This is a digital painting study of a painting by Albert Bierstadt. I wanted to capture the epic nature of the space and how tiny the people were as compared to the rest of the landscape while keeping it dark and high contract. I think the high contrast flattened it out too much though. I’ve lost the depth and the epic nature.
Same method. Simplifying compositions down to their most essential elements. But this time I’m using movies as inspiration.
For the next few days I’m going to be studying painting that I love and simplifying them down to just three values. I’m learning how to simplify a composition down to it’s most simple form so that it can “read” well.
This painting might be finished. I’m not totally sure. I’m going to let it dry for a bit, live with it for some time, then see if I add something.
First thing in a morning I got to work blocking in the silhouette for my Starry Night painting. Then later in the day I went to the Tacoma Life Drawing group and had a great time. A full day of art!
I’m working on drawing out the silhouette of the foreground elements which are super important for this painting so I’m taking my time and doing it right. I don’t want to have to try and repaint the background around the silhouette.
Still working on the background and losing interest in this painting fast.
The rocks on the right side are done and this photo of the painting is absolutely terrible. You can’t see the detail in the rocks at all. I’ll do better tomorrow.
I needed to get a better understanding of the rocks and mountains in the background so I spent an hour and a half drawing it all out again. I also used my camera to take an HDR photo of the painting to try and get it to look like the original painting but it didn’t go well.
I’ve come back to this painting. After almost a month it is finally dry. I worked hard on getting the perfect glow of the star in the background. Although the image is not able to capture it well.
I spent more time adjusting the drawing for Epic Journey V1 today and focusing more on the rule of thirds. Then I began adding in the broad value areas. After that I realized that I had no idea what to do next so I continued working on environmental design study.
When you’re unmotivated the last thing you want to do is push yourself to do something you “should” do. Instead do something that is super fun. This is what I did.
Instead of pushing myself to get back to work on my Starry Night painting I changed to something else I’m a bit more excited about right now. A new series called Epic Journey. Well, I hope it continues to be a series.
I’m not sure what happened this weekend but I’ve completely lost my motivation. I’ve been doing daily art for so long now that it’s not new, it happens. I still got in hours of art time today.
I lowered my criteria for success today by doing something different and easier to accomplish. I signed up for a course on SVSlearn.com called Developing Great Visual Stories. This is the first and second assignment form that course.
There are a whole bunch of foreground elements that are silhouetted at the bottom that I need to draw back into the painting. I’ve started drawing them in digitally first then I’m going to compare this image with the painting and transfer by hand.
I’ve reached the point where I’m working on the background behind the figures and the best way to do that is to just paint over them and bring them back when the background is dry.
I don’t post every single day but I do art every single day. For this post I’m trying to remember what I was doing on this painting 4 days ago. hmm…
It’s helpful to look back at my previous days and compare. So, for today I’m working on the right middle of the painting adjusting everything that is right above the two figures at the bottom right. I’m excited to be close to finished with this huge painting.
When I work on a painting this long I get tired of it. I think many artists face this. How to keep the motivation going?
This is where my minimum helps tremendously. I don’t focus on what I “feel” like, that will just lead to apathy. I focus on the easy 30 minutes that I can do. Before I know it an hour and a half has gone by.
I’m picking out smaller sections of the painting and focusing to get it done one small bit at a time. I realized that I don’t paint the entire painting at once. I always work my paintings up in sections.
I’m determined to finish this painting this week so I decided to continue working on it every single day until its finished.
Today I decided to dust off the design process that I built from the creative composition class over at svslearn.com. I’m using it to work on a new series of paintings after I finish the 2 that I have going right now.
I’ve finished this painting today! Plus I’ve decided to change “Other Worlds v2” to its working title. The new title for this painting is “The Passage”
More work on the top swirl. I think I’ve got the shape of it down the way I want it. Now it’s all about refining.
I spent a ton of time organizing ideas for upcoming painting and current paintings that I only had about a half hour of real drawing time. To achieve something quickly I went digital and pulled out some compositions that I love from Artstation and studied them.
I changed the central swirl at the top of the painting again. I’m sure this won’t be the last time.
Today you can see real progress on the painting. Most of the left side is done. I just need to let the bottom dry so I can put in the foreground silhouetted elements.
Anyone looking at the progress on this painting would barely see any difference from session to session. Maybe in the future I will put together an animated gif to show the transition from beginning to end.
I’m working on the left side of the painting and I’m going very detailed here. I want every inch of the painting to have complex and interesting brush work.
I’m reworking the center sun again. This time it’s going to be brighter and more dynamic.
I’m waiting for three paintings to dry now. But I have 4 going at once so I’m always working on something that is ready. The great thing about this method is that I never get tired of one thing. And if I do, I can always switch. But the max is 4. More than that and I find that I have trouble finishing.
I’m beginning to transfer Other Worlds V3 onto the canvas. The initial stage here is all about setting up the light and shadow areas. I wanted to make sure that the composition was dynamic and the figure stood out.
I still made some changes to the digital version of this painting. I think I’m happy with it now. Then later in the day I went to life drawing for the first time in what seems like forever.
This is the digital piece that is inspiring my next Other Worlds painting. Today was the first day of edits on the composition and I’m not sure if I’m done.
Even though I had a great night of sleep my motivation was lacking this morning. I didn’t feel like working on this painting. I listened to my brain and body and just took it easy by planning to only block in some of the rocks at the bottom and not worry too much about details and accuracy.
I’ve started this painting with the background and I spent a long time trying to get the transitions in these very saturated colors right. I’m still not completely happy with it so I’ll wait for it to draw and using some glazing to improve it.
The very dark areas of the painting are not black. It’s a combination of burnt umber, ultramarine blue and alizarin permanent. But, I’m using a burnt umber from Geneva Fine Art Supplies and there is a lot of clove oil and other mediums that make the paint very fluid wet for a long time. Now I need to wait for at least a week, maybe more, to add in the top layers on this painting without the previous layers mixing.
I have so many paintings that I want to do right now that it’s not going to be a problem.
I was able to cover a lot of canvas today. These beginning layers of paint have been thrown on as thick as I can get them and I’m letting the brush and random hapenstance dictate of lot of the texture.
I was having a ton of fun today just making up a story as I paint of how these rocks and cliffs were shaped in this alien landscape. Possibly the inhabitants having some affect on the landscape as well. There is freedom in not reproducing exactly what I see.
I didn’t have much time to work on painting this morning so I focused as intensely as I could for the hour I did have. I’m slowly working from the distant landscape into the foreground. The hardest part is judging the values correctly for atmospheric perspective.
This painting has set long enough and I’m pushing myself to finish every painting I’ve started regardless of my motivation towards it. So, I jumped back into this one today and just like always my motivation was renewed through the painting process.
I focused on the top left corner of the painting today. I’m trying to get at least a small portion of this painting to a point I can call done.
Day 7 and I’m realizing that if I want to try and finish a painting this week that I should jump back to the previous one and get the second layer going there. It’s much smaller and I think I can finish by Saturday.
Plugging along on this painting. It almost looks as nothing has changed but it has.
I’ve figured out the method that I want to use on this painting. Unfortunately it’s not fast but I think it looks great. I’ll be working on this painting for a while, but at the end I’m sure I will be very proud.
There are many things that can be done very easy in digital format but is super hard in oil. The best example would be color dodge. I’m using it heavily here for the outline of the figure, to get that glow, but I’m going to have to figure out how to reproduce it digitally as well.
I’ve begun a new painting. This time I’m starting with digital and figuring out all of the details because it’s a figure and I want the anatomy and composition right before transferring to canvas.
I finished this estuary landscape this morning and I’m super happy with it. As soon as it dries I’ll sign it and frame it.
I put my first layer of paint on this new 20×30 landscape. Even though it’s at it’s early stages right now I’m loving this painting so far. I’m sure to most people it looks like nothing but I can see crazy potential. I also got three quick head drawings in today. Very quick, so don’t look at how bad they are LOL.
Back to drawing some heads today. This is #26 and 27 of the 100 heads challenge. I try to go fast on these but I’m just having a lot of fun figuring out the structure of the head. The second head I sped up dramatically.
I should zoom out more though because the first head is way off. LOL. Huge Hair!
Back into solo artist mode for real now by doing a couple heads and I started a second Ai inspired landscape painting while I wait for the first to dry.
This digitial painting was generated with my prompts by Ai and edited by me in Krita. I call it Sky on Fire. We are now settled into our new home and soon I will be getting back to Solo Artist assignments.
I spent all my art time generating some wonderful ideas with Midjourney and making some small edits.
The conversation with the Ai took a dark turn this morning. I was wanting something more like Carl Dobsky but got a riot instead.
The Edge of Awe, 5 versions. A conversation with Ai through digital art.
I finished the painting that I was working on yesterday.
I didn’t have a lot of time to work on this one but I was having a lot of fun.
The future of art is here and many artists are not going to like it. 5 months ago I changed my mind about digital art and jumped head first into digital painting. Now art generated by bots is blowing my mind.
I’m experimenting with Midjourney and art generated with text prompts to create something complete original from the combination of a machine and myself.
I’ve got my computer setup again so I’m working from a reference provided by the reddit community.
I love browsing Unsplash and picking a photo to work from. Today I wanted to work from a photo with lots of crazy colors.
First drawing of our new place.
We are in the middle of moving so the next few posts are going to be of me sketching in my sketchbook. I’m still working on the solo artist course by doing mostly heads.
I had so much fun playing with these impasto brushes in Krita. I didn’t have a lot of time but if I spent about an hour more this would be a cool painting.
I was able to finish the sketch that I started yesterday. Having a lot of trouble with motivation at the moment but I’m sure I’ll get back into it soon.
Another sketch of Van Gogh but I wasn’t able to finish it today.
I’ve changed my background from a flat gray to a warm paper texture. I may neutralize it a bit more.
In an attempt to speed up my 100 heads challenge I’m drawing and only working with value.
I would have like to work longer on this painting but I just don’t have enough time in the morning at the moment. Making slow progress on my 100 head challenge. I may need to simplify my approach but I’m having a lot of fun.
One of my favorite stills from the movie At Eternity’s Gate because of the complementary colors used and high contrast. I was able to get a good block-in done this morning.
I find this method very successful for starting a painting. I don’t feel I need to take this painting to a finish Its purpose was just to establish a beginning method. The next step will be to establish methods for checking my drawing while painting more frequently.
I’m trying the same method as the last painting to see if I can repeat the quality.
THIS is the way that I prefer to paint. Lots of movement and full of life but built on a solid foundation. I had a ton of fun with this painting and with digital I’m able to go much faster than with oil. I don’t consider this a finished painting but a great block in for refinement.
I’m building the head with the method laid out by Marco Bucci and I realized I really don’t like painting this way. It feels lifeless. I need the act of painting to be energetic and full of movement. But, I also want it build on a sound structure. I’ll redo this head the way I want tomorrow.
After more study of values on the Asaro head with Marco Bucci I did another painting of a still from the At Eternity’s Gate movie. I’m not going for accuracy for these paintings. My focus is on mood and expressing myself.
Back to understanding the head with Marco Bucci. With a focus on value. I feel I already know value well but constant review will keep my skills sharp and it’s good to see how another artist deals with the complexity of value.
I spent about an hour on this painting having fun with texture and color. It’s a great foundation for a longer painting but I don’t feel like taking it further.
Continuing with scenes from At Eternity’s Gate I drew this one in black and white as I feel it expresses the inner turmoil better for Van Gogh.
I started the 100 heads challenge over again. We watched At Eternity’s Gate last night and it reminded me of how much I love painting and getting lost in the fever of it..
I did my warmup early in the morning but didn’t draw a head till later. My focus was gone by then and it didn’t work out so well.
I feel that this is enough for the study of the construction of the eye. I will be doing a 100 head challenge and more practice will happen there.
I finished the tutorial video on the eye by Marco and did a couple drawings from photos.
The construction of the eye and the eye socket is much more advanced than any other part of the head I’ve studied so far.
Continuing on more construction study of the eye.
Finishing up more construction of the ear and moving on to the eye.
I spent most of the day working on my website then I spent some time studying the construction of the hear.
I finished my study page of the structure of the mouth but this will not be the last time I study this area of the head.
Marco Bucci was correct in that the mouth is very complex. It’s going to take much more practice for me to be able to construct it well.
Lots of time watching and taking notes on constructing the mouth and a little bit of drawing the mouth.
Finishing up my study of the structure of the nose.
Moving on to the study of the nose. Wow, I didn’t realize that the planes of the nose could be so complex.