Monday, June 30, 2008
I started a big new 'homage'/master copy, another Titian: Woman with a Mirror, 48 by 36. I got to thinking what some more 'academic' artists might think of these recent paintings of mine. I imagine they might think I'm disrespecting the masters with these freewheeling copies, not paying due respect. But in my opinion, it's the tight, fussy 'academic' types with their endless rendering who are actually disrespecting the masters that they purport to revere! In my heart of hearts Titian is nodding his approval and giving Vincent some high-fives.
Matisse gave a very controversial quote in the 1940's where in an interview he likend his paintings to a rape. "Whose rape? A rape of myself, of a certain tenderness or weakening in face of a sympathetic object." He's not talking about actual rape, but of overthrowing his timidness, abandoning the need to always be 'right' and in control and "pretty" and compliment the beauty of the model or landscape or still life. It's shocking wording, but there's a lot of truth to them. The painter needs to know how to be brutal in their search for expression and truth.
I'm definately going to work more on this piece, but I like the rawness of it's present state...
Friday, June 27, 2008
I jumped back onto the Boucher mastercopy today and really like whats come of it (see previous post HERE). Again I went ruthlessly at the canvas, not trying to fuss what I'd done before but rather repaint and refine what I'd started, constructing only with color and shape. This painting is more subtle than, say, a Rembrandt; it has more flat expanses of color which gradate quickly and smoothly to shadows and dark which lends a more "real" feeling as we perceive "real" from photography, but it can sometimes be a bit tricky to get right! I think Boucher is every bit as great a painter as Ingres. In fact I prefer Boucher for his bravura and painterliness!
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Yesterday I went with Grace to paint landscape in Venice Beach, I did a little 14 by 18 of the scene. It was so nice to get out of the heat on the east side and actually be TOO cold at the ocean. Also Venice makes me like LA a little more.
Now I know that Titian was a Venitian painter, but these two paintings have nothing to do with one another except for a clever title. Here's a copy of Titian's "Woman in a Fur Coat". It's not the masterpiece that Titian's is, but it was a good experience to paint. At first I liked it, then I turned it right side up and kept working on it. Then it got too fussy and I was really frustrated that I'd overworked it, so I threw it face down into the dirt outside at my studio here and kicked it around for a bit. I put it back on my easel, scraped off the rocks and dirt and leaves, and then worked a little more on it. Now I like it again! oil on canvas, 36 by 24
Sunday, June 22, 2008
I spent a week (five full days) with my family at the North Fork Ranch in Shawnee, Colorado. Like last year, it's a dude ranch with fishing and horseback riding, shooting and lots of delicious food. Colorado really lives up to their motto of "colorful"... especially compared to Los Angeles which looks positively grey by comparison. While there I found time to paint a landscape almost every day. Here's what I came away with... they are all 14 by 10 inches and alkyd on panel (I used alkyd because it's like oil paint only it dries over night so I could pack them in my suitcase and not worry about wet paint!)
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
...that means "Venus Rising from the Sea" and this is my re-take on the Titian original. This is the biggest one yet at 40 by 30 and I'm 98% happy with the piece alla prima. There's a few spots I might retouch, but only here and there. Overall it's got a good energy to it, and it was an interesting exploration of color and shape. The book reproduction I worked from was a little warmer than the link on the internet, but I think that's probably more how the piece looks in person. I started this one upside down and without my glasses...
Monday, June 9, 2008
Excited about doing some expressive master copies, I chose "L'Odalisque" by Boucher for another re-do. I always start with the best of intentions and that I'm going to execute the piece in one shot with ease and facility. But that doesn't always happen! AHAHAHA! This painting by Boucher has a much more subtle coloring and tonality than the Rembrandt, so while I felt I had a good start, I knew I wasn't entirely happy with it.
So I did what the old masters and academics called "scrape down" the painting. With a few different shaped palette knives, and always scraping "up", I swiftly and carefully scraped most of the paint from the surface. This leaves some of the energy of the first sitting, as well as all of the color, but at the same times leaves no surface texture or buildup. It was upon this that, when dry, the masters would then re-establish and refine their drawing, and then continue to paint with vigor, but also with greater finish and attention to detail... All the colors are generally in the right place, they're just a mess!
So here's my scraped down Boucher.
for the past couple days I've tried to be inspired to paint some urban landscape in Van Nuys, but I've struck out. I love the tacky, faded architecture and signage at some of the corner strip malls on Victory Blvd and Van Nuys Blvd; it's all so beautifully forgettable and "american" (with a small "a"). Well, maybe in the future. So yesterday I decided to do a master copy, my interpretation of a Rembrandt. I had fun with this one, and now I want to do some more interpretations of my other favorites. It's cool because now I get to have the feeling and color of that painting in my home, but it's better than a poster and cheaper than the original! AHAHAHAH!
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
despite the decision by the federal government to end requiring television stations to provide free public broadcasting because of the advent of the internet and it's ability to provide public opinion and content (BTW always support legislation that ensures FREEDOM and NEUTRALITY on the internet!) JOHN KILDUFF AND LET'S PAINT TV WILL NEVER DIE!!! AHAHAHAAHAHA!!! Yeah!
Also I forgot about these... before the video shoot there was a still camera shoot with the model/actress, and I did a few gesture drawings of her in various poses she took. I liked how they turned out and they get a better feeling for how the actress actually looked, a sexy, butchy, asian woman named Max Mikita.