Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Rocks Study

Rocks Study
6" X 8" Oil on Panel
I worked on this little study early this morning to gain more confidence painting larger rock formations. To me, rocks are really hard to paint. Not the small boulder type rocks but large formations such as this to me seem daunting to paint. I've decided to work out how to paint them on the smaller panels before moving to a larger canvas. Initially I blocked in the darker shadow value and then added the highlight. After that I began painting in the craks and crevices with a liner brush. What was interesting is that the rocks looked horrible once I was in the process of adding the details with the liner brush. I was so frustrated at one point that I decided it was going to get wiped off. Once I made that decision I felt more relaxed to experiment...to continue on adding detail until it was too painful to waste time putting off dragging my rag over the whole mess. Then a strange thing happened...it started to fall together...to resemble sunlit rocks with strong morning shadows. Whew!
This is on textured masonite which accounts for all of the texture lines but that was ok since this is only a study for a larger painting with some large rock mass in it. The rocks aren't the best here nor were they meant to be. This is only a study on a very small panel. Still, to me they resemble rocks the way I'd like them to look. What I got out of this painting is the confidence to attempt a larger painting with rocks. That was more important than a finished painting here.

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