Summit No. 1
This painting was the outcome of working with several interesting challenges.
A respected figure in the community suggested doing a few paintings with simpler compositions. It was a suggestion worth taking, and this painting (as well as the next one) are the results. Limiting the amount of “action” in a this painting meant that the ALL of the elements present truly had to count. That’s the case with any painting, but more so here.
This is a “high key” painting, meaning that almost all of the tones are bright – only a few shadow areas on the folds of the cloth are actually dark. Furthermore, most of the colors in the piece fall somewhere in the range of greens. Both of those restrictions meant that achieving contrast throughout the painting was more difficult than normal. To get that sense of contrast, this painting relies on variations in temperature – the alternating warm and cool areas on the teacup – as well as differences in saturation – the folded cloth is a more intense green than the background.
Finally, multiple sources of light illuminated this setup. This area of the studio sits between a north-facing window and a west-facing one, and numerous overhead lights were also pointed into the area. Overall, this contributed to the high key (fewer shadows are present with light coming from many directions), and the light sources themselves had different temperatures.
The Technical Side
“Summit No. 1” was done entirely from life (without use of photography). It is painted with oil on linen, which is mounted to a hardboard panel. The dimensions are 14×11 inches (36×28 cm). It began with a straight-forward grisaille (black and white) underpainting. This was followed by a mixture of opaque paints and glazes on top of the underpainting.
If you’re interested in adding “Summit No. 1” to your collection, send a message using the “Connect with Me” section on the sidebar to the right. Please bookmark this blog and watch for posts about this coming week’s painting.