Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Two Olive Paintings and the Drawbacks of Using Edible Subject Matter

Well, I didn't think there was any chance one of our four-legged beings would eat green, vermouth-soaked olives.  I was half wrong. 

"Martini Time" Oil on gessobord, 6"x6"
Early this morning, I set up my still life (three olives, a metal pick and a white dish) and sketched out the beginnings of two small paintings.  One 6"x6" with three olives, the pick and the dish and a second 4"x4" with just an olive and the pick.  After my morning paint session, I left the setup there and then worked at the "day job".  I came in during lunch and saw Franklin gingerly, with all his teeth showing, attempting to sample an olive.  Oy.  Luckily he didn't eat it, only took a couple tiny sample bites and left a few tooth marks.  AND he was kind enough to do this on the end of the olive that didn't show.  After that, I covered my setup when I left the room as I've come to realize with Franklin, you only get lucky once.  If you give him a second chance, he WILL succeed.  

I still want to work on the white dish in the 6"x6" shown above. I feel like it needs finishing, but I decided to leave it where it was for now and let it set up a bit before it just turned into a whitish grey puddle on the panel. 
"Martini Time" B&W Value Study

One thing I always like to do is take the photo of my painting and then convert it to a black and white.  Looking at the painting in black and white helps me check to see if my values are correct - and that I have a good range of dark, medium and light values.    "Martini Time" needs some lighter and darker ranges in the top two olives.  To me, looking at this in black and white, it seems too monotone in that area.  I also think I need to even out the background.  

"Shaken, Not Stirred" 4"x4" oil on gessobord
The 4"x4" pictured to the right will be the second in the Cocktail Condiments series.  I really had fun painting the olives today - getting the greens right and painting the pick.  The twirly on the end was especially fun to try to capture.  Next in line will be lemon twists, orange slices/twists, limes and salt and limes!  Oh and cocktail onions. 

Want to win a painting??  Follow my blog!  Yes, I am shamelessly promoting my blog yet again.  You can easily follow me by either entering your email address in the box to the right OR by subscribing to follow via Google+.  I will be drawing the name of the winner on December 26 and the winner will receive my painting titled "Mystic River Sunset" which is an 11"x17" oil painted on linen panel.  

Franklin, caught in the act of sampling
my still life setup.

Stella taking a nap under my desk - either that
or she's contemplating the history of time..

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