I began the challenge by selecting my conceptual focus – Trees. I then found three different representations of my concept, from three different eras and one Australian art work. I selected Brett Whiteley – The Arrival n A Glimpse in the Botanical Gardens (Australian Artist) 1984. This was beautiful and used such soft swirling, continuous strokes with beautiful, bright complimentary tones.
I also selected:
- Piet Mondrian – The Red Tree 1909 Cubism;
- Isaac Levitan – Bird Cherry Tree 1880’s romanticism
- Nicholas Roerich – Kiss to the Earth 1912 symbolism
Brett Whiteley’s painting was done using oil, collage and charcoal on canvas in 1984 of the Botanical Gardens, mixing a combination of trees together to form one central tree.
I developed my own thoughts on the painting:
- Autumn day
- Central to gardens
I then answered the questions posed to me:
- Where is your eye drawn first?
The lightest part of the tree, middle of painting.
- What is represented or suggested? What shapes are used?
Gardens, central tree, autumn, sunset. Smooth swirls, bright colours, smooth lines, flowing.
- Describe the lines used in the work. Do they create a sense of depth or movement?
Creates movement, flowing, smooth, delicate, intrinsic,
- Is there a limited range of colours (a limited palette)? Which ones are dominant?
Bright autumn colours, Blue, yellow and orange.
- Do the colours create a mood or suggest ideas or feelings?
Creates a happy, summery autumn day feeling. Warm, fun, happy.
- Is the work mainly dark or light? Are there areas of both?
Areas of both. Dark shading on the tree, bright, deep colours in the sky and light yellow background – sunny day.
- Is the work balanced?
Yes – between the sky which doubles as the leaves and the yellow background with the tree trunk.
- Are there any surfaces that are visually interesting or intriguing? Describe what you see or the texture of the surface.
The leaves/sky. The leaves are colours of a sunset suggesting it is sort of both? The texture is thicker paint and swirly like clouds and to suggest soft leaves and blending the two colours together.
- Is the work busy or is there empty(negative) space? How does this affect your feeling of the work?
I think it is balanced between busy and not so busy. I think they have used their space well between the tree and the calmer yellow background. I like it more because it allows your focus on the tree opposed to the foreground.
- Are there repeated elements in the work creating a rhythm?
The tree trunk flowing in all different directions with easy movement and the background flowers suggests gardens.
- Describe the movement or stillness in the work. What elements do you notice that create this?
The way the brush has flowed across the painting in creating the flowing tree trunks expresses the movement in the artwork. Along with the colourful strokes in the leaves/sky. Also the flowing roots of the tree.
- Do you know what medium the artist used in the piece? Does the artist’s choice of medium affect the reading of the work? How?
I then drew three different types of drawings of a tree, unfortunately I forgot to photograph one before it was painted on. I began by looking at the article Line Drawing: A guide for Art Students and the various types of line drawing.
Here is what I did:
Blind contour drawing
Scribble art drawing
I also did a gestural drawing but that was the one I forgot to photograph. The challenge then asked me to paint over one of my drawings (I chose the gestural drawing) using either complimentary or monochromatic colour schemes, after researching these I decided that the complimentary colours would suit my tree better. I also looked at the article “13 Acrylic Painting Techniques All Beginners Should Try” which I found very useful before beginning my acrylic painting.
Here is my painting:
For this I drew on inspiration from Brett Whiteley with his brush strokes and colours for the trunk and bright backgrounds etc. I used acrylic paints with water and dotted the leaves on for a messier look compared to the swirly strokes for the background and tree trunk. I am happy with my outcome from this activity as it was trial and error and a bit of fun, not a serious painting that had to be geographically correct.
I also uploaded one of my drawings to be edited on ToonPaint again and played with the textures, enhancements, line thickness etc., this is the outcome:
Out of all four of my drawings/paintings this is my favourite and I am enjoying being able to refine on the apps and using technology this way.