Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Reduction Exercise

This exercise was one that I heard about from another artist and thought that it sounded like it would be very informative.  Here is the way that it works.  The top painting is an 8"x10" oil on stretched canvas where I used well over 300 strokes of color to create the image.  The middle painting is the same size but I used about 150 strokes of color to create the image.  The bottom painting is once again the same size and I used about 100 strokes of color.  I worked progressively faster and more deliberately.  My favorite is the bottom painting.  It is in the direction that I wish to go.  Leaner and more spontaneously.  I tend to work loose...but this is much looser. The middle painting is stiff and it looks too deliberate.   There are problems with the bottom painting because I wanted a darker palette of colors and did not achieve that. ( I will refer back to Peggi Kroll Roberts and her suggestion to divide the palette in half with darks on one side and lights on the other just to keep things straight in your head.)  The main thing that I learned from fewer strokes is that the painting reads better and doesn't get too mushy.  There is no going back over strokes of color because they are so scarce and each must count.    Also, the gesture is so very important. I won't always paint quite like this but will work progressively to make the marks amount to something in terms of shape as well.
I have yet to find a palette of colors that really turn me on but I will keep trying.  The Zorn palette comes the closest but it lacks some of the color range that I like.
Do you have a favorite palette that you would like to share?  I would love to hear from you.  I have miles to go before I feel that I am actually getting somewhere but the journey begin one step at a time.

1 comment:

Susan said...

Great to see your work. Love how expressive each one is.

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