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January 3rd, 2009 #1
More than just acrylics-- UPDATED 3.10.09
I'll post some stuff that I have finished during the last 6 months or so.
This one is called Berries. I used photo reference. The idea behind the motif was some slightly gothic story where a woman from a southern country comes to live somewhere in a castle in cold northern England. There is a secret about inheritances and missing children, maybe some spooky elements.
It's my first picture done in thinned acrylics on watercolour paper. Inspiration for the technique by efortune, thanks! Size A4
Last edited by Uli; March 10th, 2009 at 05:44 PM.
January 3rd, 2009 #2
i think this is pretty sweet. it reminds me of robert fawcett or john gannam or one of those old guys in its application. if you arent immediately familiar with their works, you should look them up. they were both extremely adept at handling water based mediums, and it looks to me at least that you might be able to glean some info off their stuff, due to your artistic inclinations.
i like the attention to detail like the light coming through the window and the wood work on the stairs, but cant help but feel like i wish the female in the scene was just a little more situatied in the picture. but really, thats a pretty minor thing, as she is competently painted.
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January 3rd, 2009 #3
This is very nice! My only crit would pherhaps to get rid of or soften the outlines on her mouth, chin and neck area, as it sort of cuts her out of her enviroment. Also, a higher quality jepg. wouldn' hurt
January 4th, 2009 #4
Sitting in cold northern England myself, I say it looks pretty good. You've got the authentic old-house look and colour scheme to match. My only crit is that I think the woman should be facing 3/4 into the picture (looking towards the stairs) and her hair colour should merge more with the background towards the bottom.
January 28th, 2009 #5
Wow, thanks, guys. I'm really stunned that I got such a positive feedback. I think, subconciously I posted this and hid in a corner, expecting the worst *g*
el coro- thank you very much for telling me about Robert Fawcett and John Gannam. Being from Germany, I had never heard about them, despite the fact that I'm a Sherlock Holmes fan and Fawcett did Sherlock Holmes illustrations. I like their work a lot, and will try to find out more about them.
You, Andreas and Baron Impossible a absolutely right about the woman being not that well integrated in the picture. I'm still practising ;-)
Andreas- thank you! Yes, I'll try to do better with the scanner. I'm a bit slow in that area.
Baron I. - Oh, praise indeed! I have been living near Nottingham for a while and have seen some of those old houses. I didnt bring a camera, but always felt that I want to paint them one day.
Here are some images by Fawcett. The 2. and 3. link show his preparatory sketches and some explanations by himself:
January 28th, 2009 #6
Although, as others have pointed out, there is an awkward break between the head and the staircase, this has an authentic 'feel' - sorta loved, if you know what I mean. I like it despite the flaws!
A couple of suggestons:
I read in another post of yours somewhere else that you were attracted to Eric Fortune's technique. This is only a hunch, and please feel free to absolutely ignore me, but I feel you are temperamentally suited to a 'classic' painting technique but are rather frustrated by the peculiar behaviour of acrylics, yes?
After some 6 or 7 years fighting the medium myself (originally trained as an oil painter) I have found an excellent way of getting the medium to deliver a sensitive, subtle and 'fine painting' surface without that lifeless, 'all the puff gone out of it' look that acrylics have when used to achieve oil effects. Eric Fortune, like John Jude Palencar has evolved a way of maintaining sensitivity and subtlety in the medium by using variations of a tempera method - broadly speaking, Fortune by washes, Palencar by hatching. This suites their temperaments beautifully.
However, if you are more of a 'painter' at heart (and I mean many things by this, that would take too long to go into) then I have found that using a lot of gloss impasto gell with the paint (50% and more if diluting with water for glazes) is an excellent solution. The reason it works is because the paint sorta dries suspended in the clear medium so that the life and gesture of the brushmarks (however subtle) is maintained and 'links' with the rest of the paintmarks rather than drying in unattractive, unconnected, deadpan dabs. It feels, at first as if you are painting with marmalade in a way, but this technique produces a rich, controlled and sensitive surface that rivals, in its way, the beauty of surface one finds in Palencar but for entirely different ends and with means that are entirely self respecting.
I would normally post an example but this is your thread and I feel it would be rude!
Anyways, good luck, if you are willing to give it a try. Love Sherlock Holmes too, by the way.....
From Gegarin's point of view
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January 29th, 2009 #7
dear Chris- thank you for your long and helpful reply. Does it show that much? *g* It's true, my favourite painters are early 19. century oil painters like Raeburn (and some watercolour artists).
Thank you for pointing me to Palencar, I didn't know him, too. His more gruesome paintings are amazing. And you tell me that he did this with *hatching*??? criker!
I'll definately try the impasto gel. Do you have a brandname for me so that I can get it over here? And I wouldn't mind to see an example at all ;-) Feel free to post it here or elsewhere. I had a look at your website, are all your paintings done in that technique?
I was especially impressed by the darker ones (Muldown Sisters and Three in a Garden). Thanks again
January 29th, 2009 #8
Hi Uli, the gloss gell medium I use is made by Liquitex and you can definitely get it over here (I live near Sheffield!).
Here is a study for the garden portrait you liked which was carried out using the methods I have described and a shot of the entire painting in the studio so that you get some idea of the surface without the aid of the flattering effect of scanning etc.
I've also given you a detail of some legs in a recent painting of mine that shows the technique very clearly. Note how transparent the paint is yet how painterly it is applied. The degree of polish one wants to achieve is entirely to do with how small you make these brushmarks. It's entirely a matter of personal choice, but the technique remains the same.
I've you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask.
From Gegarin's point of view
January 29th, 2009 #9
Wow <- for lack of better english vocabulary. It's pretty close to oil colour. It has almost the same deep light. My hands are itching (?) to try that out. I hope I can get it- I'm in Germany right now. Did you try other brands? I've seen Daler Rowney Impasto Gel Gloss in town.
I really like this painting, the colour scheme dark blue/dark green/pink, very strong
More later :-)
February 1st, 2009 #10
I posted some acrylic experiments in my sketchbook (first page, scroll down)
February 1st, 2009 #11
March 10th, 2009 #12
March 10th, 2009 #13
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