Wednesday, November 7, 2007

"Cold Camden"

"Cold Camden", 6" x 8" oil on board, 2007
Private Collection

This is a new studio painting from a photo that I took last October in Camden, Maine. It is starting to get a little cold here. At night. Well, alright, not as cold as what some of you have had, but cold enough to remind me of my painting trip to Maine last October with some painting buddies. We stayed and painted in Port Clyde, but took a day and went up to Camden to visit some galleries and paint the harbor. So, inspired by this "cold", I have been doing some paintings in my little back patio here at the gallery using photos from that trip. This is the first one, I'll post some others later.

Detail, "Cold Camden"

I used a burnt sienna under painting on this piece because of all the "cool" colors ( blues, greens and the white) I wanted it to look cold, but not be too "cool" in color temperature. I left little bits of the sienna showing through here and there. Your eye mixes those in and gives the painting the feeling of the sunny day. Notice how that lobster boat in the back is just a few little strokes and how the green is "bluer" to the left and "yellower" to the right. That emphasizes where the light source is, to the right.

Detail, "Cold Camden"

In this detail I wanted to show how simply the background is painted. I don't want anything back there that will take away from the center of interest, the worker in the boat. Just a few quick strokes to show what's back there, a schooner and a building. Like Hawthorne said, "Only the owner of the house will count the windows".
The edges back there are softer too making the worker in the boat draw your attention. On this scale I could not put in too many details, but I wanted to play around with a lot of subtle grays in the shadows, like in the worker's sweater and pants.


Anonymous said...

Frank--now a painting closer to my home in Maine. I appreciate the explanation of the detail of the piece. You recommended to me the book "How to Fill Your Painting With Light and Color" by Kevin Macpherson. He cites as the most important lesson in the book that "colors over dark are cool, colors over light are warm." With the sienna ground you got the "cool" perfectly. By the way. it's a lot colder in Camden right now than when you were there! Jack Thanks

Frank Gardner said...

Hi Jack, I think I'll post some more things from Maine tomorrow. Thanks for checking in.