Monday, January 24, 2011

'Orange Tree Lake'

16" x 20" Oil on Canvas

I'm taking an oil painting class at the Herndon Art Space with a local artist instructor.  This is the first painting I've completed in the class.  I can't say that I received a lot of instruction on the painting, but I think it came together well.  Just spending three, uninterrupted, hours painting with no distractions is helpful enough.  The teacher did provide one helpful suggestion and that was to bring the reflection of the sky out and to the bottom left of the painting.  This way, the reflection leads you into the painting, whereas I had originally painted it as a straight line from the horizon to the bottom of the painting.

What I don't like about the class and I guess there is no way around this in the middle of winter, is that we were painting from photos, and small, dark, photos at that.  The painting is quite different from the photo - I really had to move things around and create to make it work so that's good.  My biggest gripe against the photo and maybe this is the teacher's fault, is that she didn't know where it came from.  Hence the name, 'Orange Tree Lake.'  To my knowledge, Orange Tree Lake does not exist. I like to have some sort of attachment to my subjects so next time I'm bringing my own photos.

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