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Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Happy Holiday and a Wonderful New Year


I want to wish everyone a happy and safe holiday. I will return in the new year. All the best. Arlene



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Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Rosa Bonheur Painting, The Palette



French artist, Rosa Bonheur (1822 – 1899) painted the above painting, The Palette (1863, oil on wood palette). The palette shows the colors she used for the painting of the deer. The painting has a dominant warm hue. Bonheur loved painting nature and animals. The painting of the deer shows her fondness for animals. (J. Vigue, Great Masters of Western Art)

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Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Color Contrast in Painting







I wrote about color complements and the Triadic and Munsell color wheels. In my above unfinished color study, I used the complementary pair, orange (yellow red) and blue. On both color wheels these hues are complements and enhance each other when placed side by side. It is best to mute (dull) one hue, i.e. blue; this will increase the intensity of the pure orange. If you mix complements as I did in my sky, the colors are dulled. In the value image (gray scale), you see the limited number of shapes and their oblique directions. The dominant value is mid tone; this contrasts with the smaller amounts of light and dark values. The dominant color temperature is warm. I posterized this image to 2 values (notan) in Photoshop. You can still read the image and I have achieved a dynamic design.

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Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Turner, Paintings of Color, Light, Force



Famous British artist, William Turner (1775 - 1851) painted color, light and emotion. His art was studied by the impressionists. The above painting, Snowstorm (1842) is a wonderful example of Turner’s use of intensity, atmospheric effect and vibration. This painting makes viewers feel the force of nature. Turner reduced the detail and elements to make the painting powerful. (J. Vigue, Great Masters of Western Art)

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Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Study of Color in Painting, Triadic and Munsell Color Wheels



I painted the above study to examine color in light. The first color wheel was based on three primary colors (triadic color wheel). French chemist, M. E. Chevreul established the theory of simultaneous contrast published in 1839 (complementary colors enhance each other) and the interaction of colors. The Impressionists and Post impressionists were influenced by Chevreul’s findings and used complements to enhance colors. Around 1936, American artist, Albert Munsell, created a color system based on hue, value and intensity. His color wheel used 5 primary colors. I have previously written on both color wheels. Most artists use the Munsell color wheel which has more accurate complements. In my above painting, I used a Munsell split complementary color scheme (green yellow, red purple, purple blue). (For more information, O. Ocvirk et al, Art Fundamentals Theory and Practice and prior posts)

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Tuesday, 8 November 2011

AGO Exhibit, Chagall and the Russian Avante Garde






Toronto’s Art Gallery of Ontario is hosting the exhibit, Chagall and the Russian Avant-Garde (to January 15, 2012). Chagall was born in Russia in 1887. He spent much of his life in exile but his work was influenced by his Russian and Jewish background. His work was also influenced by the French post impressionists. His use of color complements are seen in his above painting, Double Portrait with Wine Glass (1917-1918). Chagall uses the color green and red to enhance his painting. He used a green outline around the red jacket of the male figure to create vibrancy. Compare this painting with the color Chagall used in his painting, Cemetery Gates (1917).

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Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Split Complementary Colors, Intensity in Paintings






There are several color (hues) schemes artists use to harmonize paintings. A split complementary color scheme is a color and 2 colors on either side of its complement. In the above paintings, I used the blue green hue and the split complements, red yellow (orange) and red purple on the Munsell color wheel. The first painting is fully saturated except for the sky and water (thin glazes show the white of the canvas). I have decreased the hues’ saturation (intensity) of the second image with the complements of the colors. For example, I used the red hue to decrease the saturation of the blue green colors. Red is the Munsell color wheel complement of blue green. When you alter the intensity of the hue, you also change the value (black and white gray scale). In my above painting the addition of red to the blue green hue made the value darker. When you alter the intensity you may also alter the hue.

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Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Painting Value, Hue and the Munsell Color Wheel





In my prior post, I used my painting to discuss the value (black and white gray scale) of the bottom shape. I said that the hues (colors) of the dark reflection under the bridge, the reflections of the underside of the bridge, bridge and the water were similar in value. I continued to paint keeping these values similar. I liked the large curved shape I had with these similar values. The large shape shows a dynamic movement rising from the bottom of the painting. In prior posts I have talked about the triadic color wheel. This wheel has 3 primary hues (yellow, red, blue) and 3 secondary hues (orange, green, purple). These secondary hues are made from the primary colors. There are other types of color wheels. The Munsell color wheel is popular among artists as complementary colors are more exact. Munsell added 2 primary hues, green and purple. This creates 5 primary hues and 5 secondary hues. In my above painting, I used the Munsell complementary pair, red purple and green. In the triadic color wheel, the complementary pair is red and green.

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Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Painting's Compositional Structure, Value, Hue, Shape




I am currently working on the above painting. The hues (colors) of the dark reflection under the bridge, the reflections on the water of the underside of the bridge, bridge and the water are similar in value (black and white gray scale). As I continue to work on my painting I am keeping these values similar. I like the large curved shape I have created with these similar values. I feel the large shape shows a dynamic movement rising from the bottom of the painting.

Click on title of this post to buy images of my paintings on items, i.e. fine art prints, greeting cards, posters, shirts and mugs. Customize style, color, border and more. Final prices are shown after you customize products and select the quantity of the product in my store and other stores. Did you know that my items are in the public setting? If you are on another Zazzle site, i.e. Zazzle.ca, you can buy my items. You will not be eligible for sales on Zazzle.com. If you received this post via email (feedburner), you may need to copy and paste this URL into your browser, http://www.zazzle.com/arlenebabadartist* .

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Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Painting "Rainy Day Street", Value, Temperature & Compositional Structure



This is my new painting, Rainy Day Street (acrylic on canvas). I described the mood of a rainy day in the city. While I painted this in an impressionistic style, there are few impressionist paintings of a rainy atmosphere. It was difficult for the impressionists to paint outside in the rain; the impressionists liked to paint light and color. My painting has a dominant middle value; the dominant color temperature is cool. The compositional structure is verticals and diagonals. I painted the sky with vertical brush strokes (not horizontal or oblique). I wanted to emphasize the vertical movement of rain.

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Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Painting a Rainy Day Scene, Artist Caillebotte



The above painting, Street in Paris in the Rain (1877), was painted by French artist, Gustave Caillebotte (1848-1894). When raining, there is no direct sunlight and there is little contrast between light and shadow. There are reflections on the road and pavement. The emphasis in this painting is on vertical direction with horizontal movement created by the people. (Essential Impressionists, Antonia Cunningham)

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Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Diagonal Direction in Paintings





Diagonal directions are more dynamic than horizontal. They add movement and also contribute to perspective. Diagonals contrast well with strong vertical directions. This is seen in French artist’s Degas above painting, Ballet Scene, and my painting, The Corner Store. Skies are better if they are a diagonal shape. Diagonal directions also suggest conflict.

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Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Analysis of a Painting, Dominance, Repetition, Movement



My painting, The Corner Store is acrylic on canvas (20.4 by 25.5 cm, 8 by 10 inches). I painted with loose expressive brush strokes and little detail. This is similar to art by the impressionists, i.e. Monet. The painting is a dominant light value (gray scale); there is some middle tone and less dark value. The painting has a dominant warm temperature. The focal point is the man with the black hat. There are several ways into the painting and towards my focal point, i.e. the path, the awning, the boxes. I have used all colors twice but my color trail is the yellow hue. I have also repeated the triangular shape; this repetition helps move viewers around the painting. There is a triangular shape at the front right canvas. There are 3 triangular shapes at the top; the yellow section of the awning, the tree and the light blue sky shape.

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Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Painting the Color of the Sky, My Painting, "The Corner Store"





This is my new painting, The Corner Store (acrylic on canvas). My goal was to do loose brush work. In this post I talk about sky colors. There are images of the sky in saturated color and gray scale (value); before I painted the trees. We are familiar with vertical atmospheric perspective; the blue sky moves from the zenith to the horizon. The sky gets lighter as we move towards the horizon. At the horizon, the sky can be light blue, muted orange or warm gray. There is also a color change horizontally as we approach the sun. In my painting, the sun is coming from the far left. The sky is lighter as you approach the sun; it is warmer closer to the sun. In my painting, I have used a green.

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Tuesday, 6 September 2011

The Cross as Compositional Structure in Art, Artist van der Weyden



The above painting is by Flemish artist, Rogier van der Weyden (1399-1464). The compositional structure in his painting, The Descent from the Cross (1435), is based on the Latin cross. Viewers first see the important vertical line. The line is the direction of gravity. The pose of the Virgin Mary, repeats the pose of the Christ figure including the two figures that hold her as she falls. This pose was new for Flemish art; a technique of van der Weyden. The canons of Denis the Carthusian (Roman Catholic theologian and mystic) stressed the consequence of the Virgin Mary and her belief in Christ's spirit at the moment of his death. Denis expresses the conviction that the Virgin Mary was near death when Christ died; Van der Weyden's painting suggests this idea.

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Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Compositional Structures for Groups in Paintings, Artist Caravaggio



There are a few ways to structure groups in paintings. Two structural compositions are the oval and the triangle. You can also separate the figures into one large and one small group. The main figure and focal point can be in either group. In the painting, The Musicians, Italian artist, Caravaggio balanced the three shapes on the right with the fourth shape on the left. A feeling of fantasy governs the group. The individual personalities of the figures are important. (H. Poore, Composition in Art)

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Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Exiting a Painting, The Artist Chardin



Artists need to include entrances into and movement around paintings. Artists must also ensure viewers have a single way to leave a painting. An exit out of a painting should be natural and not obvious. Viewers must first have the chance to move around the painting. Paintings should not have more than one exit point. In the painting by French artist, Jean Baptiste Chardin (The Provider), there is a small area of blue sky above the left far door. This allows us to exit the painting. We see this area after viewing the main figure and next following the departing figure in the background. (H. Poore, Composition in Art)

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Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Triangular Compositional Structure, Three Shapes: Artist Thomas Eakins






I previously wrote about the triangular compositional structure. The triangle on its vertical midline is stable. The apex of the triangle is a location of emphasis. This structure is excellent for uniting 3 shapes. American artist, Thomas Eakins (1844–1916) painted the second above painting, The Chess Players (1876). Eakins used a triangular composition. The focal point is the standing figure at the apex. (H. Poore, Composition in Art; N. Goldstein, Design and Composition) French artist Cezanne painted the top painting "The Card Players" (1894-1895) using a bridge composition to unite the 2 players.

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Tuesday, 28 June 2011

No New Posts until August 16, 2011

My next post will be on Tuesday August 16, 2011. I plan to post sales on my Facebook page and Twitter.

I hope everyone has a wonderful summer.

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Thursday, 23 June 2011

Triangular Composition & Attraction of Figure, Artist Cezanne





This painting is by French artist Paul Cezanne (1839-1906); the painting is An Old Woman with A Rosary (1895-1896). I have added red lines to the second image. The overall compositional structure is a triangle. When the triangle is on its base, there is stability to the painting. The top of the triangle will attract the most attention. In the large triangle from the bottom of the image, the apex is at the head of the woman. The bottom triangle’s apex is at the hands. Even without a triangular composition, viewers are first attracted to the head. After the head, viewers are attracted to the hands and then the figure. Use of other elements might alter the order of attraction. (H. Poore, Composition in Art; N. Goldstein, Design and Composition)

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Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Horizontal Compositional Structure & Use of Light, Artist Edward Hopper



American artist, Edward Hopper painted the above painting, Early Sunday Morning (1930). I like the way the sun shines from the right and the light on the barber’s pole, fire hydrant and the left half of the blinds. Hopper used a horizontal compositional structure and this structure adds tranquility to the scene. The lines and shapes are parallel to the ground plane and therefore do not resist the pull of gravity. The lines and shapes appear at rest. The painting is balanced by the lesser number of vertical lines and shapes, i.e. barber’s pole, building on the upper right, vertical doors. (H. Poore, Composition in Art; N. Goldstein, Design and Composition)

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Thursday, 16 June 2011

Balance & Location in Paintings, Artist Winslow Homer



I have written about the need for balance in paintings. Balance is a feeling of stability achieved through visual weight, attention or attraction of the elements of art. In this painting by American artist Winslow Homer (1836-1910), Breezing Up (1876) Homer achieves balance for the foreground shape by the location of the smaller ship in the background. The larger ship in the foreground is close to the centre point of the painting. The smaller ship balances this shape because it is near the edge of the painting: it is in the distance. The small ship is isolated. These three locations have more visual weight than shapes closer to the centre and foreground. (H. Poore, Composition in Art)

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Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Use of Light and Dark in Art, Artist Honore Daumier



In a prior post, I wrote about the brilliant light achieved with the use of dark values (gray scale). The above painting is by French artist, Honoré Daumier (1808 –1879). In his painting, The Chess Players (1863), the light is shining from the left side. The player on the right side has his face, left shoulder, hand and left arm in light. The wrist and hand of the other player is also illuminated by light. Part of the chess board is in the light. Daumier has also painted a dark line around the profile and shoulder of the player on the right. This dark line contrasts with the light. Surrounded by dark values, the light is more brilliant. As I previously mentioned, smaller areas of light are more brilliant when surrounded by larger areas of dark.

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Thursday, 9 June 2011

Balance in Paintings, The Artist Cezanne



Balance is an important principle in painting. The above painting is by French artist, Paul Cezanne (1839-1906). It is titled Still Life with Peppermint Bottle (1894). Balance is a feeling of stability accomplished by visual weight, attention or attraction using the elements of art, i.e. warm colors have more visual weight. There is a strong vertical direction in Cezanne’s painting. The viewer immediately sees the wine bottle and decanter. The dark vertical rectangle is in the top centre of the painting. These strong vertical shapes balance the shape of the draped cloth and fruit. (H. Poore, Composition in Art; O. Ocvirk et al, Art Fundamentals Theory & Practice)

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Tuesday, 7 June 2011

The Brilliance of Light Areas in Paintings, Artist Hassam





This painting is by American impressionist artist, Childe Hassam (1859-1935). The painting is called Horse Drawn Cabs at Evening, New York. Although an impressionist, Hassam used values (gray scale) to create atmosphere and brilliance. The dominant value is dark mid tones. There are some light values, i.e. the house on the right side, on the wet street. The brilliance of light is strengthened by the dark areas. The brilliancy of light results is greater when the light area is smaller than the dark area.

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Thursday, 2 June 2011

Rothko's Paintings @ the AGO's Abstract Expressionist Exhibit, Study of Color



In my prior post, I wrote about New York’s Museum of Modern Art’s Abstract Expressionist exhibit at Toronto’s Art Gallery of Ontario. I noted that artists were influenced by surrealism, World War II and the Holocaust. They felt a need to create a new and expressive art that chronicled the doubt of the post war environment. The above painting is by American artist, Mark Rothko (1903-1970). In my opinion this painting, No. 5/No. 22 (1950) is non objective art. In abstract art, artists base their forms on natural objects. Their abstractions can vary from a likeness to the object to non familiar forms. Abstract art is different from non-objective art. Non-objective art is based on the artist’s imagination and not derived from anything the artist perceived.

If you are interested in studying the elements of art particularly color, Rothko’s paintings are worthy of study. Rothko used masses of color to have shapes float above and below the picture plane, i.e. cool colors recede, warm colors advance. He used soft edges. When you view this painting “rectangles appear to hover just over its surface. Each of the work’s coloured segments, when stared at individually, affect how you perceive the colour of those adjacent to it. Despite this, Rothko did not want his pictures appreciated solely for their visual qualities. He said, "If you are only moved by colour relationships, then you miss the point. I'm interested in expressing the big emotions—tragedy, ecstasy, doom."

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Tuesday, 31 May 2011

MOMA's Abstract Expressionist Exhibit @ AGO, Photographer Siskind



Above: Arshile Gorky (American, 1904-1948, Godfather of Abstract Expressionism), Garden in Sachi (c. 1943)

I saw New York’s Museum of Modern Art’s Abstract Expressionist exhibit at Toronto’s Art Gallery of Ontario. These artists were influenced by surrealism, World War II and the Holocaust. They felt a need to create a new and expressive art that chronicled the doubt of the post war environment. Although the exhibit is primarily paintings, I particularly enjoyed the gelatin silver prints by U.S. photographer Aaron Siskind (1903-1991). Siskind was considered by many to be the father of modern photography. His work was based on shapes, textures and tones (value, gray scale) making abstract compositions. His photos were not an indication of the world; they were photos of torn billboards and textured surfaces where subjects were not significant.

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Thursday, 26 May 2011

Memorial Day Weekend Sale @ Zazzle.com

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Creating Movement in Art with Repetition & Direction, Artist Orazco



In my posts, you see the numerous techniques and styles used by artists to create movement. The Mexican artist, Jose Clemente Orozco (1883-1949) did the above painting, Zapatistas (1931). Orozco repeats the shapes of the Zapatistas across the horizontal support. The Zapatistas slant in the same direction. The repetition and direction of the figures create the illusion of movement. (Otto Ocvirk et al, Art Fundamentals Theory & Practice)

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Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Art's Expressive Use of Value, Surrealist Artist Chirico



In a prior post I wrote about surrealist artist Magritte. Surrealism emphasized unreality through the subconscious mind. Greek artist, Giorgio de Chirico (1888–1978) was also a surrealist painter. Chirico’s above painting, Piazza d’Italia, shows his use of shadow and value contrast (gray scale). Chirico used value to express a forlorn, solitary mood.

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Thursday, 19 May 2011

Surrealist Art & the Illusion of Space, Artist Magritte



I have done several posts about achieving the illusion of space in paintings. There are many techniques, i.e. use of the elements, linear perspective to achieve this illusion. Belgian artist, René François Ghislain Magritte (1898–1967) was a surrealist artist. Surrealism was a style that emphasized unreality through the subconscious mind. Magritte’s objective was to challenge viewers’ awareness of reality. In his above painting, The Human Condition (1935), Magritte used unusual space to astound viewers.

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Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Gradations in Painting, Achieving Space & Depth



Gradations in the elements of art, i.e. size, value (gray scale), and color create the illusion of space and depth. Similar shapes and forms with these changes are seen as being in different positions. A smaller form or a cooler shape is seen as further back in space. The illusion of space is most successful when gradation is gradual. In my painting, The Wreck, the sky and water gradually become lighter as they recede towards the horizon. The green hills in the background are small.

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Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Pre Raphaelite & Symbolism, Burnes-Jones' Art



British artist Edward Burne-Jones’(1833-1898) teacher was a member of the Pre-Raphaelite movement. Pre-Raphaelite artists believed that the classical poses and graceful compositions of Raphael and others had harmed art. They preferred more detail, intense colours and intricate compositions in paintings.

Burne-Jones’ was also interested in symbolism. Symbolist artists considered subjective, symbolic, and decorative purposes. Burne-Jones’ figures are well modeled and sensual. His above painting, The Golden Stairs (1880) is done with limited hues (colors). The composition is a semi circle of figures on the stairs. The women appear almost indistinguishable with their like dresses and bare feet. The golden color of the stairs is the same as the skin tone. One woman is seen gazing at viewers. Some women’s heads are surrounded by light. The light along with their bare feet make them appear like goddesses or angels.

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Thursday, 5 May 2011

Depicted Movement in Sculptures, Barlach's The Avenger



I have written about the illusion of movement in paintings. There may also be an illusion of movement in sculptures. There are two types of movement in sculptures. There is actual movement, i.e. mobile sculptures. There is also depicted movement. The above sculpture, The Avenger (1914, bronze) by German artist, Ernst Barlach implies movement. The long broad horizontal and diagonal directions of the robe’s edges and the forward thrust of the head and shoulders contribute to the illusion of movement. (O. Ocvirk et al, Art Fundamentals Theory and Practice) The base of the sculpture is a downward wedge. Barlach did this sculpture at the beginning of the first world war when he was a nationalist; it represented the unstoppable force of the German army. Several war memorials by Barlach including a wooden version of The Avenger along with other art were removed by the Nazis as offensive to the national sensibility.

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