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Yet another still life - this time mandarins/oranges in a bowl 16x20 oil on linen WIP

edited March 9 in Post Your Paintings
I posted some of the set up pictures I was playing around with on  Richard's post last week and after about a week of dilly dallying (and trying to get over strep) I have finally been able to paint the past few days.  I love oil painting.  It is so therapeutic and it is when I have been away that I realize how precious creative time is in the studio.

This is an assignment for a class I am in - set up a still life, have a strong notan, try to maintain the meat of that strong notan by no more than 4 values - compressing as needed.  We also had to do value studies and notans of some of the old masters still life paintings.    It is great fun and even people who aren't usually enthusiastic are very much enjoying the value studies of their favorite master still life paintings.

I won't bore you with the endless set up and stages of this painting in progress - this is where I am at day 3 - I am at the refinement stage so need to finish my silver (I do not want to draw attention there so there is some finesse required) - I also need to work on shapes and chroma and then finally, the highlights.   

as usual, comments welcome - I have the finished painting in my head - here is hoping I get close to realizing my vision.  



  • @Julianna ;   I would like to see a bit more color in it.
  • edited March 10
    Very beautiful, @Julianna.  Luscious colour, gorgeous texture and lovely composition.  :)
  • Glad you are feeling better and that painting has made you feel better.

    I like the painting so far. Some edges on the oranges need softening and I'd like to see what you do with the silver. :)

    Have you taken any photos of the stages of your paintings? I have no idea how you develop your paintings :)
  • Terrific as usual. It's hard to imagine you trying for subtle even if it is to strengthen the notans. The scalloped bowl is a difficult thing and needs better definition towards the left and right or you can leave it as is to keep it more subtle. The glass bowl needs more definition which I assume will be there with the highlights. The silver could be left as is. It's unmistakable and fits the subtle definition. 
  • I've decided to save your works in progress--before you change them because there is always something I like.  Please don't change the silver pitcher.  Okay, never mind.  I just saved it.   ;)  
  • that's sweet @Summer ; - who knows what tomorrow brings but I'm hoping it is just fixing my ellipses and bumping up the chroma in some of the oranges to give variety... but…. you never know!!!!!!!  There was a point this afternoon where I had determined it all ruined and was ready to scrape it all...   I hope you are well and painting again.  I look forward to seeing your paintings and am so jealous of your studio and easel and fastidiousness .

  • So when you will make your debut in galleries? I don't know the others what they think but for me you are ready. Your style is unique and recognizable, your technique is compared to the others paintings you posted the same (so it's a constant..) This gorgeous colours and textures are recognizable from miles that are yours.. and they are BEAUTIFUL, Romantic, Colourful and Melancholic at the same time. I repeat myself as I did in the past with this topic.. 
  • I for one want to see progress pictures, you crazy romantic lovely lady :)
  • This is just beautiful @Julianna
    Seriously, it’s gorgeous. I love the way you appear to just throw the paint on the canvas and get results like this. Your paintings are all about colour and drama. You paint like you don’t give a damn ! 😉 That’s so refreshing and it’s what makes your paintings special. 
    I haven’t painted since May. I have totally lost my mojo but looking at this latest painting of yours makes me want to start again. 

  • Romantic as hell. I think the rightside background changes helped with that. I'm really Bowled Over. I am elliptically challenged and can't tell if you are off or it's just my spatial impediment. I think both the big bowl's ellipses at the base and bottom of the bowl are affected by the closeness of the glass bowl. Like the glass is infringing on the blue bowl. The affects the smaller bowl's appearance as well and subsequently the top circus of ellipses on the big bowl. I'm not suggesting you try to correct these I'm just trying to say what my (over)-critical eye sees. This could have been avoided only by  changing the position of the glass bowl in relation to the big one. This reminds me of my high school art teacher who said "once you have decided on your (set-up) look at it for several minutes from your painting position." meaning we might be seeing the set-up from a different perspective while we paint. But what does he know, he couldn't paint nearly as well as you do, but better than me.
  • Beautiful Julianna, vibrant and textured.
  • edited March 11
    It's just lovely, @Julianna. It's you to a 'T'.  I have no criticism to offer really but if I had to do one thing to it I'd add another orange to the left side of the bowl to balance it. On the other hand, I like the slight tension this absence sets up. So I don't know. What I can say is that in a gallery I think buyers would jump on this. Keep doing what you do with paint. I love it.  :)
  • Very nice work. You have a unique quality to your work which I love. I always enjoy seeing new works from you. Elegant and classy but also has an old master look to it. 
  • @Julianna ;   Well, that was a wonderful journey you just took me on. Fascinating. Love some of the things you say.
  • I'm getting dizzy. What is a "notan" again? 
  • PaulBPaulB mod
    BOB73 said:
    I'm getting dizzy. What is a "notan" again?

  • @Rich_A ; @Dianna ; thank you.  @Hilary   YAY!!!!!!!   I'm so excited.  I don't think my typed words translated well... I did take it as a huge compliment and I know that you know that I do care - deeply.  I had someone recently ask me "do you put much thought into what you paint with reckless abandon?" and honestly, I was floored.  I hope I never appear to not care or not take this all seriously while trying to balance intelligence and creative, love, passion spirit.  Painting is DIFFICULT!!!!  More than anything, I am so glad you are back creating... it is such a gift.  A precious, precious gift to create.  It makes my heart happy to know you are creating again.  I love your work.
  • I agree. Glad to hear you are back painting @Hilary.

    @Julianna, thank you very much for all the progress pictures. It's really interesting for us all to see how you work, and how good your results are! :)
  • Thanks @PaulB It was interesting that Notan art came to America by way of Arthur Wesley Dow who visited Japan. One of my ancestors, Commodore Mathew Perry, established trade treaties with the Japanese in mid 19th century.  The Commodore was no stranger to Murphy's Law either and gave the middle name, "Hazard" to two of his ten children. If he hadn't had so many children I might not be here.
  • Great to hear you're back at the easel, @Hilary:)
  • This is a masterpiece!
  • @Julianna, once again I love your work. Great job!
  • @Julianna Very Renoir-like, in colors, shapes, brush stroke, composition. Remember Two Sisters on a Terrace? It is a well-loved painting and yet compositionally, there is a line going straight through the older girl's upper shoulders, a cardinal no-no, or so they say. 
    The silver, grey, and blues in this painting are a perfect setting for the lovely fruit! Yes, I do not understand your technique, but if painting be the fruit of love, paint on! (my apologies to Shakespeare).
  • orange you goin' to run out of red paint? Beautifying your garden with your paintings is an idea I hadn't thought of. If that was my yard I'd never go inside. I might build a gazebo/studio for bad weather. 
  • PaulBPaulB mod
    BOB73 said:
    I might build a gazebo/studio for bad weather. 
    Build one to eliminate the “no room” excuse instead..
  • @Renoir I don't paint in this order as a rule - it just so happened to be the way it panned out on this still life set up - it was originally a lesson on strong notans and experimenting with tabletop view vs. bird's eye view set ups for still lifes -  I keep choosing the more complicated bird's eye views for some reason...  I hope you are back painting again and hope you are well.
    @BOB73 ; believe it or not, I am so low on BLUE paint!!!  wth??????  it doesn't make any sense.  @PaulB !!!!!!!!   that is genius - now you've given him an idea!!!!   Yes Bob - do it!!!  
  • I might but it's awfully hot in the summer and we only have two seasons... summer and February. Honestly, I have a new easel and no room to put it together. I'm considering adopting two sons to move and pack my two daughters things to make room.
  • Julianna, I can see why you run out of blue. You never have the blues anyway. Bird's eye view is really just the perspective you  would normally have while standing. Table-top view should be as if you were sitting but often artists take it too low as if you had your chin on the table. I'd call that a kid's-eye-view.
  • I've enjoyed the read.  The paintings are beautiful and fresh and highly desirable.  You should be able to sell them quickly.
  • rayartrayart -
    edited March 21
    Very good impressionistic painting
    i like that you changed the two fruit in the lower right to different sizes- previously too symetrical 
  • @rayart another lesson in do you paint what you see exactly or paint your painting the way you see it or want it to be seen.  Painting is difficult.   It's nice to have you here!  Welcome to the forum.  

    @oilpainter1950 thank you - selling is not what brings me pleasure - in fact, it is my least favorite thing.  

    P.S. it is not often that I love a painting at first glance first thing in the morning but this one has made my heart happy every single morning this past week.  I don't know why.  But, I'll take it, I am full.

    I am also keenly still aware of the fact that I had a sleepless night a week and half ago, tossing and turning, because I was trying to resolve issues I was having with the wall.  

    P.P.S.  I absolutely loved Mark Carder's latest video about the process - everyone has a different process and the quote from Andrew Wyeth really struck me.  I can't wait for his next video.

    Paint what you love.  Paint what you love.

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