I bought the cutest little gourds at the store the other day so I could paint them. For the past few days I have been wanting to paint a gourd with my Maimeri Italian Earth paints... so as a reward to myself for finally finishing Twilight, and also for the Feat of Extreme Discipline for not starting another painting until Twilight was finished, I painted a little gourd.
The Italian Earth paints are fascinating... they are actual earth pigments from different regions in Italy. They are low chroma and transparent, and although I find I can't push them the way I can with other pigments, I still love them. especially the greens.
I do think I'll do better with them when they aren't the only colors in the palette, but as accents to a more well-rounded selection. I like the earthiness and somewhat grittiness of them, and also like thinking of what the old masters did with such limited materials.
I took a plein air workshop today with the wonderful Danielle Hatherley. Since Daya is usually with me when I am not at work, it's rare to have a child-free full day of painting outdoors. I have been wanting to take a workshop for a while and this was a great experience, something I'll definitely do again. It was great to spend lots of time on each painting.
We painted at the Boat basin in Riverside Park. Palette: Alizarin, Cadmium Red Light, Indian Yellow, Cadmium Yellow Light, Maganese Blue, French Ultramarine, and white.
Since I had to go to Daya's school this morning, I just took the whole day off to make the already-long weekend extra long.
Of course I went out painting. I have been having trouble getting into the painting zone lately, and I had trouble today even though I was excited to be out. These two are not really great paintings... but I read the other day on Wet Canvas that even some professional plein air painters admit a good percentage of the work they do in the field isn't great. Plein air painting sure is hard.
I used the palette I'll be using for my upcoming plein air workshop on the 21st: Alizarin crimson, Cadmium red light, Indian yellow, Cadmium yellow light, French Ultramarine, and Maganese Blue. Oh, and white. I am having trouble mixing my darkest values with this palette- they all come out looking like really dark purple or some sort of indefinable brown.
My setup for the first painting:
#33, 8x10 oil on panel ( I really have trouble with pine trees) one hour
For the second painting, I found a tree that was literally growing out of a huge rock. I thought I had a good start with this one but am not quite sure what happened.
6x8 oil on panel one hour, maybe I spent too long on it. Oh well, next time.
We spent the day in Central Park and had a wonderful time. I did a little painting while Daya played in the grass.
For today's painting I used 2 new colors- Indian Yellow and Maganese blue. I like them very, very much but also think the addition of cadmium yellow would have made more variations in the greens. I was really trying to go for masses and impression over details.
Alizarin crimson, Indian yellow, Maganese blue, French Ultramarine, and Titanium white.