I have almost wrapped up my still life paintings, only two more to go. Fall is shaping up here in Virginia and I am looking forward to getting outside and painting some landscapes.
Painting in the studio is not as challenging as painting outdoors; you have no lighting constraints on you and I have to keep myself from falling into bad habits of organization while painting. When I started these I was sticking to the same procedures I used for outdoor work. I was developing the whole painting from big to small blocking the whole thing in quickly.
As I have become comfortable with my new routine indoors though, I’ve noticed a little back sliding on my part and a slower pace to my work. As you can see with this painting I didn’t block everything in at the beginning but sort of bounced around. This will have to change as soon as I get back outside in a couple of days. Weather and the sun moving through the sky should set me back on track pretty fast.
Once I have my setup and theme for the painting I Draw it on my board with a big brush being careful to measure relative sizes for the elements of the image. I compare positive and negative spaces when drawing like this.
I establish the background color and then the blue vase. Once the vase is in I go back and cool the background a little more. I block in the main masses for the flowers and start one of the bottles.
I get some shadows in for the bottles and vase and start with secondary shapes on all of the elements.
From here I spend most of my time refining the values and temperature changes for the smaller forms and reflective shapes.
I finish up by painting the table cloth and revisiting any edges and shapes that seem out of place for the overall tone of the piece.