Today we’ll do something a little bit different. I want you to work in the range of 16x20” or larger. Bring an excellent photograph and your corners to crop the view. You’ll begin painting in a small area taped off on the page, which will contain the area of interest, then remove the tape and continue the rest of the painting, experimenting to see how the small scale start affects your overall painting. You’re invited to be creative and try various things with this painting.
The idea for this experiment, which I’ve never done as a class before, is to learn what increasing the scale from a smaller painting does. I suggest using an enlarged photo and physically cropping down to one small area using your corners, NOT necessarily in the center. Here’s what I mean:
Crop it like this, to the area of interest.
You might figure out the scale of the paper by doubling or tripling the size of the photograph, then taping off an area on the paper to paint the view below. For instance, it might be a 6x9” area, on a sheet of Wallis paper 18x24” in size (guessing at the size—not to scale. I’ll leave that to the more mathematically minded.)
Then after completing this small painting inside the taped off area on the large sheet, remove the tape and consider what you need to include (or not) from this view:
I often find that it helps me to have painted the area of greatest interest first, so that when I increase the scale of the painting I don’t necessarily get bogged down with it being so large. It may be a bit like painting the eyes in a portrait. The rest lives up to it. In other words, it’s easier to register the rest of it to the small piece this way. Be creative with this. I won’t have time to demonstrate a LARGE painting, but we’ll go over the idea and discuss it in detail at the class.
Please bring the hot/warm/cool exercises to look at and discuss, too!
See you Thursday.
* This is a Google Street View image from Prince Edward Island.