There was something regal about these two, hence the name, despite the queen sitting in a soap dish, not a throne. I started out thinking “values and planes” and then, as usual, got seduced by color and detail. I did manage to keep some of the planes I saw in this pomegranate (which was becoming more faceted as it became more elderly, having been painted a few times over the past couple weeks). However, I’m not sure the painting actually benefitted from leaving the planes (or so many of them) visible.
Below is a photo of the set up and below that the two previous pom/persimmon paintings that were a nice warmup and introduction to the subject, though perhaps not terribly successful in terms of paint application, composition and/or drawing.
I’m still having fun painting poms and trying to understand them. Below is the process I used, with photos of the set up. I like starting with a Pitt pastel pencil to sketch in the composition and then go to thinned down transparent oil paint.
I’ve switched back to working on panels again from paper in order to have a slicker surface that allows wiping off more easily than the Arches Oil Paper which is very absorbent.
(SOLD) This painting went through so many changes. I started it before I got the awful cold that kept me out of the studio for over a week. I lost my focus while painting the cloth draped in the background and at the end of the day scraped off the afternoon’s work. When I came back the next day, my foam core shadow box had collapsed and was on the floor along with the drapery and the LED light that I’d perched atop on a piece of plexiglass. Fortunately the brick held steady as did the fruit.
That accident gave me the opportunity to try a different background. I removed the white paper I’d been using to cover the black walls of the shadow box and painted the now darker background. I had fun painting the persimmons and the brick and I think I did a good job understanding them; the pom not so much. It should have a more geometric, boxy shape, not be so rounded.
Below are the stages in trying to get this thing painted, along with the set up as it changed. Click on an image to see full picture, scroll over images to read captions.
Happy New Year! Thanks for hanging out with me this past year! Even though I’ve had a nasty cold all week I managed to get in some pomegranate painting between nose blowing, naps, and chicken soup breaks, but not nearly as much as I’d hoped to do over my year-end vacation.
I only had enough energy to be in the studio for a couple of hours a day but fortunately the pom waited nicely for me. I started by doing a value study in oils (above), trying to sort out where the darkest darks and lightest lights are and just how dark and light they are.
I did a small study next since I knew I didn’t have more than an hour or so of painting energy. I had fun with this and feel like I’m starting to find a way to get loose and sketchy with oils.
I used a GE Reveal light bulb in my lamp which gave everything a pinkish-lavender cast and that’s why I named the painting “Pomegranate Revealed.” GE says they are “specially made to filter out the dull yellow rays produced by standard incandescent bulbs.” I’d bought it originally thinking it would simulate daylight but it doesn’t at all. I usually use a fluorescent 5000K bulb 40 watt bulb (equal to 150 watts) which does a better job of producing clean light.
When I compared the final painting and the studies I realized I liked the original composition with less background better so I experimented with cropping the painting in Photoshop. It’s not hard to cut the board down if I decide to crop it for real.
What do you think? Do you like this cropped version or the “final” version at the top of the post better?