My latest still life painting (“A Mixed Bag”) and its development.

2년 전

My latest still life painting (“A Mixed Bag”) and its development.

A Mixed Bag
9" x 12"
Oil on birch

Greetings and salutations fellow Steemians!,

In today’s post I thought I’d share and discuss my latest still life painting (“A Mixed Bag”) along with its unfolding development.

With this painting in particular I felt that not only did it move along fairly quickly but with each progressive stage there was a smooth transition.

Ever since I worked on my Brass Bell painting I’ve been routinely using this Italian wax medium that I have thoroughly been enjoying and has helped a lot in that it speeds up the drying time in which makes continuing to work on the painting the next day much easier.

In the beginning once again I just dove right in! I didn’t want to give too much attention in locking in the drawing right away as I figured I’d leave some room as to the possibility of having to juggle some space around.

So first off my intentions were to create a loose generalized drawing in thinned burnt umber and to cover the background.

Since in these early stages I was aiming to cover the surface fairly quickly, I was also making sure as to keep this initial first pass relatively thin and to keep edges thin, soft, and blurred. I always remember that I learned in my atelier training that it is easier to sharpen an edge later on than it is to correct a sharp edge that was made earlier in a painting.

Keeping my palette fairly limited, I then began to mass in the paper bag.

When considering edges of things, I’d like to take a moment and point out that it is best to work the edge first and then move outwards or away from it. This way you’ll be able to maintain the best control over your paint handling. In addition, if you like you can also dedicate a single drybrush for the merging or blending of edges. When you choose this soft brush, you want to make sure that it’s NOT used for anything else in the painting except for this.

And now in this stage I have completed massing in the paper bag.

Now using the largest brush I can find that gets the job done comfortably and without getting out of control, I then started to tile the planes of the orange in which would be refined later in the painting. I then proceeded to do the same to the avocado.

Alternating between the cast shadows of the fruits, I then moved onto the apple and then the lemon.

Now that the initial pass is becoming relatively set, I then decided to work on the background again to refine and compress the initial values.

A this stage of the painting, I was also wanting to refine values because I was attempting to make the distinction between the background and the ground plane.

While simultaneously finishing the background I also reworked the paper bag by modeling the subtle transitions in the paper.

Since the transparent and more highly chromatic pigments took a little longer to dry as compared to the standard earth tones, I had to wait a little longer before I could work on them again. This gave me ample time to finish the paper bag.

Once the orange was tacked up enough, I then proceeded to work on the fruits in the same methodical fashion, from right to left.

Out of all of them, I would say that working on the apple was the most challenging in that it had the most difficult modeling transitions, let alone have to juggle more red pigments on my palette as compared to the rest of my primary pigments.

Now that it’s pretty much finished, I then moved on to the highlights on the lemon and sharpened some random edges.

..Aaannd it's done!!

Thanks for reading Everyone!

-James Hansen




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