Friday, November 27, 2009

Color Field Portrait?

I had an interesting discussion with a local artist on Glenn Brown's work, particularly his use of flat color background. She thought that supports the subject of the painting (see the first figure. I thought his more successful ones using this approach is when the "background" occupies less area on the canvas. To prove to myself that this is the case, I painted the portrait of Madam X shown here in the second figure. I intend to make the "background" competes successfully with the figure itself. Yellow is usually a difficult color to deal with - its intensity depends very much on the neighboring colors. I chose it as "background" on purpose, and see whether I can make it very intense. You may need to click on the figure to enlarge it in order to see the intensity of the yellow.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Rusty's and Snacktime

When I finished "Rusty's Jazz Bar" today, I cannot believe that I worked on it on and off for 7 years!! The original figure was done in 2002 when this native American posed lying down to fit my horizontal canvas. It was a barren naked figure to be a good painting. But, I liked the pose to discard it as a failed painting. I left it in the garage not knowing what to do with it. Then, last year, I looked at it and got some images from internet and started to compose a more complex picture. I worked on it, but did not like the color and some compositional element. Last week, I was working on the "snack time". I thought these two are similar in genre. So, I took it out and continue working on it. Well here are the results of "best effort".

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Old family album

Found these pictures in my file. Aside from the last one, I took them when we got the family's first camera in 1957. Most of them are very small 1.5inch. Printing was very expensive then. The price grew exponentially with size.
I was cool, trying to make "art pictures". You can see the staging of a pretentious angle of myself reading. I like the pictures of my mother. They show her making soy sauce in our yard, and arranging flowers. I like very much the school master's awkwardness in the last picture of my mother's elementary school graduation. It will be fun to make a painting out of this. I need to rearrange the pattern of the shirts girls were wearing to make a good composition. I may change the body language of some school girls to expand the feeling of awkwardness. Hmm... Will be a challenging task. My mother is at the left corner of the last row.