Saturday, March 31, 2012

Digital Painting is Clean

Mr. Clean in Pink Bottle, 5.3" x 4", Digital Painting on Nintendo, using Colors program
©copyright Richard Luschek 2012
I have a little Nintendo DS that I like to do sketches on. These little portable devices are great as color sketchbooks. I use a program called Colors to do the drawing. I have discussed it elsewhere on this blog.

I have been pondering as to whether or not to purchase an iPad 3. A student in my class was kind enough to lend me his for a week. It is a pretty wonderful device, but I am still on the fence about it. One thing I missed in the drawing applications was pressure sensitivity- meaning, the harder you push with the pen tool or your finger, the bigger the brush gets or the darker it gets depending on the settings. The iPad has one level, so brush strokes will be of even width. Below you can see the difference with and without the sensitivity to pressure. If I do not get an iPad I am considering a cheap laptop with a small Wacom Tablet.

Left- Stroke with Pressure sensitivity
Right- Stroke without Pressure sensitivity.
It is a tough decision as the iPad sure is 'purdy', and has lots of cool bells and whistles- tech folks call them "apps". In all honesty having such a device could be a bad. Not having web access in the studio is probably a good thing.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Spring like figure session

Nude Study #2, Oil on canvas (with a bad landscape painting), 12 x 9, ©copyright Richard Luschek 2012
I decided to do some painting tonight during our Tuesday night sketch group. Thought I would start by showing the second painting, which I did on top of an unsuccessful landscape painting. Took about 45 minutes and I would have loved to have had a bit more time. The drawing is not great but I was pretty happy with the color.
We had a lovely model tonight and I had hoped to get some good work. The first painting was done in natural light, but that one did not work. I have a shot of how it looked after I unified it with a rag and turpentine.
 Sometimes paintings just need to go away.
Nude study #1- improved, oil on turpentine on canvas, 14 x 11, ©copyright Richard Luschek 2012

Sunday, March 18, 2012

A Whole Grouping of Creepy

Continuing on the theme of creepy scenes in the basement.
The basement series. oil on linen, ©copyright Richard Luschek 2012

Of course they are not creepy, they are "lovely abstract designs of light and dark with powerful Caravaggio-esque chiaroscuro".
The two above on the right are finished, the others are just in the rough in stage.
Here are the next set of paintings after some work done today in the studio.
Above the Washing Machine, 24" x 18", oil on linen, ©copyright Richard Luschek 2012

Supply Closet #1, 16" x 20", oil on linen, ©copyright Richard Luschek 2012

Supply Closet #2, 16" x 20", oil on linen, ©copyright Richard Luschek 2012

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Next Big Cellar

Behind The Dryer, 24" x 18", oil on linen, ©copyright Richard Luschek 2012
I am working on a new series of paintings all of which are various scenes in my basement. I posted about the first of them in my last post. I have 3 more compositions planned out and will figure out more after those. There are interesting things to paint all over my basement.
The above painting is not quite done. I think I need another session on it, maybe two.
I am finding these paintings to be quite the challenge. Everything in the picture has to be keyed to the bulb. I find that when I am painting, it is easy to key the picture to something more comfortable to look at, like the wall. The wall is being illuminated by the bulb and is a high value. So, every time I bring the painting out of the basement the picture is too light over all and the bulb has no glow. The obvious answer is the plan fact that the painting is not giving off light. Staring at the bulb in real life is uncomfortable. This will never happen with pigment on canvas.  It would look stupid to cut a hole in the canvas for a bulb. Plus that would be cheating.
So, I have to create the effect of a lit bulb, but keying my lightest light to the bulb, and getting the appearance of a lit bulb by darkening everything else way down until I get the glow. So, I am working on this in the basement and then in the studio- where I can actually see the painting in day light. I just have to work on it until it starts to read like I remember it.
These paintings are teaching me the true meaning of verisimilitude- not the "actual truth", but merely the illusion of the truth.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Hanging out in the Basement

Basement Corner, 20" x 16", oil on linen, ©copyright Richard Luschek 2012
My illustration "studio" is in the basement of our house. We have a pretty nice basement as my wife has decorated it with furniture and nice rugs, but it is still a basement with lots of ....well, I will call it patina.
I recently did a very small painting of a light bulb for show this winter and I got to thinking that I should do a series of paintings of various views of our basement.
I have two started, but thought I would post the first one that I have on the easel. I am finding very tricky to do these paintings as the light is not great in my basement and I am painting scenes in minimal light. So, they require a lot of work in the studio. I brought this painting up from the basement and it looked to be keyed too high and was way too yellow and green. Looked great in the basement, but of course it was in the dark.

So, I had to use work on the painting in the studio, from a bad photo and my memory to wrestle this into something that worked. There are still some issues I need to work out, but it is close. Above is a shot of it after a day in the studio.
I also have to point out how difficult it is to paint a lit light bulb. Can't really stare for too long without doing damage.  More to come.