When we visited France last year we attended a couple of music festivals, which are held throughout the year in many European countries. This was a little cafe in downtown Macon. Notice the beautiful architecture. I love Europe. They don't tear down their beautiful buildings and drop ugly ones in their place. Instead they build with quality materials, maintain the structures and restore as needed.
Perhaps the recurring was have taught them how easily things can be destroyed, so they tend to value their history a bit more than we do.
The client's only reference was a 3" x 5" faded photograph of her husband's beloved best friend, who lived to be seventeen. The picture showed the dog as a puppy, and was faded and discolored. She scanned the photo and emailed me and this is the result. Elvis, or Elvi, as he was known, looked like a happy little guy.
Lately I've had requests for paintings of people in front of their houses. I enjoy painting these little slice of life pieces, except when I have to make stuff up. If the painting is a gift the giver apparently stalks the receiver's Facebook page and finds a group picture of the family. Most of the time the people don't have legs. Sometimes they are standing in front of their Christmas tree in their pajamas and I edit the clothing because I have a strong premonition the people would not like a painting of themselves standing in front of their house in their pajamas.
Wouldn't life be wonderful if every reference picture was perfect and in focus? If no limbs were cropped and had to be added? I've come to realize that's not what you get when you agree to paint from someone else's photos, and that's OK. I like challenges.
I've been wanting to paint this scene for a few years. My son lives in San Antonio and we visit the Riverwalk when I fly down, so I have a number of good pictures. In this view I wanted to keep the focus on the bridge and have the tree in the middle ground as my secondary area of interest. I love the shape of the tree.
This is the piece I had students paint in class last Tuesday night. One gal had asked if we could paint a cat so this is what I found. It fit my lesson plan, which focused on atmospheric perspective. They were also surprised that we could paint a black cat without using black paint.
Everyone struggled with the eyes but they were all finished within two hours.
I painted in Columbus over the weekend at The Art at the Arnold, a painting competition held in conjunction with The Arnold Classic, the annual body-building and Sports Festival. This year I painted a young man who won a trophy in the physique competition last year and I asked him if I could take his picture with his trophy.
The first day is spent painting from the live model and the second day competitors have 8 hours to complete a piece and submit it for judging.