Linda Halcomb's Blog

Just another WordPress.com weblog

January 16, 2017 January 17, 2018

Filed under: Abstract,Daily Post,Watercolors — lindahalcombfineart @ 9:43 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

Brrrr! It is freezing outside…good day to paint…Once again I have been inspired by my blogging friend Barry Combs. Barry did a workshop and taught his students a very practical approach to create abstract paintings. I decided to use the first exercise done during his class which is described here . It is to create an abstract using one color (he used Sepia). Step one is to create a drawing on your paper. Barry used overlapping fruit. I am using AGAIN circles and lines. (PS can you tell I have a degree in math from Purdue University? Love the geometric shapes and am always looking for ways to integrate them in my art!)

 

Sepia Abstract Exercise 1 jan2018

 

 

During the next step you paint most of the shapes with a mid-value mix leaving some white for contrast. Because, again, I had some “felting” of the paper I went over the shapes more than once but I think this is still a mid-value.

 

Sepia Abstract Practice 2 Jan2018

 

During Step 3 I applied a darker value of sepia. Just a tidbit: One reason I did this exercise is because Sepia and Payne’s Gray have always been two of my favorite colors, especially when used together to create rough wooden structures.

 

Sepia Abstract Practice 3 Jan2018

 

Finally you add a fourth layer of very dark color. Barry has taught a very simple, straight forward approach that works well for me right now as I reenter the world of watercolor. I enjoyed creating this little work of art and plan to try the second process described in Barry’s post today or tomorrow…so on to color and scaling up!

 

Sepia Abstract Practice 4 Jan 2018

 

 

 

 

January 14, 2018 January 15, 2018

Filed under: Abstract,Daily Post,Watercolors — lindahalcombfineart @ 10:39 am
Tags: , , , , ,

Happy New Year to Everyone! I have been slogging along trying to find time to draw and paint but haven’t been very successful. The weather has been frigid and we’ve had high winds and snow. With the new year I have had lots to do and am struggling to maintain my exercise routine with the nasty weather. Very stressful. I have been sketching with a set of Micron pens with sepia ink but I keep getting distracted and haven’t finished anything. I tried a simple watercolor exercise last weekend and let it get away from me. I just created a lovely painting of mud…quite discouraging!

This weekend I was brave enough to get out my watercolors again. I have a new set of paints that I wanted to try. I did some color testing earlier and found the colors to be nice, even vibrant. I would say my exercise was partially successful. At least I got paint on a brush and finished something!

 

Circles and Lines exercise 01142018

 

You may see more of these “circle and line” exercises since this is an activity I learned from and artist named Judi Betts at a workshop a few years ago and I love it. You work with versions of the three primary colors and I do this activity occasionally because it lets me warm-up before more serious painting, test new materials and learn about new colors and color mixing. I did learn two things.

I used a 6 in X 9 in block of Canson Aquarelle paper. Last weekend I used it and I glazed pure unmixed colors. Some sections had 10 or more glazes. Both last weekend when I glazed my colors and this weekend when I mixed my colors I saw some “felting” or “pilling” of the paper. I think I work too wet to use this paper for my larger works.

I also used a new set of paints. I ordered them by accident but the reds were vibrant during color testing so I want to continue to work with them. They are called MYARTSCAPE artist quality watercolors. The reds are carmine and vermillion which I don’t normally use. What I found, I do like the colors but if I had a blob of paint remaining on my palette it did not reconstitute well after it dried. I kept finding small particles of dried paint in my brush while painting. The paint looked like it was smooth and well dissolved but wasn’t. I had several hard lines streaking through my painting that I had to try to smooth out.

So with both the paper and paint I would say I had mixed results but I guess that’s why I do this kind of experiment. At least my little painting uses warm colors…good to see on this very frigid day.

 

November 18, 2017 November 18, 2017

Filed under: Abstract,Acrylics,Daily Post,Uncategorized — lindahalcombfineart @ 4:42 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Earlier this week I posted an acrylic painting that I mentioned might not be complete…well it wasn’t. I have looked and painted and looked and painted. The additions are very small and minor but I think they make a better painting. I am to the point that I think one more change might push it over the edge. I’ve told myself ENOUGH! Here is my revised painting.

 

 

Abstract 2017 - L2 revised

 

 

 

 

 

November14, 2017 November 16, 2017

Filed under: Abstract,Acrylics,Collage,Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:50 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

I had another day of “creating” with my grandson. We worked on three different projects and enjoyed trying our hand at something new. We started by making reverse prints. We used styrofoam plates as our printing plate and bamboo skewers as our drawing stylus. Ian got two interesting drawings and I worked on a simple poinsettia. I struggled because I did not leave a deep enough impression on the plate. When we printed our images we had some problems because my ink is old and pretty thick. BUT Ian had several successful impressions of his two images

 

Print 2017 - I2Print 2017 - I1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and I finally got one.

 

Print 2017 - L1

 

 

Then we worked on new abstract paintings. I think Ian was rushing a little. He chose many colors this time and said he loves color and having many choices gave him more options. Again I worked really wet like I do with my watercolors so my painting took a lot longer to complete. I am not sure it is actually done yet!

 

Abstract 2017 - I2Abstract 2017 - L2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, we did two more collages. This was fun for me but Ian became frustrated because I wanted to natter on about “composition”. He said he likes to learn by failing! Oh My! Doesn’t this sound like a grandmother and grandson??? Ian’s is on the left and mine on the right. We had a very good day all in all and I thought he created some very interesting, fun art. Hope you enjoy!

 

Collage 2017 - I1Collage 2017 - L2

 

 

November 10, 2017 November 10, 2017

Filed under: Abstract,Acrylics,Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:21 am
Tags: , , ,

When looking for canvas earlier this week, I found a canvas I painted this summer. I thought I would do more with it but then I couldn’t bring myself to change it. I had a very clear inspiration for this painting.

One Sunday morning in the middle of July I took my regular walk at Ft. Benjamin Harrison State Park. The sunshine was brilliant, the temperature was mild and the breeze was gentle. The dappled shadows danced on the path as I walked and the forest seemed to flicker and vibrate with energy as the leaves were touched by the breeze. As I drove home I was filled with a feeling of content, peace and happiness. The words that kept arising from my unconscious were “shimmering greens and gold”. The words wouldn’t go away. They just kept bubbling to the top. The minute I walked through my door I went to my studio to paint. When I finished this small abstract, I was happy but I thought I might try adding a hint of tree trunks and limbs to make it more realistic. I thought I would post both versions on my blog. But for some reason I never was able to add to this painting. They say that the hardest decision a painter makes is knowing when to stop painting. When will one more stroke be too much? I agree!

 

Abstract Summer 2017

 

 

November 8, 2017 November 8, 2017

Filed under: Abstract,Acrylics,Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 4:08 pm
Tags: , , ,

I am trying to post every day but am having trouble getting my images from my iPhone to my laptop so I use them in a post. I am working on it and am learning all about digital communications from my granddaughter. She thinks my WIFI is the problem…? Anyway my problem, not yours.

Yesterday I spent the day with one of my grandsons. Ian is in his early 20’s and we sat together and painted small abstract paintings. I googled abstract art before we started so he could see examples. We how the styles differ so he would have a starting point. Ian has Asberger’s syndrome which is on the autism spectrum. He loves writing and drawing but is sometimes overwhelmed when he has too many choices so I told him we would both use white and black and would each choose two other colors of acrylic paint. Ian chose red and blue and I chose red and yellow. He’s patriotic and I’m wishing for sunny days after all this rain!

Here is Ian’s abstract painting. I think it is GREAT for his first attempt. He is interested in super heroes…could you tell?

 

Abstract I1

 

Here is my painting. I’ve done very little painting with acrylic paints so I am experimenting with techniques. I laid down paint in various shapes and then “floated” color letting it dry thoroughly. This is a very wet technique I use with my watercolor abstracts to achieve layers and add depth. I finished by dropping on paint and working it with a kleenex. Not sure about the results…I love Ian’s painting…a lot more fun than mine!

 

Abstract 2017- L1

 

March 30, 2017 April 1, 2017

I always have fun painting my abstracts using watercolor. I use a very wet, spontaneous process and drop paint, spritz paint, tilt my paper and generally just “go with the flow” literally. My new painting is titled Celebration 1. With Easter approaching I have been thinking about all that holiday entails, including Mardi Gras. And that is one of the most exciting celebrations in the world! Full of color, movement and life. That was my inspiration and I hope that you are able to see that I have attempted to simulate confetti falling through my painting.

Celebration 1 03302017

Celebration 1 – 12″ X 16″, 140 # CP Arches, watercolor

 

I am very careful to let my layers dry completely between painting sessions. When I do this you can often see the layers and feel depth. This painting has seven layers of paint. It is painted on Arches cold press 140 pound paper and for this painting I used primarily Dr Martin’s Liquid Watercolors. They come in a dropper bottle and retain their vibrant color as they dry. I gave it a splash or two of white gouache and then grated some watercolor crayon to create the confetti and spritzed with water to adhere the crayon. Now its done…lets celebrate!

 

March 27, 2017 March 28, 2017

As I walk at Ft Benjamin Harrison State Park I see the first signs of spring. The grays and browns are now accented by a froth of light green rolling over the landscape. The bushes are leafing out and lighting up the undergrowth with a gentle color and a clean fragrance. The skies are bluer and the breezes invigorate. As you may remember I tried a small color field painting using the winter colors I saw on my walks (here). I painted with my new acrylics and didn’t like the look of the canvas underneath. That painting was very small and I learned a lot about acrylics as I worked on it. I decided to create a new Ft Ben color field painting using burnt sienna to represent the leaf covered earth, a mix of light greens to represent the budding bushes, winter white to represent the sky and burnt umber to represent the trees. I started out by thinking about three blocks of color and a blue background. Then I decided to split the large upper block into three with white spaces between to represent the large, white sycamore trees that grow throughout the park. That was my starting point as  I worked on this painting.

The most important decision I made was to choose Strathmore Aquarius II paper as my surface. I soaked the paper until it was wet all the way through and then painted with my acrylics on very wet paper. I wanted blurry edges (the acrylics did run a little) and a soft look to the surface. My painting is 11 inches by 15 inches and, as you can see I further developed the idea of trees as I saw the painting develop.  I’m finding ways to love the Indiana winter!

 

Ft Ben Color Field 2 03262017

 

March 24, 2017 March 24, 2017

After I completed my post yesterday I realized that I had never posted the completion of my third “Zone” painting. I completed Green Zone earlier in the week and it was sitting on my mantle undergoing continual scrutiny. This painting went through only one round of revision while the Red and Blue paintings went through many more as I continued to learn. This painting was completed entirely with a palette knife and I like the effect created by the broad swipes. This painting completes the series of “Zone” paintings inspired by the three abstracts in Penny’s apartment on the TV show Big Bang Theory (see more here). I like the spontaneous approach and have now started a new watercolor abstract that uses what I have always called my splash-splash technique (because I paint REALLY wet).  This process is also spontaneous and responds continually to the way the watercolor is behaving…not always predictable!

 

Green Zone 03202017

 

 

 

May 22, 2017 March 23, 2017

I have mentioned before that I put my paintings through a lengthy “living with it” period. I have my three acrylic abstracts propped up in my family room so I can scrutinize them. I thought you might want to see them together.

 

Green, Blue and Red Zone Paintings 03202017

 

This final evaluation is very tricky. It is easy to ruin a painting at this stage. I don’t think that I will risk further changes. Your thoughts?

The painting behind my abstract is an original watercolor done by an Indiana artist named Jimmy Faulkner. My husband fell in love with it at a fundraiser. Paintings were awarded by lottery and – happy surprise! – my husband’s name was drawn. The painting could not have found a happier home. You can learn more about Jimmy Faulkner here. Be sure you check out the online gallery.