View Full Version : Learning to paint suggestively...a Town sign project

04-18-2003, 10:16 AM
As many know...I have had my years experience of hyper realism wildlife art.

Most recently...I'm working on several town signs to be erected for our centennial celebration coming up late this summer. The signs are 8'x 12'...and will be encased in vertical and horizontal logs which will greatly increase that size yet. Landscaping of small trees to the side, cedar chips around the base and lights for at night. Each sign will welcome visitors from three entree ways.

This is the second sign which I've got well underway and represents some of our local recreation. The first depicted local wildlife natural resources-

What has been amusing for me, is bearing in mind that the signs will be seen from the road/highway which will be no closer than perhaps about 20 yards from the edge of the road. Plus cars will be in the process of slowing down...so roughly 35 mph average.

That means the images will be simple. Suggestive of detail such that the marks will mix in the viewer's eye from a distance to translate to a good working design.

For example, here is the dog up close-

I paint this squinting my eyes, and the fun part is keeping a bold approach foremost at mind. Blue marks, pink ones, even green on a pointer...but note from the first image at just 20 feet away how it begins to pull together.

My painting plein air and having developed a knack now for such suggestive strokes of paint I believe are helping me a great deal and making this fun.

The paint is enamel oil based, which is a bit like painting with honey.


04-18-2003, 12:14 PM
Looking good Larry!!

I have done a few huge sign type pieces and it took me a little while to get used to the idea that it is not going to be seen face to board but from quite a distance away. After finally letting this sink into my head it made all the difference in the world in the approach I was taking to complete the job. I have to agree....it can be a real blast doing things like these!!!


04-18-2003, 01:24 PM
agree Bob...and in requiring a different mindset, one can relax and permit themselves to try methods that imployed might ordinarly unnerve an individual.

The "brushstroke made is a brushstroke stayed" method is a lesson in what works from a distance. That can be transferred (lesson learned) to one's regular painting if one just decides the viewer ought to stand 3-4 paces back rather than nose to the board!


Paul Hopkinson
04-18-2003, 05:40 PM
This is absolutely fantastic Larry. I'f I ever visit the US then I will be sure to keep my eyes open for this one!


04-18-2003, 07:51 PM
If you come this way....with that rare visit to the states, I'll have to assume you wanted to experience sparse living in a pristine environment of forests, lakes and streams! Blink as you drive by, and you might miss us! hahaha...

Not that we are short of businesses, that is...if you consider bars/taverns a business. One-thousand people and 13 bars, and within a 15 minute drive about 12 more bars!

Must be related to the hard working logging lifestyle of people here.

take care...!!!! and thanks for your comments


04-22-2003, 01:54 PM
This is really cool, Larry - btw, I love yer new tinyhead!!:clap: :clap: