Sunday, March 30, 2008
Saturday, March 29, 2008
No more mucking about. I have given myself a deadline and am forcing myself to take a critical work at my photographs and paintings. I have decide to submit my portfolio for review and consideration for membership in the Cape Cod Art Association. I will be submitting a portfolio of five photographs for the May portfolio review and then I will submit watercolors for the fall review. This makes the most sense as I feel closer to ready and have more strong work to pick from on the photographic side. This will give me the summer to finish up my painting portfolio. Wish me luck?
I'll be putting a bunch of photos up in posts over the next couple of weeks for you my friends to help decide what to submit. This will be scary, but I hope it will stimulate some conversation as well.
What do you do to raise the bar for yourself when you need that jump start? Both in Art and in the other area of your life?
Keep Painting and Photographing,
Thursday, March 27, 2008
I am glad I painted on Sunday! Today was GRAY and BLAH. There was nothing that inspired me to paint. That and being at work for 11 hours. Who's got the energy to paint after that. I wont bore you with work details... we all have to do that and I would bore you. I am looking forward to painting this weekend. I have nothing on the schedule except art and a few projects around the house.
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Friday, March 14, 2008
Well Artist me never had a chance against work me this week. We have a big server upgrade going on at the office and I was in bouncing between preparation and panic mode this week. I'll be up tonight communicating with my team and at the office by 6:30 for phase two.... The computer upgrades. Hopefully we will be done by noon with a successful upgrade. I'll crash then for the day and hopefully paint on Sunday. Stop back here Sunday. If I painted I'll show you what i am working on.
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Hello Fellow Artists,
Well my long winter hibernation is drawing to a close. How about you? I think it was the daylight savings shift or something, but finding myself driving home through the Catskills at night and being able to see reminds me of the project I started last summer. I bought some books on waterfalls of the Hudson Valley and Catskills. I discovered that some of the waterfalls of my favorite Hudson River School paintings are not difficult to find and hike to. OK some are not easy, but others are not bad. I photographed some and have had them at one time or another on the site. I plan to paint watercolors of some. Most notably I photographed Bash Bish and Indian Brook. This spring I plan to shoot Katterskill Falls. Pictured here from the beautiful Thomas Cole painting. I hope to photograph and paint Fawn's Leap and Awosting
Falls. One is easy the other a bit tougher to get to. I will do a post in the coming days on my process for photographing waterfalls. I will break it into the capture portion and the post capture workflow portion. I'll also include tips for you die hard film based photographers. I profess a nostalgic love for shooting with film once in a while. there is something satisfying about shooting with film. There are some simple techniques you can use to get GREAT waterfall shots. This Shot of Indian Brook in Garrison, New York is pretty easy to get to and is a great waterfall to start photographing. I am very lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the country around any bend in the road on almost any day there is a wonderful scene ready to be painted or photographed.
What about the approaching spring gets your artistic juices flowing and makes you want to get out there and make great art.
Monday, March 10, 2008
Sunday, March 09, 2008
TIP: When photographing simple elements in water, like a single rock walk around your subject as much as possible. look for the angle that can give you a solid or interesting background to make your subject stand out. In this case I used the reflected trees in a time exposure to give the reflection a smooth green color. It really adds interest and makes the rock standout. Sometimes you need to note what time of day would work best. Keep a notebook with you on your rambles and photo jaunts and make notes of times when direction and color of light will make for the best photo. Don't be afraid to return to the same location multiple times. I have 5 or 6 spots that I know at the right time of day and time of year will yield new and beautiful results. having said that don't be afraid to explore new locations and keep looking at the work of other photographers in your area. Don't copy them, but feel free to be inspired by the beauty of their work and even interpret common locations with your eye. before you know you'll have your own look and style reflected in your photos of the region in which you shoot!
Whether you shoot film or digital .... Spring is fast approaching. do some planning and then get out there and shoot. Comment and tell me what works for you.
If you are uninspired and need to boost your energy to get out there take a workshop!
Hello Fellow Artists:
Sunday, March 02, 2008
Hello Fellow Painters,
This post will be part of a series as I show my process for doing a watercolor painting. The photo on left in this picture is of a small island in Lake Kanawauke, in Harriman State Park near my home. The first thing I did was to crop an image I wanted to paint in Photoshop so that it scaled to the final painting. In this case both are 8x10. I then did a loose sketch on the watercolor paper and penciled in (lightly) grid lines to keep my drawing close. The painting you see on right is the first layer. The sky is a graduated wash of ultramarine blue fading down to the horizon. The water with reflected sky is the same blue with a little burnt sienna to darken and tone down the blue. I applied the wash very wet and runny and moved the paper around quite a bit to smooth out the transitions. Were the fog has a defined edge in the sky and horizon I lightly blotted with facial tissue. Tomorrow I will work on the mountains and reflections. I will take a photo of my progress for my next post.
You will note a new feature this site. On the left hand side there is now a subscribe by email widget. When you enter your email address here it will deliver email version of new posts to you mailbox. I like this feature and have subscribed to several blogs this way. Let me know what you think and if you find this feature useful.
Saturday, March 01, 2008
I'll go first to start the ripple in the pool. Feel free to jump in!
- Who is your favorite Artist and Why?
- What is your favorite medium to work in?
- What brand of paint do you prefer (photographers what type of camera)?
- What motivates you more criticism or compliments?
- Who's artwork do you admire, but wouldn't want yours to be like?
Who is your favorite Artist and Why? - Edward Hopper is my favorite painter. I am drawn to his work. I especially love the paintings he did on Cape Cod. The light is amazing.
What is your favorite medium to work in? - This is a tough one. I have been a nature photographer since high school, but I think watercolor is my favorite. It challenges me (and frustrates me more) and forces me to think and examine. Photography is like breathing for me. I am unaware of my process entirely it just happens.
What brand of paint do you prefer (photographers what type of camera)? - I currently like the American Journey watercolors from Cheap Joe's art supply best. A great value, but more important great clean hues that are luminous.
Camera choice is a toss up. I love my Canon Digital SLR for color work, but prefer a manual medium format for black and white work (I will post my reasons for this in another blog one day)
What motivates you more criticism or compliments? - By nature I need self affirmation from compliments, but when you want to fire me up to solve an artistic problem a little criticism does the trick.
Who's artwork do you admire, but wouldn't want yours to be like? - Vincent Van Gogh. I love the bright colors and impressionistic feel, but I find my finished pieces are much more constrained for good or bad.
That's it for me.
I tag - Wenderina / Josie / Aimee Greeblemonkey / Cheap Joe / and you my blog readers
I was recently thinking of some of the amazing landscapes of Ansel Adams and wondered what would he think of today's digital photography? Looking at this beautiful shot of the Snake River and the Tetons I pondered What would Ansel Adams do?
A few years ago I read several books by and about Adams. While we all have an image of the master perched atop a wooden platform he built on top of his car with a tripod and an 8x10 field camera. The man was a real student of the science of optics and film. Much of what we know about expansion and contraction of tonal ranges (thru exposure and development time adjustments) comes from his development of the Zone System. He was constantly testing new equipment for the different manufactures. I think had he lived long enough to the the full bloom of digital photography that was in its infancy at the time of his death he would have embraced the new medium with gusto.
As of two years ago I got my first Digital SLR and have not looked back (until now that is). First of all the control over the final print now rests fully in the hands of the photographer and with tools like Photoshop the full potential of the captured image can be printed in ways that traditional C-Prints just could not do by the very nature of how the image is projected onto the paper. The other huge advantage is having a workfow that with a good (and not very expensive) photo printer a photographer can produce beautiful archival prints at home the same day (or even hour) they are shot. Whether you are a weekender just taking family photos in the yard or a working pro today's technology has enabled you to get better pictures.
Having said all that.... the truth is I miss film. Not for all occasions, actually ninety percent of the time Digital is the way to go for my portraits and nature photography. I do miss my older medium format (120 film) cameras. they were rugged and reliable ( and cluncky and mechanical too). there was a satisfying whoosh and click as you exposed the image and the mirror swung out of the way so the shutter could open. These devices are engineering marvels! On the downside. If you shoot film you have to carry more types of film with you and you have to wait for the lab. You also have to rely on someone else to produce your prints for you.
Here is my answer to the digital quandary I am in. For almost all of my work I can't beat the combination of my Canon Digital SLR /Photoshop / Epson 13x19 Archival Inkjet. However for black and white landscape photography I will use my trusty 6x4.5 medium format film camera. I found a lab that will develop the film, scan it and provide enlarged contact sheets and cds in a couple of days. Granted this throws an analog step into some of my work, but I am willing to try it for the joy of shooting with a manual film camera once in a while.
One other thing the explosion of digital photography has done for the folks who always wanted a medium format camera, but could not justify the cost. Ebay is flooded with great film cameras for very little money. I find once you know how to shoot on film the transition to digital is easy. How about you? Anybody else have a film vs digital dilemma??
I will try this little experiment for a few months and let you know how it goes.
One thing I am sure of. I will always be a photographer (and a painter). On that note I am off to the studio to paint for a while.
Happy shooting (or painting)