Sunday, August 12, 2012

An Experiment

12" x 16" watercolor on Arches hot press paper
Step into ze lab.  Carefully now.  

You did vash yur hands?  Und you are completely sterilized?  Gut.

Today ve are going to perform an experiment.  As vith all experiments, ve must approach ze matter szientifically, yes?

Obzerve:

Purpose:  To paint a cityscape in a loose manner [vithout detail, yes?].

Hypothesis:  That I can make a picture using a new way [to me], namely upright and wet-on-wet in parts and wet-on-dry in parts to form a scene.

Procedure:  To paint in watercolor on a 12" x 16" watercolor block [I bought ze block at a sidevalk sale for a song (It vas Edelweiss), und I had never used a vatercolor block before vhich vas fun] and to stand the block upright on my easel allowing the paint to drip with impunity. To paint some parts wet and leave other parts dry, and to build up color and value through layering.  [I'd been inshpired by un artist (now forgotten) zat I saw on a Youtube veedeo zat vould vet parts and leave other parts very dry, und combine zeese in a creative manner.]


Results:  Above.  [Vell, everything got kinda vet.  I found myself over-enthoosed und painting fast und recklessly und vith abandon - voo!hoo! - und utimately found zat leaving dry spots in ze middle of ze painting, like ze artist I had seen, didn't vork vith tall buildings.  Und I had to lay ze block flat to paint ze cars.] 

Conclusion:  Next time I try this, I need to plan a bit better and slow down some, but I am pleased with the free dripping effect.  The simplification lessons learned from Frank Eber, here, and Terry Miura, here, helped. [So ze buildings are a bit vonky, the cars vonky, everything vonky, but somehow it vorked.]

Gut, then, ve are done for the day.  Don't step on ze cat on ze vay out.

45 comments:

  1. Oh Dan what a pleasant lunch I'm having laughing. Yes, vet into vet can get things very vet indeed. But carried away or not,this painting is spectacular. You took something precious from those sites. I have cordoned off wet in to wet areas and kept others dry. I've also used a spray bottle on areas already painted and dried, which does nice things and allows for nice things. Watercolor is an on going journey--and you've got the cab.

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  2. How wonderful! I zink de ezperimet vorked gud!

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  3. A great experiment, that works so well. Love this wet into wet loose painting.

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  4. There's as much joy in your painting as there is in your writing and I had a great time in your *lab*! May I keep the white jump suit you provided???

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  5. Vunderbar.... dis vet n vet... drippy... vonky painting.... it verks, it verks zer gut. YIKES... how did you keep that up? I went just recently to a Tony Couch workshop... he wet the paper on the back AND the front... now you have plenty time to paint vet in vet... he not use the block... vet on both sides paper sticks to masonite... used clips to hold when paper started to dry... but that was after painting almost 30 mins... I like this experiment of yours... it worked out very nicely.

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  6. I love this! Keep experimenting! It is gud!

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  7. I really like what happened and how the buildings disappear into the distance. Keep on experimenting!

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  8. Am having real trouble just writing this normally without branching out into your "pigeon" German.. how weird is that? Looks like a few of the others have had the same problem!!!

    This is a really good go at wet in wet and like you I am learning to slow down and try to plan more (fail to prepare... prepare to fail!!!) but this looks like a really successful painting so am not sure if you need to plan more at all!!

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  9. Sehr gut! Excellent work! I'm a sucker for city scapes and this one is no exception. I especially love the yellow cab- recognizable in any American city. Wonderful work Herr Kent! Wunderbar!!!!

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  10. Great colors on the buildings making the yellow car really pop. great job!

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  11. VERY NICE--- I think it is von of yer best!

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  12. Excellent results and quite out of your comfort zone, I suppose (though you sound pretty comfortable with it too !!) ! You managed it really well and it has a lot of depth . Looking forward to more of that kind !!

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  13. Yes...Fantastic!
    This works really well. As Cathy says, it is wonderful how the buildings disappear into the background.
    You must be very proud of this one Dan.
    Stew.
    stewcrowther.wordpress.com
    _________________________

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  14. I like your cars the reflections in the windshields look very realistic.

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  15. Vunderbar! I love it, you've captured the movement and energy of the big city and i looooove the reflection on the taxi cab window, my favourite bit!

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  16. Zis is great! I likes it very much!

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  17. Fantastique! I really like the result - look forward to your next experiment.
    Jane

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  18. Well done - it works! You have made a great job!Facing your demons! I have a new pack of gouache waiting to be opened and tried - never used gouache in my life!!! Help!!!!!!!!!!!

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  19. Great painting, great hilarious post. I never step on cats.

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  20. Love those misty buildings! Sounds as if you had almost as much fun painting this as we did viewing the result and laughing at your descripions!

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  21. Very Nice! And love your sense of humor....

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  22. Been meaning to look you up for ages, Dan ... glad I finally made it ... der wasser color is gut ja?

    I've signed on as a follower which means I get 10% of your income ... deal?

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  23. Dan,
    I love your painting and your "v's" and "z's."

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  24. You crack me up!!! I tell you, some days I have difficulties with being able to keep the V's and W's apart... Especially after talking both in Swedish & Finnish within the same day, then switch back to Eng...

    Oi, Vhat a mess, yes!!!

    Your painting, I really like ze right hand side of it the best... Very dream like quality to it, or like its late evening sun and misty. Looking at it, I can almost hear ze wery loud traffic.

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  25. That's awesome! I love cityscapes and you certain captured the energy of a busy city.
    Happy Painting.

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  26. Thanks for the laugh and the insight into your work!

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  27. I like it Dan, might have to try this technique with some HK buildings. Great post

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  28. sounds like zee germanz :D
    Nice work Dan!

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  29. Since I now know you are fluent in German, I can just tell you in meiner Muttersprache, dass ich deine Posts, die immer absolut zum Schießen sind, in meiner Internetpause vermisst habe! And there's so much to catch up! I love your paintings, and this cityscape is fantastic (well worth the experimentation)! I really like the yellow car!

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  30. Great experiment-love the reflection in the taxi rear window!

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  31. Hi, Dan,
    The work is very impressive. Particualrly, the buildings in a background show a very interesting texture I love. Keep up. Thank you for the wonderful post with a lovely humour!
    Kind regards, Sadami

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  32. Hi Dan, your experimet is fantastic! :)

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  33. more cabs! more urbany scenes! more! BRAVO! ENCORE!

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  34. Encore! Zer Gutt! I do like it very much and I think you're on to something Dan! Most impressive.

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  35. Thank you all so much! Your enthusiasm for this painting was a surprise to me and has me rethinking a bit how I paint in watercolor. It was great fun to do and I will see what more I can do - the trick will be capturing the same qualities. So many of you have visited, and I so appreciate it! And I am so glad you liked what came out of the experiment - turns out vee speek ze zame language.

    Addressing a few of your more specific comments, directly:

    Linda - You are so darned clever! I got the cab, lol. I liked hearing about all you do with the medium - seems the more I learn about it, the more freedom I get.

    MaryO - The white jump suit is yours!

    Captain - Thanks so much for the info re Tony Couch - fascinating.

    Margaret - Me neither, but my advice - Open it!! First step. Glad I could help.

    John - Thanks for coming! Yes, 10% of zero - why, that's zero! You've got it.

    Mari - Interesting to compare the sides, thanks - I learned something from doing that. I just knew I was going to offend someone with the accent thing - glad I didn't!

    E*phi - Confession - I don't speak the language. Fooled ya didn't I? By the way, Google Translate has translated your phrase as "in my mother tongue that I have your posts, which are always completely to shoot, missing in my internet break". Well, ok.

    Thank you all so much!!

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  36. Well, Dan, I never claimed *I* am fluent in German... XD No, I think google translate is trying to compete with you - it almost made me pee my pants (lol-induced). ;D But it's not too bad, actually. I was trying to say:
    "Since I now know you are fluent in German, I can just tell you in my mother tongue that I missed your posts, which are always killingly funny, very much."

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  37. I have to tell you: My eyes were immediately drawn to this painting. Wow! Quite some time ago, I did something similar, only tiny, and without the cars. Okay, well, it wasn't all that similar because it was actually a small outdoor market and short buildings. It looked an ugly little mess, at just 2" X 3". And though if you look closely, you would say, but you didn't really paint anything specific in all those grays and background buildings, for some reason, my eyes were drawn to that one tiny painting, on a page full of very carefully done paintings. I didn't post it because I wasn't sure why I liked it so much. I can see in yours (which is actually much better done) what it is that made me like mine. It is that it leaves so much for the viewer to imagine, or assume, or believe. There's a truth in there somewhere...I just know it! I LOVE this. To me, this is real artistry. I'm so glad you posted it!

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  38. It's fabulous, Dan ... just what watercolor likes to do best.

    Reminds me so much of Joseph Zbukvic's cityscapes (some great Youtube clips around). I did a workshop with him once and the paper was literally running with water. But he took great care to get the skyline crisp and precise. He claimed it's all you need to recognize the city.

    Your painting is soooo atmospheric. More, more!!!

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  40. Well, Dan, I never claimed *I* am fluent in German... XD No, I think google translate is trying to compete with you - it almost made me pee my pants (lol-induced). ;D But it's not too bad, actually. I was trying to say:
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