Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Rainy Day Preparations

It's been raining off and on now for a couple of months - certainly better than the drought we've been experiencing for the last couple of years.  But today, in addition to a cooler Spring than usual, the wind is carrying the wonderful aromas of a deep, green, rich season.  Our weather usually travels from the west and even in winter we get snow off the Great Lakes all the way over to the East Coast of North America.  So when I want to go outside to paint in the garden (that would not be in the winter!) this presents some problems so I'm spending time today preparing images for the next round of egg tempera painting.

Egg tempera, as I've mentioned, is less forgiving than oil so planning ahead is necessary.  That means first coming up with the right idea for an image.  Still life setups are one way to go, but the season or the weather isn't always right for what I want at the time in nature so I use current photos or those I've taken and organized from several decades of walks in the woods, fields and gardens.

The major preparation comes as I develop the ideas from setups or photographs.  I build them out in Photoshop by cutting, copying, pasting and editing until I have what I want to work from.  As I do this I also edit for light, values and color.  When the final image is ready I print several copies on thicker matte photo paper so I can cut templates of the final design.  I use the templates to cover areas of the painting not being worked on. This protects the painting from water or pigment straying onto other areas of the painting.

View this video demo of egg tempera painting with the password toomanyvideos2* -
Egg Tempera Painting Demo from Marny Lawton on Vimeo.

The finished egg tempera painting in demo: