Sunday, January 13, 2008

Winter Still Lives

Last year I started a tradition of painting a few still lives indoors, between December and March. Our winter is very rainy, and here on the hills between El Sobrante and El Cerrito, it gets foggy too. All of which makes working outdoors unpredictable. So I turn the focus inward and work from my imagination, from dreams, or from something I can place indoors.

I seldom have the patience to find a decent composition, a skill I need to work on. But something I've realized is that it takes me an average of two hours to paint each object in a still life. This oil is 24 x 36," a manageable size. Still lives beyond these dimentions pose other challenges and as a result take more time.

Instead of cotton duck, the support is engineered birch. I am enjoying painting on this surface, but had to switch to sable brushes so that I would not end scraping 30% of the paint surface with each stroke of the hog bristles.

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