Experimental Drawing with the Figure at the Woodstock School of Art was held this week and it was a blast.
Participants prepared various papers with textures, imbuing them with powerful MetaData, all designed to enhance the figure within its figure frame reference. Exercises in rhythm gesture and scale were explored with rigorous techniques designed to enhance visualization. In addition, we explored the nature of how the brain processes visual information using cues and symbologies. Finally, we explored how to construct a workflow that suits our individual expression.
A little still life of fruit. I am very much thinking about how texture and metadata can portray light- the way light bounces and diffuses. As it diffuses it translates into a kind of noise or pixelation, much as the algorithms in Photoshop emulate these dynamics.
I painted this at the Rye Yacht Club during a day where the winds were gusting from 20 to 30 knots. I painted this from inside a boat house with the door open, otherwise, it would have been virtually impossible to paint in this kind of wind.
A watercolor painting I made in the studio of my friend Janet , which occupied the front parlor of the top floor of a nineteenth century five story walkup on the corner of 55th Street and 8th Ave. Amazing light but also a real sense of New York City when the windows were open and you could feel the energy of the throngs of people and activity below. Yet on a still gray day it could be quiet and serene.
This is a painting of my dear friend Ucchia Marini, who along with her husband Mark are carvers and make beautiful stone sculptures. I painted this from life in the sculpture studios of the Art Students League of New York.
I was painting en Plein air one fall day in Central Park and ended up doing a scene near the bandshell. On this occasion, as I was painting, a homeless person ambled up to me with what I thought would be a request for money. Instead, this scruffy character recited a poem he had conjured that very moment in homage to all Plein air painters everywhere. I was flabbergasted! When you paint on the street in Manhattan you develop a bit of a thick skin as its hard to not be conspicuous with a tripod and a pochade in open view. My normal (cynical)reaction would be to try to avoid this guy but to my amazement, he gave me a gift of great eloquence. As I would later find out this fellow held degrees from NYU but had crashed and burned along the way of life and here he was and there I was.
I painted this painting en plein air in Easton Maryland. The Crape Myrtle bush blooms in the late spring in Maryland and the color is brilliant, similar to Bouganvilla in intensity. Quinac Red Rose seems to be the only color that can do it justice.
This is a painting I made plein air at the Conservancy of Southwest Flordia in Naples, Florida. Not far from the Carribean Gardens zoo, the conservancy occupies the Flieischman property which once was vast orange groves. As I was painting this scene I became lost in thought, as plein air painters often will, to be startled back into reality by the roaring of a lion. My first thought was that it must be a Florida panther and I kind of freaked. After a moment , I realized it was coming from the zoo, but the sound of the roaring lion carried through the orange groves and palms and really sounded like it was very close!
I painted this scene plein air in a barn near Yorktown, NY. The warm afternoon light silhouetted the cows' contra jour and this contrasted nicely with the cool light pouring into the barn from the east facing doors.
A corner of the Studio with accouterments of the painter's craft. The drapery and cast cabinet, the skeleton in its closet, canvases stacked above the small changing closet.a cast of Donatello's David for inspiration and the chair and coffee cup of the model who is posing just to the right, out of our field of vision.
I painted this painting of the sculpture studios at the Art Students League of New York. I was making clay sculptures and learning casting for a time in the mornings there and was always fascinated by the skylit windows that face onto 58th Street. These northlight windows face onto the street and once had unobstructed light when the American Fine Arts building was built in 1892. Since then, Manhattan has grown up all around and I'll always remember the effect of working on my sculptures on a rainy day and seeing the New Yorkers with their umbrellas silhouetted against the dirty milk glass of these windows scurrying by- sort of like some painting that Manet or Degas would paint.
I painted this scene at the Art Students league of New York. It is from the back of studio seven looking north toward the skylights. Holding forth with the brush and demonstrating the Art of Portraiture is my own teacher, Frank Mason.
On a blustery day in November, I painted this view of the Natural History Museum in Manhattan, The late afternoon light made the blue shadows really sing with color and I tried to get the feeling of motion/wind in the brushstrokes.
I've painted many a portrait and thought I'd post this one of Tommy- a much-loved model at the Art Student's League of New York.
Gosh, the more I look at this the more it reminds me of Gilbert Stuart's portrait of George Washington where ol' George's dentures are not fitting so well and distends the bottom lip out a bit, much as it is doing here.
Just north of Portland Maine, there are a number of islands that jut out into Casco Bay, and among these is one called Bailey Island. It was here that I painted this view of Peter Rodger's Lobster Pound. Peter Rodgers was a man that was larger than life- as authentic a Maine lobsterman as there ever was- a character out of Kipling or Stevenson.
I was in Shop Rite the other day and they had a sale on these interesting shaped star fruits or carambola.In addition to their interesting shape, they have an amazing translucence and a waxy surface. A buck a piece along with some green plums and I happily added some new objects to my still life collection. Taking inspiration from Carol Marine, I set up a still life with the star fruit and some mandarin oranges and a blue glass plate to balance all the colors and make it pop.
I was scoping out suitable places to paint one morning and found this little scene nearby. The bougainvillea was crawling all over a column from a retaining wall that reminded me a lot of French rococo artists- Fragonard in particular. He popularized a type of garden landscape painting that collectors prized. This view was also an excuse for me to paint my beloved palm trees.
When the Bougainvillea is in bloom it is a sight to behold.This is a scene that I painted on a path near Pelican bay that meanders through a small park. With the late afternoon sun hitting the foliage, I knew this is where I had to stop and paint.This painting comes with a custom 12" x 9" frame as appears in the photo. It's a frame that I acquired a few years back that has an interesting Gothic shape. I cut some panels to insert into the frame and glued Claessens linen canvas to them and primed with oil. I had one of these stashed in my plein air pack for a moment just like this.
This is a little plein air sketch of the lions which dominate the entrance of the new york public library on 42nd street and fifth ave.The crowds in front of the library are insane so I painted this with my little hand held pochade box.