What I’ve been up to...

As usual, I decided to corner myself into painting something demanding with an impossible deadline for my next project. I put together nine 8 x 10” canvases and painted them with acrylics from start to finish, in a very realistic manner. Even though the final product is very commercial looking, the idea behind it is based on a contemporary style concern.

The idea was to exploit photographic close up images as ways to describe and define an object (or a concept) without having just one angle capturing the whole object. You could say this painting is about the whole being more than the sum of its parts and say each picture implies the subject's polysemous nature. Or you could just say they’re pretty roses...

Either way, I purposely tried to get angles that allowed me to at least throw off the untrained eye a little bit. I tried to compose each one of these images like abstract paintings so if they were ever shown individually, they remained a little undefined. Given the fact that I was not very sure about what I wanted from these pictures when I took them in the first place (almost three years ago), I can say I’m very happy with the way they turned out.

From a technical point of view, I wanted to start pushing myself into painting more realistically with acrylics. I have been conducting research for a contemporary project for the last four years and at one point I concluded realism was a very effective way to illustrate it. This proved to be a golden opportunity to not only finally leave my oil crutches behind but to also experiment with canvas boards, which until now I had never used before.

For this project's album, please 

click here...

Chop Check 1

I noticed my memory needed a little help when it came to painting flowers. So I picked up some sunflowers at the store for a quick still life study.

I like the way the flowers turned out, but I realized how rusty I am when it comes to achieving a couple of textures. A more detailed study is in order, for sure. I noticed the condensation formed inside the vase blurred a lot of lines and gave the vase an overall opaque quality. Next study will probably focus on different textures of inanimate objects.

I especially like the little nod to Van Gogh I performed with the glass vase. If you like Van Gogh, you know what I'm talking about... For this and other works' step by step photo album, please click



Van Gogh is the cause of my obsession with sunflowers. I can't even remember how many of his still-life paintings I copied when I was first learning how to paint. Trying to accurately reproduce his brush strokes proved to be a very good exercise.

Anyway, I wanted to paint a purple-ish vase with this one, but I'm still too drawn to paint blue vases. I like the background, but I still gave the flowers and leaves a somewhat polished, too detailed quality. What I liked about Van Gogh the most was how raw his paintings looked. You could pretty much count his brush strokes.

There will be a time for me to paint realistically. For now, I'll keep trying to keep things loose and casual looking.