Wednesday, October 23, 2013

North Shore Nymph

The weather is perfect right now.  In Houston, the weather is always a little on the perfect side for some people: never too cold in the winter and a friendly, "close" kind of humid heat in the summer that makes your skin stay young.  But in the spring and autumn, the weather is absolutely perfect, no matter who you are.  It was very hard to stay in the studio and teach today, with the cool air and the flirty sun calling from outside!  But I did already get to paint out this week, with my new model, Tesa.

I met Tesa when I was registering students for the fall semester.  She was interested in being an artist's model and had already read three books on modeling!  She did an outstanding job as a plein air model for me.  She will model again on Friday in the studio for our Market Street Painters group, only then she will be a flapper from the 1920's.  For our day though, at a nearby lake, she dressed as a water nymph.
Here she is, taking a picture of the painting of herself:

 The fun and challenge of painting at a park like this is all that goes on around you while you are working.  The in-and-out clouds, the busy ducks and geese, the bugs and boaters and children (and parents) all conspire to pull your focus away from your job.  Tesa stayed focused on my face and I tried to stay focused on her face and my canvas. 
This painting was done with four colors (plus white): transparent oxide brown, ultramarine blue deep, cadmium red and cadmium yellow pale; the same palette we are using in Oil Painting 101 this semester.  The wonderful thing about a limited palette is the automatic harmony that you have.  No matter what you paint, you are drawing from such a limited source, all your resulting choices are related and so go well together.  My mind is always a little blown that so much can be done with so little.  Yet our printers only have a few colors and our television sets only have a few colors so it shouldn't be quite so surprising. 
Well, here is the sketch of Tesa, the North Shore Nymph:

No comments:

Post a Comment