Friday, February 22, 2008

"Sock Monkey"


"Sock Monkey", 6" x 8" oil on board, 2008
Not For Sale

This is my second still life. I guess I can call it a series now. I don't usually take many commissions, but since "Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse" I have gotten a few requests that I just can't turn down. For the most part, I find that kids who are not actually "paying" for a painting are pretty easy to please.

There were a few issues with lighting that I struggled with. I don't usually paint at night so I don't have good lights. I just used one 60 watt bulb to light the monkey, the painting and my palette. The light from an incandescent bulb is pretty warm. That makes the paint look warmer than it really is. I adjusted pretty well for that, and the colors are actually pretty accurate when I look at it this morning. I had a hard time seeing into my values while I was painting it though. A good challenge I guess.

A still life set up like Carol Marine's is what I need to get for these.

I have added a few close ups as well. I've found that some people like scrolling on a large image to see details and others do not. I prefer to post an image that is closer to the size of the original on these small ones. Details are cool because they give you that feeling of getting up close to check out the brushwork.



detail 1



detail 2

24 comments:

Dean H. said...

I really like the painting, Frank. The color feels calm and in close harmony....much like a great singing group. I'm also a fan of the closeup...love to see how the brush leaves the paint applied to the support.

Frank Gardner said...

Thanks Dean. Nice way to describe harmony.
I always stick my face up close to paintings at galleries to see the strokes.

christine said...

you know you are now the coolest guy on the block to your 'patrons'!! for someone who doesn't paint still lifes, this is a well done painting. there is something sweet about the way the monkey is sitting there staring off canvas, maybe he's lovingly watching his owner. the brushstrokes on this one are stronger than 'cowgirl', it makes this little guy seem very loved by his owner.

FCP said...

I really like both of these "out of the box" pieces, Frank. Thanks for the close-up views--I love to see (and be inspired by) those confident brushstrokes.

J Matt Miller said...

Thanks for the comment, Frank. I love your gutsy brushwork in this one! Cheers,

Frank Gardner said...

Thanks Christine. My "client" was surprised and thrilled to see this one tonight. I got "paid" my hugs and am feeling good about this one.

Frank Gardner said...

Thanks Faye! I'm glad that you like them.

Frank Gardner said...

J Matt, it's nice to hear your opinion on this one. You do some of the best still lives out there.
Thanks for your comments.

takinanap said...

thanks for the inspiration. i am a sock monkey maker and i am learning to paint. sock monkeys are on my list of subjects to paint.

Frank Gardner said...

Hi takinanap, Thanks for the visit. I got a big kick out of your sock monkeys. They have real personality, I especially liked seeing the adventures of Irritable and Big Hiney, and the Seven Deadly Sins.
I'll be painting a few more of these I think.

Ambera said...

This is so great. My favorite thing about it has to be that red mouth, very creepy.

Frank Gardner said...

Heh, you should see his butt. Thanks Ambera.

Jason Waskey said...

Hah! Nice to see that you've come over to the dark side (doing small still lifes)... :)

Nicely done.

Have you taken a look see at paul hutchinson's work? I think it's simpatico to the two pieces you've recently posted...

Frank Gardner said...

Jason, I just wanted to try something different. Besides, it helps to know what I'm talkin about when I am blabbin' on about still lives on blogs.

Jennifer said...

Frank- This looks like character with a story to tell... His mouth is striking. Love it!

Frank Gardner said...

I bet that he does have a story or two. Funny, I was just on your site checking the Map Monday when this came in.
Thanks for the comments as always Jennifer.

Eric Orchard said...

Really amazing. One of the reasons I gave up oil in frustration is because I couldn't paint like this.

Frank Gardner said...

I appreciate that Eric.
I don't know, I think you have a great hand for painting.
It has taken me longer than I would like to admit to get to this point. You will have to give the oils another go some time when you are not so busy.

Eric Orchard said...

I really think that oils present a special challenge. When I was training in oils I found them both engrossing and frustrating. I ended up switching to acrylic out of laziness. I'm using the sock monkey as my desk top picture, I hope that's OK.

Frank Gardner said...

Of course it is O.K. Eric. Thanks for letting me know.
I'm honored.

Mary Sheehan Winn said...

Carol Marine's set up is great. Looks like the perfect height and it's on a movable stand which I think also tilts.
I want one too.

Frank Gardner said...

Hi Mary, Carol's stand goes up and down and does tilt. It has that light PVC frame for fabrics.

Crazy Daisy said...

I love sock monkeys and I love the feeling the painting gives me its a safe warm full of love feeling.

Frank Gardner said...

Thanks Crazy Daisy! I am glad the sock monkey gives you a feeling of safe and warm. Like a sock monkey should.
Good luck with your new blog.