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I believe that art enriches and informs our lives everyday in many positive ways. Sharing those experiences, whether as an artist or as an appreciator, is part of the pleasure. I welcome your comments and hope you find something of value: a laugh, an insight, a new idea or just a happy moment. Enjoy art!

Friday, December 4, 2015

Holy Communion Lutheran Church - Foscoe, NC

A friend passes this little stone church everyday and asked me if I would paint it.  Here's how I approached the challenge:

I began with acrylics since I love to get color on fast and furious with no fear of perfection.  Next I analyze the composition and formulate ideas for further refinement.  This stage ends up looking either like "paint by number" or a child's cartoon.

Now I mix up my oils and adjust the subject matter, in this case the portal to the church and the stone.  I'm not worried about the background at this point other than for color harmony.

These photos were taken over several days so the lighting differs slightly altering your the color.  But notice that I already thought it might be finished so I popped it in a frame. I also took a photo for a closer look.  What I don't like about this piece is the busy foreground left.  The choppy colors are pretty by themselves but I think they distract from the church.  I also see that the dark areas of the landline on the right are waaaay too dark.  Both of these observations are things to be careful of when painting from a may be correct as far as the camera recorded it but it just doesn't make sense when trying to transition into art.

11 x 14, oil, 

"Cool lights = warm shadows."  This old rule came to me as I was trying to find some balance. So I warmed up the tree shadows/leaves on the foreground left.  Now there is less distraction from the focus of the church door.  Note the improved perspective of middle ground right.  Seems further away now, right?

Thus it sits for a bit as I contemplate "doneness."  I have no idea (yet) if this meets my friend's vision....and I'm thinking I want to try this same composition in a looser, vaguer approach. I can already see that the bright light to the church left needs toning down.  And...

Now you know why it takes two artists to finish a painting: one to apply the color and the other to yell "stop!"


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