View Full Version : Playing the diagonals - CrumbyBubblebrains

01-26-2005, 12:11 AM
G'day all,
OK . . yeah I know I only seem to pop in every now and then but that's the way things go at the moment. Do lurk every now and then but don't post much.

OK . .trrryyyyying to get things going here and forcing myself to paint . . this is a real quickie . .and quite an easy painting (limited pallette, no background). For those of you who've seen a couple of my latest, I've been exploring some difficult textures (plastic, ice . .and now bubbles!!) as they intrigue me.

This one is of a few rising bubbles (I love the way they take on the shape of a jellyfish as they rise . .makes the viewer look twice to see what they are). I need help here in composition . . hope you can see the strong diagonals here . . .always loved having strong diagonals in my paintings. Now I know that two is not a good number so I'm looking for input for the placement of a third, and last, bubble. My thoughts/possibilities are:

1. Just (and I mean just) above and to the left (at 45 degrees on the diagonal) to the top bubble. I mean they will nearly be together in the same focal area.
2. below and to the right of the bottom bubble (again on the diagonal). This gives weight to the bottom half of the painting and a feeling of light towards the top. I don't think I need much at the top as the movement of the bubbles leads you there anyway (get my drift?)

Any other thoughts?? . . please feel free to digitally manipulate by copying a bubble and placing it where you reckon.

01-26-2005, 12:16 AM
Fantastic! And yes, at first I thought of jelly fish!

01-26-2005, 12:17 AM
Sorry, should have mentioned this is a full sheet of Canson . . so a big airy painting. I'll try and get a close up later . . but believe me . .it's quite painterly (well, for me anyway!! LOL)

Deborah Secor
01-26-2005, 11:36 AM
Yikes, crumby my friend, this is truly exceptional... For my dollar's worth I'd put anything you add in the lower section, allowing the open expanse above, so I'd choose option #2, if it were up to me.

Is all the paper covered by pastel or have you simply painted in the bubbles? The photo shows a darker 'rim' that looks suspiciously like the shadows I get when I take photos, but it suggests that you could darken the depths of the water and ever-so-slightly lighten it as it ascends.

I thought of my friend Fred Somers' work. He does these incredibly light layers of color on Canson, building up slowly, slowly, until the surface just shines. You and he seem to have minds that work alike, in some ways! (www.fredericksomers.com (http://www.fredericksomers.com/)--and check out the pastel called 'Wonderment'.)

I'll be excited to see what you do...


Mikki Petersen
01-26-2005, 11:45 AM
Wow Crumby...maybe it's the contraction to such a small image but this looks photographic! I sort of like it just as it is but if you need a third, I'd go to the bottom for the same reason Deborah gives. Wonderful work as usual.


01-26-2005, 01:32 PM
AS usual I am amazed at your skill! I am curious also about the background...I can see something going on but like Deborah, am not sure if it is on the paper or from the photograph.
I am inclined to agree that something on the bottom might be better...although I'm not sure exactly where or how. I will be curious to see what you come up with.


01-26-2005, 05:50 PM
Nice to see another one from you Crumby. It is beautifull too!
It makes me think I am actually underwater looking up through it to the
bubbles. I woul agree with the others here, on the bottom would be good

Thanks for posting it :)

Kathryn Wilson
01-27-2005, 05:25 AM
Boy, Crumby, I always love looking at your paintings - this one is so imaginative and inventive.

I'll be watching for an update.

01-27-2005, 06:52 AM
Hey guys,
Thanks for the input . .

Firstly . .just to clear this up . . the background is just Canson paper . .no pastel on it at all . .which makes this a reeeeally quick painting :-) I did think of adding a tone lightening towards the top but these bubbles are pretty small and I don't know if you'd see such a gradation in a small space . .besides . .I just wanted a quick painting!! LOL

OK sounds like a unanimous decison to place the thirs bubble towards the base which was my preference. I had placed the two bubbles at focal points determined by the method illustrated below. You draw a diagonal, then draw lines from th opposite corners which intersect the first diagonal at right angles. It's just another way instead of dividing the painting into thirds except you've got to watch this one a little because as the shape of the painting becomes more square, the focal points merge towards the centre . .so only works with rectangles (preferrably the golden rectangle . .if you want to play by the rules)

Now to determine secondary focal areas, you draw vertical lines from the two main focal points that intersect the top and bottom of the painting (as shown) then from there, two more lines at right angles to the initial diagonals. You end up where I've placed a circle. Funny, a good friend of mine placed it there coz it "just felt right" . .funny how "the rules" often just feel right. At least it's good to know the rules so you know why things work . .and if you break them . .at least you do it with a purpose.

Next image is then a digital manipulation showing what it might look like . .hope you guys like it.

Last image is a close up for you but the colour is wrong . . you get the idea . . . . VERY painterly for me!!! LOL

OK off to put the actual bubble where I've indicated . .will post the final painting tomorrow :-) (I think I like these quick ones . .I could do one of these per night if I put my mind to it . .worth a series you think???)


01-27-2005, 08:01 AM
What a treat to see you here, Crumby! This is so unique and so well done (but what else is new ;) ). I agree with the spot you picked for the new bubble.

Deborah Secor
01-27-2005, 10:02 AM
Yes, worth a series definitely: Crumby's quickie paintings. :D "Painterly" is in the eye of the beholder, but this is really beautiful. I can't wait to see the additions and I think your lesson on division is terrific. Thanks!


Paula Ford
01-27-2005, 09:17 PM
This is just fabulous!!


01-28-2005, 01:58 AM
Totally impressed.
Love these bubbles !!!


01-28-2005, 10:36 AM
Just had to pop in and say I'm blown away by your bubbles! Thanks for the close-up - it's great to see how it was done.

Merethe T
01-28-2005, 07:28 PM
Amazing!! And what a neat idea, to paint bubbles... love it!! :clap:


01-28-2005, 10:13 PM
Thanks for looking and your comments guys.

OK here's the final painting just for prosperity . . . . I've accidentally cropped the left and top of the painting with my camera . .those two large bubbles are meant to be on the diagonal (please use artistic imagination! LOL)