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Book Review: Color and Light

Im currently reading Color and Light: a guide for the realist painter by James Gurney. Hes the guy who illustrated the kids book Dinotopia. I dont remember what its about, but i remember the whimsical pictures of Dinosaurs living with people. Thats pretty impressive considering I read it when I was 6 or 7 years old. 

So this book is not your standard color theory and this is how you paint a landscape book. Gurney goes into how our eyes process color and how to make realistic paintings. This is even more impressive considering the artist key topic is dinosaurs (!!!). I think I learned more in the first fifteen pages than my last four books combined. 

So for example, Gurney talked about how colors look richer on overcast days and bleached on sunny days. So I tried it out on one of my paintings 

I like how it looks very much. I’ll keep reading this book. Im excited to see what I’ll learn

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Doodles: Watercolor

I doodle as a relaxation method. And, it works! Science says you can get a lot of benefit out of it even if you think you’re no good. And we all know science doesn’t ever steer us wrong right? Besides, this is an excuse to play with colors and not have to be productive for a few minutes. In other words, its like playing solitare with byproducts. 

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Hawks Circle the Dry Grasses

Acrylic on canvas 16 by 20 in
Artist Corinne Viner copyright 2017

Yesterday while I was out walking, I saw this hawk circling. It was beautiful to watch, though the rabbits probably didnt think so. At one point this little bird starts harrassing the hawk by swooping and touching wings before veering away to do it again. The small bird drove the bird of prey away by pestering it. Perhaps that bird had babies it was protecting, or perhaps it was bored. Looking back on it, it seems to be an omen. The hawks will leave if we bother them enough. Just, stay out of reach of those talons.

Here are some pictures of the landscape. No hawk pictures unfortunately! They move so fast. 

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Autumn Days

9 by 12 inches oil on canvas
Artist Corinne Viner copyright 2017

This is a continuation of my love affair with oil paint. Its not as though there is anything wrong with acrylics. On the contrary, there is much that is right. Acrylics allow for mistakes to be hidden, and there is a lot to be said for that. Acrylics allow me to easily scrap a painting that has flopped by painting over it right away.

But! When I paint with oil there is a sense of connection with all the painters before me, from Bob Ross (my patron saint of accidents!) to Caravaggio to Titian to Monet. Oil paint glides onto the canvas in impossibly long brushstrokes and there is no fear of drying mid painting. The colors are impossibly vibrant, and there is a certain depth in every aspect. Yes, I will probably continue with oil painting. 

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Meadows Before Mountains

This one is inspired by Phyllis Shafer’s landscapes. I am a huge fan of her work since she showed in the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno. I love how each painting looks, almost, like I’ve been there looking with her. They make me feel as though I am a part of the art and not merely an observer. If you’re interested, you can find her paintings here. Well worth the click.