Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Composition and Simple Subjects

I teach a few art classes and workshops every year so I am always trying to come up with "easy" ways to approach simple subjects. I use these exercises for the first class to give everyone a bit of confidence. It's my firm opinion that a painter with confidence and a big brush will create a better painting than a hesitant painter with a small brush (or any size brush).

Fruits and other organic subjects are deceptively simple subjects. I still have these pears because we haven't munched our way through them yet and I never get tired of doing still life paintings. So I set up another composition using my favorite fruit and did a quick 45 minute study this morning. It was important to be able to paint this quickly because I want the students to be able to start and finish their piece in one 2 hour session. I usually give them a photograph of the finished painting so they can see how my version turned out and a choice of photographs of the still life set up. I begin the class with a 15 minute demonstration on how to approach the painting, leaving them with a couple hours to do their piece.

The first class in this session starts Tuesday, October 2 at the Bryan Community Center on Buffalo Road in Bryan, Ohio. Classes will be held from 6-8:30 PM for four consecutive Tuesdays. Contact Cindy Rau at crau@cityofbryan.net to register for the classes or obtain more information. This is an oil or acrylic class and there is a $30 supply fee payable to me the first night of class.

Perfect Pears
6" x 6"

Sometimes I will check the composition using the "THRESHOLD" function
in Photoshop, which reduces the values to black and white and creates a simulated ink drawing.
If the black areas match my initial block in I know I have
remained faithful to the initial concept. I was pretty close with this one.

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