Monday, December 31, 2012

New Painting: Jarod in a Turtleneck

Jarod in a Turtleneck, 2011-12, oil on linen, 16 x 12 inches
This is it, the last painting of 2012, a good close to a great year! I began work on this portrait of Jarod in August 2011, and although the composition is simple, the execution needed to be just right. I spent a lot of time developing the flesh tones trying to get a variety of warms and cools, I think I found myself glazing a lot more than I ever have. Trying to get the likeness of Jarod's face was another reason for the many layers on his face. Perhaps the nose and lips challenged me most, but these are all just the beginning elements of a good portrait. The hardest thing to achieve for any painter is capturing the soul of the sitter, lucky for me I know Jarod very well, this made it easy for me to connect with the painting from the start.
What drew me to this pose was how the turtleneck, with it's volume, framed Jarod's face. It reminded me of 17th century Spanish court paintings of regal men of high stature, business men who had a cool and important presence. Jarod is one of those few regal men left in this day and age, always manages to look well put together, and believe it or not he came close to getting rid of this turtleneck. I stopped him of course, and now he wears it often during winter. Aren't you glad Jarod I stopped you from committing fashion suicide?

Friday, December 28, 2012

Window Air

Winter Morning, Connecticut, 2012, oil on linen, 9 x 12 inches 
Not quite plein air, not quite studio paintings, these babies were executed looking out of the windows of my parents' home in CT. Window Air, that's what I'm calling them, haven't you heard? It's the newest art movement sweeping the land, tell your friend, call your mom, scream it at loud, it's here, it's queer....alright I may have gotten a little carried away!
Early Afternoon, Winter, 2012, oil on linen, 12 x 9 inches
All jokes aside, I was not planning on doing any painting at my parents' during Christmas break, but sometimes impulse takes over and I have no other choice but to give in. Out came the brushes and the paint box and before I could brush my teeth, or shower even, I sat in front of the window of my old room and began working on the cloudy sky above. As the warm blooded latin man that I am I hate being exposed to the cold, after twenty two years of living in New England I still can't get used the winters here! Sometimes I wish I could hop in a plane headed for Miami and never come back. I've learned  how to deal with it though, and while painting these sketches I managed to stay nice and cozy. I just came to realize that the two windows I chose to paint out from had heat radiators right under them, go figure! I do try to push myself as much as I can, and this winter I'm hoping to do some actual winter plein air painting. Actually I have a trip to Colorado planned at the end of January where I will be painting the beautiful sites of wintery Durango. Wish me luck and pray I don't turn into a big icicle...more to come.