22 June 2009

Sean Cheetham Workshop. Day 1 (b)

For an excellent review on Sean's workshops click on this link and do not miss the graphic of his palette. This are some common weaknesses he points out:

*Starting to paint without a tight and accurate drawing. Impatience costs in time and it doesn't improve spontaneity.

* Starting with powerful darks maintains the luminosity of the shadows and allows the painter to not have to revisit them later and making them muddy.

*Transitions between light and shadow are more subtle than novice painters make them.

*An organized palette saves most of the guesswork as the painting progresses.

* Regular painting helps the artist remember and consolidate what he/she learns.

After Sean had placed all the dark areas with a rich mix of burnt siena and olive green, he made a large pool of mid-tone color and a smaller pool of fluorescent or cool light with manganese blue and white. He then carefully proceeded to add the mid tones. I think this might be one of the most critical parts as it forces to distinguish what is in light and what is receding. Depending of the degree to which each area is exposed to light, cooler or warmer tones will be used. Into consideration as well is the reflection of the background, clothes, etc. ..

Finally, Sean tackled the most luminous areas never for a second jumping to highlights or touches of "effect" which are so frequent in other painters which shall remain unnamed. For a more realistic effect, he used some of the more worn out brushes to blend the paint a bit afterwards loosening the almost graphic effect of the result. This sobriety and uncompromising approach is what makes Sean's paintings so appealing and contemporary as well as the subject matter which shuns the precious and picturesque. You just can't beat reality.


Albert. S said...

Jose, did you happen to see if Sean squinted as he painted? I saw a video of him and couldnt see if he did. I know some artist really take to that technique and some use it sparingly.


Jose De Juan said...

I have no idea If he did, I didn't notice plus he wears glasses.