Tuesday, June 12, 2012

First Show!

This summer I joined the Sunnyvale Art Club, which is a community group that meets on a monthly basis to watch painting demos and listen to lectures, as well as connect with other local artists.  Every year they host an art show at the local library and members can submit a few pieces for the show.

Although anyone in the club can display their work there, the show is judged by a trained judge/artist that we bring in from outside the group.

I'm very proud and excited to announce that my seagull painting won 3rd place in the watercolor category!  I stayed and received many compliments from people that came to see the show.  It was great.

Here's a link to a better photo of the painting:  "Bay-Gull"

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Street Scene

Here's a scene I painted last night from a photo from my brother, Justin Evans.  Once he publishes it online I'll provide a link to it.

I imagine my style as being a lot looser and less specific.  It seems like it should be easier to paint like that, but I let myself get caught up in details.  I will paint this scene again soon and try to edit myself better.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Château de Combourg

I did this painting last night of a châteaux in France, using photo reference from my brother, Justin Evans.

I was able to take much better photos of a few of my paintings tonight and I'm very excited about it!  Here's a comparison (it's especially apparent if you right click and open the images in a new tab/window and then click on them to make them really big):

Good lighting and focus:

Late-night light bulb lighting:

I signed this painting in watercolor, which was a first.  I read a good article about the importance of signing your work.  I have felt like it would presumptuous for me to sign, but the article made some good points, and I want to be good at my signature by the time I'm making paintings I want to sign!  I practiced quite a few times, but I can see I should have used a lighter color.  It feels like my signature is leading the eye away from the painting.

Things I like about this painting (I'm trying to be more positive about my end results):  I love the colors and the softness of the sky and water washes.  I like the boat, but I think if I paint this again I'm going to try to get some of the grass and clear reflections like in my brother's photo.

You'll notice that my painting is based only loosely on the photo below.  That's because I wanted to paint something styled after another one of Joseph Zbukvic's paintings.  It's one of my favorites on his site, I just love the airy lightness of it.  Here's a link:  Joseph Zbukvic Inspiration.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Bad News

Another thing we talked about in my last class was copyright violation.  I hadn't ever really thought that my paintings referenced from various photos and paintings I've found online could be considered copyright violations.  I knew I wasn't planning to sell any of them, and it seems extreme that anyone would take exception to my painting attempts.

I went back tonight and added links to the majority of my references, and I'm going to get in touch with a couple of the photographers that have their emails available.

From now on I'll try to paint mostly from my own photos, from someone that's given me permission to use their photos, or from unrestricted stock photos.  I do get a lot of inspiration and ideas from other watercolor artists, but I won't be directly copying any of their work, apart from the tutorials I complete.

Tonight I also did some research on giclee printers in my area.  A giclee is a high quality copy of original artwork.  Once I'm ready (if I'm ever ready) to start selling my art I can sell the original for a higher price, and then sell nice copies for a reduced price.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Good News

After my last class, my teacher said she thinks my work is ready to show and told me about an art show coming up in May in a nearby city.  She said she'd help me get something ready to submit.

I'm so excited!  And a little nervous.  =)

But now I've got some motivation to keep on painting regularly, even though I'm not in any classes right now.

Last night I painted this dog from a photo my brother's friend took in Belgium.  His name is Aaron Beddes and he's got some amazing work on his site HERE.

I see some problems, but as a whole I really like it.  I had an artist at work critique it for me and he gave me some good composition advice.  It's nice working with artists sometimes.  :)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Week 8: Elephant

Here is the final version of the elephant I started in class last week.  I did some more detail on the eyes and then darkened his body and added some shadows.  Finally, I used some sharp scissors to scratch in the grasses against his dark body while the paint was still damp.

Adding some contrast really made a difference!

I wasn't able to finish this little guy in class, but I really like him so I'll hopefully put the final touches on tonight or tomorrow.

Reference found HERE

Monday, March 12, 2012

Class 7: Cat

I've been having fun painting animals... here's one of a tuxedo marked cat.  I can see things I'd change, but for tonight I'm just going to post it without the critique.

I used the photo here for reference, but I added the white myself:  Black Cat

Next week is my last class, and I'll be painting an elephant.