Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Little Squares

Seems like I can't leave well enough alone, I'm always experimenting, especially the last year or so.  However my typical go-to techniques have been either lots of layering using brushes and glazing or thick palette knife application.  Last month I made two paintings using a somewhat different technique/style.

art original for sale painting nature mountain outdoors
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"Spring Walk in the Mountains"

Acrylic on 1/8" panel, 10" X 8"
Original - $100
Prints Available

As you can see in this painting the entire image is made up of small, square brush strokes creating a sort of mosaic effect.  I'm not sure this could technically be called impressionism but the image is more abstract the closer you look at it so it does have an impressionistic visual effect.  The technique is very simple and I think that is one of the things that appeals to me.  I did a simple underpainting to establish the composition then simply applied deliberate brushstrokes.  The idea is to always consider the brushstroke color, direction and placement before putting it down, it forces you to slow down and by more mindful.  My goal was to avoid having to rework my brushstrokes.  There is some overlapping of strokes but nothing to the extent that could be called layering. 

One of the challenging aspects of using this technique with this image is that I was using square brushstrokes to represent the organic shapes of clouds, distant mountains and trees without it looking mechanical, I think it worked out pretty well.  The painting is based on one of the many photos I've taken while hiking in the Wasatch Mountains, I think I was on the Willow Heights Conservation area trail for this one.

original painting art classic car Chevy 1948
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"Red 1948 Chevy"

Acrylic on 3/4" panel, 20" X 16"
Original - $300

This second painting was an experiment of trying the "little squares" technique on a vehicle.  To keep it simple I chose a close crop of a 1948 Chevy that I photographed at a car show and I put in a simple abstract background.  While I did have to stray slightly from the "little squares" concept in order to maintain the identity of the car it was easier than I thought it would be to keep the variety of shapes on a classic car identifiable, and it was a lot of fun and went quicker than I expected.

I think there is plenty of potential in the "little squares" technique/style, the process was enjoyable and produced interesting and effective results, I'm sure I'll continue to explore this concept.

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