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“Espresso Time-R” at Rogue Gallery’s Annual Member’s Exhibition

Greetings!   

I am pleased to say that my painting “Espresso Time-R” is in the 2017 Annual Member’s Exhibition at the Rogue Gallery.  
  
Rogue Gallery & Art Center (Medford)

Exhibition Details.

This is to let you know the where and when of the show.

  • Location:  Rogue Gallery and Art Center, 40S Bartlett St., Medford OR
  • Opening Reception:  Friday, November 17, from 5 to 8 pm.
  • Show Dates:  November 17th through December 21
  • View during business hours:  
    • Tuesday – Friday:  10am to 5pm
    • Saturday:        11am to 3pm 

About the Exhibition, From The Gallery’s Website.

“This exhibit gives Rogue Gallery members an opportunity to exhibit one piece of their work on the central theme of “Time”. Over 50 artists are participating in this non-juried exhibit. Artists’ submitted artwork that reflects their personal interpretation of the theme. The exhibit includes watercolors, acrylic, and oil paintings as well as sculptures, photography, and pastels”.

Participating Artists:

I would like to highlight that, per the gallery’s website, over 50 artists submitted work this year.  Included are the following artists:

Bruce Allen, Rachel Barrett, Betty Barss, Bruce Bayard, Linda Boutacoff, Robert Broadway, Susan Eileen Burnes, John Campbell, Jim Curtis, Julia Dahl, Ann Di Salvo, Linda Dixon, Phyllis Earls, Anna Elkins, Linda Elesiya Evans, Kim Faucher, Debby Fisher, Cynthia Flowers, Tom Glassman, Kelly Gratton, Phyllis Gustafson, Claudia Harlow, Nomeca Hartwell, Pam Haunschild, Anna Hinkle, Howard Hunt, Marilyn Hurst, Zelpha Hutton, Jennifer Ivey, Joan Kennedy, Judy Benson LaNier, Christina Madden, Dave Mathewson, Anna May, Linda Meerten, Vera Melnyk, Kathy Morawiec, Judy Ghetti Ommen, Tom Ommen, Cecilia Pestlin, June Shepard, Margaret Stermer-Cox, Leland Struebig, Cherri Van Syoc, Daniel Verner, Doug Wallace, Karen Wallace, Gerald Westgerdes, Marilyn Westgerdes, Charlotte L. Wirfs, Walter Wirfs, Eve Margo Withrow”.

Happily, many of the artists showing are personal friends; I look forward to seeing their work!

About My Painting.

Daily Espresso.  So, each morning I start my day with a couple of cups of espresso.  And, for those of you who have followed my work, you might have noticed that espresso and coffee cups appear in my paintings often.   One could say there is a life theme being expressed in my painting.  

Why Espresso Cups?  I’d like to explain that one of the reasons that the cups appear so often is that they are a good objects to teach oneself how to draw or paint.  Specifically, its the ovals of the cup’s mouth and the semi-circles of the cup’s handle that are challenging.  And, the shapes are fun to play with when I want to go abstract!

Time-R.  Back to the painting’s title:  “Espresso Time-R”, I added my favorite kitchen timer so the title would fit.  And, if the painting was about time, I could enter it into the Rogue Gallery’s “Time” show.   Furthermore, you guessed it, I like the shapes of the timer; so much so, I keep drawing and painting it!

Distorted By Design.  As is my style, I chose to play with the shapes of the timer and espresso.  I flatten them, distort them and paint them expressive colors.  Perhaps this is because its espresso time!  And, energy and I like espresso!

Acrylic.  This particular painting is done in acrylic.  Much of the work I have been doing this past year has been in acrylic, which is something different for me.  Most of my show work is in watercolor.  I thought it was time to show some of my new acrylic work.  

Invitation.

If you are in the area, please do stop by the Rogue Gallery & Art Center.  Please, take your time and feast your eyes on a wonderful collection of artworks.  

And, naturally, if you would please stop by my “Espresso Time-R” and have a look.  

Thank you!

 

 

Share

The post “Espresso Time-R” at Rogue Gallery’s Annual Member’s Exhibition appeared first on Margaret Stermer-Cox.

“Espresso Time-R” at Rogue Gallery’s Annual Member’s Exhibition

Greetings!   

I am pleased to say that my painting “Espresso Time-R” is in the 2017 Annual Member’s Exhibition at the Rogue Gallery.  
  
Rogue Gallery & Art Center (Medford)

Exhibition Details.

This is to let you know the where and when of the show.

  • Location:  Rogue Gallery and Art Center, 40S Bartlett St., Medford OR
  • Opening Reception:  Friday, November 17, from 5 to 8 pm.
  • Show Dates:  November 17th through December 21
  • View during business hours:  
    • Tuesday – Friday:  10am to 5pm
    • Saturday:        11am to 3pm 

About the Exhibition, From The Gallery’s Website.

“This exhibit gives Rogue Gallery members an opportunity to exhibit one piece of their work on the central theme of “Time”. Over 50 artists are participating in this non-juried exhibit. Artists’ submitted artwork that reflects their personal interpretation of the theme. The exhibit includes watercolors, acrylic, and oil paintings as well as sculptures, photography, and pastels”.

Participating Artists:

I would like to highlight that, per the gallery’s website, over 50 artists submitted work this year.  Included are the following artists:

Bruce Allen, Rachel Barrett, Betty Barss, Bruce Bayard, Linda Boutacoff, Robert Broadway, Susan Eileen Burnes, John Campbell, Jim Curtis, Julia Dahl, Ann Di Salvo, Linda Dixon, Phyllis Earls, Anna Elkins, Linda Elesiya Evans, Kim Faucher, Debby Fisher, Cynthia Flowers, Tom Glassman, Kelly Gratton, Phyllis Gustafson, Claudia Harlow, Nomeca Hartwell, Pam Haunschild, Anna Hinkle, Howard Hunt, Marilyn Hurst, Zelpha Hutton, Jennifer Ivey, Joan Kennedy, Judy Benson LaNier, Christina Madden, Dave Mathewson, Anna May, Linda Meerten, Vera Melnyk, Kathy Morawiec, Judy Ghetti Ommen, Tom Ommen, Cecilia Pestlin, June Shepard, Margaret Stermer-Cox, Leland Struebig, Cherri Van Syoc, Daniel Verner, Doug Wallace, Karen Wallace, Gerald Westgerdes, Marilyn Westgerdes, Charlotte L. Wirfs, Walter Wirfs, Eve Margo Withrow”.

Happily, many of the artists showing are personal friends; I look forward to seeing their work!

About My Painting.

Daily Espresso.  So, each morning I start my day with a couple of cups of espresso.  And, for those of you who have followed my work, you might have noticed that espresso and coffee cups appear in my paintings often.   One could say there is a life theme being expressed in my painting.  

Why Espresso Cups?  I’d like to explain that one of the reasons that the cups appear so often is that they are a good objects to teach oneself how to draw or paint.  Specifically, its the ovals of the cup’s mouth and the semi-circles of the cup’s handle that are challenging.  And, the shapes are fun to play with when I want to go abstract!

Time-R.  Back to the painting’s title:  “Espresso Time-R”, I added my favorite kitchen timer so the title would fit.  And, if the painting was about time, I could enter it into the Rogue Gallery’s “Time” show.   Furthermore, you guessed it, I like the shapes of the timer; so much so, I keep drawing and painting it!

Distorted By Design.  As is my style, I chose to play with the shapes of the timer and espresso.  I flatten them, distort them and paint them expressive colors.  Perhaps this is because its espresso time!  And, energy and I like espresso!

Acrylic.  This particular painting is done in acrylic.  Much of the work I have been doing this past year has been in acrylic, which is something different for me.  Most of my show work is in watercolor.  I thought it was time to show some of my new acrylic work.  

Invitation.

If you are in the area, please do stop by the Rogue Gallery & Art Center.  Please, take your time and feast your eyes on a wonderful collection of artworks.  

And, naturally, if you would please stop by my “Espresso Time-R” and have a look.  

Thank you!

 

 

Share

The post “Espresso Time-R” at Rogue Gallery’s Annual Member’s Exhibition appeared first on Margaret Stermer-Cox.

“Electron Constellation”, oil on wood, 10×10 I love…

“Electron Constellation”, oil on wood, 10×10

I love continually playing with the macro / microcosm and I see the bees I’ve been painting as like little island planets with their own contained ecosystems and landscapes. I got really stuck halfway through this one and didn’t know where to take it. On a road trip returning from Lake Chelan last month I was driving into the sunset and saw ever stunning and beautifully mysterious lenticular clouds over Mount Rainier. It was just the thing I needed to complete the composition. The continual conversation between nature and painting practice is a never-ending scavenger hunt!

www.michelleanderstshop.com

The Best Advice For Plein Air Painting Artist EVER !

In this video Stefan Baumann talks to his students and give them The Best Advice For Plein Air Painting Artist EVER !
Inspiring Millions to paint outdoors This video is about Touch Move and Inspire. Get a free Book at his website www.StefanBaumann.com. The paintings of Stefan Baumann reveal the true spirit of nature by transporting the viewer to distant lands that have gone unseen and undisturbed. With the huge success of Baumann’s weekly PBS television series “The Grand View: America’s National Parks through the Eyes of an Artist,” millions of people witness for themselves the magic Stefan portrays on canvas, his passion for nature and the American landscape. By distilling his love of nature into a luminous painting of brilliant, saturated color that transcends conventional landscape and wildlife art, Baumann has captured the hearts and imaginations of a generation. Each painting becomes an experience rather than merely a picture – a vivid manifestation of his special and personal union with nature and the outdoor world. Through his mastery of light, color and artful composition, Baumann invites you to experience nature in its purity. It is no wonder that for many years distinguished American collectors, including former presidents and financial icons, have sought out his work.

The post The Best Advice For Plein Air Painting Artist EVER ! appeared first on Stefan Baumann – The Grand View: Paintings by Stefan Baumann.

Create A Unique & Beautiful Gift For The Artist In Your Life!

Create A Unique & Beautiful Gift For The Artist In Your Life!
Central Art Logo

Mugs & Coasters with Posca Pens

at Central Art:

centralartsupply.com, 101 N. Central Ave., Medford, Oregon

Don’t miss out on this fun and engaging 1-hour mini art workshop, exclusively at Central Art!

When: Wednesday, Nov. 8th, 2017

Location: Central Art

Time: 3:30pm – 4:30pm
Fee: $7.50*

*Pre-registration required for all workshops. Space is limited to 12 students maximum. Payment is required at time of registration.

http://www.centralartsupply.com/events-and-classes

Art Deadlines List 

December 01, 2017 – SPLASH 20 CREATIVE COMPOSITIONS
Showcase your talent by entering this exciting competition, brought to you by the North Light team. We have dedicated the 20th edition of Splash Creative Compositions! Composition is the arrangement of the visual elements in your painting. This is quite distinct from the subject of your painting. Entry Fee. Details:http://bitly.com/2bGHlWY
November 30, 2017 – SLOWART PRODUCTIONS | EMERGING ARTISTS 2018
The 26th annual competition for exhibition at the Limner Gallery. This exhibition is devoted to the discovery, introduction and promotion of Emerging Artists. The exhibition will be held in March 1 – 24, 2018 at the Limner Gallery and is open to all artists working in any media. Entry Fee. Details:http://bitly.com/2wYpkPW OR [email protected]

November 11, 2017 – EXPO 38
b.j. spoke gallery in Huntington, NY will host a competition juried by Cara Manas, Assistant Curator, Painting and Sculpture, Museum of Modern Art, NY. Selected artists participate in a show at the gallery March 2017. We attempt to show several of each winner’s works. Application Fee. Details: 631 549-5106 OR http://www.bjspokegallery.org/juried-competitions/expo-37 OR [email protected]
November 12, 2017 – OPEN CALL FOR VISUAL ART: FLAT RATE BOX
Modified Arts, Phoenix, AZ is planning an open call exhibition opening Dec. 15, 2017. Artists working in all mediums are asked to submit work that fits into a USPS Flat Rate Box, regardless of size upon opening. Artists are encouraged to explore the possibilities of art works that transcend shipping size restrictions. No entry fees, but artists must pay for all shipping. Register by Nov. 12, 2017. No Entry Fee. Details: http://modifiedarts.org/flat-rate-box
November 12, 2017 – NYC4PA CALL FOR ENTRY
Patterns and Shadows – see the full call at our website listed below- click on Patterns and Shadows. Entry Fee. Details: 917-359-2642 OR http://www.nyc4pa.com OR [email protected]
November 13, 2017 – THE STATE OF AMERICA, JIM RICHARDSON, JUROR
What images reflect your feelings about America today? Are you worried about our political state? Our changing climate? The reality of the American dream for your family and others? Regardless of your opinions or nationality, we welcome images that evoke the broad range of emotions and events of this astounding period in United States history. Entry Fee. Details: 802-388-4500 OR http://photoplacegallery.com/the-state-of-america OR [email protected]
November 13, 2017 – CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS FOR “OWE”
For the Spring 2018 issue of Oregon Humanities, we want to hear your stories, ideas, thoughts, and arguments on the word “owe.” Explore a contemporary or historical story about indebtedness. Share an experience about a debt that you owe or that is owed to you. Tell us about the complex nature of loyalties, responsibilities, and obligations-individual, communal, or otherwise. No Entry Fee. Details:http://bitly.com/2xE5Bkf
November 18, 2017 – $1,000 PRIZES : MONTHLY MASTERS : INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION
Juror: Ray Wetzel, Director and Curator, Gadsden Museum of Art. Early entries are encouraged. Previewing will occur on a daily and weekly basis as submissions are received. No Entry Fee. Details:424-781-7947 OR http://monthlymasters.org OR [email protected]
November 30, 2017 – CALL FOR ENTRIES | WORK INSPIRED BY FRANKENSTEIN NOVEL
A juried selection of images inspired by the classic novel will be published in a newly designed layout for its 200th anniversary. Open to artists working in any media. Selected works compensated. Entry Fee. Details: http://bitly.com/2uJRIof
November 30, 2017 – URBAN PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR 2018
This year’s theme is ‘Cities of Connections: People, Places, and Perspectives’. The Contest invites the entrant to submit original photos to be the essence of “The Connected City,” at any time of day, be it poignant, inspiring, quirky or amusing. Each entrant may submit one photo that represents one hour of the day, up to a total of 24 photos (each for a different hour of the day). No Entry Fee. Details:http://bitly.com/2dzluPk
November 30, 2017 – AMATEUR PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR 2017
The contest is organised by the Amateur Photographer, a British photography magazine. It is divided into eight monthly rounds, each one focusing on a specific theme. The competition is open to all amateur photographers. There is no age limit for entering, and international entries will be accepted. The first entry to each round is free. No Entry Fee. Details: http://bitly.com/2qpPtDH
November 30, 2017 – THE SHARED DREAM CHAPBOOK CONTEST
In times of anti-immigrant sentiment and racial intolerance, Backbone Press is pleased to announce The Shared Dream Chapbook Contest for immigrant poets. The winning manuscript with be published by Backbone Press, and the author will receive a prize of $250. Submit chapbook-length manuscripts, 18-30 pages. No Entry Fee. Details: http://bitly.com/2wTazNd
December 08, 2017 – ARTISTS IN ACTION
Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center seeks artists working in any media to submit proposals to set up a working studio space in the Main Gallery for 1-2 week periods. These studios will be set up much like a “booth,” utilizing the artist’s own supplies and equipment. Application Fee. Details: 410-326-4640 OR http://bitly.com/2xDQUhd OR [email protected]
December 10, 2017 – 2017 INTERNATIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR
International Photographer of the Year creates new opportunities to showcase the best photographic work and introduce leading talents to the world of contemporary photography. IPOTY celebrates creativity, ambition and supports artists to develop and present their work through competition. Entry Fee. Details: http://bitly.com/2szsFQq
December 11, 2017 – CALL FOR ENTRIES BIG FUN ART!
BIG FUN ART! seeks to capture a jovial and exuberant spirit. There may be a profound subtext, but on the surface the jury is looking for works that possess a boldness in color, an exaggeration in scale, abundance in repetition, dynamic in pattern, or playful in subject. All media welcome; small to large-scale works sought; indoor and outdoor works to be included; cash awards. Application Fee. Details: 410-326-4640 OR http://annmariegarden.wufoo.com/forms/artist-application-big-fun-art OR [email protected]
December 16, 2017 – $5,000 IN CASH PRIZES : DAVE BOWN PROJECTS
Jurors: Alison Ferris, Senior Curator, Des Moines Art Center; Rachel Gustafson, Assistant Curator, Norton Museum of Art. Early entries are encouraged. Previewing will occur on a daily and weekly basis as submissions are received. Entry Fee. Details: 917-365-5265 OR http://davebownprojects.com OR [email protected]
January 09, 2018 – CALL TO ARTISTS – CASH AWARDS – JURIED EXHIBIT
Embracing Our Differences seeks submissions for its 15th annual outdoor juried exhibit celebrating diversity to be displayed April – May 2018 in Sarasota, FL USA. 15 artists will be selected and national and international submissions are encouraged. Since 2004, the exhibit has been viewed by more than 2,400,000 visitors. Final selections will be made by a 3-judge panel. $3,000 in awards. No Entry Fee. Details: 941-928-0567 OR http://embracingourdifferences.org/submit-art OR [email protected]
January 12, 2018 – ART IN PUBLIC PLACES KNOXVILLE
Art in Public Places (AIPP), now in its 11th year, is a featured presentation of Dogwood Arts. In partnership with the City of Knoxville, Art in Public Places is a juried exhibition of large-scale sculptures created by exceptional local, regional and national artists. The 2018-2019 Exhibition will feature up to twenty (20) sculptures. The selected works will be exhibited from March 2018-2019. Entry Fee. Details:http://dogwoodarts.submittable.com/submit/48778/art-in-public-places-2018-artist-application OR [email protected]

Central Art & Faber-Castell Present A One-Of-A-Kind Workshop With Don Colley!

Central                                                          Art Logo

 

Saturday, November 11th, 2017

“Creating A Rich Drawing”

with Artist Don Colley

Where: Central Art

Time: 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Fee*: $20 (*Pre-registration required. Payment required at time of registration) 

– Please bring your own sketchbook and drawing supplies (We will have a list of supplies that Don uses available)

– Free product samples for attendees!

Don Colley, one of Faber-Castell’s celebrated instructors and a graduate of University of Texas in Austin will be holding a drawing and illustration demo as well as sketch-out event at Central Art in Medford on Saturday, November 11th, from 1pm – 4pm.

Armed with his signature vintage journals and a vest stuffed to the brim with

Faber-Castell products, Don will focus on showing you techniques and how to use Faber-Castell products. Don’t miss his tips and techniques of drawing, his passion for sketching life around him and discussing what it’s like to be an artist on the go. His main staples include PITT® Artist Pens, Polychromos Color Pencils, Albrecht Durer Watercolor Pencils, charcoals and graphites.

We will also have product giveaways for students and customers to try Faber-Castell’s products and see the difference when using the best quality for their art. Attendees are encouraged to bring their sketchbooks and drawing materials, as Don loves to help with projects and has been known to take the group outside to do some urban sketching!

Space Is Limited to a Maximum of 15 Participants.

To Register, Call 541-773-1444 Now

or Visit Central Art at 101 N. Central in Downtown Medford.

Photographer Pat Moore at Cafe 116

Pat Moore Artist Reception with fine art photography Nov 5, Dec 3 11 AM - 2PM  Cafe 116, Ashland

Seeing Design Features: The Painting of Regal Kitty

Greetings!  Meet Regal Kitty, and, if you’ve met her before, then how about a peek into her design?

By Design: Regal Kitty

Purpose.

The purpose of this article is to give you some insight into how I designed my painting Regal Kitty.  More specifically, I would like to share with you three composition features that I purposely included in this painting.  

  • Fractured planes – the “Cubist Style” approach.
  • Shape and line, where shape dominates but line adds character.
  • Value and color scheme; value is important; color is managed.

History.  

To set the stage, I’ll start with a bit of history.  Regal Kitty was painted in 2009.  I had been reading books on Cubism because I wanted to understand what this important art movement was all about.  How did they create “Cubist” paintings?  I liked the shapes and lines of Cubism and wondered how they did it.  

In order to understand the movement, I thought I’d try my hand at designing my own Cubist style painting, though how does one start?  To me, one of the signature moves of the Cubist era, that is to say the design that stands out was the double face.  I find it intriguing to see both views together – front and sideways.  

By Design: Cubist Style Head

The Cubist Face.

But, how to combine both sides?  Well, the best solution I could come up with is just to start.  

I worked with several drawings, trying to marry side and front view faces.  It was a struggle; its not as easy as one might think coming up with a coherent design!  Then, I ran into drawings and etchings by Cubist sculpture Henri Laurens.  Wow!  I get it (sort of); I had a way in!  

You see the Cubists were thinking sculptural, or three dimensional and drawing two dimensional.  There is a sculptural side to Cubist paintings.  That is why a flattened box, where you see all six sides at the same time, is a good starting point for understanding Cubism.

Designing a Cubist Box

Back to Regal Kitty.  All these Cubist ideas were pinging around my brain.  After seeing photos of Henri Laurens sculpture plus his drawings, I plunged in again and tried to draw a cat.

Design detail: Profile view Regal Kitty

If you look closely at the head, you will see I did indeed include a sideways (profile) view and a forward view of the cat’s head.  All the other shapes allude to the different planes of the cat-figure flattened.  Think sculptural and statuesque.

I was pleased with the resulting cat design.  

Design view: frontal face, Regal Kitty

Design Elements: Line And Shape.

Another device I noticed while looking at paintings done in the Cubist era was the interplay of line and shape.  Some of the objects in a still life, for example, might just be outlined.  Other objects will be filled with color, value or texture to create a shape.

I liked the marriage of both line and shape.  But, as I learned while studying design, its best for either line or shape to be dominant.  When you have both in equal number, its confusing.  

So with the design of Regal Kitty, I focused on shape as dominant over line.  However, around the face, I used line to add character, (see the detail of the head above).  Naturally, you might say, the face is the center of interest.  That is where you want something a bit special to catch the viewer’s eye.

Design Analysis: Regal Kitty Grayscale

More Design Elements: Value and Color.

Both of the design elements “value and color” play an important part in this design.  I would consider this a value painting first.  Value, the relative light and dark of each shape, is what gives the design its power.  Plus, it is the relative light and dark of adjoining shapes that helps to express the feeling of a statuesque cat.

When I was developing my color scheme, I considered the relative value and intensity of the colors in relationship to each other.  So, a dark blue, for example, might read as a plane or side that is turning away from you, the viewer.  On the other side, a warm orange or yellow feels like it is advancing toward you.

I chose a complimentary blue and orange color scheme for a couple of reasons.  Foremost, a complimentary color scheme makes it easier to manage color.  Its like composing with a simplified color chord rather than an entire kaleidoscope of colors.  Granted, there are times when lots of different colors are just what’s needed, but that’s not what I wanted to do here. 

Design: Alternate Color Scheme, Regal Kitty

Another reason for the blue and orange is that I simply like the scheme.  It speaks softly but with some dignity and serenity.  You guessed it, the blue dignity is linked to the “regal” word in the title.

Sometimes its easiest just to see what a different color scheme will do.  I manipulated the image of Regal Kitty to give you a violet and yellow scheme as well as a red and green version to see.  It changes the meaning somewhat, don’t you think?  You might like a different color better; its all a matter of taste and what “speaks” to you.

Alternate Color Scheme: Green and Red

Looking Again And Sharing Secrets.

So, now that we have talked and looked at Regal Kitty for several paragraphs, how do you see her now?  Do you see more?  Has her meaning changed?

I like sharing with you my secret “double faced” cat; its like a little joke just between you and me.  My Regal Kitty is trying to be dignified and regal, but she’s really looking at you, or is she?  Perhaps she’s contemplating the meaning of life and the greater universe.  Or, maybe, she’s thinking its time to go take a nap.

Thanks!

Thank you for sharing your time with me and Regal Kitty!

 

Share

The post Seeing Design Features: The Painting of Regal Kitty appeared first on Margaret Stermer-Cox.

Seeing Design Features: The Painting of Regal Kitty

Greetings!  Meet Regal Kitty, and, if you’ve met her before, then how about a peek into her design?

By Design: Regal Kitty

Purpose.

The purpose of this article is to give you some insight into how I designed my painting Regal Kitty.  More specifically, I would like to share with you three composition features that I purposely included in this painting.  

  • Fractured planes – the “Cubist Style” approach.
  • Shape and line, where shape dominates but line adds character.
  • Value and color scheme; value is important; color is managed.

History.  

To set the stage, I’ll start with a bit of history.  Regal Kitty was painted in 2009.  I had been reading books on Cubism because I wanted to understand what this important art movement was all about.  How did they create “Cubist” paintings?  I liked the shapes and lines of Cubism and wondered how they did it.  

In order to understand the movement, I thought I’d try my hand at designing my own Cubist style painting, though how does one start?  To me, one of the signature moves of the Cubist era, that is to say the design that stands out was the double face.  I find it intriguing to see both views together – front and sideways.  

By Design: Cubist Style Head

The Cubist Face.

But, how to combine both sides?  Well, the best solution I could come up with is just to start.  

I worked with several drawings, trying to marry side and front view faces.  It was a struggle; its not as easy as one might think coming up with a coherent design!  Then, I ran into drawings and etchings by Cubist sculpture Henri Laurens.  Wow!  I get it (sort of); I had a way in!  

You see the Cubists were thinking sculptural, or three dimensional and drawing two dimensional.  There is a sculptural side to Cubist paintings.  That is why a flattened box, where you see all six sides at the same time, is a good starting point for understanding Cubism.

Designing a Cubist Box

Back to Regal Kitty.  All these Cubist ideas were pinging around my brain.  After seeing photos of Henri Laurens sculpture plus his drawings, I plunged in again and tried to draw a cat.

Design detail: Profile view Regal Kitty

If you look closely at the head, you will see I did indeed include a sideways (profile) view and a forward view of the cat’s head.  All the other shapes allude to the different planes of the cat-figure flattened.  Think sculptural and statuesque.

I was pleased with the resulting cat design.  

Design view: frontal face, Regal Kitty

Design Elements: Line And Shape.

Another device I noticed while looking at paintings done in the Cubist era was the interplay of line and shape.  Some of the objects in a still life, for example, might just be outlined.  Other objects will be filled with color, value or texture to create a shape.

I liked the marriage of both line and shape.  But, as I learned while studying design, its best for either line or shape to be dominant.  When you have both in equal number, its confusing.  

So with the design of Regal Kitty, I focused on shape as dominant over line.  However, around the face, I used line to add character, (see the detail of the head above).  Naturally, you might say, the face is the center of interest.  That is where you want something a bit special to catch the viewer’s eye.

Design Analysis: Regal Kitty Grayscale

More Design Elements: Value and Color.

Both of the design elements “value and color” play an important part in this design.  I would consider this a value painting first.  Value, the relative light and dark of each shape, is what gives the design its power.  Plus, it is the relative light and dark of adjoining shapes that helps to express the feeling of a statuesque cat.

When I was developing my color scheme, I considered the relative value and intensity of the colors in relationship to each other.  So, a dark blue, for example, might read as a plane or side that is turning away from you, the viewer.  On the other side, a warm orange or yellow feels like it is advancing toward you.

I chose a complimentary blue and orange color scheme for a couple of reasons.  Foremost, a complimentary color scheme makes it easier to manage color.  Its like composing with a simplified color chord rather than an entire kaleidoscope of colors.  Granted, there are times when lots of different colors are just what’s needed, but that’s not what I wanted to do here. 

Design: Alternate Color Scheme, Regal Kitty

Another reason for the blue and orange is that I simply like the scheme.  It speaks softly but with some dignity and serenity.  You guessed it, the blue dignity is linked to the “regal” word in the title.

Sometimes its easiest just to see what a different color scheme will do.  I manipulated the image of Regal Kitty to give you a violet and yellow scheme as well as a red and green version to see.  It changes the meaning somewhat, don’t you think?  You might like a different color better; its all a matter of taste and what “speaks” to you.

Alternate Color Scheme: Green and Red

Looking Again And Sharing Secrets.

So, now that we have talked and looked at Regal Kitty for several paragraphs, how do you see her now?  Do you see more?  Has her meaning changed?

I like sharing with you my secret “double faced” cat; its like a little joke just between you and me.  My Regal Kitty is trying to be dignified and regal, but she’s really looking at you, or is she?  Perhaps she’s contemplating the meaning of life and the greater universe.  Or, maybe, she’s thinking its time to go take a nap.

Thanks!

Thank you for sharing your time with me and Regal Kitty!

 

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