Tuesday, January 12, 2010

First Try: the Virtual Paintout

9x12 inches oil on canvas board
Ille Rousse, Corsica (available)

I've been casting about in my mind trying to decide on some artistic goals for 2010, and mostly failing to come up with anything except to keep experimenting with various media, and to learn more about the tubes of water mixable oils that have been languishing in my studio.  I also have a short term decision to make, since I signed up for a three day studio class near Madison, starting tomorrow.  What to work on?

I may have found a focus for the studio class and a goal.  Last year I enjoyed participating in a monthly online challenge called Virtual Sketchdate,  I enjoyed interpreting the photos there both as watercolors and as paper collages.  I loved seeing other people's interpretations, and getting feedback on my own efforts.  Sad to say the VSD is no more, the authors of the project have moved on to other things, perhaps painting more themselves and spending less time organizing projects for other people.

I'm happy to say I found another online challenge that looks interesting, the Virtual Paintout.  Bill Guffy uses Google Streetview to find scenes to paint.  Recent locations include Nova Scotia, Paris and Seattle.  This month the topic is Corsica.  I spent a couple happy hours taking a virtual drive on the French island, and finally settled on this scene in Ille Rousse.  It was a challenge in lots of ways.  It was challenging to find a spot I wanted to paint.  There were scenes in cities, along country roadways, bridges, ocean views.  What to choose?  I had to learn the Streetview program, and then figure out how to take a screenshot and edit it.  Then there was the actual painting.  I don't paint a lot of city scenes, and perspective isn't my strength.  I am also inexperienced in using oil paint.  Still, I had fun in both exploring Corsica and in painting this scene.

So, one goal for 2010 is to participate in at least six Virtual Paintouts, and to use my water mixable oils in most of them.  Short term, I have a scene chosen from Streetview in Florence to paint in my workshop.  It should be fun because we're traveling to Florence and Venice in March.  It'll be a chance to practice my perspective more, and to dream a little about our upcoming trip.


Carol said...

Enjoyed your post and painting.

Charlene Brown said...

Congratulations on a beautiful start to your virtual painting plans! I think your perspecitve does a great job of accomodating and enhancing the random angles of the composition. And what a good idea to practice painting Florence in anticipation of your trip there.

Murilo S Romeiro said...

Very good oil painting.
I do enjoy this kind of scene ( city and its buildings)
I loved the colors and composition.

Leslie Hawes said...

Beautiful colors! It does take a bit of 'doing' to learn Street View, but once you do it a bit, it is tons of fun!
The Virtual Sketch Date has continued as the Monthly Sketch Project.
Thought you might be interested!

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Anonymous said...

I saw your painting on Virtual Paintout and loved it. Your colors are wonderful and the perspective really works. It's so hard picking a scene, isn't it. You chose a good one!