Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Those Are My Blue Paper Towels

"Pomegranates," oil, 10"h x 8"w, ©Jill Banks 2012
Today was the second to last Still Life class of the term, and with many students gone missing, I had a chance to paint between visits to other easels. Trina had brought in a big wooden basket full of pomegranates for sharing (as in eating) ... and as potential painting subjects. They are set up on top of the blue Shop Towels that are indispensable painting companions of mine.

While painting this, we were discussing last week's workshop with Lea Colie Wight from Studio Incamminati. One of my takeaways from the week is a renewed appreciation of some of the colors that had worked their way off of my palette. (Studio Incamminati's full supply list is missing some of my standard colors ... but adds about 50% more to the line-up.) Actually, it was pretty funny to have gone from painting with seven tubes of oils the weekend before in Tucson/Tubac, Arizona ... and then controlling an eye-popping array just a few days later.

Three color additions have caught my attention: Dioxazine Purple, Pthalo Turquoise and Indian Yellow. All three were booted off before for "bad" behavior, but now all of a sudden, I'm finding them incredibly useful. They are highly staining, saturated, crazy colors that can be added to other "saner" oils to darken (or brighten) them while still retaining a punch. Look at the bottom of the front pomegranate. I'm not sure of the exact mixture ... and I paint right on top of the oils underneath ... but that's probably Permanent Rose and Dioxazine. It's tough to get a deep red without muddying it. Voila! A perfect solution, too, for many mouths (on portraits, the line where the upper and lower lips meet is a dark, bright, saturated red).

And those blue paper towels. The Pthalo Turquoise mixed with white and Cobalt or French Ultramarine helped engineer my Shop Towels (the surface of the still life) in the light.  In our color discussion, Carol added that Indian Yellow and French Ultramarine make a great green. She was right and I added that into the shadow on the towels as a top layer.

The workshop was a reminder to play with your paints. Push for new discoveries. Experiment with color.

Please excuse my recent absence from posting. I've either been too tired (during the workshop), on a different time zone (Arizona trip) or painting into the night (finishing portrait commissions). I can't wait to walk in my still-to-be-tidied-up (it's a MESS) studio and go a little nuts. There's so much I want to paint!

Web: www.jillbanks.com
Blog: jillbanks.blogspot.com
100 Faces in 100 Days Project
Phone: 703.403.7435

Events and Exhibits
"Large Squares, Small Squares," Gallery at the Artists' Atelier, November 14-December 31. Opening Reception: Friday, November 16, 6:30-8:30pm. Open Hours: Wednesdays and Saturdays, noon to 4pm, 1144 Walker Road, Suite G, Great Falls, VA 22066

October 2 through November 30, Greenberry's Coffee & Tea, 6839 Redmond Drive, McLean, VA. Solo show of seven oil paintings celebrating coffee, friends and family and food. 
American Women Artists 15th Annual National Juried Exhibition, November 2-25, K Newby Gallery and Sculpture Garden, Tubac, Arizona. "Honey Bunny" is one of 60 artworks chosen from around the country. 

Allied Artists of America 99th Annual Exhibition, November 9-18, National Arts Club, 15 Gramercy Park, NYC

More events are listed on my web site: www.JillBanks.com

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