|#5- Stone Lion, 6x6", Oil on MDF Panel (SOLD)|
This, my fifth small painting, is another subject that I figured I could handle with fast gestural brush work. The subject is a stone lion face that is on the gate of Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida. It's carved from red sandstone, and is quite beautiful.
But it's deceptive how working in mostly value pattern can turn into a dance between hitting the temperatures as well as the range of value. What I thought would be a straightforward process quickly got complicated.
It didn't help that I chose cad red for my under painting. I like red under paintings, but in this case, there was so much red in the colors of the stone face, that things got confusing - and wet. Really wet.
Reluctantly, I had to step back with the piece incomplete because I needed it to dry before popping in the lights. This is how I usually work my larger pieces., but the whole idea with these smaller ones was to get in; get out; and get it done.
While I liked how this was turning out half way through, I needed to stick with the plan, and keep things much more spontaneous.
But, one thing with this small painting project that I am not ready to let go of is the desire that each finished study has "something" visually interesting. I'm not interested in churning out vast numbers of little works just so I can put notches in my easel. If these pieces are anything, they are a record of my interest in specific visual ideas, or my wish to understand on a deeper level an aspect of using various approaches to color.
It's early in this game for me. But even after only five, I'm seeing the benefit of thinking this way about making art.
Next, I think I'll try another landscape. This time, a nocturne. And I think my challenge will be to include as much saturated color as possible in low light, which has a tendency to pull the intensity out of color.