Monday, November 21, 2011
I did the above painting as a commission, and since the recipient has no idea who I am, and is one of the rare few who doesn't read Maine-ly Painting, I thought it would be safe to post it. To get this scene, I took a photo, projected it onto a blank masonite board, then carefefully traced the outline. When it came time for the color, I used the photo as much as possible.
I'm totally kidding!
I actually went to this harbor and kayaked out to this boat at precisely the same time every day for a week and painted it from life using a small easel and palette I had set up on a bouy.
Fooled you again!
Okay, really, I did neither. But this really is a portrait of a lobster boat converted into a pleasure craft, and my client wanted it to be seen in a harbor during fall. Since the boat is currently up and out of the water for the winter, I had to use photos. These are what she sent for me to use:
Next, I had to come up with a design for the painting. I settled on a low-angle view of the boat because that's how I personally saw so many of these boats when I would paddle around Cundy's Harbor, Maine, where I lived for four years. I felt I would be comfortable portraying it that way.
After I came up with an idea for the painting, I went back to my photo archives to see if I could get some usable reference shots of harbors and boats. The viewpoint for almost all of my photos is from my kayak, or about three feet above sea-level. I thought I could convert this one into my lobster boat:
Next came the harbor. Again, I wanted something that was consistent with the perspective I was using for my painting. This was actually taken at Oakhurst Island, right next door to Cundy's:
I simply changed the sun angle, and turned a beautiful spring day into fall.
Next came the reflections. Remembering all I had observed while I sat and stared for hours at the boats moored out in the harbor, (and talked about in my last blog post) I faked it.
So there's my painting, and I hope it makes a nice gift for someone.
Now, I'm sure that if I actually was out and saw this boat in this setting in person, I'd notice a thousand things I could do differently.
But then it would be almost like copying a photo, wouldn't it?