Monday, June 4, 2012

would you like to tango?

Mi Buenos Aires querido! cuando yo te vuelva a ver... no habra mas pena, ni olvido...

I had never painted the human figure, until this last weekend. One of my argentine friends (she is one of my best friends here) gave me a bunch of pictures with tango couples dancing. Most of them are already paintings, but there was one that was an actual photograph of the real stuff. That is what I picked.

"you paint from photos, not from paintings. A painting is that painter's interpretation of the picture, not yours!"

And so I did. The pictures take away most of the color transitions. They blend in the colors too much. What I like about this piece is that the further you go, the more "real" or "picture like" it looks like.

sky holes

I took a private lesson for the very first time in my life. Barbara guided me thru the process of choosing the right values, before and after the underpainting. We used some kind of turpenoid (the smell was quite intense we were getting all dizzy).
We spent more time talking about art than actually doing the stuff. So I left with this much done...

I spent the next day working on this. Note the detail of "sky holes" or breaking thru the red of the tree with a background color (either the sky blue or the mountain purple coming thru). This is an effect that I like a lot, noone ever thinks that one would first paint the tree to then add "sky" parts in between branches! but that's the only way to do it, or at least, the one that turns out more realistic.

trees in midday light

It was almost a year ago when I decided to start investing more time working with pastels.
And now is the time when I am getting some good results out of that investment. I love colors and I love drawing, so much that I usually paint at night, yes! with a big day light. Nights are quiet and it helps me relax. Get my brain filled with something other than work for a change.

I grabbed this photo from my cousin's album. A trip she did to the south of our beloved Argentina. The first attempt was colorful (nature is always hard, the picture is all green), but there was something fake about the trees. I could not figure out exactly what. I had the piece sitting on the easel for a loooong time until I realize it was the shape of the trees, yes! they looked like bushes and they needed to be more pointy.
First attempt:

So there! orange and blues to cut the green a bit. Lots of detail in this one. It's almost like a real picture.
After reshaping the trees, we have "On the way to Tronador" (Camino al Tronador). The picture was taken on the hike to the Tronador volcano in Argentina.