Friday, February 8, 2013

Wood you challenge yourself?

Isn't this red pear amazing? It was so red and stripey that it almost didn't look real. But the thing that really challenged me was the old wooden box it's sitting on. I've had trouble making wood look like wood.

Wood's brown right? But it's more complex than that. This brown is made with raw umber, ultramarine blue, transparent oxide red, cadmium yellow medium and a little white. After a good bit of experimentation I think I got that rusty brown old pine look.

It turns out capturing texture is all about observation and patience! You know the saying: the devil's in the details. Slow down, look at each detail and see how it fits beside the next.

Red Anjou Pear ©2013 Dorothy Lorenze

In the past I've just painted a sort of neutral background in the grey/brown family. Like this:

Cabbage Peach ©2012 Dorothy Lorenze

It's OK in this painting because the peach is the star and the paper wrapped around it is busy  and adds interest. That's what I tell myself.

But the truth is... I've had a tough time rendering wood. So I am working on it, hence the wood challenge.

I hope you are challenging yourself to grow creatively this year.

I'm happy to say the Red Anjou Pear (on an old wooden box) will be donated to a fundraiser for the Taghkanic Chorale. I hope there are lots of bids!



  1. Ms. Lorenze, your paintings are so inspiring to me! I am a writer and have just found your blog. I love your posts about challenging yourself. I struggle with that too, and am thoroughly enjoying your work and musings.

  2. Hi Christine,
    Thank you for your kind words!

    It's not so easy for me to talk about my art. Talking about the challenges comes more naturally - and there are ALWAYS challenges! I'm often surprised at what goes into a "successful" work.

    It's been a great adventure and writing often helps me to clarify what's been involved in the process.


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