Monday, October 15, 2012

Oct 15 - Thinking and painting

 It is now a couple of hours later and I have tried my first Emily Carr copy.  Here is a picture of the original (note the orange post its). The title is "Shoreline" and it is a painting of the cliffs below Beacon Hill Park with Clover Point in the distance. It was painted in 1935 (or was it 1936?). It must be stunning.

Here is my monochrome first attempt at copying it.

I used burnt umber with titanium white - which I suppose will take a while to dry. I think flake white dries faster. It is interesting how the one pigment - just burnt umber with white - looks so varied in this photo. It goes from almost black to red to gold.

The main thing I learned was that Emily Carr's swirls were her way of showing the surfaces of everything.  Everything! Cool! The part that worked the best for me - so far - is the sandy beach - where the sand swirls around the cliffs and the logs. But even the closest cliff is painted in swirls which follow the shape of the cliff. No blocked out areas for her - pure surface swirls. Of course, the most interesting part of the original is the sky. She does that type of sky quite often - but I think only works because it is not the only swirly part. It is one of many swirls. . This gives movement and wonderful glowing light.

The other thing I learned was that the boards that I am using are way too small. On top of that, they are the wrong dimensions. This picture should be more than a meter wide. However, this is only an exercise, so I won't be deterred.  Once the monochrome under-painting has dried, I will start to put in colours more like the original as it appears in my book.

BTW, I got my info on how to do monochrome under-painting from

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