Monday, July 29, 2013

Cuppa Cream and Sugar

What happens when you do two back to back workshops
and then try to incorporate the new information into your work?

It can get a little crazy and sometimes my work can get worse
for a while instead of better because it's messy and confusing to
change the way you paint.

Since I was really focused on color temperature changes and brushwork,
after I came home I decided to set up a still life as an exercise,
just focusing on those two things- temperature and brushwork-
and paint something I was familiar with and a set up of my own design.

To eliminate confusion I worked on a mid-tone gray palette and
stained my boards the exact same gray mid tone.
Then I did an experiment with different underlying colors in a 
monotone value painting and proceeded to try different color combinations,
trying to get them to harmonize.

After four of them I took it a step further and decided to try to ignore
subject matter altogether by taking a photo of my still life in black and white
and then working from the  photo upside down from a computer monitor.
That one ended up being my favorite,
maybe because the colors are more unexpected.

Now I feel ready to move forward!
I appreciate your comments and would love to hear if you enjoyed hearing about my process.



  1. Thanks for sharing Bruce. So often, artists come home from a workshop expecting an immediate change. One step back usually gets you three steps forward. Seems like you understand the process. Nice painting.

  2. Hi Blanche, it's a process for sure, with lots of baby steps:)

  3. Loved reading about your process...a lot of work but well worth it and a lovely painting in the end!

    1. Thanks Karen. It just seemed like a logical way for me to integrate what I was working on and simplify some of the other things since there is so much to think about in painting!

  4. I appreciated hearing of your process (and love the results!)

    I was so impressed with your accounts of Dreama's France workshop that I signed up to go in 2014.

    1. Hi Bonnie,
      You won't regret it! Dreama gives one of the best organized and most fun workshops I've ever done. You'll love it and she's delightful. Great environment and you'll make lots of new friends too! Enjoy:)

  5. You accomplished your goal , Bruce.
    I still see " you " in these, but with a difference from before the workshops. Funny you turned to a method neither teacher uses to achieve your goals.
    I would say that there is a tiny bit more of Dreama's edge work in this than the big O. What do you think or are you too close to it so soon after finishing it?
    Which artist's voice are you hearing in your head?

  6. Ah, the voices. I THINK I'm actually hearing my own! We'll have to see how this develops but what I'm painting this week reminds me of some of my older work but with more paint, temperature change and attention to the variety of brushwork. Can you ask me this again in a couple of months?:)
    The process is something I started doing to help me stay on track with my values, a way to help me set myself up for success:)