Tuesday, November 28, 2006

just splashing it on

new commission / day 2
Originally uploaded by nepalblue.

I just finished up day two of the underpainting. Sixteen more until deadline. It's going pretty well, however the humidity levels here make the underpainting process a little bit more difficult (more paint pullage). No big deal though. I've just got to kick over the hurdles and keep going*. I'm going to try and get as much of the other guy's face done as possible tomorrow. I'll let you know how it goes. Late.

*No more flip-flops... I'm painting barefoot now (it's painless kicking over hurdles as long as they remain metaphorical)!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

one last look...

check out that beard!
Originally uploaded by nepalblue.

at the New Mexican horizon, and now I'm back within the seemingly impenetrable grey, horizonless confines of cook county. Wait, wait, wait. I make it seem far too bleak - it's not. It's always good to be back home (even though the humidity talks my hair into curls).

The good news is that I have some work to do. Last monday, my mom and grandma were walking around in a local Albuquerque art gallery (Weems) that they've been going to for years, and ended up talking to the owner about me and what I had been up to in Santa Fe. She insisted that I see her at once and that I bring my work along. So, I went.. and it paid off. She got a commission for me with the Eye Associates of New Mexico on the spot.

Unfortunately, I am going to be working from a photograph, which lacks the color, form and intensity of reality. But, it is work nonetheless, and may be a future host to other opportunities and possibilities (from which I can work by a preferred method). I have until December 16th to get it completed and..

you: "#*&@% $! Did you just say you have only until December 16th to finish a painting!!!!!"
me: "Uhh.. yeah."
you: "You?! How big is this painting supposed to be?"
me: "18 by 24 inches."
you: "You are nuts."
you: "N"
you: "U"
you: "T"
you: "S"
you: "NUTS!"

.. and shipped back to Albuquerque. It is definitely going to be a challenge, but now is the time to get a foot in the door.. and I am up for it.

So, now that I am home and have gotten some decent oil primed linen stretched onto some not-so-decent stretcher bars, it's time to get to work. Late

Sunday, November 19, 2006

schools out.. bummer

this is it, originally uploaded by nepalblue.

I'll bet that you haven't heard that one before!

Well, Friday was the last day. When the morning started, it was just Pauline and I painting from our group. Every one else was already on their way home. My goal was to just frame the face, since I knew I wouldn't be able to condition all of her hair. I was basically finished by the long break, and decided to celebrate by treating myself to some iced chai. By lunch, the party had begun and I had moved on to wine. After lunch, it was only Eva (the model) and me, trying to communicate (she doesn't speak much English.. and I was under the influence of Bacchus).

I met a lot of wonderful people and some who are sure to be good friends for a long time, not to mention that it was such an honor to be able to study with Tony. They all had such nice and encouraging things to say to me, so I definitely made my way back to Albuquerque with a big smile on my face... ...until I was in the middle of three and a half hours worth of traffic!!! At least the traffic gods waited until my very last commute before dropping a jam on me. I had been very lucky in that respect.

My folks flew in for Thanksgiving; it is definitely nice to see them again (although, it only feels like a week since I last saw them - time just flew by). Well, that's all I've got for now (I need to figure out what I'm going to do with myself for these next few days, since my routine will be all out of whack). Late.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

hair today, gone (after) tomorrow

then there was one, originally uploaded by nepalblue.

This is it. I'm sitting outside of the drawing studio (the flip-flops made way for the shoes for this one), doing my best to type with numb fingers. Tonight is the last night of drawing (as long as I'm not frostbitten - remind me to take my chairs home with me).

I feel good. Had a decent day painting, and hopefully that carries over into drawing. I was a little discouraged with my effort last week (even though it started off well), so I need to step up to the plate this time (I ever tell you how much I love baseball?).

Back to Eva. I did a little paint-stic surgery on her nose today (needed to be rounded a bit more in the dark light), finished up the neck, and started in on the hair. It's coming along; definitely makes a difference. I'll be sure to post up this weekend so you can see how she ends up. Now, I'm going to see if I can get inside to thaw out my hands. Late.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

filling out the form

wednesday, originally uploaded by nepalblue.

Which reminds me.. I need to fill out the evalutation form for tomorrow.

Welp, Eva is almost complete (we're not counting everything below her neck). I have two more days to go. I am basically done with her face. I just have to do some touch ups and then finish up the neck. After that, I'll probably brush her hair (with paint of course) until it's time to sign it. I am extremely happy with the way she's looking (I feel that this method is (picture) perfect for me - I will definitely be able to evolve with it).

As for the flip-flops.. GEEZ! It's starting to get cold out there. I can do it though. Two more days of painting in flip-flops (luckily, indoors), and one more day of drawing at Tony's studio. I need to see if I can get a group picture of the class before it's all said and done. Unfortunately, Cathy and Patty already left, so we'll be missing a few cruicial artists.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

uno mas

a different perspective, originally uploaded by nepalblue.

I can't believe that there is only one more week left of class. It has been such a great experience so far. I have learned so much, have made quite a few good friends, and have made it into mid November still wearing my flip-flops (making the most of it, because there will be no flip-floppery when I get back home)!

Eva is coming along nicely. I was able to get pretty far with the underpainting, although I would have liked to work on her beautiful necklace. The facial details turned out to be the breaks for my speed painting, which is okay, because those needed to be attempted with precision. I fell a bit short though.. well, her nose fell a bit short. I realized as I was finishing up yesterday that, although it appears to be her nose, it is slightly lacking in vertical length. I'm pretty sure it is something that I'll be able to adjust in the form painting, but unfortunately, the nose job has to wait until Monday.

So yeah. We'll see how far I can take Eva. My goal is to finish all of her face with the form painting (which definitely seems doable)... and to make it one more week wearing my flip-flops. Late

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

zoom zoom

muy rĂ¡pido
Originally uploaded by nepalblue.

No, I'm not selling cars, but my painting of Eva is definitely rolling (so much for the turtle vs. the hare - previous post). I'm not sure what's going on. Something must have *clicked* when I went to bed early on Monday night. I have been full of energy and momentum since yesterday morning (This sleep stuff is magical - I should have tried it sooner). I've shifted into first gear and I'm driving my paint brush with a lead foot.. and it feels pretty good. I can't wait to get back there tomorrow and take it even further (I'm definitely going to make it to the form painting this time.. knock on wood).

Drawing last night was good as well. It was the first time, since week one, that my back hadn't bothered me or that my eyes hadn't been a little blurry. Not to mention that Macarena was a pleasure to draw (.. and I love her Spanish accent). I have three more hours with her tomorrow night, so we'll see if I can maintain this pace.

I added a new link to the list (Silver Fortress) which is basically a blog, similar to mine, maintained by a few of Tony's colleagues. Be sure to check it out. Late.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

happy trails

ben kenobe and luke
Originally uploaded by nepalblue.

I went on a great hike in the foothills with Tony today. It was somewhere in the Santa Fe area, but I can't recall the name (the trail began with an A. Well, the name of the trail did anyways. As you might imagine, the trail began with an incline).

I drove out to SF in the afternoon and met up with him at his drawing studio. Next thing I knew, we were on our way up. It was an absolutely beautiful day out; perfect for a hike. It was nice getting to know and converse with him outside of the classroom atmosphere. On top of being an amazing artist, he is a very cool guy. He had a lot of encouraging things to say about my work, which worked out well for this picture (I wouldn't have wanted everyone to see me crying on the blog). It was a lot of fun, and I definitely needed the exercise. Speaking of exercises, tomorrow starts a new pose, and therefore, a new poster study. I'll let you know how it goes. Happy Trails to you.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

2 down, 1 more to go

Originally uploaded by nepalblue.

.. and hopefully the model won't bail this time. So, I'm as done as I am going to be with Hillary. Aside from filling in the rest of the neck shadow, I should have left the rest of the underpainting alone. I kept trying to tweek the areas that needed adjusting (which, normally, would have been corrected in the actual painting layer - but I wasn't going to get to it, so I tried to fix those areas), and continued to pick up paint (see previous post), due to the wash not being dry. I spent pretty much 3/4ths of the day unsuccessfully trying not to erase what I had done. Having to overcompensate, I went a little darker than I would have liked in some areas. Fortunately, an easy fix in the form painting. I'm looking forward to a fresh start on Monday. I'll see you then. Late

Thursday, November 02, 2006

turtle vs. hare

more time
Originally uploaded by nepalblue.

Okay. One more day to go with this one. I'm not going to even make it to the form painting. That's okay though. It is more important for me to take my time and go about things the right way. I was quite a bit frustrated the other day; trying to rush. On the way home I realized that I'm not necessarily there to turn out finished paintings, but to learn the techniques. I have to be true to myself and my own style, so I decided to go back to taking my time (which can be meditative for me*). I've been much happier since slowing down, and it has paid off. I got a really positive critique from Tony (basically letting me know that I'm on the right track), which as got me even more excited/motivated about what I'm doing. So even though I'm no where close to finished with Hillary, I'm heading in the right direction, which is where I want to be. Late.

*Meditative as long as I'm not picking up paint. if you don't know about picking up paint: Epimetheus told Pandora never to open the jar she had received from Zeus. However, Pandora's curiosity got the better of her and she opened it, releasing all the misfortunes of mankind (plague, sorrow, poverty, crime, despair, greed, vice, old age, sickness, insanity, spite, passion, famine, deceit, PICKING UP PAINT, etc.). - Wikipedia