Friday, March 08, 2013

"Space Race" Seattle city oil painting by Robin Weiss

"Space Race" 24x48 oil on canvas by Robin Weiss    Sold
While I'm on the topic of doing value studies for larger studio paintings I want to post the progression of images and ideas that lead to this larger work entitled "Space Race"

 I started out with this obscure photo taken while driving to my sons apartment in Bell Town. I've talked in other posts about taking pictures while driving...I do not recommend you do this! I have a lot of practice and can take these pictures without looking at my camera or being distracted from driving....seriously!

I liked the break up of the big shapes in the photo so I worked out some simple compositions placing the Space Needle in different positions and using different formats. This is a crucial stage....I am learning!... As you can see they don't have to be great works of art....just simple thumbnail sketches working out big shape placement.

Space Race value study 6x10 B/W oil on panel  sold

The next step was fun!  After I picked the shape placement that looked the best to my eye, I put some black, white and portland grey medium, paint on the palette and did a fast value painting in oil . As you can see here,  this established some of the drama and atmosphere of the painting.

The next step I didn't plan but it helped with the final painting. My wife and I attended the Nicolai Fechin exhibit at the Fry Art Museum in Seattle.I was struck by the rich impasto application of the paint. When I came home to work on this painting I scraped all the paint off my palette into piles of greys, loosely mixed. I then added a lot more paint than usual for me to lay in thick layers with the dryed clumps of paint mixed in. This enhanced the feel of the sort of "gritty city" piece I was hoping to achieve.   Hope this helps you in making some of your compositional decisions!  Happy painting!


Linda Hugues said...

It's a beautiful painting, Robin. Thanks for all the background on your process. It was cool to see how you rearranged the photo and the values to make it work!

Unknown said...

I thought I was bad about taking photo's while driving. Apparently I'm not the only one lol. Love it though it's always interesting to see the outcome, most times it comes out horrible but there's been quite a few that surprise me. Nice painting Robin. Is that a Dodge Charger :)


Darrell Anderson said...

Big painting! I'd like to see this one in person...the cars have real movement, rushing toward that ethereal needle in the sky. Enjoyed your comments about the paint application and planning...another reason to see it. Do people realize what quality work they can get for such inexpensive prices?

Sherry Schmidt said...

Beautiful piece! I love the way you indicated the Needle.

Chad said...

Lovely composition and edges Robin.

Robin Weiss said...

Linda , thanks!, as most artists I'm working hard at breaking free from copying and moving more into creative expression.

Thanks for the comment Randall! I'm pretty sure it is a Dodge Charger! One of the reasons I decided to go for this image was the shape of that car....careful out there!!...=..]and shoot from the hip whenever you can.

Thanks Darrell! come on over any time!....think I'll save this one for the Edmonds show!..

Thank you Sherry!!....Thank you Chad!!...=]

Mark Nesmith said...

Beautiful work! Love the vantage point with roadway framing the needle in the distance. It's great to see your thought process and stages of work!