One of the reasons I considered putting a blog together was to create an incentive for myself to be a little more dedicated to keep up with my regular life studies. I hope to post a study on a weekly basis in between my regular projects. These "life studies" are typically done on a very short time frame (3 hours) and don't generally share the same "finished" quality that some other paintings might have. However, due to the nature of how they're painted, they typically have their own appealing qualities. They also provide invaluable practice for me for those times when I am required to work from photos. These "life" studies might include anything I observe and paint from directly without the use of photos, whether it's a person, a piece of fruit, or a piece of cardboard. This helps to train my visual memory and provides a much more accurate reference for color and values than I could possibly get from photographs. It also encourages me to paint more quickly and accurately than I generally would do otherwise.
This first sketch is one that I did recently in a weekly painting session with a group of artists I try to meet with each Monday morning. Thanks to Daneane Taysom for consistently scheduling models for us and to Kathy Torgeson for all the cool costume pieces. I learn a lot from painting with these two as well as Dave Story, Ken Spencer, Barrett Shuman, and Anne Merkley. Look for each of their work!