Friday, January 31, 2014

And Here They Are! A Painting A Day for January Challenge

And here they are! My artistic interpretation of 15 master paintings on day one, and the following day my abstract using the masters palette. If you read from left to right, the master is on the left and my abstract to its' right. The images are tiny, but it's all there. I think I will show them side by side, which is easier to see. What a month; I had planned on telling you what I've  learned, but at the moment am too exhausted and need to recharge! Thank you Leslie Saeta for this challenge and congratulations to all the artists and bloggers! Bravo!!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Mission accomplished! Day 30 of January Challenge

Mission, um, I mean challenge, accomplished!  I've been painting every day, one day inspired by a master painter, the next day an abstract inspired by that painters palette.  This 30 day challenge, which ends today with an abstract painting inspired by Richard Diebenkorn, has been such a commitment by so many artists. It's humbling to be in such company, and now I'm looking forward to visiting blogs and getting ready for the next chapter and personal challenge. More on that tomorrow!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Diebenkorn, Day 29 of January Challenge

Two days left of this challenge and I return to Richard Diebenkorn. So influential to the Bay Area artists, and always an inspiration to me. This painting from 1957, titled July, is rich with narrative and the saturated color present in so many of his paintings. You can feel the heat of the day!
Mine is 5x5 on Arches oil paper. I will be mounting the group on cradled panels and plan to show how they all look in a later post. For now, there is an end in sight to this painting whirlwind called A Painting a Day In January. Hasn't this been quite the experience?

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Day 28 of 30, Abstract

Inspired by Girl With Green Eyes, painted in 1908 by Henri Matisse, the vases in the background caught my attention and became the jumping off point for my abstract painting. A master one day, an abstract the next. What a fascinating journey through painting history this month and challenge has been for me. All of the artists and especially Leslie Saeta for kicking it off, deserve great kudos for stamina, creativity and commitment! WE are awesome!
Oil on Arches paper, 6x6

Monday, January 27, 2014

Matisse, Day 27 of January Challenge

The last few days of this challenge have me thinking hard about which master painters I will choose to use as inspiration. Matisse was an early love, his use of bright color appealed to me as a child; I have since learned to appreciate his sophisticated color juxtapositions and flattening of space.
Girl With Green Eyes was painted in 1908. As usual, I have cropped the original, seen below, to fit my square format and simplified to my sensibilities.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Day 26 of 30, Abstract

We're in the final week of the Painting a Day Challenge and todays' abstract was inspired by The Boating Party by Mary Cassatt. I used some of her push and pull techniques and flattened the space, using non-associative color for sky and sea. I can feel the distant shore and the mood of this afternoon sail and thought of this quote by Hopper, " More of me comes out when I improvise." Good luck to everyone participating, it's been quite the kick-start to 2014!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Mary Cassatt

Day 25 of the 30 day challenge. Yes, we are coming to the end.
I have been painting from a master figure painting one day, and the next day making an abstract painting using the colors of the master work. Today is Mary Cassatt, an American living in Paris at the time of Impressionism, a friend of Edgar Degas and a wonderful painter. I hadn't noticed before how the three hands are almost touching in the composition, although the boatsman is at a distance from the woman and her child. I hadn't noticed how the green in her hat mimics that of the distant landscape. I love this push and pull she plays with. This painting was inspired by a vacation at Antibes, in the south of France, not too far from St Jean- Cap- Ferrat, where we lived when I was a teenager. But that's another story!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Day 24 of 30, Abstract

This painting took on a life of its own, a curious phenomenon that happens as shapes transform themselves, new colors  appear and I let go of trying to control the outcome. No masterpieces here, but it's been very freeing, to put it mildly!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Wayne Tiebaud

Day 23 and I don't want this challenge to end without including the masterful American painter Wayne Tiebaud. Born in 1920 and living in San Francisco, I have been a fan of his for ages and this painting from 1974, The Yellow Dress has long been a favorite! I love the touches of orange and that blue shadow is so striking. I hope I did the painting justice, especially since I had to crop the bottom of the dress for my format!
Tiebauds' painting is oil and charcoal on paper. Exquisite!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Abstract Avery, Day 22 of 30

I wanted to duplicate the colors in the Milton Avery painting and keep the strong shapes, playing with some of the lines to add textural interest. I read that he did this with a fork or a razor! I feel I caught the sense of being by a window. Hard to believe that this challenge is 2/3rd done; I have been so caught up in the process!
6x6 on Arches oil paper. 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Milton Avery again, Day 21 of 30 Day Challenge

I am really enjoying studying about Milton Avery and decided to work with another of his images for my 30 day challenge. This painting is titled Sally and Sarah and was painted in 1947. Because I am working in a square format, I will crop this painting to reflect the area of my greatest interest, strong color adjacently juxtaposed.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Avery Abstacted

I decided to keep this painting very simple. using  the minimum of shapes, similar juxtaposition of colors as the Avery inspiration painting titled Feed, creating a mood of peacefulness which attracted me to his work in the first place. 
Palette knife only, 6x6 on Arches oil paper.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Milton Avery, Day 19 of 30 Challenge

In case you're new to my blog, I'm painting every day in January as part of a 30 day challenge proposed by fellow blogger, Leslie Saeta. I'm painting my version of a master figure painting one day, then the next day I'm abstracting using only similar colors.
Today's artist is Milton Avery, a master of distilling the essence of any subject. The man loved color! This painting is titled Feeding, and was painted in 1944.
I wanted to show the full painting, then the detail I worked with.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Day 18 of 30, Hopper Abstracted

I wanted to use the sewing machine as my jumping off point, as well as the general colors of the Hopper painting. I indicated the sky and window frames while shifting the elements around. Painted with a palette knife on a 6x6 panel.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Edward Hopper, Day 17 of 30

This painting, titled Girl at a Sewing Machine, was painted in 1921-22 and resembles his etching East Side Interior; both depict a young woman sewing by a window. Hopper was influenced by Rembrandts' figure at a window and used the idea of a 17th century realist for his work. I love how much we can learn from the past to inform our process today. I cropped his painting for my take on it; pressed a bit more than usual to finish and meet my other deadlines! I can see how much warmer his is than mine, wahhh!
I am posting both as I've received positive comments from people being able to see the original as well as my rendition.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Day 16 of 30, Abstracted Denis

This is a surprise. I don't know where I will end up with these abstracts. Something starts, maybe a spark, and then it's just painting like crazy.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Maurice Denis, Day 15 of 30

This is a small landscape with a figure with the most extraordinary colors.
Denis was part of the group led by Paul Gauguin who called themselves Nabis. They are post Impressionist and breaking away from conventional ways of seeing. My painting is a detail from Peasant Woman With A Cow painted in 1983.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Day 14/30 Abstract

This is my freewheeling interpretation of Bonnards' painting from yesterday's post. I am at sea, to be sure, but adrift in my imagination!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Pierre Bonnard

I love the composition of this painting titled Excursion at Sea painted in 1924-25 by Bonnard. I have started using a brush instead of exclusive use of the palette knife, still attempting to simplify and remove detail. I am going for my interpretation of the essence of the painting.
Three figures (the Hahnloser Family) seem not entirely together. Parents seem to be in conversation, but the daughter is by herself. A teenager?

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Day 12/30 Abstract

I knew when I did the abstract of David Parks' painting Kids on Bikes that I wanted the orange of the handlebar, the red and blue stripes from the boys' shirt and the general shape of the white shirt. The fun part is not knowing where you'll end up, like being in a new city and just exploring. I like that feeling!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

David Park

One of the Bay Area figurative painters, this painting titled "Kids on Bikes", painted in 1950 by David Park, interests me with its flattening of the picture plane and the perspective showing the huge foreground kid, with his friend riding off.
I knew I would use this painting when I read a quote from" Bay Area Figurative Art 1950-1965 "saying, "Park emphasizes the analogies between abstract and representational painting and points to artists' absolute freedom to move between them." Yes!

Friday, January 10, 2014

A Painting a Day in January, Degas Abstracted

Here we are on day 10! This project has me engaged completely, looking at art to find my reference paintings, reading so much about these artists, then taking flying leaps by abstracting these figure paintings after first simplifying and making them my own. So it's back and forth and I am having fun! This painting is perhaps the greatest departure from the reference, and I have mixed feelings about that. On the one hand, I'm excited of how far it took me, on the other I wonder, "Have I gone too far?" "Where will I go next?"

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Degas, Day 9 of 30

I have a large catalogue from a 1988 retrospective of Edgar Degas and I found  this pastel, referred to as the Paris bather, to use as my inspiration for today's painting.
Painted in 1885-6 it is titled Nude Woman Drying Her Feet. His interest was in the figure and here she is doubled over into a seated fetal position, the room cropped tightly around her, her imperfections portrayed as truly as Degas saw her through his own eyes. The blue, yellow and green harmonies are used here, as they were in many of Degas' bathers. 
I had to keep making her rounder, which went against how I thought she should be. Interesting!
My son thinks I should also post the original work, which is a great idea and I will do when I get a bit of time. Update 1/20/14. Original images are now added so you can see what inspired me!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Diebenkorn abstracted Day 8 of 30

I loved that this painting felt playful to me, those red stripes of the fabric take on a life of their own in my painting and that makes me happy! It's the beginning of the second week and if you are new to my personal challenge- besides a painting a day for 30 days- I am doing my take on a master figure painting one day, then abstracting it the next day- way out of my comfort zone. So much to learn when we take a risk!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Diebenkorn- Day 7 of 30

"Woman in a Window" was painted in 1957 and to me looks utterly timeless. This is one way I appreciate art, its' relevancy to the present. Diebenkorn is genius in shape making.  As I attempt to recreate this image, I see layer upon layer of thin color washes with thicker paint applied on top. Wish I had the original to study, I could look at this for hours! Just sitting and gazing out at the sea.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Day 6 of 30

Hopper abstracted. I start with the colors I used to paint yesterdays interpretation of the Hopper painting and look for a strong shape as my starting point. From there, it is more an intuitive pushing of paint around; waiting for forms to come into alignment with each other. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Edward Hopper, Day 5 of 30

This 1933 painting titled "The Hotel Room" is my Day 5 challenge of Leslie Saetas' 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge.
I have been inspired by Hoppers' seeming simplicity until I begin to paint, then I see the many layers of color and the sophistication of his compositions. I am learning so much by really looking at these great artworks as I try to find color and shape, using only a palette knife, and bring them into my little paintings. On another note, todays' post is number 450!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Day 4 Abstracted Bonnard

Bonnards painting abstracted. It's so fascinating to see this next to yesterday's painting, color palette the same but very different feel. The heartbeat of the paintings is the same!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Day 3 Learning from Bonnard

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What a master colorist was Bonnard! I changed the composition as I'm working in a square format and looked hard at the amazing separation of light and shadow. So interesting that the value of the tablecloth inside is the same as the garden outside! These are things that interest me. Tomorrow I will abstract  this painting "Dining Room in the Country", one of Bonnard's largest paintings, painted in 1913.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Day 2 of 30 Abstract inspired by Degas

Using the palette I developed while painting the simplification of the Degas yesterday, I painted abstractly for day 2 of 30 using the colors and general composition of the master work. This was utterly liberating!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year and a painting a day for January

As I did last year, I will be posting a new painting each day and joining the January challenge by fellow blogger Leslie Saeta
This month I will focus on two personal challenges, learning from the masters about color and composition and getting more abstract.
Todays painting is a Degas, the original pastel on grey paper, titled Girl Combing Her Hair. Mine is a simplification in oil on Arches oil paper.