Friday, February 26, 2016

Learning to see

There is more to painting realistically than painting what you see. It actually involves constantly balancing and comparing what you see against what you know.

In a still life with a single, strong light source, we know that objects farthest away are in less light than those close up even if the difference is so subtle it can hardly be seen. This awareness is part of a conceptual model: the knowledge that depth is created when light is diminished as objects go back in space. Keeping this concept in mind helps artists create a more convincingly realistic painting.

How do I know this? It's one of many significant elements of painting that I learned studying the classical method of oil painting with Todd Casey. In addition to being an award winning artist, Todd is an experienced teacher with so much valuable information to share.

The pitcher below is a favorite subject of mine because I love the warmth of pewter and the soft reflections inherent to it. The earlier painting, on the left, has lots of interesting angles but none of the subtlety of the later version, which was my first piece working with Todd. I've learned a lot!
pewter pitcher, reflection, shine

If you'd like to study classical oil painting methods, you're in luck! Next month Todd will hold his first local workshop. This two-day, small group workshop will cover classical painting techniques and I'm happy to share the information, since so many artist friends have asked. So, if you're interested, check out this link or see below. The dates are March 12 & 13, right here in Somers, NY.

I first saw Todd's work in a feature article in Artist Magazine and was thrilled to learn that he lives in the area. In addition to his beautiful artwork, his credentials are impressive and I can't believe my good fortune to be able to learn from a master who has studied at Grand Central Academy of Art, Water Street Atelier and the Academy of Art University, as well as with many of the best representational artists living today including Jacob Collins, Max Ginsburg, Warren Chang, Camie Davis and Carlos Madrid.

This workshop is limited to a small group to allow for lots or personal interaction. If you'd like to participate, it would be best to email ASAP ( since I have a feeling it will fill up fast! Hope to see you at the studio!!!

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