Monday, January 19, 2009

People You Know

THIS House Dress Has a Pocket, 2009, Oil on Birch Panel, 12x24

Wow, didn't mean to not post for so long! Nothing much going on here either, every day seems the same lately; getting the kids off to school, doing a few chores, shoveling, of course, studio time and then what feels like an excessive amount of driving each day. Doug has been traveling a lot, so I have been doing double duty I guess.

I have been working steadily in the studio however, and have nearly finished three new paintings with three new underpaintings on deck. I was hoping to be able to put up some images of them last week but after unsuccessfully photographing them, several times, I have realized that I will have to change my system. THAT means I may have to pull out the stupid lights and get a whole set up in order to photograph them properly. Blech. I hate having to do this because a. I am super lazy and do not want to have to do all this extra work and b. I am at the very outer edges of my brain capacity when taking photographs, using a digital camera and photoshopping, so between that and having to do all the extra work, I am usually just pissed off. Sorry to be so blunt, but it's true.

Anyway, I did manage to get one half decent shot that I was able to photoshop enough to look pretty accurate, so I am putting that up today, along with a close up shot of the face. I am pretty pleased with this painting.

I have decided to consider this work as a series and am going to call them "People You Know". I have been referring to these pieces as portraits or figurative work but neither of those seemed accurate, so I felt a series title would be more appropriate. This series will only include the work from photographs of people that I DON'T know, but whose stories I want to tell. The paintings in this series are about the photographs.

8 comments:

Gary Rith Pottery Blog said...

sun here today (SURPRISE!) how about at your place?

Melody said...

how do you find photoshop? I am deliberating whether to go with full on photoshop or photoshop elements 7.

Angela Wales Rockett said...

I'm with you on the photographing artwork thing. It just never seems to go smoothly. And since it's so frustrating, I put it off for so long between sessions that I often times forget what I learned to do better the session before - thereby insuring that it stays frustrating! I really need to do it more regularly - and take notes.

You always seem prepared with good photos of your work so I was actually going to ask you if you have a schedule for photography sessions - do you do it once a week, as each piece is completed, when you happen to feel like it…?

I like the idea of "people you know" too. You do such a great job of capturing these people that I really do feel they are people I know.

Tracy said...

A minute of sun today Gary, but mostly big fat beautiful snowflakes the rest of the time.

Melody, I can only do about 4 things with photoshop, just what I need to do to make some basic adjustments to my images. I really should take the time to learn it, but there always seem to be so many other things to do. I can't really give you any good advice, and I don't even know the difference nor do I know what I have, it's pathetic. Sorry....

Angela, funny you mention the People You Know, I was just thinking I might change it, although I don't know to what. Doug said it makes him think of which celebrities they might be and of course I don't like that connotation. I like your connection and I was also thinking of how all of these people look like someone who may be a part of anyone/everyone's family. Someone you know. I think I will let it stand, it was my first thought. Doug thinking of celebrities is funny though, that is so unlike him.

Oh, and I don't have any set schedule for photographing my work. I often do them when I am done with a batch, OR I will take a quick shot if I need an image for a blog post OR I often have to wait until the light is right, diffused enough. Many variables.

Nicholas Wilton said...

HI Tracy- I do photoshop, photography of my art--I also do high end digital printing as well in the studio. I use a Canon eos 20d camera. I whip it on a tripod and you need to use a wire shutter release- I don't need any lighting except the room with filtered sunlight coming in--the kind of bright but not directional light daylight. Then take these images into photoshop and as long as they are sharp that is the most important--all the adjustments --squaring them up, adjusting contrast etc should only take a few minutes once you get it down. The best digital images , however are done from flatbed scanners. I"stitch together multiple file sin photoshop to get a extremely sharp file that can reproduce full size high end digital fine art prints. Email me with questions if needed. I can shoot and process a picture in a few minutes start to finish now--and they are good

Tracy said...

Hi Nicholas, thanks so much for your suggestions. I have the same camera as you do, and usually I can get the shots with natural light. The rub is that the surface of my paintings is shiny and so any reflections really throw me off and even indirect light will affect the image. Sometimes I can get rid of reflections in photoshop but not always. I have to work on the whole set up and also learn more about my camera AND photoshop! Anyway, thanks.

Natalya said...

"people you know" is a great name for this series, i think it's perfect! i once worked on a movie called "people i know", but that was a disaster... i'm loving photoshop, can't do too much, but just enough for me..

Stacey Peterson said...

This post cracked me up because I know so well the frustration of photographing paintings. In our last two houses, I had perfect spots to photograph, and all was good. Then we moved up here and both the condo and our new house don't seem to have any good spots where I can set a painting without glare. So I've been messing with lights and pretty much curse my way through every photo session (after putting off photographing until I have stacks of paintings ready to go out the door).