Tuesday, January 15, 2008

"Still Life with Shades," oil, 4x5 and 8x10

Ah, this was another fun one. I was cleaning something or other and found some sunglasses. It occurred to me that they might go well in a still life; in fact, they might be funny in an otherwise traditional-looking composition. So I took my Korean celadon vase and a flower and some branches, and coyly hid the sunglasses behind them.

I decided that I'd try this composition on a black background. This is how Karin Jurick paints, and she's way good. Check out her painting video (and she uses one brush!). Also, I wanted to continue with the smaller draft image first. I decided to start with a 4x5" canvas board. Here's how it came out:

Connie Kleinjans painting: Still Life with Shades (study)
Not bad! Now, my last post was about how hard it is to paint roses. This one took some attention but was much better! And, as with my garlic and fork a few days ago, the smallest draft stayed kind of painterly.

Next I set up an 8x10" gallery-wrapped canvas. I moved the vase to the left just a bit, since in the smaller piece I thought it was too close to the middle. Painting this one was harder and less painterly. (Sheesh, maybe I should just stick with the beensy paintings!) But I'm pretty happy with it. This time I added rose reflections to the sunglasses. Here's how this one came out:

Connie Kleinjans painting: Still Life with Shades
I feel like I put down the paint with more assurance, and that the sense of confidence is visible in the painting. (Hmm. When buy artwork, do we buy a sense of mastery?) So I'm thinking my next one could be Still Life with Rubber Ducky. (And if you've read this far, I have a cute trick for you: Roll your cursor over the images and see what text you see.)

Speaking of rubber ducky, I meant the sunglasses to be a subtle joke. I mean, hey, the Dutch still life painters didn't own any. So, what do you think? Is it funny to you?


  1. I like how you're experimenting. In the first painting you really nailed that subtle celadon color. The second painting somehow captures the coyness of the glasses. It seems they are looking at the rose.. Nice reflection on the lense. I also like the feel of the back wall.

  2. Hi Silvi! Thanks for dropping by and for your kind comments. For the second one, I put in a little red reflection of the rose, and it seems to catch people's eye. Funny how some details are so appealing.

  3. Hi Connie, First time I've visited your blog. I've enjoyed reading and looking at your art, some very nice things. Really like the way the vase came out in this one. I haven't tried painting any roses yet but one day I will. So many things to paint. Stop by and visit me. Barb

  4. Connie,
    I like the punch in the first small painting. Lots of fun with color. Your second one is beautifully handled. More realistic in color, more serious. Slightly different in style. I like the glasses. This is the modern world and sun glasses are definitely part of everyday life.

  5. Barbie, thanks for dropping by. I visited your site and enjoyed your flowers. And you frame things, too! (Where do you get your frames?) Best of luck at the museum.
    -- Connie

  6. Dori, thanks. In general the first painting is getting more comments, I think. It's looser, more holistic. In the second one people like the reflection in the sunglasses. This is a fun series (well, this and the next one I'm working on).