"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.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Out to Sea

"The Shrimper"
By James Swanson / Li Newton
14"x 18" Oil on Linen panel
A Real Bubba Gumper!
Seeing a new place through the eyes of someone else is what the Artist and the Traveler project is all about. Our new Traveler and friend Li Newton brings just that to us to enjoy.
Li Newton
New Traveler Li Newton
I met Li when I was asked to join a painting group of artists called "Paint My Photo". It's a site where artists from around the world come to meet and exchange things like painting tips, photo references, or show off their latest works and get great feed back on it. A very friendly place, and Li was one of my first new friends there.

Shrimp Boats and the Birds That Love Them
Li's wonderful photo of a shrimp boat going out to sea that was used for painting inspiration.
Traveler Li photo story: The shrimp boat photo was taken on Harbor Island, S.C. What a noisy racket those gulls made! I had a week off from school ( went back at 51 to learn decorative restoration in Asheville, N.C.) and we just drove to the coast, no plans, and explored.
The only photo of the painting as it was being created. At this point
it is all blocked in and  ready for details and color adjustments.
Traveler painting "The Shrimper"- I'm sorry to say that I forgot about the painting step photos for this painting. You see I was trying out a new brush technique and got caught up in it and forgot to take them. Here is the new technique that I was trying out though.

I usually start with my darkest dark colors and work to my lightest.  Well I was was trying out these really big brushes ( about 3"wide) and there wasn't much dark to begin with, so I went for the biggest mass area to cover first. And of coarse that was the sky.

I mixed up the base color tone for the sky and then broke that tone down into a few other colors by just adding blue , red or yellow to it. Then with intermingling of those colors, I slapped them on the canvas with big bold strokes.
From the sky I progressed to the blue trees in the background and then to the grasses. That left only the ship to be painted in.

Since I didn't paint in a lot of detail in the background with the big brush I didn't want to tighten up and over do the boat in details. So I only used a medium sized brush ( size 8 ) and my palette knives.

A palette knife is one of the great ways to get some thick clean paint on the canvas. You can see a lot of it's uses here in this detail. See the whites and the lines, only a palette can give you that clean of an edge in thick paint.
The lines and rigging of the boat are just touches of a loaded up with paint knife edge and then a touching of the brush softened here and there.

The gulls where painted in with just the tip of the knife with some paint on it. Simple and clean like the rest of the painting..
Then there is the person on the boat. he only gets the same amount of attention that everything else does, anymore than a few strokes and he will stick out like a sore thumb.

Done and framed
"The Shrimper"
By James Swanson / Li Newton
14"x 18" Oil on Linen panel
A special thanks goes out to our new friend and traveler Li Newton for the use of her photos and for all of her very kind comments about my art. Li is quite the artist her self, check out and enjoy her wonderful paintings and photos here.
Also check out Paint My Photo website, it's a great meeting place for artists or anyone. 
And if you are interested in becoming a traveler for this project contact me here or at the www.theartistandthetraveler.org website.
Until next time so long.

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Have a good travel story and some fun and interesting pictures and we can get started on a painting journey.E mail me here with
name, place, and a few pics of the spot,and I'll get back to you.