Glass and Ceramic Still-Life

oil painting
Glassware and Ceramic Still-Life, oil on canvas 24 in. x 20 in., May 2018

This ended up being a very spontaneous, instinct-driven painting, and I am happy with how it came out. I set up my still-life like this because I liked the pathway of the shadow. The shadow of the glass connects to the ceramic, becomes the ceramic’s shadow, and then continues off the canvas. The two empty vessels are connected.

Before starting the painting, I did a large, preliminary sketch with pastels to figure out the types of colors I wanted to use. Sketching with colors allows me to take time to experiment and develop my color scheme.

This painting became spontaneous when I was feeling stuck after doing the sevres blue shadows of the glass and ceramic containers. This was because my thoughts battled between doing very neat brush strokes and color-blocking like I did in my Glassware Still-Life, and my instinct to go with a looser approach. I listened to my instinct, and began painting without thinking too much (especially with the ceramic pot), and mixed colors directly on the canvas. I had been reading about the Impressionist masters and how they painted the quick impression of a scene they were looking at.

This painting is sort of about the two objects sitting on the cloth, but at the same time the surrounding colors and shapes are just as important, and complement and echo the still-life itself. The emphasis is on the painting as a whole, and how shapes and color define a space. I created the two, big magenta-ish cloud forms on each end of the canvas to create the illusion of depth and dimension. I worked on this painting at the same time as painting Dorm Bay Windows, and realize that I enjoy dividing my time between two paintings at once. The variety keeps my inspiration flowing.

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