View Full Version : Three Apples - X-post Spotlight

04-28-2015, 02:36 PM
This is 5" x 7" on glossy red cardstock. I originally had the shadowed sides of the apples darker, took a photo, and the photo showed the dark red as too black. I lightened it. I think I'll have to go back in with dark. All comments welcomed. And thanks to Don for his lovely reference photo!


04-28-2015, 02:38 PM
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: oh Blayne, you did it again. I am chuckling here loud. So, three were simply not enough? :D

04-28-2015, 03:50 PM
This happens to me all the time. Get it to where you like it and the camera sees something else. However, I like this. Especially the progression of lighter cast shadows into the distance. And the bounce light at the base of the shadows. You could darken the apples shadow side but why?

It has a good feeling.

04-28-2015, 05:56 PM
There seems to be a fairly clear indication of light and shadow, so I wouldn't worry about adding more dark to the shadow sides, although it certainly could be done if you wanted to! The painting is nicely done! And while I'd like to take credit for the reference photo, it is actually by Ivyleaf, from the RIL.


04-28-2015, 06:27 PM
Nick, I need an apple a day! Three weren't enough. :lol:

Thanks, Guy! I have decided to leave it because, once I got away from the idea of making that largest apple look so realistic, I decided I like the sort of flat effect it has, which bounces attention father back into the painting.

And thank you, Don! I'm glad you agree no more dark on the apples. And I apologize for not giving proper credit on that photo (which you certainly did when you used it in the Spotlight). My bad!

04-29-2015, 02:31 AM
Good use of edges to show objects receding in the distance. (At least, I think that's the correct terminology).

04-29-2015, 05:46 AM
Thank you, bongo1! It was tempting to "clean up" some of those messy edges, but I forced myself to leave them alone. I'm glad you think they work.

ural jones
04-29-2015, 09:14 AM
Blayne, I have already expressed my like of this. Great...Red cardstock Hummm, it seems a mixture of cool red and warm red. Delightful.

04-29-2015, 12:37 PM
The ONLY thing that I would change .... well add ... the shadow of the third apple has no stem. Would the apple look in the mirror and freak out if it saw that? :)

04-29-2015, 12:44 PM
LOL George, it just might! Those shadows in the ref photo were really weird, and I didn't understand why no stems showed in either the second or third apple's shadow. I could, of course, put one in, anyway, but I think it might stop the progression of vision back into the reflection?

04-29-2015, 06:56 PM
Wow, Blayne! A parade of apples! And I love the cast shadows. Very lovely tablecloth too. A vibrant vision!!

04-30-2015, 09:10 AM
Ural, I apologize for overlooking your comment--thank you very much! Odd as it seems, I enjoy working on that glossy surface. And I like that the glossy surface lends a reflective quality to the pastel.

And thank you, Jay! This was a fun one to do.

04-30-2015, 09:26 AM
Nice warm clean color and lighting! You may be interested in pushing a few more darks into this, but it isn't really necessary. The trick with this one is to retain the rate of change in all respects as they move back into space. As it stands, there is a quick drop-off after the third-

04-30-2015, 09:43 AM
Don't push the darks! This is perfect as it is, utterly wonderful. Not all paintings fit the Rule of Three, the overall pattern in this is gorgeous. The eye paths between the apples and the shadows are very pleasing and I find myself constantly wandering around among all of them. The reflection is absolutely wonderful, lighter and cooler and a little looser but very clear, this makes the light feel so bright and vivid! So do the saturated colors on the apples.

04-30-2015, 11:13 AM
Thank you, Ken! I appreciate hearing your opinion! IRL the apples seem to be dark enough, so I think I'll leave them as they are. And I did consider that abrupt drop off, but here is my thinking (and I could be wrong!). I like the implication of an S curve formed by the 3 apples and their 3, 4 or 5 reflections. The blurring at the top of the third apple might be a reflection, as might the tiny red blur at far left. If I make a consistent progression of color, the implied S curve would be lost. And I'm afraid I'll mess the whole thing up if I get started correcting! :lol:

Robert, thank you so much--and thank you for taking time to post here when you've already commented in the Spotlight!

04-30-2015, 02:30 PM
You are welcome! Then leave them as they are. I did not realize at all that these were intended as reflections. As they are, they do not appear to be reflections, as those take place under a certain logic- it must be that you just invented them. The soft edges and blurry nature would work, but not their positioning. Do a small setup of three objects in front of a mirror in a row and let me know-

04-30-2015, 05:39 PM
:lol: :lol: :lol: I'm afraid you're on to me, Ken! I confess to inventing the reflections and hoped no one would apply scientific rules to them! Surely, somewhere, there is one of those fun mirrors you find at carnivals that would produce such reflections?:lol: :evil: :lol: At my age I certainly prefer mirrors with a very blurry reflection, but I do appreciate your taking time for a second look at my painting. My only excuse now for the so-called "reflections" in that painting is that I liked the splotches of color on the page and they reminded me of being in a room of mirrors where your reflection goes on forever. Perhaps the painting can work as a mix of representationalism and some other "ism"?

04-30-2015, 06:37 PM
Love! the endless progression! Very dynamic.

04-30-2015, 10:19 PM
Thank you very much, Charlie!

04-30-2015, 11:04 PM
It is perfectly fine to create situations in your work and they can be very convincing if you know a few simple rules about them. I've seen the effect you mention- if you're including the reflections, use it as a reason to learn about this aspect of life (mirrors, water, shiny things...) also indicate a bit about how this is happening (edge of mirror or mirrors). Maxfield Parrish would often create a small model of the scene he was about to paint, with a small mirror for the lake- the results have stood the test of time, wouldn't you say?

05-01-2015, 06:13 AM
Ken, your interest and comments set me off on an engaging hour of Googling Maxfield Parrish and infinity mirrors! Any time spent learning more about art and artists is time well spent, and I enjoyed the search. I certainly agree that his results have stood the test of time! The idea of setting up a still life between two opposing mirrors to get the infinity effect is an intriguing one.

05-01-2015, 05:41 PM
Good! Artists of the past really learned their trade- something I greatly respect- Rockwell was one of many. James Gurney is a contemporary and successful artist who explores many concepts related to making pictures- check out his blog. Learning the craft well is a goal well worth pursuing- both interesting and helpful to your work.

05-01-2015, 08:03 PM
Thanks for reintroducing me to James Gurney, Ken! I have run across his teachings from time to time but lost track of his blog, Gurney Journey. It's a tab I'll keep open for awhile and bookmark. His work is truly that of an artist and master craftsman.