Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Peonies in a Vase

 "Peonies in a Vase"
pastel, 11 x 14 inches
floral, still life, unframed

With this still life, I wanted to try something with studying color and purposely using specific colors in a painting. I am not sure if I pulled it off or not, but this is my first attempt at setting up a still life for a specific color arrrangement and study. By using the really cool tool called the Gamut Mask on Robinson's website at www.livepaintinglessons.com, I put together the colors that I wanted to use in this painting. There are many different approaches that can be used. Check it out. I definitely will use this tool again. It is something that will get those creative juices flowing.

For this painting, a lot of time was spent in finding colors similar to the chart below and then arranging them into a pleasing still life composition. I hope to try different color combinations in the future by using this tool as a guide.

My reason for using the Gamut Mask is to try to create a more uniform painting with color. One that is pleasing and works. It is just a guide and another tool to add to my artist's toolbox.

 Color Study Used for Pastel

The color arrangement below is one that I did not use.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Peaceful Meadow

"Peaceful Meadow"
8x10 inch, oil on linen panel, unframed
copyright 2012 MaryAnn Cleary

This week I made a short road trip to one of my favorite painting areas - Crex Meadows. It is a land preserve in Wisconsin that is approximately 40 miles from my house and is 30,000 acres. Crex Meadows is near Grantsburg, WI. The peacefulness and the sounds of nature surround a person. I probably saw three or so cars all day long (I am not sure one counts as I saw the same vehicle twice). Most folks on that Wednesday were bird watchers stopping to watch different species with their binoculars. Wildlife is abundant, especially birds.

If you are ever in the area, a trip to the Crex Meadows Wildlife Area is definitely worth it. I love being able to stand and paint, looking in all directions, and not seeing or hearing a single person for miles. There will be an occasional car, but they are definitely few and far between. The morning when I arrived this week, the first thing I heard when I stopped my car were loons in the distance. I also had to stop the car twice for wildlife traffic - once for two families of geese, who definitely did not feel the need to be in a hurry, and next for a huge bull snake making its way to the tall grasses on the other side of the road.

While I painted, birds would suddenly fly off while being only a couple of feet from me, hiding in the grasses for several minutes.

Where is your favorite place to go in nature? 
Also, if you live nearby and would like to get together to paint the next time I head for Crex Meadows, drop me an email.