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Border Corpsman
09-03-2012, 10:01 PM
Hello! Below is my current work in progress. I am at a point to where I feel I am close to completion. I have spent the last 2 weeks working on this and have learned so much. It is done on a 12"x16" board with oils. I struggled with the clouds, had a mountain range I removed, and despite enjoying the calm empty foreground... kinda think it may need something there. I painted this from my imagination as a place to escape to for calmness. Please feel free to critique, suggest, and educate. I can eat the meat and throw out the bones so don't hold back. Thank you.

Solace (2012 MDR).

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Sep-2012/1117672-Solace_2012_Mont_Rutledge.jpg

Revilo
09-03-2012, 11:18 PM
Not too shabby! I think you should put a shark or a sea turtle or a manta ray under the water, swimming toward the viewer with refracted sunlight ripples on it.

Border Corpsman
09-03-2012, 11:29 PM
Not too shabby! I think you should put a shark or a sea turtle or a manta ray under the water, swimming toward the viewer with refracted sunlight ripples on it.

That would be interesting. I'll need to search out youtube videos and information on how to paint the refracted water surface, develope the sense of depth in the water, and decide how to put it together. I'll look into it, thank you.

Andrewcody
09-03-2012, 11:40 PM
Welcome to Wet Canvas
I agree with Revilo that this is not a bad start for someone new to oils.
Ok some critique, I am struggling to see the horizon - is there one?
Plus the viewing angle would appear to be at some height, is this intentional?
The clouds look ok but what are the building up against? The mountain range you removed?
Regards
Andrew

Border Corpsman
09-04-2012, 01:21 AM
Welcome to Wet Canvas
I agree with Revilo that this is not a bad start for someone new to oils.
Ok some critique, I am struggling to see the horizon - is there one?
Plus the viewing angle would appear to be at some height, is this intentional?
The clouds look ok but what are the building up against? The mountain range you removed?
Regards
Andrew

Thanks Andrewcody, I never really thought about the horizon to be honest. To me it seemed like the island set the horizon but in retrospect, I guess having the image known to me would allow me to place it versus the outside viewer not knowing the reference for it from inside my head (if that makes any sense lol). Any suggestions on how to make the horizon more obvious?

I'm not sure about the viewing angle. I don't really understand what is meant by it, could you educate me so I can be sure to work on it in future paintings?

As for the clouds, I think you are asking me what they are building up against in respect to the natural way clouds would build up against a mountain range inside a valley. Again, the novice in me never gave it any thought. I remember seeing beautiful cloud formations building up from typhoons when I was out to sea with the Navy and guess I drew off those memories without any real thought for the actual mechanics of it when I laid them out on the canvas.

When I initially started painting this after I laid the ground, I had a sweeping mountain range that took up a lot of the foreground. I could not get the mountains to translate from what was in my head to the canvas and decided to take them out by scraping them off and cleaning with some turp. The peak of one of the mountains I removed also removed a portion of the cloud. After looking at it a few days later, my wife said "It looks like it wants to have an ocean." so I filled in the missing part of the cloud with the island (which was previously a mountain peak before I removed the mountains).

I'm interested to learn about perspective, blending, color use, and lighting also. Pros and cons you see with my use in this painting, what was done ok and what could be done different/better maybe?

Thanks again.

Debzy
09-04-2012, 08:12 AM
If you wanted to improve this, I think perhaps you could have moved the island and the middle of the painting down further, or, if you cropped off the bottom two thirds of the water it makes a more dramatic scene in my opinion.Then it is more about the energy of the clouds! It is kind of cut in two, and that is why you feel that the water needs something. love the colours you have used and it is very good for a first painting. You have good cloud depth, shape and colour, and the blue of the water is peaceful. Welcome to WC and hope to see more from you. Cheers =)) Debs.

Revilo
09-04-2012, 09:43 AM
It seems to me that the horizon is the division between the air and the sea. That's why I suggested an underwater scene. There are many artists who do this kind of "split view" marine art--Wyland, for instance.

Border Corpsman
09-04-2012, 11:59 AM
If you wanted to improve this, I think perhaps you could have moved the island and the middle of the painting down further, or, if you cropped off the bottom two thirds of the water it makes a more dramatic scene in my opinion.Then it is more about the energy of the clouds! It is kind of cut in two, and that is why you feel that the water needs something. love the colours you have used and it is very good for a first painting. You have good cloud depth, shape and colour, and the blue of the water is peaceful. Welcome to WC and hope to see more from you. Cheers =)) Debs.

Thank you Debzy. It hadn't crossed my mind to remove (crop) the bottom portion. I really like that idea because I don't want to distract attention from the clouds and island by adding something to the foreground. Seeing that this is painted on the board, I assume I can just cut off the bottom portion right? May be worth it for me to practice painting something into it before I chop it off though. Maybe try a refracted water surface or a subsurface creature as mentioned before?

Border Corpsman
09-04-2012, 12:04 PM
It seems to me that the horizon is the division between the air and the sea. That's why I suggested an underwater scene. There are many artists who do this kind of "split view" marine art--Wyland, for instance.

Makes sense seeing that anywhere 50 miles from land on open ocean that is exactly what you have for a horizon unless you have cloud cover or some other atmospheric phenomena occuring. I've been on oceans where the sun was the only thing to let you know the sea ended and the sky started. However, I didn't give it much thought in this painting cause I felt like the Island set the horizon (as said before).

Border Corpsman
09-04-2012, 12:16 PM
So I cropped the painting in paint and attached it below. I feel like I lose some of the depth/distance in it though. I wanted the feeling that the island was being viewed from a distance (perspective right?). Is it just me or in the cropped version does it seemed lost?

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/04-Sep-2012/1117672-Solace_cropped.jpg

Border Corpsman
09-04-2012, 01:17 PM
I really appreciate all the input and critiques thus far. Here is what I have come up with.

1. Do Not Cut the Board! I am learning and to cut the board would rob me of the experience and practice I need to improve upon future paintings. Not to mention it would ruin the integrity of the board. I came this far with this painting by looking at it as a study and opportunity to practice various techniques and should not lose that objective just because I think the painting is "pretty".

2. Find another technique to practice and improve my painting and learn. Seeing that my ocean foreground is relatively dead and I have no experience painting seascapes (or anything for that matter lol) I decided to try and liven it up. I ordered some Alkyd and Liquin and will see if I can get the ocean to have some movement via glazing. This will give me practice in another technique and stays true to the objective I set out with the painting, to learn.

3. Researching what Andrew mentioned (viewing angle), I understand it to mean "What is the angle/perspective of the person viewing the piece?" or as I think of it, "Where am I at in the painting?" If I am correct in this then it seems it is being viewed from below the horizon. With this in mind, it should be displayed a bit above eye level to add to the effect (if I understand the theory correctly).

Feedback on this idea would be appreciated, as would any tips for doing it. Should I try adding any birds to the distance? Thanks again everyone, I really appreciate the guidance.

crafor
09-04-2012, 04:10 PM
I'm a beginner, too, and not landscapes so much. There are few RULES in art, and people everywhere break them with success. ONE of the rules is to never put anything (important) at the halfway point, either vertically or horizontally. In your first post, the horizon line is about at that halfway point.
Another thing I'm learning is that just because something looks a certain way does not mean the artist HAS to portray the scene that way. The artist can add things that are not there, or not put in things that are. Of course you want it appropriate to your goal.
I like your colors, but (:o ) I learned that there should be a change of some kind across an area. Look at your clouds. In that large expsnse of "white" are yellows, blues, grays, highlights, shadows. There's only one place that is "harsh" that bright white area near the top. Now look at the blue area next to it. It may be what is actually there, but to make that area more interesting, some variety in it will help
Just a few thoughts, and my very inexperienced and uneducated opinion. Use what you can and leave the rest. I know you said this is an imaginary peice, so you can do with it what you like.

Welcome to the group.
Ella

Black Spot
09-04-2012, 04:43 PM
I went back to the original as you can't crop a canvas that easily. I did a little paint over and gave it a horizon and a little boat in the distance. Also I toned down the breaking waves as the sea looks too calm for that many breakers.

My 16yo son came in and said it looks like the island from Lost.

774912

Border Corpsman
09-04-2012, 06:36 PM
Great info crafor! I appreciate you giving me something I can work with. I'll need to photograph the painting without the easel light on next time, I think it is causing the top portion of the clouds to ring as bright as they are but yes, they are still bright regardless and I will see what I can do to tone them down.

Black Spot, you amaze me! I have no idea how you were able to make the changes to the painting but was struggeling to no end to see how I could add a horizon. I still don't understand the process to make the change but I am inspired to give it a shot. I will be adding movement to the foreground ocean and will wait to tone down the breakers until after I do this but plan to add the horizon for sure. The boat is a nice touch but for me, the empty vastness of the scene is what gives me the Solace. A place far from others where I can seek comfort and peace. I am not sure what the island from "Lost" is but I did use my memories of Mt. Mayon (Bicol region, Legazpi, Philippines) to help contruct it.

Everyone here at wet canvas have been amazing. I really appreciate all the constructive feedback. Thank you again!

Black Spot
09-06-2012, 01:25 PM
I have no idea what the Lost island looks like either.

I took it into a digital program to mess with it. One thing I did notice is that the sun coming through those wonderful clouds is behind the island - it should make the mountain cast a shadow on the sea and most of the mountain should be darker. If you keep the shadow very short, to just past the breaking waves, it will emphasise the distance a bit more.

Border Corpsman
09-06-2012, 01:44 PM
I have no idea what the Lost island looks like either.

I took it into a digital program to mess with it. One thing I did notice is that the sun coming through those wonderful clouds is behind the island - it should make the mountain cast a shadow on the sea and most of the mountain should be darker. If you keep the shadow very short, to just past the breaking waves, it will emphasise the distance a bit more.

I have some Galkyd and Liquin on its way that I will use to glaze in the suggested shadow areas. The smaller cloud has some highlights that I feel will clash with the sun being behind the cloud formation, what do you think? Should I drop those highlights? I tried to make the light appear to be coming from the high left. I will also be working on the horizon and adding movement to the foreground ocean. Im currently closing escrow and moving so the changes may not appear until October some time. Thanks again!

Adrian Setterfield
09-06-2012, 01:59 PM
the bottom area of the painting could turn it into something entirely different...like an underwater scene. Then all emphasis could go onto this and you could just put a glaze over the background to push it back. If this was my painting I would not attempt to learn too much out of one painting. Do another one in which you can learn about painting clouds and mountains and how the light affects these.

Black Spot
09-06-2012, 02:07 PM
I think the smaller cloud is fine, but I'm not an expert on clouds.

I would disagree with Adrian about trying to learn too much. Getting too precious about a painting when you're learning will only stifle you. Making mistakes is one of the quickest ways of learning. Good luck with the next stage and remember what you learn in this painting will make the next one stronger.

crafor
09-06-2012, 02:39 PM
Great info crafor! I appreciate you giving me something I can work with.
I ...was struggeling to no end to see how I could add a horizon. I still don't understand the process to make the change but I am inspired to give it a shot.

You're welcome. :wave: To get an idea how to make changes, take a look at my recent thread--REPAIRING RICK--A REPAIR IN PROGRESS--IN THIS FORUM!:D Oil paint is very user friendly--a major criteria for ME!:D You'll see I had several learning opportunities and maybe you will get some ideas. FWIW, I use only oil paint and walnut oil--no solvents or alkyds or anything else. Be aware that alykds contain driers, so your oil paint will dry faster than it will without alkyds and stuff like liquin.
Ella who is also somewhere north of the border!

Border Corpsman
09-06-2012, 11:19 PM
You're welcome. :wave: To get an idea how to make changes, take a look at my recent thread--REPAIRING RICK--A REPAIR IN PROGRESS--IN THIS FORUM!:D Oil paint is very user friendly--a major criteria for ME!:D You'll see I had several learning opportunities and maybe you will get some ideas. FWIW, I use only oil paint and walnut oil--no solvents or alkyds or anything else. Be aware that alykds contain driers, so your oil paint will dry faster than it will without alkyds and stuff like liquin.
Ella who is also somewhere north of the border!

Awesome thread Ella! Thanks for directing me to it, it is motivating. One of the challenges with Solace is making the corrections on dry paint. When I removed the mountain range before, the paint was wet. A couple runs with the knife and some turp and a rag and I was back to painting. Now, I have some major changes to make on a painting that is close to finish. I almost feel I should start a new canvas and use this for what I have learned and for comparison. However, I think of all the stuff I could still learn like having to remake and match colors already in my painting, glazing, perspective, etc.

I have some time to make a descision before I do anything. I am more likely to continue with this canvas and attempt the modifications/repairs and thank you again for the Repairing Rick thread. It turned out very nice :thumbsup: wish me luck ;) :crossfingers:

Monte

crafor
09-06-2012, 11:57 PM
Monte, MOST, if not all, of my repairs on Rick where after the paint was dry. I paint using layers. Basically that's putting color on, letting it dry, putting color on, letting it dry, and repeating as often as needed.
Ella
Edited to add: After the paint is dry, before adding more paint, I add walnut oil to the areas I plan to work. I put it on, and usually use a finger to rub it in, then use a tissue to wipe as much as I can, off. It leaves a thin layer of oil--called a "couch"--to place the next color layer onto. If that oil beads, and at times it does, I use a small chunk of raw potato or onion to wipe that area. I let that set on the canvas several seconds then wipe it off with a tissue. That allows the oil to stay on the canvas. Then I re-place the oil in that area rub it in, and wipe it off, and paint.

crafor
09-07-2012, 12:41 AM
Monte,
Thanks for your kind words re the Repairing Rick thread.
When I want to change an area that is dark and replace it with lighter color, I paint that area out with white oil paint. I let it dry, then paint as if it were "new". If the paint I want to use over that area is opaque, it's probably not a problem, but it gets hard for me to see what I want to do. It's easier for me to paint it white. If the paint is transparent, it would be a problem for me.
Ella

Border Corpsman
09-07-2012, 01:35 AM
Monte,
Thanks for your kind words re the Repairing Rick thread.
When I want to change an area that is dark and replace it with lighter color, I paint that area out with white oil paint. I let it dry, then paint as if it were "new". If the paint I want to use over that area is opaque, it's probably not a problem, but it gets hard for me to see what I want to do. It's easier for me to paint it white. If the paint is transparent, it would be a problem for me.
Ella

How would you paint over impasto? For example, if I wanted to move the island down or expand it to the bottom, I would have to paint over the impasto of the breaking waves on the shore. To me, this is no bueno! Suggestions?

La_
09-07-2012, 03:25 AM
well i wonder of a few of things ...

- the canvas is split almost exactly in half horizontally and all the action is up top - generally ill advised and easily adjusted by subtly extending the mountain down further, etc. ...

- the (beautiful) clouds are settled heavily, firmly, too firmly perhaps - if it's actually sitting On the horizon, the straighter the bottom is (soft edged, but Straight), the farther away it's going to look. if it's not sitting On the horizon why is it so dark at the bottom. And why, with all this water floating about, are there No reflections anywhere? all that big white cloud ... all that water ... just seems odd to me that nothing reflects.

what if, the clouds came forward, enveloped the 'mountain' and trickled, skimming the surface of the water, reflecting all the while, coming toward us in a misty/mysterious sort of way

or

what if all that vast blue foreground had some beach ... and that wee (lost!) boat could park there

perspective tools with oils 101
- soft edges recede and crisp/sharp edges come forward
- cooler colors recede and warmer colors come forward
- light values recede and dark values come forward
- small items recede and large items come forward
variables and exceptions to all of it apply

i can't climb in your head and see exactly what you're trying to do, besides learn, so i hope that's some help to ya :cat:

la






I went back to the original as you can't crop a canvas that easily. I did a little paint over and gave it a horizon and a little boat in the distance. Also I toned down the breaking waves as the sea looks too calm for that many breakers.

My 16yo son came in and said it looks like the island from Lost.

774912

crafor
09-07-2012, 10:28 AM
How would you paint over impasto? For example, if I wanted to move the island down or expand it to the bottom, I would have to paint over the impasto of the breaking waves on the shore. To me, this is no bueno! Suggestions?

It might depend on the thickness of the impasto and your goals. You might have been able to extend the mountain downward a bit and painted that foam green for trees:rolleyes:. For that distance, the foam would not have been seen, I don't think, and certainly not as more than a smudge, almost like fog, or a color change.

For portraits, I prefer a smooth canvas, particularly for the "body" areas-head, torso, etc. There is some texture on RICK'S face, but he has relatively rough skin, or it appears so to me, so in this case, I didn't see it as a problem.

However, a little impasto on the branches caused a problem on the hat.
I didn't think of that when I first enlarged his hat and covered some of them. I should have removed it before doing the hat, but didn't think it mattered. It did. It made the top and forward edge of the crown lumpy.
That thicker paint was dry, but I was able to use my palette knife and carefully scrape a lot of it away. I did it with that canvas laying down and a book under that area for support.
Later, when I had to make the hat smaller, I used a small square of fine sand paper (it was about 1" square,) and softly passed over the area I wanted to remove paint from. It took a few gentle passes to remove what I needed to remove. Those areas were very narrow--less than1/4" wide, and quite short.
Keep notes of the colors you use. It's very dangerous to sand some paint.
There are "paint scrapers". I don't know how they differ from painting knives, or if one would have removed those small areas of paint, but I expect I'll buy one.

I'm learning to paint studies on small chunks of gessoed cardboard--maybe 5x7", to see how what I'm planning works. Before that, I do a few sketches. Probably most artists do, but I'm just learning all this.
There was a thread in the oils forum several weeks ago about "things I learned" which you might find very helpful. Maybe somebody remembers it and can post a link.

Ella

crafor
09-07-2012, 10:51 AM
here it is: http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1052052&highlight=things+learned

doing a forum search with those 3 words brought up seveal threads that might interest you--and me!
Ella

Border Corpsman
09-07-2012, 12:49 PM
- the (beautiful) clouds are settled heavily, firmly, too firmly perhaps - if it's actually sitting On the horizon, the straighter the bottom is (soft edged, but Straight), the farther away it's going to look. if it's not sitting On the horizon why is it so dark at the bottom. And why, with all this water floating about, are there No reflections anywhere? all that big white cloud ... all that water ... just seems odd to me that nothing reflects.

what if, the clouds came forward, enveloped the 'mountain' and trickled, skimming the surface of the water, reflecting all the while, coming toward us in a misty/mysterious sort of way

perspective tools with oils 101
- soft edges recede and crisp/sharp edges come forward
- cooler colors recede and warmer colors come forward
- light values recede and dark values come forward
- small items recede and large items come forward
variables and exceptions to all of it apply

la

This will happen... I don't know how to make reflections and stuff but you all shall see my attempt at learning them. I plan to explore expanding the island down and setting a horizon as well. No boat. I like Black Spots boat but no boat for me.

La, thanks for the "101" info. I will be copying it down in a note pad I plan to create of things I learned oil painting. This type of information is paramount for a beginner. I wish I had come across it before I started this painting.

-Monte

Revilo
09-07-2012, 10:36 PM
This is what I'm suggesting: something under the water where the break between surface and below is the horizon line, kinda like this which was composited for instructional purposes only.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/07-Sep-2012/1074282-forinstructionalpurposesonly.jpg

La_
09-07-2012, 11:05 PM
Fabulous example!

la

Border Corpsman
09-07-2012, 11:16 PM
Revilo, bud... I am not putting a durpy dolphin in this painting lol. I like the example, or I should say, the idea behind the example but I think spongebob and patrick would be far more suited for it than flipper ;)

In all honesty though, I would like to try this with an octopus. If I went this route, what would you suggest be the tweaks on the upper half of the painting? Broaden and darken the underclouds for depth maybe?

-Monte

Revilo
09-07-2012, 11:22 PM
I like the clouds. Granted they are the remainder of orthographic lift from the erased mountains but they are still interesting. The dolphin was just for example.

Border Corpsman
09-07-2012, 11:48 PM
I like the clouds. Granted they are the remainder of orthographic lift from the erased mountains but they are still interesting. The dolphin was just for example.

I had to look that up http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orographic_lift :thumbsup: The example is great, I like it and it seems more within my noob skill range. Thanks for the help!

Monte

Revilo
09-08-2012, 12:58 AM
I thought I blew the spelling on that one. My first spelling was orographic but it didn't look right so I changed it.

Border Corpsman
09-09-2012, 07:22 PM
Ok so I sat down with this one for a little today. I expanded the clouds, started the sea floor back drop, and added motion to the ocean. I am running with the underwater scene here and can not figure a way to make the cut from surface to subsurface work I plan to just start dropping in my octopus when whats on here is dry. Are the waves too sharp, should I blend them down more? http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/09-Sep-2012/1117672-Solace_Modify_1.jpg

I'm frustrated with this one lol.

Border Corpsman
09-09-2012, 10:55 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/09-Sep-2012/1117672-Solace_rework_3.jpg

Lighting not the best for this picture but I did a little more work to the island and ocean floor. Blended the waves out a bit more also. Will add sea life after I get moved so sometime next month.

Revilo
09-10-2012, 08:48 AM
BC, I think you can go a lot lighter on the sea floor because at that depth there is plenty of sunlight to illumine the bottom and your subject--also, the bottom is coral sand, which is very light in color and reflects light very well. I think you are not leaving much room for the octopus, either. Reference the example with "Durpy" and you can see there is a balance of canvas space between above and below surface. If you're doing an octopus, be sure to get a good reference image so you can really create an image that "sells" the scene to the viewer.

Trumper
09-11-2012, 04:03 AM
:) I like that.I would do some more colours on the island,seems very uniform in shadows and colour.
It is very tranquil and allows you mind to wander.

Finally painting
09-23-2012, 06:47 PM
Hola, well I liked the original as well as what you've done now. In the original I felt like I was looking across from maybe a boat or another island at eye level and found it peaceful, but did agree that there was too much wave action on the shore for the distance. Living in the tropics I see these scenes and even though they say that the focal point should not be at the half way mark of the canvas, sometimes I think it works. Maybe a small fishing boat or something in the forground, but what you've done now is also nice. I like the sun on the clouds too and see that brightness here too. Anyway, I like it.

Border Corpsman
09-24-2012, 09:29 PM
Thank you for the inputs and compliments (Revilo, Trumper, Finally Painting). I will be closing escrow and moving into my new house this weekend. I hope to have my studio set up within a week and then be able to do some more work on this painting (and others). I appreciate the support. Post back soon!

Border Corpsman
10-16-2012, 02:16 PM
Ok, finished moving into the new house and I was able to sit down for a few hours this weekend and work on some of my WIPs. I added some color to the Island, toned down the breakers, and began trying to create the split sea view (sub-surface and surface ocean view). I am very frustrated in my attempts to accomplish this and could very much use input specific to creating this effect (unless what I have will work). I am ready to start adding my sealife to the painting but don't want to until I get the split view effect completed. Ayudame!

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/16-Oct-2012/1117672-Solace_10-16-2012_2.jpg

Border Corpsman
10-16-2012, 02:20 PM
Ok, finished moving into the new house and I was able to sit down for a few hours this weekend and work on some of my WIPs. I added some color to the Island, toned down the breakers, and began trying to create the split sea view (sub-surface and surface ocean view). I am very frustrated in my attempts to accomplish this and could very much use input specific to creating this effect (unless what I have will work). I am ready to start adding my sealife to the painting but don't want to until I get the split view effect completed. Ayudame!

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/16-Oct-2012/1117672-Solace_10-16-2012_2.jpg

This was one effect I tried also but it didn't seem to work for me so I went with what I have above for now.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/16-Oct-2012/1117672-Solace_work_10-16-12.jpg

:confused:

La_
10-24-2012, 11:39 PM
marvelous bunch of learning you've got going on, fabulous

i'm waiting for an octopus, to become, the focus of the piece

since you're learning along, why not, right

you're latest water/sand is fine

octopus

just saying

= )

la

rossmarie
10-29-2012, 05:51 PM
Don't hold back you say.....well, this is bold striking and surreal. I can cope with impressionistic but surreal I find difficult. You certainly have imagination but, if this is to escape to calmness (see your first post), then regret it does not calm me. I find it interesting but disturbing. This is quite possibly my own fault because I like skies, oceans, land, tonal values perspective etc to look "about right". That is not to say that I want realism - photographs do that much better.
Perhaps this is a case of "everyone to his or her own"

regards

Mike:confused: