Just Art-e

Demonstration II by William Whitaker - Artist Website


A painting demonstration in oil on an 18x24" canvas.  


     In the summer of 1999, Sandra took a workshop from Jim Wilcox in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.  While everybody went out to paint the Tetons all day, I stayed inside in Jim's Jackson studio and started this painting from a photograph.  I toned the canvas with what was probably one of the ugliest oil washes I'd ever made and then I began to draw the form with a brush and some burnt umber.  I had my slide camera with me, so I decided I'd try and take pictures as I went along.   The image on the left was taken when I was about fifteen minutes along, the image on the right was the state of the painting after about an hour.

    By the end of the first painting session, when Sandra and the other students came dragging in all sunburned and bug bitten, I'd taken the painting this far.  I put down my brushes and went out and enjoyed the Tetons in the cool of the evening like a sensible person.  Since I'd used earth colors, thin paint, and a walnut oil/alkyd resin painting medium, my canvas was dry by the next day. 



     Above left shows the painting at the end of the second session.  Progress begins to slow down in spite of my always using the largest bristle brushes possible.  I take lots of breaks too.  I don't want my eyes to deceive me as I go along.  In the image on the right, I continue to correct the drawing.  Notice the shape of the cello.  I refined the hands and face and laid in the chair.  Cello strings are a challenge.  I spent a long time on them.

     I finished the painting back at my sister's mountain home in Heber Valley, Utah.  I used a mirror and myself as a model to help me get the hands right.  I also used a pair of shoes and an old chair as models.   I try and preserve the happy accidents in my paint.  I also pay a lot of attention to edges.  I used a painting knife on the background.  I'd put down a slash of blue color along the subject's upper right arm.  At this final stage, I've covered it over.  However, bits of it come through to add a little visual interest.




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