"Sour Milk Gill" Oil Painting by James Swanson

"Sour Milk Gill" Oil Painting by James Swanson
"Sour Milk Gill" From the award winning painting series.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Higher Education

"Turl Street"
By James Swanson / Traveler Kallie Day
16" x 11" Oil on Linen Panel
See the journey of this painting here and the story below.

She came, she saw, she conquered.
Traveler Kallie Day
This next traveler painting project inspiration comes from my niece Kallie Day, who was studying aboard in Italy a few years back. 
Florence Italy, all photos are from Kallie's trip.
 Kallie was junior at Skidmore College when she had the chance to go to Italy for a semester to study design. While she was there she did a lot of sight seeing of her own. 
Gull and Big Ben
Kallie and her classmates somehow were able to get to London over a weekend and did the town.

The Traveler Painting "Turl Street" When this project idea first came up I was very lucky to have my niece Kallie an Art major in Italy studying. When I mentioned the concept to her, Kallie offered up any photos I wanted.
The photo that inspired me the most right off the bat was this Oxford street shot of hers. 
Oxford, photo inspiration for the painting.
I must say, at first I thought it was Cambridge I was painting, but was quickly corrected by some English friends when they saw the painting.
Here are the steps to Turl Street.- I started this painting as a painting demonstration in front of my class.
The rough oil sketch on canvas to start the painting. I already had a composition sketch made and transferred  it to the canvas. I knew I wanted to paint this one very loose with strong bold strokes. I rubbed and brushed in the sketch with a mixture of Burnt Umber and Burnt Sienna. At this point the painting was done in my head.

Painting in the dark colors first. Painting in these dark colors  first gives the painting all its structure. Kallie's photo radiated this warm monochromatic tone that I wanted to capture in paint. So I didn't go over board with the color and kept my color scheme heavily in the yellows and browns.  
This painting was part of a painting demonstration so I must apologise for the lax of photo steps here. But I was painting very quickly. Here are the painting steps from the last step. The sky was next. After that I painted background to foreground. Watching my paint edges  the whole way. I then painted the street, car and people.
With most of the painting close to finish here, all I needed to do is some clean up and color changes.
Done and signed. All this painting needed was a little warmer sky.
 Details from the painting.

Framed and ready to go.
"Turl Street"
By James Swanson / Traveler Kallie Day
16" x 11" Oil on Linen Panel
A quick update on Kallie- She graduated from Skidmore College, started Kallie Day Photography Studio there in Saratoga  Springs, NY and recently gave birth to a big happy baby boy named Donate. If you need a great photographer I highly recommend Kallie. Thanks for the photo Kallie
The artist and the Traveler is always looking for new spots to paint and interesting stories to hear about them. If you have any you con contact me here or through the website www.theartistandthetraveler.org
Until next time.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Dog Gone It!

"Ode to Tim"
By James Swanson / Traveler Gary
12" x 16" Oil on linen panel
Watch how this painting was made.

A Sad Time. 
I heard some sad news while I was finishing "The White Church" painting.
Traveler Gary Richardson and pal Tim
Long time walker, traveler and friend Gary Richardson's walking mate past away in his sleep.
I think Tim liked Gay's photos as much as the walks.

Gary's big white dog Tim was always a favorite of mine to look at while perusing Gary's photo albums.
Good boy Tim
Tim just stood out in his pictures and you could feel the happiness in their journeys together.
Gary's photo I asked to paint.
So in honor of Tim, I've painted Gary a little keep sake and a reminder that
Tim is in our thoughts. God speed Tim.
The Painting steps to "Ode to Tim"

The rough oil sketch for the painting. Gary's wonderful photo didn't leave me much to change in the translation to a painting. The placement of Tim was in a perfect golden rectangle spot.
The palette of colors I used to start this painting. This is where my paintings take form.
 If the colors don't work together on my palette they won't work on the canvas.

I was painting this painting in front of my class I teach, so I didn't get as many photos as I usually do.I did start with my darkest colors. I placed them warm in front and cool darks in the background.
The blues are being added and some of the heather is starting to be added along 
with putting in the greens

The sky was the next step. Keeping it from jumping out too much from the land was  a challenge, 
but I  painted it very loose in keeping it in the style of the land.

Done! There were a lot of little things to take care of from the last step. Like putting in a few details on Tim and painting in the lighter colors in the heather.
Details from the painting.

Framed and soon off to Gary
"Ode to Tim"
By James Swanson / Traveler Gary
12" x 16" Oil on linen panel

Since my last paintings traveler was my own dog Amber, I felt for Gary and his plight. But I am glad to say after some tough mourning for Tim, 
 Gary and his new walking mate Cleo.
Gary made the decision to save a rescue dog and break her into a new life. I'm very glad to say that Cleo and Gary are doing great, and are partnering up in some wonderful photos together. Now that's a good Dog!
If you and or your partner have a story you would like to share with us contact me here or at www.theartistandthetraveler.org
Until next time hold on to your hat, later!