Categories
Oil Painting Painting Still Life

Stumped by Stumpy Carrots

Stumpy Carrot Study 2, oil on panel, 8x8"
Stumpy Carrot Study #2 with Apple, oil on Gessobord panel, 8×8″

A fresh bunch of colorful, stumpy, little carrots with greens still attached: a great still life subject, I thought. But after two days of painting carrots I had my doubts. I was happier with the one above, my second attempt.

Stumpy Carrot study #1, oil on Gessobord panel, 8x8"
Stumpy Carrot Study #1 with Olive Oil Jug, oil on Gessobord panel, 8×8″

After the first try (Study #1) above, I wasn’t so sure. I tried and tried with the first one but it just wasn’t happening. In a rare moment of painting sanity, I decided to abandon the first one and try another composition (Study #2 at top).

I questioned whether to even post the first study since I’m not happy with the carrots. What do you think? Is it interesting or helpful to show the ones I don’t like? Or should I only post my best work that I’m proud of?

I don’t know if it was their hours under the lights or my hours struggling with them, but by the time I finished the carrots were looking an awful lot less appealing to me. I ate them anyway. Sliced and steamed with a little butter. They tasted better than they painted.

Categories
Art theory Oil Painting Painting Still Life

Apple Can Brush (huh?)

Apple Can Brush, oil on panel 8x8"
Apple Can Brush, oil on panel, 8x8"

I know the title sounds like random word salad but since the still life objects are equally random I think it is fitting. The tin can in the painting is from a can of Trader Joe’s Split Pea Soup.

I was fidgeting with the can while the soup was warming in a bowl in the office microwave and in the process removed the label. I was struck by how pretty the can was and so to my office mates’ amusement, I washed out the can to take it home and paint it. It needed companions in the composition; an apple was handy as was a paint brush.

Apple Can Brush, drawn on panel with pastel pencil
Apple Can Brush, drawn on panel with pastel pencil

I focused on seeing planes values, and putting the paint down and leaving it. The picture above shows the way I sketched out the composition with the planes on the panel with pastel pencil before painting.

I really enjoyed the process and the results. Can’t ask for more than that!