Friday, 1 August 2008

Sfumato Peonies

I was reading this book about painting 'sfumato' and thought: "Hey, I must try that!"

Oils on plywood board, 61x40cm: "Sfumato Peonies"; Anything Italian interests me (wine, food, fashion and car design, politics, history [especially Rome], love, lifestyle, coffee, women) and this method of painting by brushing over the painted image with a dry brush to create this kind of "smokey" atmosphere seemed like a good idea at the time. Personally I feel that the original bold image I had painted was lost. Still it was an interesting exercise to do. I will probably re-work this painting to re-establish the stronger dynamics I prefer.


Andrea Kobayashi 小林アンドレア said...

Oh it's looking gorgeous. I'd be tempted (rightly or wrongly) to add a few more lowlights here and there, but that's just me. love the colours.

daviddrawsandpaints said...

It's not just you, Andrea. As I said in the blog I feel that this type of painting for me lacks the bold dynamic I am looking for - I NEED a bit of high definition. I like to experiment with different techniques.
Gorgeous is good. I like that!

Edgar said...

Hard to see the dry brushing in detail... but it seems like if you have two near-perfect complements and you start blending them, you're going to get some muddiness. Wouldn't you just go back in with saturated color, high- and low-light glazes to put the punch back? Or does it take something away to rework?

I love your experimentation. I'm so limited on time and opportunity, I can experiment vicariously by looking in on your blog. Thank you for the art 'fix.'

Lor Lor said...

I'm with you on the Italian thing, especially fashion.
But the whole sfumato thing is about softness.
But I know what you mean, I like to have a few sharp or clean edges in drawings.

daviddrawsandpaints said...

Well, that's brilliant that you say so Edgar.
I suppose that's the whole point of 'sfumato': that you don't really see the detail - it all becomes a blur!
You are right - if I go back in with highs and lows then it becomes a different painting. Still, that's probably what I'll do. Nothing to me is sacrosanct!
I'm glad you both feel free to comment. I was reading a blog by "The Sixty Minute Artist" which was (to my mind) decrying the kind of blether that I go on with in favour of something "important" to say, when it struck me that sharing our immediate thoughts on artmaking is surely as important as saying something more profound. In this way we learn from each other.

ps: I really should take larger sized photo's so that you can see the detail better (because it's incredibly beautiful!):o)

daviddrawsandpaints said...

Nearly missed you there Lorraine. I am impressed when I see what other people do with gentle, close harmonic painting, but it's not really suited to my personality. I am far too loud (as you may have noticed!). Still it's worth exploring - even just to confirm where our allegiances lie!

Melinda said...

I've been thinking again about your monotypes. I think you have a really strong, natural compostional skill. I see that in your paintings too. If you're still interested in experimenting in printmaking, here is a link you might find fascinating: worldprintmakers
This guy is doing incredible work with solarplates and vitreography:
Dan Welden

my croft said...

Hi David, thanks for stopping by the croft the other day. I was away arting and am just catching up with everyone.

I love the vibrancy of the peonies. How goes your monoprint adventures?

daviddrawsandpaints said...

As you say, Melinda, the link to Dan the Man's printmaking sites is indeed fascinating. Thank you very much for these. The problem, in a way, is that when you click on a link it opens up a number of others and I haven't been able to get through them all! What does interest me, however, is his printmaking workshop in Firenze. I will look into that and see if I can afford it!
Thanks for your comments on my compositional capabilities. It's a pity I am seldom able to convert them into decent paintings. Perhaps one day!

And my croft: The monoprinting has taken a bit of a back seat for the moment while I deal with other more pressing domestic matters. But I will return to it soon. The ideas are still tumbling around my mind like washing in a tumble-drier!
I will need more pegs to hang them up?