Thursday, June 05, 2008

Back from the Bush!

Well, I'm back in Chicago, and I am now in need of a vacation from my vacation! My wife Kat, and two girls Isabeau and Ava and I spent a week in Bushnell IL, relaxing, watching a ton of The Backyardigans, Dora the Explorer, and The Wonder Pets. At night my wife and I made popcorn and watched episodes of C.S.I., it was a nice time. I tried to get out a bit to do some painting and drawing. Since I just finished my book and have a lot more new pieces to introduce to my portfolio, I decided that I wanted to give caricature a break for a bit while on vacation. So I thought it would be fun to do some oil sketches, pen and pencil sketches, just drawing my surroundings a bit. Well, it so happens that bugs have evolved a tolerance of sorts for bug spray, at least in Bushnell . . . it was hopeless, I spent about two hours one night painting a plein air, or at least trying to, I was eaten alive by nazi gnats, flies, and mosquitoes. They were crawling up my back, flying into my nose, mouth, and eyes . . . . bedding down in my ears. I was going MAD-CRAZY. To my left there was a herd of cows that were literally puking and pooping the entire time. It was lovely. I didn't have much time for drawing and painting as I wanted to play with the kids as much as possible, but the times I squeezed in were discouraging. Because of the bugs, it was hard to find inspiration to paint and draw outdoors. I found myself locked in a screened in patio painting and sketching whatever was around. The plein air above was done in about 30 minutes, painted during a thunderstorm. It's oil on a 4"x8" panel, using a "zorn" palette. My goal was to capture this little scene with as little brush strokes as possible.

These are quick little thumbnails that I did in prep for paintings that I thought about doing.

The top sketch of a trailer was done while sitting in a van in the middle of the woods. I first sat on the ground and was soon eaten alive by zombieBUGS . . . . frustrated again, I drove into the woods with my van to sketch the trailer.

Locked within the enclosed patio and having the itch to sketch I decided to sketch the wood fencing on the porch. Exciting eh?

These sketches were again done while sitting in a "bug-free" van . . . I would drive around in the country and find old trailers and shacks and just sketch. All done very quickly, and very loose.

Being that this was really the only view from within the screened in porch, I did a quick digital plein air, painting by gut, no real palette in mind, just grabbing color and painting. This was done in about 10 to 15 minutes!


Blogger idragosani said...

Welcome back!

What is 'plein air'?

5:06 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

glad your back. nice sketches and paintings

7:45 PM  
Blogger Asier said...

yeah...welcome back Jason...missed you man.Very nice pàintings & sketches.

4:49 AM  
Blogger Adam Ford said...

Great studies! I feel like I will never be a true artist unless I go out and do more of this kind of stuff.

4:58 PM  
Blogger Tim Bye said...

Top stuff Jason - I also need to try this stuff more :)

5:50 PM  
Blogger Toby Cochran said...

the trailer "quick" sketches are great!

3:15 AM  
Blogger Moyse said...

Great studies Jason, shame about the bugs!

4:21 AM  
Blogger Bobby Chiu said...

awesome stuff! Welcome back my friend!

10:41 AM  
Blogger Larry Seiler said...

good efforts, Jason...and amusing seeing you take on the "itch" of the "beast"...that is, against all the surmounting odds, the need to paint or be creative!

The sketches are quite nice...the plein airs honest!

Good to hear you survived...and home safe.


10:57 AM  
Blogger W. K. Moore said...

Jason next time pack your Cutters mosquito wipes.. or roll around in the ash of the campfire.. or perhaps a beekeeper's suit. Pesky flying insects! What I remember of the Zorn palette is that he used black. But whatever palette you used you got off some very solid work. The trailer sketches are an added treat... and oh yeah.. welcome back to the Chicago summer.

11:55 AM  
Blogger Jason Seiler said...

Thanks everyone, much appreciated! Dad, I hope "honest" is a good thing? :)

1:29 PM  
Blogger Larry Seiler said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

11:37 AM  
Blogger Larry Seiler said...

by honest...I mean, how the moment touched your soul!

Seeing the work is a double connection, that with the nature you captured, but as "felt" thru your aesthetic heart as well. As if...(and I like describing it this way) dipping your brush in your own soul...

Not passionless painting that unfortunately many seem cast to do...


11:39 AM  

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