Wednesday, May 04, 2016


Wow! The response to yesterday’s post was overwhelming. And since so many of you asked for more about that process of sketching and painting in public places, here’s another one.
     The sketch for this one was done in a musty old bookstore I happened to wander into. I’m a sucker for bookstores, especially OLD ones that have a totally random assortment of used books. You never know what you’ll find. And one thing I found here was this painting waiting to happen.
     In this particular case I didn’t get beyond the pencil sketch on-site. In fact, each of these guys was sketched separately. And that brings up another interesting tip: don’t be afraid to combine people in different ways than you see them if it makes a better picture.
     In this case both guys actually were positioned like you see them here and I quickly sketched the overall composition, especially how the two figures were positioned in the aisle. But then the guy in the foreground moved quickly to another spot up the aisle.
     I took that opportunity to complete the sketch of the guy in the background. It took only a few minutes, and by then the guy in front was down looking on bottom shelves again. That’s when I finished my sketch of him, keeping him in the original position you see here.
     Then I took my time to add the shelving and more carefully note the lighting. But all this was still done only in the pencil stage. I also made written notes about the colors and lighting because I knew I wouldn’t be painting here and I desperately wanted to PAINT this. I loved the darkness, and the glowing lighting effects. Take a look at the detail images to see this better and you’ll understand why I was driven to record it in color. I’ll be covering all this and more in my new Figure Workshop. It’s going to be pretty cool; hope you can make it. Here are the details to enroll if you’re interested:
     Meetings are on Saturdays May 14 to June 18 from 1pm – 3:30pm in a large studio at the Irvine Fine Arts Center. To enroll today call the Irvine Fine Arts Center at 949-724-6880, and refer to class #166138.
     If you have more questions, email me at  
CLICK HERE for all my available paintings.


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