Michele Clamp Art


John Lovett Exercise - Rocks

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Next John Lovett exercise.   A little lethargic with this one for some reason but my lack of interest managed to result in something pretty loose.

The original photo:

And Mr Lovett's version from the end of the book:

Very nice.   Simultaneously simpler and yet more detailed than mine.




landscapeMichele ClampComment

Our wonderful local art center Post Road Art has a number of exhibitions throughout the year.    The next one is seascapes and landscapes so I thought I'd turn my hand to some sea and rocks.    Now historically this has been a danger area for me (What isn't?   Horses, buildings, snowy owls - all pose all sorts of problems).    But hey!  Nothing ventured, nothing gained so off I went.

The drawing was uneventful.   just outlining the rock shapes and where they meet the sea.   The washes went in fairly well :

Not too light,  not too dark and some nice rough edges in the sea to allow for foam.

The next step was crucial.   Getting the final darks in on the rocks so they stand out against the top of the cliffs was very important.   At the same time I wanted to get enough variation in the rocks to suggest structure.    This went pretty quickly and came out  well.    

Next was the sea.     Always tricky.    Don't overdo it as everything gets colored in and you lose the impression of foam.    Underdo it and you don't get enough depth of color to show the form of the water.     Again the gods were smiling on me and this went well too!!

The final piece was the foreground.   I'd tried to get some thick paint on and drop water in to create texture but that obviously didn't work.    One last try  - keep the board a little more vertical,  very thick paint with water and even thicker paint dropped in.    And it worked!    It's been a good day.

I don't think this will be my final submission for the exhibition but it's a good backup if nothing else comes together.

Digital Rocks

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Digital Rocks

Came home too late to get the old painting sticks out but decided to have a bash at getting the tones right on my Wacom tablet.   The drawing experience isn't much like real paper but for noodling around and practicing it's pretty awesome.

If you ignore the 'grass' I'm pretty happy.    I started with a mid-tone wash and then a slightly darker one to start modeling the shapes of the rocks.  I then put in a darker tone still for cracks in the rocks and a final very dark tone for the deep cracks.    I then realized that I didn't have the faces of the rocks that were in direct sunlight light enough so went back over with the lightest tone to mark these.

So what did I learn?    Well first - I didn't leave the highlights light enough at the beginning so if this was watercolor I'd be out of luck.   Second modeling with fairly close mid tones worked well and saving extreme darks for touches here and there gives a good effect.   Thirdly I can afford to go 2 or 3 shades darker in the lightest areas when touching in the cracks on the lightest faces.  Finally - the rocks look fairly complicated but were actually built our of only a few shapes.

Art class - lighthouse

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This is from a photo of Owl's head lighthouse.  I'm not sure why I'm picking lighthouses recently but I did a similar John Lovett exercise recently and it wasn't a great success.

I'm pretty happy with this.  The sky is good - a little blossomy but still good.  The rocks are ok - I may lose some of the warmth in the nearest ones.

The colorscheme is a little bright but I'm ok with that and was actually aiming for this.  Maybe I'll do another one and aim for a little subtlety.

WetCanvas - April Challenge 2013

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This month on


 the photo is rocks.   And I hate it.

Drab, drab drab.  Not happy.

I'm not too unhappy about the trees - I tried the Sterling Edwards approach and that seems to have worked out quite well.  The rocks themselves - need more tonal variation and color.  Having come back to this after a few hours I'm not so displeased as I was.   Compared to my last attempt 

Binary Colors: Indoor outdoor painting class

 they're pretty good.

Intermediate stages below.

Art Class - a bad day at the office

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It was a real bad day at the office and then a metaphorical bad day at the office when I finally got the brushes out.   This was the best of the bunch - just a 15 minute doodle of rocks.

So this is what happens when things go wrong :

This was the main task of the night - build up flowers with different colored layers.   Hmm.  Not great huh?

This was my play around picture while I was waiting for the daffodil layers to dry.   Again not much to write home about.

Rocks - John Lovett again

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 I diverged from the script on this one.  The instructions were to use pen and ink to outline the rocks before starting but I couldn't be bothered to rummage around for a pen and dived straight in with the washes.  Considering some of my previous rock attempts this actually turned out quite well.