Its About Doing Studies.
What I’d like to do with today’s article is talk to you about why I do studies. You might have noticed that I’m called my drawings and paintings for the Strada Easel challenge “studies”. I’m doing that for a reason: I’m studying!
Day 19: Tea Time-R V2.
Today’s study is another version of my Tea Timer-R still life. I rearranged the objects and lighting. And, then, I took the composition up a notch by being more deliberate in the placement on the page.
To explain, with my previous studies for the Strada Easel challenge, I took a simpler approach to placement. In the back of my head I figured I might crop the study if I wanted to. Put another way, I was just concerned to get the subject on the paper and complete my painting in a day.
However, today, I took some time to frame my composition, consider where I wanted space and where I wanted to touch edges.
And, then, I went to it, drawing and painting from life.
Timer: Focal Point.
You might notice that the arrangement made it so the timer is the most important object in the study. By being the lightest and warmest shape, your eye goes to the timer. It also has the area of greatest contrast.
So, what if I wanted the teabag to be the center of attention? Well, I think that might be a good idea for tomorrow’s study.
Study By Intention.
What is it with all these studies? Aren’t they paintings? Well, yes, they might be small paintings. However, my intentions have been to study. That is to see, to try things, to experiment, and to discover.
So, how is this different? Well, I’m not concerned about mistakes. I allow myself to ask the “what if questions”, then try something out. Its sort of a free-wheeling, intuitive way to explore subject. Potentially, some of these studies could lead to a more deliberate painting.
The Difference Between Studies and Show Paintings.
When I do a study, I carry out the drawing or painting only as far as I want to. When I do a more deliberate painting, something that might be show worthy, it takes a LOT of thought, planning and problem solving. And, the painting is not complete until I achieve unity.
Picasso Did Studies.
I have had the privilege of seeing Picasso’s painting “Guernica” in the Museo Reina Sofia, Spain’s museum of 20th century art in Madrid. What struck me was the number of studies that Picasso did in preparation for the grand mural. Plus, he altered the composition during the painting process.
The point? That’s when I realized doing studies was a natural part of the artist’s process. Its sort of like a musician doing scales or practicing.
About Picasso’s Process For Guernica, from PBS.
Artist Steve Mitchell’s blog article on doing studies, What Exactly Is A Painting Study.
About Today’s Studies.
I thought I’d catch up on my daily “from life” studies for the January Strada Easel challenge.
One final thought about doing studies: you can do them pretty much anytime, anywhere! Isn’t that wonderful?