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Grand Canyon IV

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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Tue Feb 07, 2017 1:17 pm

Good morning again. Just finished another three steps. Decided to post them today because I am going to make a major shift in thinking when I start doing the sheep next. Maybe. Up to this point I have been painting roughly to the control chaos approach. I have been answering the question in my mind of how do you confine a grand vista overlooking a hundred miles, plus or minus a few, into a canvas space and still bring the viewer to put their hand to their mouth as they gasp. I have enjoyed that response and I intent to enjoy it again. Moving on. I use vivid colors instead of trying to fade the entire painting into a distant background. The paint is textured as a sculpting would address a three dimensional form. The controlled chaos comes in with the juxtaposition of different colors, forms and textures within the same object present with other multiple objects that make up the whole painting. This creates a synergy of confusion in the mind as we humans are not capable of seeing all the complexities at the same time as our brain adjusts our understanding of what we see according to our culturally trained vision of reality. Or, simply said, we see what we want to see. I will have to return to those green leaves once the paint dries to do some highlight enhancement. Other than that the tree is done. Enjoy.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Thu Feb 09, 2017 7:37 am

Good morning. Two more progress posts. I have a lot of work ahead of me. I think I am going to finish painting all the sheep forms then do some more research about painting fur as the blending process I am using makes that first sheep look hairless. Not happy with that. Anyway pressing on. Expect to get some more work done today.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Fri Feb 10, 2017 10:22 am

Good morning. Pressing on. Did some research. There are as many ways to paint fur as you can thing of. Seems to be a consistent approach of dark underpainting and lighter brush strokes on top of it though. Now that I know the basic concept I will just let it happen. Seems to be my best approach anyway. If I think to much I can create a painting D.O.A. There are four progress images in this post.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Sat Feb 11, 2017 6:34 pm

Good afternoon. I pushed a little bit today. Put in five hours. Had to research the horns on the females. It is difficult seeing them in some of my photos. Well, I found out even the youngsters have beginning horns. Now that I have confirmed it, I can see the horns and the little horns on the baby. That has caused a visual twist in my thinking. Kind of disconcerting and fun at the same time. Moving on. The animal forms are coming along just fine, I think. There are four progress posts today.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Mon Feb 13, 2017 10:13 am

Good morning. Had a good production day yesterday. Had a little problem with the baby sheep's head. It kept looking like a ghost head on a little body. Solved the problem with reducing the sharpness of the jaw line, added a little more brown to the grey mix and made the body vertically larger. The ram pretty much went as planed. I wanted the ram to be darker and more rough looking than the three together. It had to be darker because to light would cause the viewer to look to long at it thereby loosing interest in the other animals. Making it darker allows the other animals to be recognized sooner causing the viewer to look first at the power of the ram then drift vision left to the animals. Adding the rough detail to the ram brings it a little more forward in the painting. This painting is being done with points of interest for the viewer. Those little rocks on the bottom left are planned to cause eye contact with movement between them making the viewer feel comfortable at moving the eyes from point to point within the painting. I am now, in the back of my mind, designing the frames for this collection of six paintings. Moving on. Here are the five progress posts.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby Pooch » Mon Feb 13, 2017 2:33 pm

It's coming along great. I love seeing how everyone has a different approach to art. You have the patience to do a highly detailed drawing which might take you days to do. I sit in front of the canvas and start slapping on paint. And you probably enjoy the drawing process as much as the painting. Maybe more. I can't wait to start laying down color. I sit down and start blocking in shapes with my brush.
I think, for me, it's because I'll get a bit overwhelmed by looking at that drawing and feel, "Oh God, this is gonna take forever!"
Happily there is no right or wrong in art.
Looking forward to the finished piece.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Tue Feb 14, 2017 10:58 am

Good morning. Thank you Joseph for your comments and sharing. I have tried many styles and techniques. Both paintings of my hands were painted directly on the canvas. No drawing involved. Go to the practice and post forum if you are interested and click on the hands post. I have several developmental posts in different forums on this site. In the fury forum I challenged Cristo in a portrait paint-off. That was fun. Check the 'Let the games begin' post in that forum. I experiment, practice, challenge myself and others in order to learn and grow. This particular painting required a detailed drawing to be painted, primarily based on fear. It is complex and large. I feared both the complexity and the size in the areas of could I remember the whole concept with all the myriad nit picky details and constantly arising problems with the shapes, form locations and color contrasts mixed in with self doubts about could I really do it in the first place.

Moving on. There are three progress posts of yesterday's work. While painting the ram the size and shape of the horns kept bothering me and I didn't know why. I researched all the photos I took and discovered I had not drawn the left horn correctly. It was to short in height and small in size. I let my brush correct that. It is no longer wimpy.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:56 am

Good morning. Here are three progress posts. I won't be working today and maybe for the next day or two as I let the paint dry before I resume. I have to the fix the ram horns, decide how I am going to enhance the grass with lines and forms, clean up the two rocks and what colors to choose for the limb on the ground. If I paint it grey it is possible that the viewing impact of the animals will be lessened. Do I want that? If I paint it the same colors in the tree, how will it direct the viewer's vision pattern. Does that matter? The grass has five basic shades of green moving from dark on the left to light on the right. Do I want to do lighter highlights on the left moving to dark highlights on the right? Should the fallen limb start dark on the right moving to light on the left, or the other way? This is what I call having a conversation with the painting. I never start a work, drawing or painting knowing what it will end up looking like. It is to interesting and involving to develop the work, to turn mistakes and happenstances into interesting and beautiful elements within the context of the overall composition. Enough. Here are the progress posts.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby www-ksart-se » Thu Feb 16, 2017 6:12 am

Coming along nicely Carl. I really enjoy reading these updates post while drinking my morning coffe. =)
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:29 am

Good morning. Thanks for your comments Kristian. When I post, it is what I am thinking at the time. It is part of my process on producing a work of art. I have frequently been wrong about what I think I am going to do and what I actually do. Seems to be a pattern with producing this painting. I did work on it yesterday. The rams were dry enough to work, so I did. The male's horns were enhanced with thinned yellow ochre and raw umber for form definition and shadowing. That lead to thinned raw umber shadows on all the animals which lead to vague animal form shadows on the flat rocks. The greens were a light tacky so I decided that I could get away with the pallet knife work on the fallen branches. My wife helped me make the color decision. She has really good taste. Whenever we go to a gallery she will pick out a painting and say that she really likes it. It is almost always the most expensive painting in the gallery. So I listen to her before I make up my mind. She nixed the grey limbs idea. Said it would drain the life out of the painting. So, the browns and reds it is. When I started laying in the dark brown bottoms of the limbs I saw that it indeed kept the eyes attended to objects within the painting as opposed to allowing the vision drift off the painting while looking at the limbs if they were a flat grey as I saw with my mind's eye. The browns and yet to be painted reds will keep the vision within the painting. So, here are the four posts.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Fri Feb 17, 2017 9:05 am

Good morning. I have seven posts today. I detail recorded the development of the fallen limbs. I used a pallet knife to lay in all the colors and a small flat sable brush to fill the open gaps and to define some shapes. I now have to think about that grass area. While I think it looks good, if I do not do some definition work and add a bush or two it will look like I just rushed to finish it. Getting close to the finish.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Sat Feb 18, 2017 9:21 am

Good morning. There are two progress posts. I decided to place some small shrubs in the two rocks area and to then make the rocks a little more outstanding by cleaning the sun side surfaces with a strike or two of the pallet knife with a yellow ochre and white mixed together. I also defined the grasses with a fan brush. I then enhanced my signature by lightly painting white into the incised signature I had done the day before.

At 5:09 p.m. on 2/17/2017 mountain standard time, I finished this painting. I think I destroyed a few million brain cells and grew another few million doing this one. It may be awhile before I start Grand Canyon V as I need some down time and need to attend to life business that I put on hold until this was finished. I started this painting on 12/28/2016. It took me 52 days. All in all I spent about 182 hours at an average of 3.5 hours of work per day on this painting from start to finish. It is my most ambitious painting to date. I think I like it. I hope all you viewers enjoyed the presentation.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby Singular » Sat Feb 18, 2017 5:56 pm

Bravo Carl. Well done. I definitely enjoyed watching the progress.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Sat Feb 18, 2017 6:53 pm

Thanks Joe. I have some grownup stuff to do for the next few days or weeks so I will have to hold off on Grand Canyon V, or at least try.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby www-ksart-se » Sun Feb 19, 2017 8:10 am

Well done Carl!
Guess I have to find something else to read with my morning coffe for a while.
Thank you for sharing. And enjoy your down time.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Sun Feb 19, 2017 9:28 am

Thanks Kristian. Glad you enjoyed the progress.
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Re: Grand Canyon IV

Postby CarlOwen » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:35 pm

Well I have decided that I am going to varnish these paintings. Have to wait until the end of August to varnish this one. If I am on time I will be varnishing the Grand Canyon V and the Grand Canyon VI paintings sometime in December. Soooooo the four paintings will be ready for exhibition sometime in 2018. Sure glad I have always had the long view, so to speak.
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