Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Finished Winter Runoff Black Bear 8"x 10" oil

Well...as the title says, it is now finished. I also took
the photo outdoors in a bit better lighting, so color
may appear slightly different from the originals below.

I made a few darker accents, along the rock in the
nearer area where water lapping might make the rock
darker anyway, but the aesthetic painter's reason for
such is the anchor the darks of the bear so that its
very dark stark value does not appear foreign to the

Indeed a big black bear bruin with its rich velvety
black fur would appear astonishingly black up close
and personal. Anyone surprised by a bear in near
proximity will remember that about them!

I'm leaning at this time using this as a reference now
to start a much larger canvas...40"x 50" or larger.

I invite you to click on the image to see larger...and
thanks for looking!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Winter Run Off Black Bear...8"x 10" oil

Painted the waterfalls and woodland scene first, then
added this black bear. Will work a bit more color, some
warms and softening to get the bear to feel the light
and surrounding environment

here is a closeup...click on either image to see larger.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Alaskan Moose...9"x 12" oil

This 9"x 12" study of an Alaskan moose is perhaps
as finished as I believe it needs to be, saving the
more in-depth work for a much larger studio
piece, My thinking at this time is about a 48"x 60"
stretched canvas.

below is the process of sketches and thinking
that resulted in the painting above-

This is a sketch I worked up in my sketchbook, of another
try at a bull moose. After studying a number of paintings
of Carl Rungius (1869-1959)...wanting to touch on his
giving the moose such a sense of nobility, majestic strength
and power, I was getting quite frustrated.

It wasn't until I pulled my sketchbook out, and started
working things out...

What follows is my progression, and when I was done, I came
to the conclusion that Rungius lengthened his body length
a half-head length. Mine was 3-1/2 heads (from nose to just
where the brow tine begins), and Rungius makes his a full
four head length.

Picasso once said that "art is a lie that tells the truth" and
sometimes in experiencing a moment in nature, our senses
feel something that perhaps only stretching the truth visually

first visualized the mass and volume of the moose using
perspective and rectangles/boxes to give form

Then I put flesh to this form, and come up with my moose,
but, its not been Rungius'ified yet!! That comes next!

I now push the rump, the shoulder back to reflect that
half-head length addition I observed in Rungius portrayal
of the bull moose...indicated by the red arrows...

Then, I re-work the flesh over again to come up with my
stretched truth...which immediately seems to my eye to
deliver on that greater truth I'm after, namely the
majesty...the noble nature of these fine beasts!

The final touch was working Wolff carbon pencils up to
6B into the drawing, then applying a bit of water using
a sable watercolor brush which converts the carbon
drawing to a wash watercolor. I felt I had a good
feeling for the form having followed this study and
analysis of Rungius moose, and the effort has resulted
in some greater confidence for which the study/painting
above then was birthed. ,

Friday, April 11, 2008

Changes...and better I think... Moose Oil Painting

Well...advice I often give artists I realized was a pill
I needed to swallow myself today. Anytime something
doesn't quite feel right, 90% of the time its going to
be an issue related to values. Now, its not finished,
the oil needs to tack up so I can paint a bit more into
the fur and such, but its now feeling more to me like
its saying "big honkin bull moose!"

...and here a closeup...but, click on the image and
much larger view!

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

A study of a Moose in Oils... 9"x 12"

Using a Zorn Palette...of red, black, yellow ocre and white..
I started a study of a wading, drinking bull moose today-

Working on this for my next book I am writing on learning
to paint painterly realism.

What is interesting is that aesthetically any stage or level of
finishing such a painting like this is possible. I could leave
the left side nearly as is...with a few sketched lines, bring to
a great refinement a focal point such as the head/eyes area
of the moose's head. I could paint the whole of the moose,
leaving it looser, more painterly brushwork...or refine one
area again, finish the whole of the moose more painterly,
and add a suggestive background.

It becomes all kind of fun to play with such, considering one's
options along the way. Will repost when finished...

Clicking on image reveals a nicer large image of the moose.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Common Goldeneye- Oil painting 8"x 10"

Finished this painting today, very satisfying after so
many years in a couple ways. One, such a painting
fifteen years ago would have required about 50-100
hours time, and this painted in just over four hours.
Secondly...I kept this in a painterly mode...tightening
what was necessary only...

Hope you enjoy...and clicking on image will reveal a
larger view.

Here also is a step by step painting of this painting

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