Noah Layne

Monday, February 21, 2011

Easels and screws

In a previous post I was asked about the screws that I use on my easels.  Here are some photos of one of my easels and the screws that I've used to hold the canvas away from the top and bottom of the easel.

I've installed screws on all my wood easels, another studio easel and a french traveling easel.

The main reason that I use these screws is so that I can brush past the end of the canvas, much like one can brush past the side of the canvas when it's on a normal easel.  As the size of my paintings tends to be on the smallish side, it's important to me to be able to control my brush work right up to the edge of the canvas.

The screws also hold on to the canvas and give me confidence that the canvas will not go anywhere ;)

The easel in the these photos is my biggest easel.  The Italian Mabef M/04, here is a link to Mabef's website

This is a beautiful easel with a crank at the front to move the canvas up and down as you need.

Here is how I went about installing the screws into the easel.  For the top part I ended up using a small piece of wood I had sitting around.  I put 4 screws though the piece of wood pointing downwards.  Then I attached the piece to the easel's top holding thing with 2 screws. 

I wanted to keep the screws as close (front and back) to the main upright support of the easel so the canvas can be placed firmly against the main support and then one can lower the top holding thing to secure the canvas.

When I'm working on a small canvas I want to be able to set it up at the left of the easel so I can see my model and the canvas easily.  With the top wood piece extending out on both sides it lets me set the canvas where I want it.

For the bottom I've installed 4 screws along the bottom support.   Here it got a little tricky as I couldn't get a screwdriver to work coming up from the bottom shelf, as below the bottom shelf is a box to store things.  This box is attached to the bottom shelf and got in the way.  I ended up drilling holes down into the bottom support and then using a hacksaw to cut the heads off the screws.  I then used pliers to hold the screws from the top and turn them down into the drilled out holes.

Here is the last tip, make sure all the screws are at the same height!   ;)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

New painting

Here are a few photos of the painting that I've just finished.
For a more detailed step-by-step demo of a similar painting check out this demo on my website.
Start of first coat
Limited palette of colors
First coat brushes and palette
Full color pass

Starting to model the form

Still modeling the form :)

Adjusting things



Oil Portrait Painting Class

March 1st  - April 5th
Please register by February 18th
Tuesday Evenings 6:30 - 9:30 pm
I'm excited to be offering an oil portrait painting class again!

In this 6 week course we'll be working from a live clothed model.
I'll be teaching the use of plumb lines, comparative
measurement, and tilt angle to find correct proportions and how to paint
convincing form by controlling ones use of hue and chroma.

Lots of demos and individual instruction!

For more info please visit my classes website!

Monday, February 7, 2011

New paintings

Here are a couple of recent paintings.

"Fall Apples" Oil on panel 20"x24"

In Fall Apples I was thinking a little about Claudio Bravo.  I remember reading many years ago about some of his still life paintings from the 70's? when he was influenced by some zen ideas.  If I remember correctly he was painting rocks on a white table.  They were just scattered and placed randomly on the table.  I liked the idea that there are beautiful relationships in any grouping of things. 

Of course I've not got to the part where I'm just randomly placing things in my still life setups but I like the thought. :)
When I think of drawing or painting peoples faces, I'm reminded that even though there are people who have features and proportions to their face that are more easily recognized to our eye as beautiful every face has its own unique beauty and rhythm to its shapes.

In Fall Apples I also used one strong light source as well as a softer light that was not coming from the same direction as the main spotlight.  It was interesting to work with this light.

"Onions and Garlic"  Oil on linen 14"x30"
 In Onions and Garlic I was back to using just one light source on my setup.