Sunday, September 20, 2015

Week three. September 2015.

LOOK:


QUESTION:
I started this painting back in 2013 but the carnival closed before I could finish it. I remember at the start wondering nothing more than if I could pull off a large night-time plein air painting. But as it leaned against the wall in my studio over the next two years, waiting for that fair to roll around again, I piled more questions onto it: could I capture the gestures of the people walking without too many distracting details; could I organize them into a graphic compositional element that supports and is secondary to the midway tents; could I paint the optical effect of the bright lights subtly reflecting into the dark sky-shape?


PAINT:

Step Right Up, 24" x 30", oil on canvas, $1500 framed, $1400 unframed.

Please visit my website elizabethsauder.com to purchase this painting and to see more of my artwork. I also occasionally post about the happenings in my studio at facebook.com/elizabethsauderstudio


FIELD NOTES: 
Rockingham County Fair is one of the top 50 agricultural fairs in the country and I love to wander though the barns and see the kids working with their animals. Here are a few snapshots.













 

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Week two. September 2015.


PINHOLES 
When I'm traveling on a carnival-painting trip I often take an evening away from my night-time painting to make pinhole photographs. A pinhole camera, in case you don't know, is the most basic form of a camera. It's a light-tight box with a tiny, pinpoint-sized hole on one side and some type of photosensitive film or paper (or digital computery-thing) inside the box, on the wall opposite the hole. The light that's reflected off of the exterior landscape enters the camera's pinhole, turns upside down, and is projected onto the back wall of the box where it's captured by the photosensitive stuff.

The exposure time changes depending on a bunch of variables. In my case it's how much light is out there. So when I'm photographing a carnival ride at night, my exposure can be anywhere from 30 seconds to 3 or 4 minutes. And that's the part I like, because that makes taking pinholes both very similar and radically different from making paintings.  

It's similar because I'm compressing an appreciable chunk of time, and all the activity therein, into a single visual image - about 3 minutes in the photo and 3 hours in the painting.  And it's similar because I'm standing in the space, carefully observing my subject, and experiencing and interacting with the peripheral action.

But it's also different because, unlike a painting, the photo captures and makes explicit the three dimensional space that I seem to look through instead of at. This helps me to perceive space in a way that I'm trying to bring to my paintings. 


















Each of these pinholes are available for $30 unframed, $80 framed, 6" x 9" image size.
Please visit my website elizabethsauder.com to purchase them and to see more of my artwork.
I also occasionally post about the happenings in my studio at  facebook.com/elizabethsauderstudio

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Week four. August 2015.

LOOK:


QUESTION:
I was really interested in the picture-puzzle complexity of the shapes and their colors. I was drawn, too, to the splash of light across the center of the floor.


PAINT:
Bumper Cars, 12" x 12", oil on canvas, $375 framed, $350 unframed.


Please visit my website elizabethsauder.com to buy this painting and to see more of my artwork. I also occasionally post about the happenings in my studio at facebook.com/elizabethsauderstudio


FIELD NOTES: 
Painting during the day when the rides are still is challenging enough so why in the world do I try to paint the rides at night?!?  
 



Sunday, August 16, 2015

Week two. August 2015.

LOOK:


QUESTION:
The unusual clarity of the air is making the landscape unfamiliar. What colors am I seeing?


PAINT:

Toad Run/Shag Hill - lush life, oil on gessoed paper, 10" x 5", $175 framed, $150 unframed

Please visit my website elizabethsauder.com to purchase this painting and to see more of my artwork. I also post occasionally about the happenings in my studio at facebook.com/elizabethsauderstudio  


FIELD NOTES:
After last week's chilling encounter with the heavily armed man I had to put things to rights by spending the day painting in my happy place. It worked.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Week one. August 2015

LOOK:


QUESTION:
What's the big difference between the shade and the light?


PAINT:
Cicada Shade, 8" x 6", oil on panel, $150 framed, $125 unframed.

Please visit my website elizabethsauder.com to buy this painting and to see more of my artwork. I also post occasionally about the happenings in my studio at facebook.com/elizabethsauderstudio


FIELD NOTES:
It was a perfect day and I was in a perfect place. The weather was hot and bright but with unaccustomed low humidity. I was cool in the shade of a smoke tree that was busy with two hummingbirds. Cicadas buzzed. A small stream tinkled nearby. Then a very large, very clean, four-door, black pick-up with an equally huge ATV in the bed pulled up next to me. The tinted window eased down. I walked over to chat. The driver said "Ma'am, I ask you to cease and desist immediately." I looked in the cab. There were multiple weapons on the seat and floor. I left.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Week four. July 2015.

Last week's monsoon kept me from painting outdoors, but it gave me the opportunity to work on an indoor project that I've been thinking about for a while - making a picture book for toddlers illustrated with my paintings. Here's the cover:


It was one of the most engrossing things I've done in a while. I brushed up on my layout and Photoshop skills and learned a bit about copyright law and ISBN numbers. I spent a luxurious afternoon at the library looking at beautifully-illustrated children's books. I created Bird Forest Press and designed it's logo. And best of all I got to daydream about my friends, the tractors, and what they like to do.

You can see the full preview of the book (all 15 pages of it!) and buy a copy for $18 plus shipping by clicking HERE. It'll take about 30 seconds to load up so please be patient.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Week two. July 2015.

LOOK:


QUESTIONS:
1) How can I handle the background so that it suggests the bright lights and movement and excitement of the midway without overpowering the main subject matter?
2) What color does everything become under those yellow bug lights?
3) What the heck was I thinking to begin a painting, in the dark, of shifting people and whirling carnival rides while hoards of fair-goers drifted by and at least a quarter of them wanted to chat?


PAINT:
Bingo Night at the Fireman's Carnival, 10" x 8", oil on gessoed paper, SOLD.

Please visit my website elizabethsauder.com to see and purchase more of my artwork. You can also follow the happenings in my studio at facebook.com/elizabethsauderstudio
 

FIELD NOTES:
Here's a word problem for you: Bingo night runs for three hours total. Each game takes about five minutes. Each card costs 25¢. The winner of each game receives a prize of $3. The total take for the evening is $426. How many Bingo cards did they sell?