Nov 11, 2014
Oil on museum board
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As I've said before, it's always best to get your thoughts down immediately after finishing a painting. Just as in the painting process itself, going back to rekindle is hard to do. This painting was finished on Sunday, so we're talking 2 days later here. My goal was to bring lots of color variety into this 'say cheese' painting. (Cheese as in smile for the camera...not cheese as in cheesy painting; I hope.) Before I write the rest of this post, I need to say that this painting seems a little bit cattywampus, but I still am very happy with it : )
If you are looking at a good deal of classical painting, you will notice that painting a smile seems to be a questionable decision. I guess because it doesn't seem natural for a model to pose that way for an extended period? Or because the look just isn't as languid? I think it's hardest to paint a face that is looking straight at you. Getting the symmetry is difficult to do without creating an overworked look. Getting an eyeball placed into the skull accurately is hard enough to do, but then achieving a graceful passage of skin tissue over the sockets and eyeball is really a killer. When you get caught up in what you think you know about eyes vs. what you are actually seeing, you are destined for a struggle. With palette knife especially because in trying to achieve a fresh, pure stroke AND getting it placed accurately, you are likely to face a downright wrestling match. Then you have the nostrils and the flares that define the edges of the nose around them. And underneath that is the pair of gentle slopes and a valley that lie above the upper lip. Lips should be easy, but they are elusive too. There is the jawline and another slope of skin tissue that joins with the neck, which is positioned center and toward the back. I'll stop there, except to say that if all else fails, there is always hair that can be tousled around; flipped out, or under; placed over a bad eye - you get the idea. Putting it all together is a trick. It's worth the time to really study anatomical structure from all angles. Just do it!
WORKSHOPS and CLASSES
• Three Day Palette Knife Technique and Philosophy Workshop scheduled for January 6-8th, 2015 at the Crealde School of Art in Orlando Florida. (Winter Park Area). $420 for members; $440 for non-members. Workshop is limited to 15 students and will coincide with my Solo Show at Grace Gallery at the Ancient Olive. For more workshop information, please email Barbara Tiffany or call 407-656-4155.
• Four Day Intensive - Palette Knife Technique and Philosophy with focus on clean color mixing based on theory. Workshop scheduled for January 28th-31st, 2015 - FULL
• Palette Knife Technique and Philosophy Workshop scheduled for May 2015 at The Art School in Sandy Springs Atlanta, Georgia. $450 for 3 days. For more information, please email Donna Thomas at 404-313-7356.
• Announcing one day, 3 hour intensive COLOR MIXING sessions at my studio, Sally Shisler Palette Knife Painting Studio, in Winter Garden Florida. These sessions are designed to help students prepare for their own paintings that they will paint at home with their premixed palette. This is all about thorough color mixing; not actual painting. Each student will be provided with a high quality color print of their selected photograph with a clear breakdown of which colors will be mixed. Preparing a palette of clean, harmonious color before putting knife/brush to canvas gives you a head start on a successful painting. Sessions are held on the second Saturday of each month. Cost is $50. Beginner-Advanced. Space is limited to six students. Please call or email me at 321-331-3045 or email@example.com to secure your spot.
• Private Lessons at my studio in Winter Garden, FL. Cost is $100 for three hours. Those interested, please call or email me at 321-331-3045 or firstname.lastname@example.org to make an appointment.
• Now Available! Sally Shisler - Contemporary Impressionist Painter, A Collection of Palette Knife Paintings from 2011-2014
• Coming in 2015: Sally Shisler - Color Mixing for Radiant Harmony in your Paintings. This book will go in depth on how I prepare my colors from careful subject observation through completion of a painting. Step by step color choices and mixing will be diagrammed with detailed written instruction.