Saturday, January 31, 2009

Value scale

Above you see my value scale. It is 14 inches high, and made from a scrap of left over painting panel (Masonite). Its a sort of "yardstick" I can hold up against my paintings or often against a picture of a painting in a book in order to analyze the value structure of a painting reproduced there. I ruled out the little squares, and using ivory black and white, I painted the top square just a little less than black. That represents the darkest dark I am likely ever to run into in nature or a painting. I painted the bottom square white with just a little black added, as I am unlikely to deal with anything pure white either. I used plenty of Liquin in my paint so it dried quickly. When it was dry I numbered the squares one to ten with a big felt tip marker. Then I used the four inch wide cellophane tape on my packaging dispenser to put a protective film over the whole show. You will notice to the right I also enclosed a couple of paintings by whose key I would like to be influenced, there are two Metcalfs, one high key and the other a little lower and an Edward Seago. The Seago (Yeah, I know you don't know who he is, but I will do a post on him later, I have to get all this technical stuff out of the way first) displayed a full range of values from light to dark. This is a very handy thing to have around, I even take it into the field in my backpack some times


Mary Bullock said...

HI Stape:
Great stuff - I got to make one of those! Do you ever use a sheet of red acetate placed over a picture to determine values?

Stapleton Kearns said...

No Mary,I have not. I have heard that recommended. Long ago I had a black mirror I used to do about the same thing. I think we made them by painting the backside of a piece of glass with black paint.I expect both would accomplish the same thing.

Stapleton Kearns said...

I am starting to get Europeans reading this blog. I have no idea how they find it.