So, I had my first of (hopefully) twelve Machines of Loving Grace inspired shoots yesterday, and after the initial chaos with set-up and the MUA being late, we got things sorted had some fun shooting. Or, I did at least.
While I think I’ve made my selection (three hours to get a single photo), I’m still doing my post-processing on it and a few other selections, so I don’t have anything but teasers to show yet. But, soon enough.
More to come…
Well well well, that’s four paintings up in the past four weeks, if I’m not mistaken. It’s almost like I’m ceasing to be a hopeless failure and more like a Good Productive Artist. Rock on!
Sure, it was a commission, and it’s got a private audience of two, but I was so delighted with the bizarre comedy of Brain SAMMICH! that I felt it would be a shame not to shoot it for record’s sake. So, while only Ms. Stephanie Hammer and her guests will be viewing exactly how awesome this painting is in the flesh, you all can rub your peepers over its pixels here on the site.
The other painting is one of the fastest I’ve done in many years, because I wanted to retain that energetic sketchiness the underpainting started. It’s also my first self-portrait in like, two years, and the only true one I’ve done in paint (though this painting arguably counts).
And, because I really think self-portraits are among the more egotistical things I can think of, I couldn’t help taking a satirical jab at them in it. Mind you, it creeps me the heck out (not to mention my coworkers and girlfriend. My friend Liz is disturbingly amused by it…) At any rate, however disturbing it is, it’s very brilliantly colored and explores a lot of new line work I’ve been getting into lately, so it may be just watershed or it might be kicking off some new stylistic explorations. We’ll have to see.
Oh, and while not technically a new painting now, the previous shot of Lipstick 66 has persistently felt a bit flat to me, so while I had the lights out I went ahead and reshot it to more accurately show it’s glory. Find that here.
Naught But An Odd Tree
So, I finally got off my duff and got my two newest paintings shot and up on the site. Lipstick 66 (which came a long ways from its failed original incarnation) and Naught But An Odd Tree join the ranks of my other paintings, and finally bring my online portfolio kicking and screaming to the land of “up-to-date.”
The problem is, unlike my artist friend Nathan Monk (who it seems I have something of an art-crush on, judging by how often he comes up around here), who works in things like aerosol and watercolor, I work in oil.
And I don’t just work in oil, I relish oil. And, anyone who’s worked with oil can probably guess where this is going.
Yup, my paintings are shiny. Not shiny as in “shiny, cap’n,” though the geek in me does love the Firefly reference. No, instead, they’re shiny as in “mwahaha photographing us both honestly and without buckets of glossy blown highlights is going to be a bitch.”
So, it didn’t help matters that Lipstick 66 is probably the glossiest painting I’ve ever done (boy, it shines). Or that Naught But An Odd Tree is done on two spatially separated sheets of plexiglass, one of which is a giant magnifying glass that loves distorting and obliterating whole parts of the painting when light hits it at all. But, I finally buckled down and did it anyway.
With the help of a 2 light kit with umbrellas, I managed to split the difference between perfectly flat, shiny-less lighting (which removes the character from these pieces), and the desire to have the painting itself clearly discernible. It’s not a compromise I like having to make, but physics…
I grabbed a shot of the astoundingly ghetto light set-up I managed to shove into the only space my apartment has that’s big enough to shoot my paintings: my bedroom. And also one shot of how the magnifying plexi hates light. Catch them after the jump.
Golden Thread, 9-17-09
It’s starting to get somewhere I like. Boy how much it changed the past two weeks…
Man, glad I picked up some Gamsol. Whatever ghetto belnd of linseed oil and copal I used to glaze this sucker left a very strange finish. Not bad, but I don’t think a whole painting in it would work. Also, new brushes rawk.
This, as anyone who’s hung out at my apartment for the past year would know, if the painting that’s been skulking around, making me like it enough to waffle but not enough to commit to it’s completion. It’s gone back into active work three times now, and I’m just not getting it to click.
It has elements I like, for sure. The creepy faceless lip dude, the paint-handling, the colors, but… man, it just refuses to click. I don’t know if it’s more the composition, the excessively chunky (even for my preference) surface that keeps foiling my attempts at nuance, or the lack of suitable subtext.
What it is not, however, it the fault of the dog-lizard. Kudos, me, for finding a dog-lizard.
Finally making use of this blog as I intended, check it out, sketches. The first one to show here is the first concept sketch for a different direction to the same ends, and below that is the revision from later this evening:
That second one has what looks like the best direction. It’s still got the raw sexuallity and the golden thread, and the lips, yes the lips. I’m running low on several paints, so instead of postponing this until I rebuild my usual dizzying rainbow of colors, I have opted to try my hand once again at a limited palette, this time using only the paints seen here:
More to come…