Seeing color and developing your artistic eyes

Well I was very wrong about Ohio color. It took me to traveling the United States on my American Workshop Tour to see the colors I have back home.

I tell my students this all the time, when we start to see, and develop our artistic eyes, it does not just happen. We continually improve our seeing over our lifetime. At least this has been my experience. What I saw a year ago was very nice, but every so many months my awareness to more accurate color is enhanced. I do spend a lot of time at the artistic gym, so these seeing muscles, if you may, are getting a good workout.

So in my recent field color studies of farm houses and country, here in the Ohio Valley the blue sky seems more grayed with a purplish cast. Horizon colors have subtle oranges and colors in the landscape seem to glow in all types of different directions within a restricted color pallet.

M. Graham Oil Paints, Ultramarine Violet with a touch of Payne’s Gray and Ultramarine Blue seemed to be the perfect color choices for my Ohio Valley blue sky. M. Graham colors seem so vibrant and pure.

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© 2012 Daryl Urig

Preliminary painting development takes some of the anxiety out of painting. “Woman with Basket”

For as long as I can remember I have heard how beneficial doing pencil sketches, small thumbnails or color studies can benefit my work. But thinking I know better, I skip ahead missing these important steps.

Now I go back to these most important steps in developing a painting and find out how beneficial they are to my final painting.

Woman with Basket, 12 x 16 inches, oil on canvas
Woman with Basket - Study, 6 x 4 inches, oil on canvas
Woman with Basket Study, 6 x 4 inches, oil on panel
Woman with Basket, 12 x 16 inches, oil on panel

It is a delicate balance between understanding aesthetics, composition and details. Every concern pulls you in a different direction. Balance is important in life and painting.

My inefficient process was that when I get involved with the idea of the finished painting I rush toward the details, many times forgetting some of the more important items like composition, design, and color flow.

All of these can easily be worked out in preliminary sketches and very small color studies. It actually takes some of the anxiety out of the painting process by not having to do all of this the first try, or having to balance all of these decisions in my head when I leave down each stroke of the paint.

I find I am more comfortable spending time on my painting knowing the direction provided by preliminary painting development. This work helps me to figure out things that I would have normally missed. Subtle adjustments done instinctively to forms in the rough would never had been seen when I get overwhelmed and caught up with detailing an intended direction of a finished painting.

One big thing I have learned, I am not sure why this has taken me so long, is that every painting I do is not worth keeping. Most are for learning, others mistakes, once in awhile I find one that I really like for some unexplained reason, but all lead up to a better understanding of my trade.

The painting shown here of the woman and basket was developed from a photograph, pencil sketches, color study shown here and final larger painting shown here.

© 2011 Daryl Urig

Old Door

Old Door, 12 x 16 inches, oil on canvas

This door so impressed me on the old farmhouse in Russelville Ohio. I was not sure I would be able to capture all of the rustic nature of the old wood and weathered paint that was self-destructing and lifting itself from the wood it was attached to.

The color changes of the door as light tried to move under the overhang of this old porch helped to provide illumination for the painting. I was careful to be aware of all of the subtle color changes and this is what I believed made the painting a total success. Even very subtle light colors move into different warm and cool colors. If you do not bring attention to these subtle color changes you painting will look anemic.

I enjoyed some of the rough drawing as it juxtaposed the rough pallet knife painting of the door. The colors seemed to force the visual 3d space.

Morning Glory

I was out shooting reference for this painting and I saw this beautiful hill and the sweeping grass, I knew it would be perfect for the model to walk up the hill for a photo. After several tries I believe I captured something I would like to paint. But when I got into the reference so much was lost from what originally inspired me about the image. It was up to me to bring back from memory my vision, image feelings and impression of that day.

Morning Glory, 17 x 11 inches, oil on canvas
Morning Glory, 17 x 11 inches, oil on canvas

As I painted colors began to emerge, the softness of the moving tree leaves with the color resonating as light touched the moving leaves. The softness of the fence post, so dangerously placed in the center of the painting added a balance of focus for the model and space they shared. The movement and sway of the models hips and associated dress as she took steep steps up the hill, working against the pattern and movement of the tall grass and the unusual colors they captured as I was looking into the light.

Grandpa Urig’s Farm in Avon Ohio held so many memories for me as a kid

Open Graze, 11 x 17 inches, oil on canvas
Open Graze, 11 x 17 inches, oil on canvas

Being at my Grandfathers farm was such an adventure when I was a child. My cousin Terry and I would explore everything we could find. Bursting out to take a long walk on those little legs of ours, covering as much of the fields as we could. It seemed like my Grandfathers land went on forever. I could not see it all yet walk it all.

Looking in the old barn, outhouse or chicken coop, we were the best type of explorers. Finding old creamer pales from a time long past. An old watch-a-ma-call-it that has a handle and grinder with all kinds of gears stay close to my fireplace in my present home as does the creamer pale I found in those days. It was a safe place and a good place.

Your mind could just imagine all of the good things happening their.

Daybreak

This was a scene I had to paint. In the barn, there was a bucket hanging from a twisted old nail, accentuated by various shadows and lights hitting the worn floor boards.

The light that hit the bucket provided a nice transition to the glaring light that came through the boards from outside. The high key tones in the light complimented the deep, obscure tones in the enclosed barn.

Old structures are sometimes hard to paint. I think I was able to complete this painting by focusing on textures of the wood and the dark patterns of the slats of barn siding and juxtaposing them against the bright outside light.

Daybreak, 12 x 16 inches, Oil on Canvas

© 2011 Daryl Urig, All Rights Reserved

Visit the Paintings of Daryl Urig Online Gallery Store: http://www.darylurig.com/store.html

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Website: http://DarylUrig.com
Blog:  http://DarylUrig.com/blog

Enlist Urig for your next Historic Event Painting: http://www.darylurig.com/historic-event-oil-painting.aspx

Purchase:
Price: Contact: Robyn@DarylUrig.com

View Exhibits and Awards: click here

Subscribe to Urig’s Blog: “The Adventure of an American Oil Painter” Blog by Email

More on Daryl Urig:

Interview & Bio: http://www.darylurig.com/about-daryl-urig.aspx

American Oil Painter Daryl Urig is a member of The Portrait Society of America, Oil Painters of America and Cincinnati Art Club. He has teaches at the University of Cincinnati for over 9 years and is president of Total Media Source Inc.

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Life on the farm (using studies to create great art) – Original Oil Painting Blog by American Oil Painter Daryl Urig


Dinner Bell, 8 x 10 inches, oil on gallery wrapped canvas

As I mentioned in my last post when I was painting, I realized the importance of doing small studies before tackling larger paintings. I could then work out the color flow of the composition with larger more suggestive areas of paint.

My first attempt was a 6 x 4 inch painting, which was just too small and I realized the composition was missing something. Then I began on this 8 x 10 inch canvas, which was more suitable size and then added a barn on left side of the canvas. This served to keep the eye of the viewer in the painting by focusing the eye between the two barns.

The color harmony and direction of the thick beveled paint unified and added dimension to the painting. The piece becomes more about color, than anything else to me. If I can capture the color of the light and the form light creates the painting becomes alive with my feelings and emotions.

One thing further I discovered doing this painting was how much I enjoyed painting old barns. My Father was raised on a farm. And though my experiences came when I was very young boy and brief at that, the impression of home on the farm holds a great charm to me and my life. I cannot really express it yet in words, but my feelings are strong.

© 2010 Daryl Urig, All Rights Reserved

Visit the Paintings of Daryl Urig Online Gallery Store: http://www.darylurig.com/store.html

To view more paintings:
Website: http://DarylUrig.com
Blog:  http://DarylUrig.com/blog

Enlist Urig for your next Historic Event Painting: http://www.darylurig.com/historic-event-oil-painting.aspx

Purchase:
Price: Contact: Robyn@DarylUrig.com

View Exhibits and Awards: click here

Subscribe to Urig’s Blog: “The Adventure of an American Oil Painter” Blog by Email

More on Daryl Urig:

Interview & Bio: http://www.darylurig.com/about-daryl-urig.aspx

American Oil Painter Daryl Urig is a member of The Portrait Society of America, Oil Painters of America and Cincinnati Art Club. He has teaches at the University of Cincinnati for over 9 years and is president of Total Media Source Inc.

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Gatekeeper – Original Oil Painting Blog by American Oil Painter Daryl Urig


Oil on Canvas – 10 x 20 inches

This depicts a scenic view in Indian Hill, Ohio. For me, the gatekeeper’s home is nostalgic of days of yore. It also compliments the beautiful Marge Schott mansion that lies far beyond the gate.

The long profile of the gatekeeper’s home was perfect for the long canvas I had brought with me. While quickly rendering the painting on the canvas, I tried to capture the stone against the trees and the silhouette of the sky on the structure. After readjusting my drawing, I layered in multi-colored strokes to capture the stones’ ever-changing colors, so I wouldn’t have to paint each stone individually. By accenting points like the tower, the roof cone, the door, the tall and narrow wall and the shale roof edge of the building, I provided form for the piece.

© 2010 Daryl Urig, All Rights Reserved

To view more paintings:
Recent work: http://www.darylurig.com/2010-paintings.aspx
Blog:  http://DarylUrig.com/blog
Website: http://DarylUrig.com

Enlist Urig for your next Historic Event Painting: http://www.darylurig.com/historic-event-oil-painting.aspx

More on Daryl Urig:
Interview & Bio: http://www.darylurig.com/about-daryl-urig.aspx

Purchase:
Price: Contact: Robyn@DarylUrig.com

American Oil Painter Daryl Urig is a member of The Portrait Society of America, Oil Painters of America and Cincinnati Art Club. He has taught at the University of Cincinnati for over 8 years and is president of Total Media Source Inc.

View his Exhibit and Awards by clicking here.

Subscribe to Daryl Urig’s “The Adventure of an American Oil Painter” Blog by Email

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The Old Water Tower – Original Oil Painting Blog by American Oil Painter Daryl Urig


The Old Water Tower
on 5355 Miami Road in the Village of Indian Hill, Ohio
Oil on Canvas, 11 x 14 inches


It was only when I started painting that I realized the large size of the old water tower in Indian Hill. In addition to that, the light at the time of my plein air session lit up both the top of the tower and the ground beneath it. Although this created a beautiful effect, it made capturing the image more difficult. I think I ultimately achieved the lighting effect and showed the grand nature of the tower in my piece, but not without some alterations of my original rendering.

While painting outside, I especially enjoyed completing the top section and cloud portions of the piece. But upon arriving at the studio with my initial rendering, I noticed that the bottom of the painting did not fit with the top section. After noticing this, I repainted the bottom portion based on both my memory of my plein air session and the photograph I took of the location.

Like most of my paintings, I learned a lot from this piece.

© 2010 Daryl Urig, All Rights Reserved

To view more paintings:
Recent work: http://www.darylurig.com/2010-paintings.aspx
Blog:  http://DarylUrig.com/blog
Website: http://DarylUrig.com

Enlist Urig for your next Historic Event Painting: http://www.darylurig.com/historic-event-oil-painting.aspx

More on Daryl Urig:
Interview & Bio: http://www.darylurig.com/about-daryl-urig.aspx

Purchase:
Store: http://www.darylurig.com/store.html
Price: Contact: Robyn@DarylUrig.com

American Oil Painter Daryl Urig is a member of The Portrait Society of America, Oil Painters of America and Cincinnati Art Club. He has taught at the University of Cincinnati for over 8 years and is president of Total Media Source Inc.

View his Exhibit and Awards by clicking here.

Subscribe to Daryl Urig’s “The Adventure of an American Oil Painter” Blog by Email

Add      to Technorati Favorites