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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Benefit of Using Mini Reference Photos


'Change in the Air'          8x10         pastel       ©Karen Margulis
available $145
 I like mine small. Very small. In fact I like them so small that I can hardly see them especially with out my readers. I'm talking about reference photos. I am not anti-tablet or iPad but I do prefer a physical reference photo. But I want them small! This is my guiding principle when using photos.

The less you can see the more you are free to interpret what you do see.




Contact sheet of reference photos

That is why I like my reference photos small. I only want to see what is important. I can see the big shapes or maybe a color that excites me. I can see patterns of light and dark. Seeing the big shapes of light and dark form the bones of a strong painting.

I may not be able to see the tiny details but that actually allows me to concentrate on what is important. I won't get caught up in painting detail too soon. It won't allow me to put in more detail than is needed!
The reference photo used for this painting 3x2 inches!
Painting notes:  8x10 on Walllis warm mist discontinued paper. :(  with an assortment of Terry Ludwig pastels.

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6 comments:

Ricardo García Espinosa said...

Hello, Karen! I also prefer stamping on paper my photos of reference, on sizes near to 4 inches. But if I am employed at bigger formats, also I use bigger impressions. Do you use these sizes to paint big formats?
Thank you!

Karen said...

For larger paintings I still use smaller photos. Sometimes I will use smaller paintings as my reference for larger work.

Sandi G said...

Hi Karen , I’m trying to figure out how you were able to take these low photos . I envision you squatting or crawling around looking for a few perfect shots! I’m a long time follower so I thought you wouldn’t mind if I asked ! Lol! 🙃

Karen said...

Good question Sandi! I sometimes squat but most times just hold my camera down low and hope for the best!

Gail said...

Hi Karen, I love the idea of printing multiple small photos. Just wondering — what type of printer do you use? My printer runs out of ink in no time if I try to print photos

Karen said...

I have a cheap hp printer. I use the setting for plain paper