Monday, October 4, 2010

Class 2— October 7— Turn Up the Contrast

Contrast is one of the elements that creates movement and gives pizzazz to a painting. Find a photo that has a good range of values from dark to light. In this class we’ll ask how we can create effective contrast that draws and moves the eye. 
Have you ever noticed that the winning paintings at most shows are high contrast pieces? They have an excellent range of strong light and dark values. Does every winning painting have sock-it-to-you high contrast? Well, maybe not, but it has enough of a range of values that it's effective and interesting. Value is a basic property of color, of course, and is in essence the motor that drives where your viewer's eye moves. You have to control that movement to make your composition compelling, whatever the subject matter might be. 

At this week's class I'll do a demonstration that develops the grayscale underdrawing to create a composition with excellent contrast that moves your eye into the area of interest. We'll discuss the motivating factors and talk a bit about how value and color are linked. 

Find a photo that interests you, with a stimulating value contrast in the area of greatest interest. Bring both a color and grayscale copy of it to class to use for your painting. It can be any subject matter, and any size. 

Look for something like these, which I reduced to grayscale, as well:

(c) photo: Don Ketchek,  'Bobby'
(c) photo: Don Ketchek,  'Bobby'

Please bring your paintings from our 3-D class last week so we can discuss that class together. I'll be interested to know how you liked it. 

See you on Thursday!