|'September Fair' 8x10 pastel ©Karen Margulis sold|
There was so much stuff in this scene...water, trees, fall foliage, water lilies, dead trees. Too much! This must be what Robert Henri was referring to when he said we see too much...scatteringly. I needed to see the scene simply. But how?
I came across the photo this week and thought it would be a perfect demo for my class. We are working on doing simple block ins starting with 4 value thumbnails. This photo would be the perfect candidate for simplification. But how??
Glassine Paper to the Rescue!
|Black and white thumbnail for the painting|
It is challenging to see the big simple shapes when there is so much information. Squinting helps to eliminate the clutter. I need to remember to squint more often! But here is another way to eliminate the clutter. Tape a piece of glassine or tracing paper over your reference photo. This allows you to see the big shapes of light and dark. Now outline these shapes with your marker. You can fill in your values right on the glassine or use the outline in your sketchbook.
I used the thumbnail to block in my painting. I was able to gradually build the painting on top of these big shapes adding the detail I wanted. If I had started trying to paint from the photo I would have been lost! I would have seen too much.