trees and paint

More moleskine tree drawings. It's been fun searching out the best trees to draw when I go bike riding. Kind of like an assignment for myself. Finished the painting earlier than expected, and I like the absence of visuals in the background. Definitely a study piece, and it was fun.


  1. This is a great painting, Ester. How much time would you say you spent on it in the end?

  2. thanks Sail. I think the total time spent - besides stretching the canvas and priming and stuff, took around 16 hours of pure drawing and painting. I'm happy with it, but next time I'd like to stay more true to the original colors that I see in front of me. I'm a little disappointed in the pigments I loaded my brush with, more often than not, just to match a value, rather than scrutinizing the color I was seeing. But maybe it's just a good excuse to do another skeleton study...

  3. Wow... I just don't have the patience for that! I'm always impressed by people who do.

    And, I dunno, I understand the desire to stay true to the colors you see, but I like that it's not the same. What's the point in reproducing a photo? Beyond the ability to do so, that is. Sure, it's a great skill to have... if you're into that, btu I like it when the color says something more than, hey look, it's just like real life. Art imitates life, but it shouldn't mirror it. In my opinion anyway. It should represent it, but go beyond it... it should be inspired by it, but not a slave to it, right?

    I dunno, blah blah, all I really know is that I like the colors. :)

  4. yeah, I hear you on not being a slave to the "real world" visuals, and I'm glad you like the colors :) I do too, but looking back at my initial intention to do this piece, I wanted to study what was in front of me and not really exaggerate it. I think I was more of a slave to personal color choice than having the ability to maintain what was truly there. It's just a matter of perspective really, I saw it as more of a challenge to depict was was really there, than to go ahead and let myself do whatever I wanted. Kind of a strange way to look at it I guess, but I kind of see it as being more disciplined than held back when I'm drawing or studying what is really in front of me.

    The main reason I wanted to not just "do whatever I wanted" was because I think that being able to render everything as I see it is a base, and once I have that down, then I feel it's appropriate to explore the vastness of imagination and a mixture of the two...but right now I really need to get my base down really well. I'm just not at a great level technically, and if that's missing, then I will be limited by all the the inability and insufficient practice.

  5. I see what you mean, and I agree (like I said) that it is a great skill to have... but as far as not technically being there, you could have fooled me.

    I suppose it's what you're interested in really. Being able to represent real life accurately is what allows you to twist it mroe I suppose. I try to be accurate, but I'm not concerned with colors as much as values. I want where the light and shadows fall to be correct, but I don't care if the colors are right.

    Like, um, in watercolor, sometimes the darkest part of the image isn't represented with the darkest color on the page, but you know it's a shadow. You know it's the darkness. I like the implication.

    But, at the same time I do understand and respect that desire to be able to accurately represent what's in front of you. Sometimes it's important. Especially if you want to be a freelancer. It allows a lot more possibilities in the work you can do.

  6. now you've got me all excited to get my watercolors out :)


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