Saturday, October 29, 2011

Warty Pumpkin

 setup for painting "Warty Pumpkin" 10/27/11

"Warty Pumpkin" -- oil on canvas 12x12" -- Margie Guyot

After about a week of gloomy, rainy, chilly days, the sun came out.  It was such a dazzlingly, glorious day!  Big, puffy clouds flying over.  I wanted to take my easel to the beach and do a bunch of cloud studies.  But then the phone rang.  Good news and bad news.  A friend met a friend who knows a rich art buyer who spends moolah dollars on car paintings.  My friend knows I have scads of them sitting, collecting dust in my studio.  The bad news: I had to re-photograph them ALL and resize into both 72 and 300  dpi.  It took about 3 1/2 hours.  Definitely NOT my favorite thing to do, especially when the sky was so spectacular-looking!
But I did it.  Sent all the 72 dpi images to my friend so she can make a presentation to the potential buyer.  Alas --- by then it was 3:30.  Clouds had all gone.  Clear blue sky.  And I was kind of exhausted from having to use so much left-brain energy.  What to do, what to do?

Instead of wasting time driving around, I decided to paint a picture of one of the odd-looking pumpkins I've collected this fall.  Setting it on a plain, white background would have been the easiest, but I really loved the colors of the green grass and fallen leaves.  So I plopped the little, warty pumpkin down on my front lawn, set up the Soltek and Best Brella and got out a lawn chair.  May as well get comfortable!  

Normally I stand while painting, but I knew if I sat, I'd be closer to the pumpkin and I liked the angle, the view that I saw while sitting.  OK, OK -- I also was kind of tired, so the lawn chair was the way to go.

I haven't done a whole lot of "in the grass" closeup paintings.  I wasn't entirely sure I could pull it off.  And it was kind of late in the afternoon when I got started, so I was under-the-gun, time-wise, as well.  So yes, I used my trusty #6 flat bristle brush to do the whole painting.  I love this particular brand because it holds a nice, crisp edge.  I can paint finer lines with it (if I want) than if I use a smaller brush.  Generally speaking, that is.  Signatures always require a small Kolinsky sable.

Besides the late-day pressure, the temperature became an issue as well.  Around 4, 4:15 there was a noticeable temperature drop.  It's usually around this time of day when the wind direction changes and it gets a good 10 degrees cooler.  Feeling the chill, I thought feets, don't fail me now!  Painted as fast as I could.

This was so much fun, I really want to paint more!  If only the weather holds out....!

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