A Class with Rick Surowicz: “Abandoned” (Day 2)

Today I moved forward a few steps, in part because I’ve been busy with other things.  However, I am determined to work every day on this class, to keep myself from forgetting things.  There is a lot to learn, even though it may not appear to be such.

Moving from the value studies, the next step is color value studies, for light, medium and dark, but also for warm and cool greens and neutral colors.  To me, this is often an issue.  I don’t perceive colors as “warm” and  “cool” visually – I see them intellectually, meaning I know some formulas for mixes.  This section of the course, then, is very important for me – it’s a road map for future work.

Cool green are achieved by using sap green with a tinge of pyrrol red, raw sienna, burnt sienna, and (to my surprise) cerulean.  In the video, Rick mixes these colors and uses them for the trees in the background, behine and beside the house.  Warm greens are created with raw sienna and sap green, with a tinge of pyrrol red to neutralize the sap green.  These greens are used in the foreground grasses and bushes in front of the house.  I can see the differences in my color study, but they are subtle.  However, painting is a skill and learning such things, and memorizing them, adds to the basic skillset of painting.

Finally, using burnt umber and ultramarine blue (supposedly a warm blue!), dark values were created.  These two colors often are used in painting to replace what we may consider to be black visually.  Now we have a color study with values of light, medium, and dark.  These should help with the final painting when considering what to do!

Besides explaining the usage of color, Rick states he does not mix his colors on the paper, but on the palette, getting the consistency he wants before applying it to the paper.  Other painters take a color directly to the paper, and then mix as they go along.  Both techniques have their points.  I find my colors are more pure when I take them directly to the paper, but easier to turn to mud if not carefully done.  The palette method of mixing colors allows for testing swatches of colors on scrap paper.

Looking at the above study, I think I want the trees behind the house to be a bit darker (more contrast?) along with the windows on the far left, second floor, of the house.

More tomorrow!

Disappointment & Enlightenment

Disappointment:  The meetup experience did not go well.

Being interrupted and being told “you are wrong,” in no uncertain terms by an old geezer, and then being attacked by the group leader for telling the geezer to let me finish talking and stop interrupting, is wrong.

Further in the session, the geezer told someone “those are the rules” without clarification.  What rules?  How to put a sentence together?  What do you mean?  Explain, please.

My initial impression of the moderator was not impressive – he felt needy and off-balance somehow.

Facing the geezer, my first thought was here is a man used to being in power and control, who feels it is okay to interrupt others.

Rudeness and ego-centrism do not have a place in a group such as this.  Other groups I have been in have not had these elements from either members or the moderator.

I am sad, too, as I had looked forward to becoming part of a community of writers.  The other members of the group were good, and there was some talented writing.

Enlightenment:  While disappointed by this experience, it also served to make very clear to me something which had been rumbling around in my head for some time:  Scheduling things to do on my days off does not always work in my favor.

Each time I schedule something that needs some work – such as a writing meetup – it means a lot of focus on that event.  If it becomes something that takes up a lot of time and energy without reward, ultimately I am exhausted.  As an introvert, quiet time with self-reflection and thought is a necessity for self-renewal.

Scheduling time with people I value, doing things I enjoy, is a completely different thing.  I come away refreshed and joyful.

I knew this before the meetup.  I know this now even better than before.  My choices are very clear.