Saturday, July 21, 2012

Useful.. May be

I realized that I never post anything useful in my blog. This post will try to break that. I thought I'll share one of my working methods with you. And may be you benefit from it.

Now this method is one of my working methods and not the only method I follow. But I thought of sharing this because I thought it may be a little unique, and its just so much fun.

Whenever I work from photographs I don't directly work from it. There is an intermediate stage where I make a sketch using the photo which usually involves moving things here and there, eliminating stuff, adding elements, playing with tonal values etc. The idea is to come up with a composition from the photo which can be painted. Mostly I do this step with pencil. But sometimes a clear idea does not get formed even after trying out a lot of things. Or may be sometimes I want to get a lot more clarity on the idea. Then I do this.

I do a few fun sketches in watercolor itself. This is how I do it.

1. I tape my paper (usually half imperial) to divide it into four parts. Sometimes the parts are equal and sometimes they are not. Really depends on my mood.I picked this paper division thing from Robert Wade.
2. Then I do my drawings.
3. Next I generally put down a note on top of each part mentioning the time of the day/mood that I am aiming to achieve in each part. Not always though.
4. Then using only 3 primaries (generally) I start coloring them simultaneously. This way I don't have to wait for layers to dry in a painting.
5. I try out whatever ideas I have in my mind. This is important because I get a general idea about what will work for that painting. And more importantly what will not work.
6. Remove the tape in the end and again make note of what has and what has not worked.

This way I get a reference for my painting which has a lot of information and lot of clarity of thought while having loads of fun. Sometimes one of these sketches turn out just perfect. A finished painting in its own right.

 Stage 1: Drawings are done. Note about the time/mood has been made.
 Stage 2: A snapshot of simultaneous paintings. Just trying out everything I have in my head

Stage 3: All sketches done. Now its time to reflect and find out what worked and more importantly what did not.

Another older study

Let me know if you enjoyed this post. If you learnt anything from this it will be great. Let me know.


Vicki Holdwick said...

Wonderful idea; I think it would be great as a warm up exercise prior to painting, whether or not these small pieces are going to be used later.



Judy said...

Very useful! I like to see how other people work, very interesting to see! Thanks for sharing, Prabal!

Serena Lewis said...

I very much enjoyed seeing your process...thank you, I found it very helpful. :)

hmuxo said...

Even though I don't work with watercolors, its always interesting to see how other people work!!! Wonderful process...thank you for sharing, Prabal!!.

Sandra said...

I always enjoy looking at the processes of other Artists. Yes - we all learn from things like this and I would love to see more! :0)

Carol Blackburn said...

Prabal, I enjoyed this post very much. It is so interesting to see how a wonderful artist as yourself works. I have often done a sketch, then a quick painting before working on the final version. Other paintings just happen first try. I do hope you'll show us more of your process and tell us about your materials. You're the greatest! I miss your orange hat....:)

Blaga said...

Thank you for sharing this, Prabal! It is definitely very useful and interesting. I would imagine that quite often these studies turn out very successful themselves, like most of those you showed here.

Studio at the Farm said...

I DID enjoy this post, Prabal! And learned. Whether I apply it, I'm not sure. I am usually too impatient to get on with a "finished" painting. And that's probably why I have to do so many re-starts! I think this technique is extremely beneficial when painting landscapes, and I thank you very much for demonstrating these techniques.

Kathy said...

Great job Prabal...thanks so much for sharing. I am not that patient but look at these little gems that you came up with. This might be a great study to do with my students. They hate to do the pencil value sketches that I have them do...This would definitely separate the men from the boys.

I am on my way out to get a pizza. Want to join us?