Sunday, May 1, 2011

"The Basket Weaver" A Studio Painting Demonstration

Step 1.

This is the beginning.....the placement of the focal point.

Hopefully I made the right choice early on. We`ll see how it goes.

Step 2.

Here I am just framing her head with something that I can judge sizes and values more correctly. If I can get a reasonable start, it will lessen my later adjustments.

Step 3.
The background is starting to work. I am not unhappy at this point.
I do not want to get caught up in over rendering of things. My hope is to suggest
and indicate objects, and hopefully have them look like what they are because of the accuracy of shapes.

Step 4.

I`m working my way to the foreground. This is pretty much a direct type of painting, so there is no preliminary drawing. This is not necessarily the best way, or the only way that I approach a painting, but it is fun to test your observation skills as they relate to shapes and value. There are always, it seems, some adjustments that must be made.

Step 5.

Things are progressing along without any major disappointments. Hope I have not spoken to quickly. I just have to indicate a suggestion of many baskets. This painting is about the light and how it effects the way the subject looks on a very sunny day.

Step 6.

This painting "The Basket Weaver" 20x20 oil on stretched linen is very near finish. I only need to finish a couple of baskets.

Step 7.

This painting is for all intents and purposes finished. I will make a few adjustments....nothing major at this point, then sign it and put her in frame. I think I will let it sit for a few days. Then take another look. I will post the finished painting later.


  1. Thanks for the steps. Your painting are beautiful.

  2. Great to see the steps. This is a very nice painting and I love the subject. I trust your eye better than mine, but I find the scroll thing to the left of her face kind of distracting and I'm not sure what it is. Just my opinion.

    Great work!

  3. Hey Randy, thanks for the comment. I always debate with myself as to how little I can do or put in and still tell the story. I generally try to avoid over rendering. The thing you mentioned (I believe ) is a piece of black rod iron....not sure why it was there, but I felt it was a nice different texture and added to the variety. Sometimes I feel like it is not as important what it is, as is it interesting,and does it look appropriate. I felt that the imagery to the left also helped idenify the location and give a sense of place. Good comment, but I think I will leave it in for now. Thanks.

  4. I particularly liked seeing how you worked the edges in this one. Your baskets are so wonderfully simple. I wish I could have seen it live.

    Have you ever done a post about materials? I remember some of your paint and medium choices, but I was curious what kind of easel you are using.

    Love to see your work.

  5. Hi Caitlin,
    My paints and medium are still all pretty much the same. I experiment a little here and there, but what I don`t change are the basic principals.

    I have had this request before to post paints and mediums, and maybe I will do that. It could be helpful to someone who might have questions about basic materials. Artists who have been doing this for some time forget that newcomers to painting find these details extremely important. There is a degree of comfort that one gets from knowing that they are a least in the ball park, as far as materials go. I think I will post a materials post. Thanks for the comments and suggestions. Hope all is going well for you since Ringling?

  6. Thanks for the materials post, I love knowing the details. I liked the pictures of your studio as well, for some reason I always find those fascinating.

    I am doing well and considering grad school since I am still looking for something more in my work. I would like to look into some new opportunities as well. Are you still enjoying teaching? I would love to stop by if I am ever fortunate enough to make it back to Florida. Hope all is well.