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Joel L 05-15-2019 10:20 AM

Barn in western Iowa

Barn located in western Iowa. I did this as a commission work. Comments are welcome.

16" x 12" on watercolor paper.

rosta 05-16-2019 06:36 AM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
I love the way you've captured the light on the roof.

Great job Joel.

Scene Chaser 05-16-2019 08:06 AM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Nice light and shadow work, Joel.

Joel L 05-16-2019 10:09 AM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Thank you, Ron and Bill! This was an overcast day so I had lots of soft shadows from ambient light. It is an enjoyable challenge to me to get soft shadows and warn texture to combine and look right. The compression has made this drawing look a little more coarse than what it is. The face of the barn is a little lighter than the actual drawing.

The person who asked me to do this requested that I patch the wholes, put the doors on, and trim away the weeds around it.

Charlie's Mum 05-16-2019 04:09 PM

Re: Barn in western Iowa

The person who asked me to do this requested that I patch the wholes, put the doors on, and trim away the weeds around it.

Ah! so that's why it looks so pristine!:lol:

Well drawn and I agree, beautiful capture of the light and soft, soft shadows ....... I would love to see a work of it in its natural state though, with weeds and neglect showing!:lol:

Joel L 05-16-2019 04:48 PM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Hi Maureen! Thank you. I much rather draw them in their natural state. I imagine that might be why I forgot the door to one of the openings. Something inside me just couldn't do it. :)

pedlars pen 05-17-2019 06:30 PM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
To me personally,there's too much homage to to the art of the photographer in this rendering & not enough interpretation , not enough feeling about the subject. However skillful & well practiced it undoubtedly is.

Joel L 05-18-2019 11:20 AM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Hi Mike! Absolutely! One of the reasons I'm not always in love with commission work. I'm not always connected to scene as much as the person I'm doing the work for. Then what I'm left with my love for light and texture. I don't really have a love for doing photography. I don't really get to touch the subject. For me, drawing allows me to feel the texture and feel the light in a physical way. I draw the shadow, I draw the cracks, the creases, the wrinkles, branches. My fingers touch every part. I get to embrace what I see with every line.

Something I didn't care for is the person asked that I fix the barn and clean the ground around it of weeds and such. This sterilized the scene for me. I kind of work in a "death mask" frame of mind for some scenes. I look for the wear and struggle. Sometimes the last gasp or the final farewell.

I agree with you completely! I don't feel I'm here to interpret what I see for others. It is hugely important to me that they come up with their own interpretation and their own meaning in what they experience. Who am I to tell them how to see their world or impose onto them how I see it? The beauty is finding our own ways to see the world and to experience in our own way. Mine is to feel the texture and the light in the way that is most meaningful to me. :) (This is edited in later - This previous paragraph may possibly be showing my lack of love for commissions and that I may have run my course with barns. :) I don't mean it in the grumpy way that it appears to have been written :) )

I think this is why my compositions aren't always the greatest, my perspective is often off, and probably a lot more odd things here and there. My love is to feel the light and textures in the motion of my fingers. I guess this is just my thing. Its not much. But it helps me get from today to tomorrow.

Joel L 05-18-2019 11:30 AM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Mike, thank you for the comment! It is really making me look back at this drawing and figure out things I didn't like and why I did what I did.

Commissions for me are sometimes (most times) tough for me to do because I just don't feel the love that the person who is asking me to do the drawing does so I try to guess what they would like. If this drawing was just for me, I would fill the sky with cross-hatch. The mid ground (now white) would also be filled. It would be dark and moody. And it would not be something to show off the barn so much as it would be to say farewell.

This didn't seem to me what the buyer would want and I think this threw me out of my element and wound up with this.

I appreciate your comment. I find myself trying to draw to match what I think someone else is expecting to see and wind up loosing me.

graphicali 05-18-2019 11:53 AM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Very well done!

pedlars pen 05-18-2019 03:04 PM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Most interesting those replies Joel, I never or perhaps I should say I couldn't do commissions because I see my "job" fundamentally as an artist, is to make to most beautiful rendering of a subject as I am able as I see things. Period.
I will remove an ugly extension of a house if it spoils my take on aesthetics ! I will draw cracks in the wall that are not there ! , that tree would lead the eye back into the building if it had a heavy branch winding in that direction- so I'll make it up etc. etc.:lol:
I know that the landscape artists I have studied like Turner or Constable felt totally uninhibited about mixing things up as they pleased ,just for effect !
Turner would move ruins or make ruins just because they looked more romantic.
Constable is famous for putting his favourite church spire in the background of a large number of his paintings regardless of it's position in reality ,even if it was in a different county!

The constrictions of a commission had never even occurred to me & it does sound like a alien & frightening world :eek:
I don't know if you have to do it for the money ? which is an entirely different thing of course ! but without reading in-between the lines at all - you sound like a artist who is not following his heart , not going his own way or has exhausted this way.

This is bad enough in real life (although not always avoidable) but in artistic life terms unforgivable !
You simply must drink the refreshing & energizing waters at the well of your own path -what ever that is & where ever it goes.
Nobody at all can be factored into the discernment of this direction, it is a purely personal path .Otherwise you will wither, repeat & die of thirst.
I just say this because I've been there & more than once.:(
Perhaps we all have been ! :lol:
Cheers Mike

objectivistartist 05-20-2019 08:55 AM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
good thoughts, Mike - is why I not do commissions - my paintings are from my world within my head, and if ye not like it, a fart upon you..... but I admire those who do commissions and can stomach those restrictions.......like this one - very good barn, and the background reminds me of Yang Yu-Tang...

pedlars pen 05-20-2019 06:45 PM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Thanks for commenting Robert :) , there are those who can do a commission but others who just feel it is a compromise, feeling that their heart is taken away.
I've found I just can't put my heart into commissions, others I know gauge their whole satisfaction from art by how pleased the recipient is.
Neither is right or wrong - just differently motivated maybe.

Green Ink 05-21-2019 08:17 AM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Good grief I thought it was a photo! Nice work.

Joel L 06-13-2019 02:35 PM

Re: Barn in western Iowa
Thank you, Green Ink!

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