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“Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.”
— Oscar Wilde
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Here is the underpainting in-progress of a new work entitled Yellow MMZ. As usual the underpainting color is Quinacridone Magenta (Sennelier). I am often asked "where did you paint that?" The easy answer is that I do not paint "out in the field" but in my studio. In fact, I only collect my reference images out in the field usually at tractor fairs or at one of the big fairs in CT during September and October. Sometimes while driving, I might catch a glimpse of a tractor somewhere on a farm or backyard somewhere in which case I ask permission to enter their property and photograph it. It would be impossible to paint at one of these fairs or on location for many reasons, so I gather source material for analysis later back in my studio.
The answer requiring a more complicated explanation is that the scenes in my paintings simply do not exist. As a professional digital artist and master Photoshop image editor I much prefer to compose my landscape scenes digitally where I can manipulate the background and foreground elements, along with color, tonal characteristics, and object relationships as I see fit. This is actually my favorite and the most important part of the entire creative process in developing a new composition.
In a couple of my Studio Notes (Silhouette & Replace Background; Image Editing to Develop Composition) I detailed some of these working methods, including some very technical commentary and screen captures of the composition in-progress. In a future Blog posting I will chronicle the digital development of an upcoming work from start to finish but without the technical commentary. For those of you interested in working this way its worth checking out.
Until the next post then.