A Lazy Pear and a Turquoise Background

Oil on gessoed rag board, 6 1/2" x 5 3/4" $100.00
I had fun painting these pears. I actually started them
yesterday, so I was able to use some glazes, which deeped
and enriched the colors in the way that I like. There aren't
many shadows, because that is just the way it was set up.

I use bosc pears to teach in my painting class. We do
a really fun exercise, because the class is one in indirect
painting (like they did in the Renaissance and in the early
days of oil painting). The students first paint a grisaille,
which is a black and white underpainting, and comes from
the French word for "gray".

After that dries, they cover that with a very, very thin
layer of a glaze made up of Liquin and Gamblin's Transparent
Red Earth. Voila. Pears! Well, not exactly. They blot the
glaze off here and there, because they have to keep painting,
using a limited palette, and painting into the pears and
background with opaque paint, using little or no medium.
It's amazing the results they come up with, though. Pretty
sophisticated - and some of these people have really never
painted before.

Indirect painting - that's what Jeff Hayes does, if you're
familiar with his blog and all his excellent sequential photos
of his paintings - is really the easiest way to paint. You
basically separate the drawing from the painting part.

Well, it's not quite that simple, but if you're a beginner,
it's worth a try. I'll be teaching it next year at The Art League
School in Alexandria, Virginia, if you happen to live near there.

1 comment:

Robert A. Sloan said...

This is very cool! I've been meaning to try an alkyd painting with a full detailed grisaille sometime, and your example of the pears is very encouraging. I love the rich colors and transitions on them. Thanks for the explanation too!

Robert A. Sloan