Monday, January 11, 2010


12 x 16 in
Oil on Canvas Panel
I started the drawing with a dry brush with burnt umber.  I went pretty quick knowing that the gesture was more important to capture rather than spending too much time articulating lines.
I then started to apply the paint, usually when I paint I like to go in sections and take it to a certain stage. Again I am not using any medium in the first stage of the painting, I am just laying down the primary colors and modeling them correctly to their form.
When I felt comfortable with the colors and the modeling of them, I then moved onto the background.  I know a lot of artist work the other way around, but for me at times this works.  I can easily bring the background in and soften the edges of the subject where it needs to be soften.
This is the result of my first session which took me about 3 and half hours to paint, I did not apply the darkest darks because I did not want them to sink in.  Primarily whats important in the first stage for me is to get the right colors down, model them correctly and play around with the edges.
This is the finished result after the second session.  I brought in the darks and it really unified the values, then I added more of the smaller details which brought it all together in the end.  I hope you enjoyed it!


abey said...

Muy buenas naturalezas muertas!! Es muy didactico que subas el proceso, muy interesante! Un saludo

Jonathan Aller said...

Muchas gracias Abey!

Jeremy Elder said...

I have really been enjoying seeing your working process. It is very simply done, and with wonderful results. I have one question if you don't mind me asking. If you are dry brushing and scumbling during your first session, are you waiting for the paint to dry before beginning your second session?

Judy P. said...

Again a great lesson for me to study, Jonathan!
Since you're taking questions, how and when do you decide on the color for the background? For me, even when it's a simple undetailed background, it takes me a long time to figure out what color to use - I hate being so indecisive!

billspaintingmn said...

Jonathan! this is fun! These beets are as fresh
as it gets!
I grow 'em in the garden and love 'em with a little butter & salt.
They look real! They look tastey!
Thanks for posting this. It's helpful to us, and I appreciate this effort.

Jonathan Aller said...

Jeremy: Thank you for the comment Jeremy, the only time I dry brush is in the drawing stage, this allows me to control the values better with the lines I put down on the canvas. Yep I wait till its dry in the areas I wanna paint the second time around. Primarily with this technique you wanna keep your paints thin in the beginning which pays homage to the old saying fat over lean. I go very thin in the beginning trying not to build up excessive paint so it'll dry quicker and thats the other reason I don't use any mediums in the beginning.

Judy: Hi Judy thank you again for your nice comments, I really appreciate it. I usually decide the background when I am setting up the still life, its as critical as the subject your painting. I really don't spend too much time in figuring out the dynamics of it, I just see it and if it feels right with the painting then I go for it. As far as what colors to use, it really depends on the chroma of your subject. I think the best way to think about it is to keep it simple, If you keep your background colors simple then your subject will stand out even more. I hope this helps!

Bill: Thank you for your kind words, I really appreciate it. I am glad these little demos are helpful, they're lots of fun to do.

Orlando Sanchez said...

These are very beautiful paintings.

Jonathan Aller said...

Thank you Orlando

SEILER said...

I'm enjoying these veggie paintings, really nice!

ian said...

I just wanted to say that I just found your blog and I'm blown away! Beautiful stuff and so varied. Love the still lifes, love the portraits, especially the two that were going to be in the show a while back. And I'm BLOWN AWAY by your ballpoint pen drawings, blown away. I will be back a lot!

Jonathan Aller said...

Thank you Ian!