I admit I have yet to do the graphite rubbed paper version of this exercise, I’m sure it will look good when its done, mostly because its the perfect way to do clouds.
I’ve had a week of flat grey skies, this hasn’t really helped with this exercise. However, I have achieved these sketchbook works
Clouds in the evening are far from chiaroscuro, the colours are intense, amazing life afirming things, leaving them out every time is nearly heart-breaking.
Now I admit this is as far from Vija Celmins as you can get, it is not a precise copy of a black and white photo, the colours are contrasting against the background colour of the paper, picked partially for this effect and partially just to see what would happen. I normally end up forgetting what colour the paper is I rub so much pastel in, but I wanted a looser, more expressive effect.
I get that Vija (this is also the name of my mother, my grandad is Latvian which is the origins of the name and I’ve never had to write it down in connection to anyone else) is using her art to create neural pathways to remember objects and scenes by, but a part of me is always going to view hyper realism as an OCD point too far when we have cameras that can achieve it also. Getting sucked into recreating accurately like Zaria Forman makes for awe-inspiring pictures, with an instant Wow factor, but I have to ask what the point of referencing this style in a research point is when most of the exercises are about pushing us to create looser expressive marks that stand as the recognisable style of the artist, I feel I have more to learn looking at Turners amazing later colourscapes and as much as the potential mistakes I am sure I will make getting to grips with oils (something I haven’t tried to do since I was about 10) I am looking forward to the future course that will justify my trying to replicate these marks.
I can do accurate pastels
Although given my favourite rubbing tool for skies and clouds is my finger, I tend to work better larger, the two above are A1ish. I’m also happy with the effects I can get with watercolours,
the above piece I think has more importance in the framing dark rock then the bluest blues in the centre than any more detail in the water.
Sometimes the picture is all about the clouds and sometimes its not. How would I do this differently next time? I’m not sure I would, the clouds would be different, but the pictures defined as just draw some clouds would have the same blank meaning if the point in time the clouds are drawn doesn’t have some bearing or the bit under the clouds has not been drawn to have some relevence.