Sunday, 10 March 2013

A Change of Direction?

After the Storm Over Rape Field. 305 x 210 mm watercolour and pen.

A Change of Direction?
This is my first foray into cubism. I've never really liked Picasso’s cubism works or cubism in general, until I came across Barry Coombs. It is his watercolour works that inspired me to paint this landscape, which is something of a departure for me.


This painting may look familiar, as I've done this scene before as a normal watercolour (see picture below), but this time I wanted to keep it very simple and colourful and have tried to introduce some cubism element to the work. I think you’ll agree this version is a complete transformation.

I've used three primary colours (French ultramarine blue, cadmium red and cadmium yellow) with a little cerulean blue added, mixing large amounts of each and adding as much pigment as possible. Just seeing those three gorgeous colours in my palette dish in all their bright splendour was a real turn on and it felt so exciting to lay them down and drop them into each other on the paper!

I'm already hooked on this style of painting, and I think I may have to change the name of this blog from Frank’s Watercolour Revival to Frank’s Watercolour Discovery, as I seem to be finding out new ways of doing things all the time!
My original version
30 Tourists Part 2


Work on my current acrylic project is slow, and going to be a lot harder than I first thought. The faces are turning out to be more time consuming than I really wanted, and for some reason, skin tones are proving unusually difficult. Never mind, I will work it out!
This time I gave the whole canvas a light wash of  burnt sienna, taking care not to hide the pencil work too much and to stop those annoying white bits showing through my work. This also makes it easier when adding whitish highlights. The way I like to work is to treat each small area of the work one piece at a time, then move on, gradually building up to the finished painting. The layering that a lot of artists do, I'll leave for my watercolour work.
30 Tourists - Part 2. Acrylic on stretched canvas.

13 comments:

  1. Wow! The cubist version makes the original look positively grey! I think you might be onto something here and it looks very exciting.

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    1. I must admit that the new version outshines the old Keith, but to be fair, the old one is underexposed quite a bit.

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  2. Really like the new direction, Frank. It looks funky and fun! xx

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    1. Thanks Pat - it definitely was fun!

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  3. WOW this is just great. You have actually discovered some thing. The colors and the composition all look way beyond the original. Fabulous.

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    1. Thanks AK, art is like a tree isn't it, a branch grows, then shoots off in different directions.

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  4. This new direction of yours is fantastic!! It's so exciting and vibrant! It captures my imagination and holds my interest. I keep wanting to look at it again and again!

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    1. Crickey Angela, your comment spurs me on a lot!

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  5. Talk about something completely different. This is a fabulously 'wacky' painting Frank but I love it. I have to confess to never having heard of Cubism so this has been a real eye-opener for me. I'm looking forward to seeing more. ;)

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    1. It sounds to me like "whacky" is a good word to describe this painting John. Maybe there'll be another whacky cubism painting from again soon!

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  6. I think it is fantastic! I've never liked cubism (probably more for a lack of understanding what they are trying to do?) but this really does stand out when compared to the other! I love the colors; I even love the jagged lines. I think I like cubism in your hands! Your previous painting was so good, but next to this it looks sleepy in a way. I am truly surprised at the result. I might need to go learn a little something about the cubists!

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    1. Sorry...I say 'I' a lot. I really need to work on that. :)

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    2. Bless you Reana for saying you love cubism in my hands - that's such a compliment. Funny though, the more I try to do cubism, the more I find myself slipping back to normal, quite annoying!

      I too struggle with alternatives to "I" ;)

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