Saturday, December 26, 2009

Alla Prima Red

Hope everyone is enjoying thier holiday weekend! I was lucky that Santa generously brought some fantastic art gifts that I look forward to chatting about in weeks to come including Richard Schmid's classic oil painting book, Alla Prima (which I've read many times from the library) but never owned as well as Quang Ho's Nuts & Bolts DVD. I can't wait to set aside 6 hours, a nice cup of tea, and get my notebook out for this!

Speaking of Alla Prima (meaning simply "at once" in Italian) it's a great technique to try if you normally do a lot of careful planning for your paintings. In other words, complete a painting "wet in wet" all in one sitting. Do you typically sketch out your subject first on your paper or canvas? Try just going for it next time and see what happens.

While it's not always appropriate for more complex or highly detailed subject matter, painting alla prima will both help you focus and free you from overthinking.

I also received a great book called Inside the Painter's Studio by artist Joe Fig. As many of you know, art can often be a singular and lonesome pursuit, so there's something extremely comforting about seeing other artist's work spaces.

Thanks to all of you who are planning to start class in January--Winter the perfect time to start studio painting. And for those of you continuing your studies I'm using this holiday break to research and create some exciting exercises for you. From landscapes to abstracts, I plan to keep you on your toes, so get those brushes ready and see you soon!

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