“Three Passions: Horses, Flowers, Travel” Preview of New Works

“Three Passions: Horses, Flowers, Travel” opens tomorrow at the Blue Pig Gallery in Palisade, Colorado, running through September 30, 2016

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“Cosmos”  framed watercolor          27″ x 13″  $350                                 copyright C Isgreen 2016

 

“Three Passions” features new works inspired by my love of horses, flowers, and travel.  All the horse and flower paintings are executed in watercolors, and explore the effects of light on living forms.  While the horse paintings are narrative in nature, the flower compositions are pure design.  They focus on movement, space, color, pattern, rhythm, and line.  My travel pieces are framed 5″ x 7″ prints from my sketch journals.  They represent a wide range of work including pencil, pen & ink, watercolor, watercolor & ink; Mexico, Texas, Colorado, Utah.

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I have one more piece on my easel, a narrative equine painting which will be titled, “Ebony & Ivory.”  This is the study for “Ebony & Ivory.”  (Note difference in style between equine & floral compositions.)

 

 

“Cosmos” will be one of the featured works for my upcoming show at the Blue Pig Gallery running Sept 1-30, 2016.  For more information about this show, visit the following link:

https://cheriisgreenfineart.wordpress.com/2016/08/19/solo-show-slated-for-september-2016-at-the-blue-pig-gallery-palisade-co/

The Blue Pig is open Tuesday – Saturday, 10 am – 5:30 pm and Sunday – 10 am – 5:00 pm

101 W. 3rd Street, Palisade, CO 81526

The Blue Pig can be reached by calling (970) 464-4819.

 

Sneak Peak at New Artwork for New Gallery at Backstreet

Scott is working hard remodeling the bagel shop, including a new gallery space!  Please excuse the mess during the construction phase.  The artwork has been de-installed until the new gallery is completed.  In September artwork will be rehung, with an opening party to celebrate new work in the new space slated for later this fall.  Please stay tuned for more details……………

 

“First Pal” finished painting from Demo

“First Pal” is a portrait of my daughter’s first pony, a section B, 12 hand Welsh Pony, which I bought as a weanling for her fifth birthday.  Capriceaux and Marissa grew up together.   You can read more about them at Marissa and Capriceaux or just watch the video Pony Pals video

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Taken on Marissa’s 5th birthday

It took me awhile to finish this painting; sometimes how to resolve/finish a painting can be elusive.  When that happens, I’ve found the best strategy is to stop painting and simply think about different approaches.  Returning from the sketching trip to Texas reignited my creative flow.  I played up the negative grass shapes, adding some counterchange and juxtaposing negative grasses from the pour with positive grasses, painted with the brush.  I added atmosphere in the background with wet-into-wet painting, and finished with textural splatters.  To review the painting process for this painting, visit Demo part 1 and Demo part 2.

First Pal
“First Pal,” watercolor, 15″ X 11″  $350; copyright Cheri Isgreen, 2016

Poured Watercolor, part 2

In this post, I will show you how I take a poured watercolor composition from conception to finish.  In yesterday’s post, I noted the steps I feel are important in developing a successful poured painting.  Today, I will illustrate these points.

Critical concerns to Ensure a Successful Painting

  • The artist needs to make studies before painting.   For each mask layer to be successful, a careful drawing must be executed with accurate shapes and   values .  Additionally, the artist needs to consider all the elements, (line, color, texture, form,  and space, as well as shape and value), to insure a balanced composition.  Though pouring is primarily a studio technique and not suitable for pleine aire painting, poured watercolor develops technical skills, habits of mind, and the awareness of compositional elements that are critical in the field when an artist must work quickly to capture the light.
  • When initiating compositional studies, develop your ideas into connected shapes with three or more values.
  • Edges matter- draw and mask shapes very carefully, so the painting will read when the mask is removed.  Buy the best brushes you can afford for masking, (you will need a variety), and take good care of them, so the mask doesn’t destroy them.  Mask brushes and water containers must be dedicated for masking only.
  • Exploit lost & found edges, negative space, and counter-change when developing compositional studies.
  • Avoid details until the end, when the mask is off.
  • When the mask is off, find areas where the edges must be softened.

Make Studies:

The photograph below shows my daughter’s pony, about 17 years ago.  It is well suited for a poured demo, as it has large shapes and strong light.

Develop strong connected shapes in three values:

I made an initial drawing in three values.  You can see how the shapes connect- the white area of grass flows into the pony’s nose, and the dark area of grass flows into the pony’s legs.  This gives the painting nice use of negative space, and the lost and found edges compel viewer involvement.  In the actual composition, the white leg flows better into the white grassy area.  Without making the value study, I would not have noticed this.  At this stage there are few details, yet the painting clearly reads as a pony in his pasture.

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Consider each element of art:  (line, color, texture, form, space, shape, value)

I begin designing with shape, value, and space, then I consider the other four.  The light on the pony’s back and the lighter belly areas will define a well-rounded, solid form.  I will enhance this element after the mask is off, as I soften edges that define form.

Color, line, and texture come from my painted studies.IMG_1907

Raw sienna, cobalt blue, and manganese blue all produce granulation, which will add texture to both the pony and the foreground.  This color study tells me what to expect as the colors mix during the pour.

In making a small color study, I learned that my initial primary color triad- raw sienna (for yellow), burnt sienna (for red), and cobalt blue, needed a little punch to the earth pigments.  I added rose madder, because it is earthier than permanent rose, and manganese blue for its lovely green mixing qualities and granulation.  I use a limited palette of 4 blues, 3 reds, and 3 yellows for my paintings.   For poured paintings, I limit my palette to just 3-6 pigments.

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In the painted study, I connected the white leg into the white grassy shape, as noted above.  In painting the grass, I used a variety of long, short, and broken lines to convey both texture and to lead the eye into the pony, as subject.  Then I added juicy drops of color into the tail to blow tail lines that echo grass lines and blend into pasture.

Edges matter:

Shapes are carefully masked.  I use my value map, (first photo), to make order out of the chaos of masking and pouring.  Once the first mask is applied, it becomes difficult to see how the painting is progressing, so the initial studies are critical to organizing the pouring process.

 

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Preparing for the first pour.  Each pigment cup is labeled and dedicated for only that pigment, which I rinse & save after each pour.   Large syringes work well for mixing, and small syringes are handy when pouring into small spots.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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mask and first pour- raw sienna, burnt sienna, cobalt blue. Note very light underpainting of soft trees and clouds before the first mask was applied.

 

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After the final pour, removing the mask.
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After the mask was removed, beautiful passages of granulation and texture were revealed

 Avoid details and soften edges when the mask is removed:

Check back soon for how to resolve the painting once the mask has been removed.

Poured Watercolor Demo

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“Riding for Rain” poured watercolor, sold/private collection; copyright Cheri Isgreen

Why Pour?

Painting wet-into-wet is so much quicker and uses far less paint.  Why would I bother to mask and pour?

  • Because the amount of paint applied to the surface of the paper is so saturated, (even when making early light value layers), spontaneous color mixtures combine in unique ways that can’t be achieved any other way.
  • Layers can be built undisturbed by any brushwork, resulting in luminous, clean colors with neutral mixtures occurring without muddy passages.
  • Though it appears that masking would restrict the element of spontaneity, pouring allows the artist to exploit the unexpected by controlling how the pour will run.  This is particularly effective in areas with large passages of color where there is potential for  a great variety of subtle variation in color, value, and texture.
  • Pouring allows the artist to emphasize shapes and negative space, as well as to imply meaning through the use of lost and found edges.
%22Out of the Shadows%22
“Out of the Shadows” poured watercolor, sold/private collection; copyright Cheri Isgreen

 Critical concerns to Ensure a Successful Painting

  • The artist needs to make studies before painting.   For each mask layer to be successful, a careful drawing must be executed with accurate shapes and values .  Additionally, the artist needs to consider all the elements, (line, color, texture, form,  and space, as well as shape and value), to insure a balanced composition.  Though pouring is primarily a studio technique and not suitable for pleine aire painting, poured watercolor develops technical skills, habits of mind, and the awareness of compositional elements that are critical in the field when an artist must work quickly to capture the light.
  • When developing compositional studies, develop your ideas into connected shapes with three or more values.
  • Edges matter- draw and mask shapes very carefully, so the painting will read when the mask is removed.  Buy the best brushes you can afford for masking, (you will need a variety), and take good care of them, so the mask doesn’t destroy them.  Mask brushes and water containers must be dedicated for masking only.
  • Exploit lost & found edges, negative space, and counter-change when developing compositional studies.
  • Avoid details until the end, when the mask is off.
  • When the mask is off, find areas where the edges must be softened.
%22pause in the day's occupation%22 *G
“Pause in the Day’s Occupation” 21″x28″ sold/private collection; sold/private collection

To schedule a workshop for your organization or find out where the next workshop will be held, comment below.

Tomorrow: steps for completing the demo painting begun at the Brush and Palette Club demo

 

Watercolor Demo at the Western Colorado Center for the Arts

An interested audience of close to 40 artists attended a watercolor demo by Cheri Isgreen at the Western Colorado Center for the Arts Thursday afternoon. The demo focused on the technique of poured watercolor, which exploits watercolor’s natural tendency to produce unexpected, yet rich luminous color mixtures.

An interested audience of close to 40 artists attended a watercolor demo by Cheri Isgreen at the Western Colorado Center for the Arts Thursday afternoon. The demo focused on the technique of poured watercolor, which exploits watercolor’s natural tendency to produce unexpected, yet rich luminous color mixtures. Cheri explained that this technique emphasizes lost and found edges, negative space, counterchange, and a strong value design. With its many layers of mask and washes, poured watercolor is primarily a studio technique. A good underdrawing, balanced composition, and carefully applied media ensure successful paintings. Though not suitable for pleine aire painting, poured watercolor develops technical skills and the awareness of compositional elements that are critical in the field when an artist must work quickly to capture the light. The demo, sponsored by the Brush and Palette Club drew one of the largest audiences the club has experienced for a demo. Elise Lind, president of the club remarked the club gained 5 new members after this demo. The club is working with Cheri to provide a Poured Watercolor Workshop in the coming year. If you are interested in attending, comment below.

To learn more about the technique and see how this demo painting is developing, follow the blog- https://cheriisgreenfineart.wordpress.com         The series will begin tomorrow, taking the demo painting from initial studies to finished painting.

A large audience of artists await the beginning of the demo by Cheri Isgreen:cheri5