but then moved back to pastels and the increasingly mixed media artwork. I'll stick with that as plan 1b (that's the assorted pastels, gouache, acrylics and whatever comes along with it), but for the Saturday mornings up until summer I want to focus on oil painting technique.

Subject matter is a bit secondary at the moment, but I must admit that I keep circulating around the Northern Germany winter fields and woods - there's something there that wants a bit more expression - and it isn't homesickness. Yet, by developing a familiar (as well as well-known and comfortable) subject, I'll have more time for the technical explorations.

So, first off, there were a few studies with Sennelier oil bars (and some oil pastels on top) - I actually did these back in autumn, but yesterday I took them out for the first time.

Conifers on hillside no 2, 15x20cm
Oil and oil pastel on paper

The first technical bit will be more explicitly about colour mixing - and here I already stumbled over the oil bars - I got 10 or so as a set with a workshop. Yet - of course (and I should have known that before I got excited): other people's colour sets aren't really mine. So: what do I do with primary reds and blues when I got used to cerulean, ultramarine and alizarin crimson? Well: experiment and mix, I suppose. And in the worst case: flog them again.

I've got a strong sense where I want to get with those colours - I think that is probably also an advantage of knowing the landscape well - Those earth colours, a lot of umbers, some silvery greens. And yet, my paint tubes don't seem to easily get me there. Small amendments thus include cobalt blue and lemon yellow (no cadmium) as well as a primary (!) red.

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2 comments:

Daniel Ted said...

God, you are good. How I wish I could work with paints the way you do. I tried copying one of your works and I think it was a good try. I'm looking forward to more of your paintings.

Gesa said...

Cheers, Daniel :)