Getting my feet wet with Jimi [Archive] - Artist Forum

: Getting my feet wet with Jimi

02-26-2016, 05:45 AM
Hey, Gang.

I've been posting in the pen and ink area because that's what I've been doing since the 70's. But I'm determined to master color. I'm starting with watercolors. I've been practicing for a couple of months, with gradual improvement evident, and finally decided to just fill an 18 x 24 inch piece of paper. The result is Jimi. This is based on a photo of him at Woodstock, that guitar would later be set on fire on stage.

Now, back to improving with more practice...

02-26-2016, 06:16 AM
Outstanding! So what medium did you use?

02-26-2016, 06:28 AM
Thank you. :-)

It's 90% watercolor, ink used for detail on the strap, the watchband, and the tuning knobs. I was going to add ink highlights to the shirt wrinkles, but decided I needed to get over my fear of using color and went with pure paint. It's really been a struggle to trust color.

Susan Mulno
02-26-2016, 08:00 AM
Wow! Great composition, great detail, great pose, great use of color and great likeness!

02-26-2016, 08:38 AM
This is a wonderful painting.:laugh: I love the vibrant colors.

02-26-2016, 12:41 PM
Great work. You definitely have a great loose style. Personally as realistic as I can draw and paint I actually have trouble with a loose styling. Everything always ends up sharp and tight. So I can really appreciate a painting like this. Keep it up. You are definitely doing great with it

02-26-2016, 12:43 PM
Great work. You definitely have a great loose style.

LOL, that means a lot! I'm an ink guy, which means loose is the opposite of what I'm used to doing! Loosening up and not getting too worked up about watercolor's mind of its own has been a challenge, but I'm getting better at it. :wink:

02-26-2016, 12:48 PM
One bit of advice, one of the things that help this painting work is the fact that the lightest parts are highlighted in the figure. Nothing in the background is as light. With that said I would also make the darkest parts of the painting in the figure too. Darken some of the features that are already dark but make it darker then anything in the background. The higher contrast will help draw the figure more to the top. But that would be the only thing I would do at this point.This technique doesn't necessarily work for every painting but I think in this case it would be a final touch.

02-26-2016, 12:50 PM
I found your response interesting. I have taught a couple of people that were B&W artists to use color and mostly got the same result as you. That is the looseness of the use of color. You definitely are onto something. Have you tried watercolor pencils yet?

02-26-2016, 12:56 PM
Have you tried watercolor pencils yet?

My wife is learning watercolors too (she's never done art at all) and has some pencils as well as paint. I may have to give them a go.

And thanks for the advice about background colors.

02-26-2016, 02:12 PM
I have been playing with watercolors as well, but haven't tried anything that bold. I just suck at shading. That's always been my issue with sketches too, which just annoys me. I know it takes practice, but I am just blooming impatient. :DirtDOG:

I wish I could take a class. I never think about the you tube tutorials, but I will have to buckle down and give one a go.

02-26-2016, 02:58 PM
I never think about the you tube tutorials, but I will have to buckle down and give one a go.

There are full-on art lessons there that used to cost hundreds of dollars in the pre-internet days. Alphonso Dunn is the ink master in there, and there are a number of watercolor whizzes, too. :-)

02-26-2016, 11:27 PM
Okay I will share with you guys one of the lessons I use to teach. Some of you may find it helpful others perhaps already beyond this. Go to any craft store a purchase an assortment of plain white styrofoam shapes. I have used toothpicks, hangers, extra large paperclips bent funny, or anything you can think of to make an obscure sculpture connecting the shapes. Use a single source of light on it. Then creating only shaded areas with no lines, paint or draw, pastel, whatever medium you prefer. you will find yourself seeing large shapes. It helps with depth, light and dark, and then it helps you find these shapes in other things you draw. One of the threads was about a portrait that someone was having trouble with. It was the same concept. For most people starting out your brain focuses in on one area and works it's way out from there. This exercise helps to see the whole playing field and helps your composition as well for other pieces. Then graduate to the styrofoam head the craft and art stores sell now. it is smooth and helps, again with one light source, to see larger shapes. Then you can add in all the detail and color etc. that you want.

02-27-2016, 09:23 AM
What's crazy is that I took art in school, and I remember being good at it, and my sketchbook getting high marks, but I suppose going 30 years without drawing, I lost some of what I learned. :unhappy:

02-27-2016, 09:25 AM
I suppose going 30 years without drawing, I lost some of what I learned. :unhappy:

Only one way to get it back...

I went twenty years without picking up a pen. I was rusty too. :smile:

02-27-2016, 10:34 AM
I think I was 14 when I did my last drawing. It was the Keep on truckin guy. I loved peter max work especially. Lets see, that was 48 years ago. It came back.

02-27-2016, 10:37 AM
I think I was 14 when I did my last drawing. It was the Keep on truckin guy.

R. Crumb is GOD!!!

Susan Mulno
02-27-2016, 02:49 PM
I also went 30 years without drawing, don't know how I did it, or why! :surprise:

When I started again I went back to the beginning, I mean straight lines (pages of them!) on up to drawing exercises, which I still love to do. Just reminding my brain how it is done. :biggrin:

Good for it leighann! You will be back at it in no time. This month marks a year since I re-started.

02-27-2016, 02:53 PM
Apparently, if you can draw, you can draw. Doesn't matter how long it's been. Just need to get back in shape.