Tuesday, February 26, 2013

"The Jester" - A New Orleans Mask Painting

I bought this Mask in New Orleans over a year ago and have been waiting for the time to paint it since. I finally just decided to put the time aside and do it. I figured with Mardi Gras here, now was a good time to post it.
It's 18 x 24 Oil on Panel. The first painting I made in 2013.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Five Baby Eggplants

This is the first painting I am posting since redesigning the Blog....I decided that it needed to be brighter in color because I have been posting more text in my posts, even though I love the way paintings look against a black background.



I love painting these Baby Eggplants! They are actual size in the painting, and the painting is a 6 x 8. I try to paint them every time I see them because they are not easy to find. They are easier to find up north then they are down here in Florida.
There was a Farmers Market down here my girlfriend and I used to go to. It closed recently and I was dreading life without it. They suggested one that was not much farther away so we went to check it out. It is ten times better!!!...and they has these little guys.
Interestingly enough she decided to paint them as well so there are two different baby Eggplant paintings available out there right now!
If you want to see her version click: http://javeryfoster.blogspot.com/

The Benefit Of Painting In Black And White

Every time I teach a class I start with the same  lecture of how important it is to learn portrait painting step by step. I'm sure there are people out there who put out a full palette of paint and learned to paint portraits without doing black and white paintings first, but I would say that they are in the minority.
I have personally seen classes where an instructor recommended 25 colors on the palette and the class was full of brightly colored disasters.
The most common comment I get from a new student who is struggling is "I'm having a problem with color". Then they begin working and I quickly find out that they can't  draw and they don't understand values.

 I did the above painting in a Daniel Greene Workshop several years ago. The model had been posing all week and I couldn't get it right. On Friday I just decided to start over and try something else. I did this Black and White in two hours and was far more happy with it then the one I struggled with for four days.

Before I started oil painting portraits, I spent some time drawing portraits, which is always a good idea. This one is done in Warm Grey and White Prismacolor pencil on Charcoal Paper. Read books on portrait painting as well. I will be posting a blog on some of my favorite portrait painting books soon.

 I would say the hardest thing about learning to paint is figuring out exactly what the paint is going to do. I always suggest going back one step until painting gets easy. If you are working in full color and are not satisfied, work in black and white. If you are now making new disasters in black and white paint, I would suggest drawing for a while.
If you get to be an excellent portrait artist who works in charcoal on paper, I guarantee you will learn oil painting ten times faster!

When I say black and white, It really means just two colors, one color and white .
The above was done in raw umber and Holbein's Foundation Umber. It makes for a softer more sepia colored value study. When I began using color I didn't jump from B/W to a 25 color palette. I added them one or two at a time.
My first color palette was Burnt Umber, Yellow Ochre, Terra Rosa, Black and White.
I then added one color a month until I hit twelve colors and then stopped for a while.

This one was done in six hours as a demo for a workshop I taught in Australia. A student was nice enough to film it and put a short video of it on YouTube.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

A Few Art Books I Highly Recommend

There was a recent post about essential art books on Muddy Colors, A great Illustration Blog. I mention art books in every class I teach, but thought it was about time I posted a list of my favorites as well.....

Creative Illustration by Andrew Loomis is one of the most complete art educations you can get from a book. I have said it is as good as the first two years of art school. Loomis has other books which are excellent and I have read them all but this one covers almost everything anyone who wants to make pictures needs to read.

If Creative Illustration is as good as the first to years of art school I would say that The Illusion Of Life By Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston one does the same for animation. Anyone who wants to paint and draw should read it as well. Many of these tips can be applied to any type of art.

Just a great book. I love the paintings and there are some great ideas and tips. His advice on making charts of color is excellent.

This one is from my drawing teacher James McMullan. It can be hard to understand if you don't read it carefully, or know someone who was in the class and can explain it to you....but still one of the best figure drawing books ever written.

The title says it all.... The Big Book Of Oil Painting by Jose M. Parramon is not the greatest book on oil painting out there, but it is an excellent introduction to oil painting and covers many topics.

One of two books on this list by Harold Speed. A must read for any drawing student. I first read this when I was in art school. I couldn't believe how much information is in it.

Keep a dictionary by your side since Vanderpoel had an amazing vocabulary....Once you get through it, you will be impressed with how much you have learned. It's an excellent book.
I recommend reading as many books on anatomy as possible. I actually have over a dozen, at least.

Another Harold Speed book. Just as good as his book on drawing... great ideas about how to approach painting.

Probably the easiest to understand and best book on figure drawing I have read.
When I was at SVA someone bought a copy of this and because it was spiral bound they made copies. Then someone made copies of the copies and so on. By the time I got a copy you could barely see it.
I had a bar tending job in art school and made decent enough money so I ordered my own copy.
Glenn Vilppu has an entire website full of other books and drawing aids.

On Acting by Sanford Meisner

On Acting by Sanford Meisner is the best book on painting/drawing I have ever read. The book is really about being great at anything. As you read it, just substitute the word "Acting" for whatever it is you do, and the first half of the book is wonderful. The second half gets more specific about acting and doesn't work quite as well but if you are looking to get more character and personality into your work the book is invaluable.

I have had a few people read it and report back to me that they didn't get my fascination with it.
I would suggest reading at least the first few chapters. Anyone that gives it a chance, let me know, I'd love to hear what you think. The introduction by Sydney Pollack is also fun to read.

I have left out hundreds of books. In my drawing class I used to have a challenge, If you can bring in a book on drawing I haven't read, I'll give you a drawing of mine.
This list is of the books that were the most important for increasing my skills.
I could make ten more lists for other areas of interest.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Three Lemon Plums

As I walked into the grocery store a few days ago, the first thing I saw in the produce section was the most bizzare and interesting fruit I have seen in a while. I don't know whether these are some new hybrid fruit, or just something I have never seen before, but either way I instantly loved them. When you paint as many still-life paintings as I do, anything new is good!....and also fun to paint.

6 x8 Oil on Panel
 Below is a process shot of another one I am working on which shows that the Plums do actually look like that!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Portrait Painting Class in Stuart, Florida

I have made some changes in the format for the March/April Portrait class at Stuart Art Supply in Stuart, FL. I have decided to combine the two classes and have the model pose for six hours straight.
There will be two separate classes and painters can take either one of the individual classes or both classes. The first class will be from 3pm to 6pm and the second from 6:30 to 9:30pm. The model will be in the same pose for both classes, one pose all day long. There will be a different model each week. Anyone taking both classes will be able to get one six hour study done per week. (I can guarantee I will still get emails to be more specific on this)....
I am limiting the class size to six people per class. I don't like more then that around one model.  

The cost of an individual class, either afternoon or evening is $200.00.
There is a special rate of $350.00 for anyone who wishes to take both classes.
Please send a deposit of  $50.00 made out to Clinton T. Hobart along with a note stating which class or both to:
Stuart Art Supply
45 Kindred St.
Stuart, FL 34994

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Salon International at The Greenhouse Galley in San Antonio, TX

These two paintings were accepted into the Salon International this year.
"All Sorts Of Apples" is 9 x 23 Oil on Panel
I painted this one to show that apples are different! I see so many apple paintings where it looks like someone took the same apple and painted it over and over again.
Apples are like people, they come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and variety. Why treat them all the same!

The below piece is a six hour study I did of my girlfriend.
It was a quick study, but one of my favorites. I was surprised it got into the show because it was so unfinished.

I don't enter many shows per year. Years ago I entered as many as I could thinking it would get me into galleries and increase sales. It didn't. In fact all it was doing was costing me hundreds of dollars per year without much in return.
After taking a few years off I decided to enter a few shows per year and to be very selective about which ones I enter.
I also look carefully at who the judge is. One of my favorite Artists, who judged a show a few years back, believes that no good painting goes to the edge of the canvas.
In a show, where he is the judge, I have pretty much no chance of getting a prize if I enter one of my still-life's which go to the edge, so I need to keep that in mind if I plan on entering. The above portrait is something I think he might like but unfortunately he isn't the judge this year....nice thinking on my part.

I' don't paint to prove I am better then someone else at it, and I couldn't care less what someone who is not buying my work thinks. I have read too many great reviews of bad paintings and bad reviews of good paintings. The NY Times magazine published an article years ago titled "Americas Bad Art" Page one was Norman Rockwell. The magazine should have come with a small pack of Tums.

I enter shows for publicity and prize money. Prize money to me is like finding cash on the ground. I don't have to part with a painting!!
Although it is certainly nice when people like and compliment my work, I don't get down or upset if I don't win a prize. Sales are what actually keep me painting. If I enter a show, and don't get a prize but the painting sells, which has happened several times, that is all the validation I need! I must admit I did get a "Judges Choice" at the Salon one year and it always feels good just to get into the show. Only about a third of the paintings that are entered actually get in.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Apples And Cherries

There is nothing like a little red on red with Valentines Day Coming up. This one started as a quick demo in my weekly still-life class. I decided to bring it home, add the cherries and finish it.

6x8 Oil on Panel


Sunday, February 10, 2013

Another Try From The Scammer!! - Updated

For anyone who read the first Blog I posted on a recent scam. I can't believe he tried it again under a different name! I'm posting this one just because I thought I would have some more fun with him at this point. These are real emails, and I am posting real names they sent. None of this is made up. So far the two names used are Peter Glendover and Michael Silverberg.
Peter Glendover must not be a very common name because nothing shows up in a Google search on it but a few scam blogs. 
Michael Silverberg is more tricky because it is a much more common name.
The give away is the poor sentence structure. "My eyes caught this particular work" and "i will be waiting to read from you" are the two sentences to look out for. If anyone gets an email that sounds like this but is under a different name, let me know. I'd like to list all of the fake names here.
Hi there,
My name is Michael,im from phoenix,was browsing through the internet and my eyes caught this particular work("Heather"),will like to have it for my new apartment probably this month.please let me know if the piece is available and if yes let me have the detailed price and more information about it. i will be waiting to read from you.


Michael Silverberg  sgtmikesilver@yahoo.com

 My Response:

 Hi Michael.

I'm sorry but that particular painting has already sold.
Thank you so much for your interest in my work!

Please keep an eye on my Blog, New paintings go up for sale every week!


 His reply....

Date: Fri, 8 Feb 2013 22:52:26 -0800
From: sgtmikesilver@yahoo.com
Subject: Re: Artwork
To: clintonhobart@hotmail.com

Can you send me the picture of the available piece?


So I thought I should send him an image of my available painting and the asking price:

Hi Michael,

Here is a picture of the available painting, It is 2" by 3".
The price is $50,025.00

Please let me know what you think!


So far I have not heard back.....