Friday, December 19, 2014

Moonlight and the sun - A couple of contrasting landscapes

Here's a couple of recently finished landscape paintings. Though both are featuring trees, they couldn't be more different in atmosphere, and time of day...

Under the shade of the oak
Acrylic on wood      28X36

The first of these, is a 'classic' Californian view with an oak in the foreground and strong over head sun. The day I took my original notes and reference it was a little cooler than normal, but still I was appreciative of the shade the tree offered.

The foreground and tree was a joy to paint, but the background took more time. I tried a few different color versions of receding hills, before settling on this. Despite it's alla prima appearance, the painting was slow to grow to completion, and was painted gradually over many months.

Moonlit colors
Acrylic on wood      22X34

'Moonlit colors' was a great challenge, it had been years since I had attempted a night scene, but one evening when the moon was full and strong I felt compelled to take notes on the colors and trees. I then attempted to recreate the ambiance of the scene in my studio days later. I enjoy the process of painting from memory, I feel it often breeds more heartfelt creative work.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Rainmonds Staprans inspiration

Late in the summer I experimented with some ideas from looking at Rainmonds Staprans work. I find his work to be immensely exciting!

 A R. Staprans painting
Few artists are able to achieve the balance between 'color-field' and 'form' (or 'content') as well as him.  He also composes his frame in a very modern style; with focal elements placed in what would traditionally be thought of as poor or bad locations. Staprans never falters in this,  his composition choices never appear ill chosen, and always exemplary. (the images of his work I've shown here are maybe not the best examples of this, but a quick google search will give you many examples). 

For further study of the artists work, I would also recommend the book 'Raimonds Staprans - Art of tranquility and turbulence' by Karlstrom.
 A R. Staprans painting

I wanted to take a little flavor of Staprans work, and fold it into my more usual compositional and color choices of my still lifes.  To tease the edges of my work and it's usual conformity. In occasionally, doing this sort of thing, I feel it's a good way to come to terms with your work and where it's growing too. Maybe to resolve in your mind a direction that may work, or may not?   At any rate here are the fruits from that labor...

Stargazing with a hint of Staprans
30X30                 Acrylic on canvas