Saturday, July 31, 2010
Odds and ends
First, I'd like to say I love your blog. Thank you for taking the time to teach young painters a thing or two about how to be a pro. All of the questions I've been struggling with you have answered for the most part on your blog. Thank you so much!!!
I have a 2 part question to ask you. I was reading your post about making a morgue of paintings from magazines and books and it sounds like a great idea. However, I can't seem to bring myself to cut the images out. I have issues of American Art review from 1998 until now and I love going through and reading the articles. What are your thoughts about this?
And I guess this is a more important question: Do you photograph your paintings after you varnish them or before? Do you photograph them yourself? Do you recommend any photographers?
Best, (name redacted)
I cut the magazines up because I would never be able to find the paintings I want to see if I left them all in the magazines. I order them by periods and geography. Also if they are open in my studio when I am working, putting them in plastic sleeves protects them from flying paint. Here is the link about building a picture morgue.
About photography. I used to have many of my paintings professionally shot, particularly if they were going to be reproduced. That was in the day when I used 8 by 10 transparencies. They were expensive, and like color slides one of a kind, unlike a photo from a negative that could be printed out in quantity.
Today digital photgraphy has made things much easier. I shoot my own photos. I usually do that outside, but not in direct sunlight. The best thing about digital is I can open them in photoshop and "tune" them. I have the small version of photoshop, photoshop express. It is enough for my needs.
I try to shoot the paintings before I varnish them. It is hard to shoot a freshly varnished picture without getting glare, or hotspots. I am not an expert photographer and I have a very inexpensive camera. I shoot everything on the blog with it though. I have also shot my own paintings for advertisements in national magazines.
In the comments I was asked;
Question: what did you mean by "you cannot observe good design into a painting?"
I am confused by the term "into". I read it first as "in a painting", but that didn't sound right either.
What I meant was that design is a human construction and can not be copied from nature. You use decision making to add it to your painting. Design is a decision making and not a transcription process. No matter how carefully you copy that which is before you, you won't end up with a designed painting. Design is a construct, a geometric armature upon which you build your painting.