Category Archives: Figure

Random sketches

Thanks for your recent comments about my sketches.  Here’s a few more.  I’m also testing out various ways to include photo slide shows into my blog.  This is using Cinopa.  Hope it works!

Cincopa WordPress plugin

Some figure work

Last year I posted a video collage of some some figure work, but thought it would be nice to post full images.  You can view these at a higher resolution.  I’m working more so lately on the figure, and may have some new work to post soon. I’m incredibly inspired by the latest work by Dan MacCaw.  This blog post, which describes how he takes a landscape and sort of “deconstructs” it through a series of paintings into something else, is intriguing, and something I’m going to attempt myself this weekend.  I’ve struggled with loosening up my work, and trying to drive more and more towards abstraction.  His recent studies are a fascinating example of how to achieve that.

Hiking Swimsuit, Oil on Linen, 5 7/8 x 6 1/2
Hiking Swimsuit, Oil on Linen, 5 7/8 x 6 1/2

Attitude, Oil on Linen, 6 1/2 x 6 /12
Attitude, Oil on Linen, 6 1/2 x 6 /12

Sleeper, Oil on Linen, 7 1/14 x 5 1/2
Sleeper, Oil on Linen, 7 1/14 x 5 1/2

Boy, Oil on Canvas, 3 3/4 x 6 1/2

Boy, Oil on Canvas, 3 3/4 x 6 1/2

Chase

This painting of Timberfield model Chase sat in my studio for a while, unfinished (I thought). I like to work “ala prima”, wet into wet. I wasn’t able to finish this one that way, so it sat a few weeks. But it grew on me as is, so here it is.

Chase

This painting is an exploration. Art is a viable pursuit for me as long as I have the opportunity to push myself through experimentation and growth. Having just finished Door County Plein Air, I was reminded that I need to avoid creating works that veer on “trite”. Yes, I like to capture beauty, but I want to create works that are more intellectually stimulating. That’s how music evolved from Bach to Portishead :-).

Pushing the viewer by capturing images that are beautiful (in an abstract way), yet have mystery–and maybe confusion–is a direction I’m exploring. This is one example. When you see this image, what do you think?

What you don’t see, is that Chase is jumping out of a tree, so his body is contorted in an unusual way, you don’t see the tree, but you probably get some sense of movement. This is similar to Robert Longo’s “Men in the city” series, who I recall used to photograph his models while throwing rubber balls or rocks at them.  Their contorted bodies made for an interesting subject, and without the balls for needed context, the viewer wonders what instigated the movement.  Mystery in art…it’s a good thing.

Door County Plein Air, Day 4-5

Busy couple days, but finally ready for the show tomorrow night! It rained all day today, but I was able to finish a painting of a Venus-like statue at Edgewood Orchard Galleries. Last night, finished two paintings for the “Evening with the Artists” sunset reception. I did both a late afternoon/pre-sunset work and a really fun nocturne, both of which I hope to post tomorrow. My second Cavepoint painting below was painted yesterday, which was really productive!

Painting at Forbes’ Timberfield

I was honored to be asked to join a wonderful group of artists to paint at Timberfield, the Forbes family estate in New Jersey.  Christopher “Kip” Forbes was an unbelievably gracious, open host with a wonderful dry sense of humor, and M. Stephen Doherty (Editor, American Artist) facilitated great discussion among the artists and selected a group that complemented each other well. The artists included: Camie Davis, John Patrick Campbell, Rob Clarke, Bryan Le Boeuf, George Towne, Wendy Walworth, Timothy Jahn, Ed Terpening, Patricia Watwood and John Dowd.

Artist's Dinner at TImberfield
Artist's Dinner at TImberfield
Ed Terpening at Timberfield
Ed Terpening at Timberfield

Stephen writes about the weekend in American Artist Workshop magazine (Summer edition, on news stands now). That’s Camie Davis on the cover, who’s also featured in the magazine. She did a wonderful job of capturing the four days on her blog (day 1, 2, 3, and 4).

American Artist Workshop Magazine (Summer)
American Artist Workshop Magazine (Summer)

Here’s one of the paintings from the trip.  The artists are to be featured in a show at The Forbes Galleries in Manhattan next year.  This will be my first show in the “Big Apple”!  I’m thrilled (and a bit nervous…this is an incredibly talented group!).

Timberfield, Oil on Linen, 10x12
Timberfield, Oil on Linen, 10x12

UPDATE (7/26/2010): Kip was kindly sent some photos of the trip.  Here are a couple:

Rob Clarke, Ed Terpening, Chase, Timothy Jahn, John Patrick Campbell
Rob Clarke, Ed Terpening, Chase, Timothy Jahn, John Patrick Campbell
Timothy Jahn and Ed-Terpening
Timothy Jahn and Ed-Terpening

Sewing the Sail (after Sorolla)

Painting copies of artwork you admire is a great way to learn. Joaquín Sorolla is one of my favorite painters, so I can open “Joaquín Sorolla” (Museo Nacional Del Prado) to any page and find a work of inspiration to copy.  Like this one.  Funny thing is, I opened the book, and found later this is a detail of a larger painting! I had a feeling it was an odd composition (having the two people on the edge of the canvas), so it was nice to see the full composition on the next page.

Even so, copying “Sewing the Sail” (1904) was a great lesson in composition and color.  I learned how Sorolla used the folds in the sail to lead directly to the figures, and even the shadows in the sand.  Look how the main shadow folds in the sail lead directly to the center of interest (foreground person).  I was also surprised someone how intense many of these colors were, but how adding a complement (violet to the orange) would bring down the intensity just enough (although, comparing mine to his now, I see I should have used even more violet).

This was also a great study in brushwork. The original is much larger, but I was able to adapt my brushwork to this scale (10×8) to lay down some juicy brushstrokes, particularly on the sunlit side of the sails.

The Sewers after Sorolla, Oil on Canvas, 10x8
The Sewers after Sorolla, Oil on Canvas, 10x8

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Hearst Castle Plein Air Invitational

It’s been a wonderful couple days here at Hearst Castle for the invitational.  The artists and staff of the castle have been great.  I can’t wait to see everyone’s work framed for the show June 5. Tickets are available for $175 for the Friends of Hearst Castle’sTwilight on the Terrace” fundraiser benefiting art programs for at risk youth.

Ed Terpening, Hearst Castle, May 13, 2010
Ed Terpening, Hearst Castle, May 13, 2010

My first effort was painting “Casa del Mar”, a guest house on the South Terrace of the castle. I got to take a peak inside…wow.  Opulent doesn’t begin to describe it.  Hearst himself spent his final years in this house.  This is just about done, I think a couple minor tweaks when I get back to my studio should do it.

Casa Del Marr, Hearst Castle - Oil on Linen - 10x12
Casa Del Marr, Hearst Castle - Oil on Linen - 10x12

My next effort was painting this white marble statue, which I imagine is Cupid (sans arrow).  While in full sun is always a joy for me to paint, as white takes on so many colors and reflections of light. I’m not sure the color of reflect light is quite right, so I may make some adjustments before I call this one done.

Cupid (Hearst Castle), Oil on Linen, 12x9
Cupid (Hearst Castle), Oil on Linen, 12x9

And on my final day, again on the South Terrace outside Casa del Mar, I painted this fountain and gold statue of a princess holding a frog. I realize the princess statue on top looks like an Oscar statuette, but that’s really what it looks like!  Even the shadow side on the gold had a red glow. I’m happy with this one.  It’s interesting to me because it almost looks like two different painters/styles: the fountain is high-key, colorist, and the background trees and distant shore are more traditional value painting.

South Terrace View (Hearst Castle), Oil on Linen, 12x9
South Terrace View (Hearst Castle), Oil on Linen, 12x9

As you can see, all of these paintings push color a bit.  With full sun available, I didn’t paint much tonally.  To make sure these colors are still on track, I look at the images in black & white as well.  If light and shadow read well in black/white, it almost doesn’t matter what color you choose to paint (see my 2007 post on values). I think the light/shadow patterns read in this black/white versions, so these seem to be working.

And here’s the group of painters.