Daily painting #45: Grapes & blueberries

After two huge days of plein air, I spent much of the day doing errands, and I didn’t get around to painting until the evening. So that left time only for a quick study. I decided to practice painting grapes and blueberries. I learned a fair bit. (E.g.: blueberries aren’t necessarily blue.) I definitely want to try grapes and blueberries again.

Geoff Watson, “Study of grapes and blueberries,” June daily painting #14, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Study of grapes and blueberries,” June daily painting #14, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Daily painting #41: Peach sketch

I didn’t have much time to paint, but had to do my daily painting! Just a quick sketch of a peach. I spent too much time on the plate, not enough time on the piece of fruit. :)

Geoff Watson, “Peach sketch (study),” June daily painting #10, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Peach sketch (study),” June daily painting #10, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Cadmium-free apple

Today I spent the afternoon painting (drum roll) an apple. I just bought some "Cadmium-free red" and “Cadmium-free yellow” from Utrecht paints. I'd heard about them from their designer, who was interviewed on Eric Rhodes' Plein Air Podcast. So I wanted to paint something with red and yellow to try them out. Thus the choices were (1) an apple, (2) a peach, or (3) the national flag of Spain or China. As I had no peaches or flags lying around, I went with an apple. I liked the paints but found them a tad dry; nothing medium won't fix.

To add to the fun, I also chose to follow Mark Carder's "color checker" method. For more info, see his website and many interesting videos: http://www.drawmixpaint.com/

I own Mr. Carder’s color-checker, so I made myself check almost all the colors I put in. He wants you to put in just one little stripe of color wherever you see it, and never to blend. Mostly I did that. For me, it's great training in judging values (i.e., lights and darks). Whenever I do his method, I'm always amazed at how poorly I judge shadow values: they're almost always darker than I expect. A LOT darker than I expect. The cast shadow here should be darker, but the only way I could figure to do that was with black, and I didn't want black.

I didn't color-check the background because I wanted to change it to suit my evil compositional design -- darker background by the lightest side of the apple, for example. Mwuhaha!

Geoff Watson, “Cadmium-free apple,” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Cadmium-free apple,” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Orange lemon

Today I painted a lemon, but I put a very warm spotlight on it, and the painting made it look too orange. Also, there’s lots of glare on this photo. I will work on it more tomorrow!

Geoff Watson, “Lemon (in progress),” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2018.

Geoff Watson, “Lemon (in progress),” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2018.

Battery

It was too hot to paint outside today, so I did this little still life for fun.

Geoff Watson, "Battery," oil on canvas, 5" x 7," 2018.

Geoff Watson, "Battery," oil on canvas, 5" x 7," 2018.

Mother's Day flowers -- from Mom!

My mom is a wonderful person, and one of the many things I love about her is that she inspired me to take up art.  She's also a terrific artist in her own right.  You can see more of her work at http://www.bethwatson.com/ .

She did this painting of roses some time ago, and when I admired it last Christmas, she sent it to me as a surprise gift!  So she sent me Mother's Day flowers.  It's supposed to be the other way round!  :-) 

I'm sorry for the glare on the photo; it's been raining all week, and I've had trouble finding a good spot to photograph (or create!) paintings.  Anyway, Happy Mother's Day, mom!

Beth Watson, "Roses," oil on canvas, 9" x 12."

Beth Watson, "Roses," oil on canvas, 9" x 12."

Candle

I haven't had much time to paint this week, but today I managed to put in an hour on the still life I started last week. I focused on the rearmost object, the candle. I like the irregular shapes around the wick. I tentatively plan to add a little statute of a king on a drum; that's his cast shadow on the candle. 

Geoff Watson, "Old coffee pot and friends," detail, in progress, oil on linen, 18" x 24," 2017.

Geoff Watson, "Old coffee pot and friends," detail, in progress, oil on linen, 18" x 24," 2017.

Here's the whole piece; the rest is still just a sketch. I hope to fix that in the coming days!

Geoff Watson, "Old Coffee Pot and Friends," in progress, oil on linen, 18" x 24," 2017.

Geoff Watson, "Old Coffee Pot and Friends," in progress, oil on linen, 18" x 24," 2017.

Deodorant

I've been messing around with deodorant. I'm not happy with any of the compositions I've come up with so far; they all kind of stink! But it's still fun to paint the strange shapes of various anti-perspirants. I haven't really been sweating the details.

Geoff Watson, "Deodorant Study 1," oil on canvas, 8" x 10," 2017.

Geoff Watson, "Deodorant Study 1," oil on canvas, 8" x 10," 2017.

Geoff Watson, "Deodorant Study 2," oil on panel, 6" x 6," 2017.

Geoff Watson, "Deodorant Study 2," oil on panel, 6" x 6," 2017.