Saturday, January 21, 2012

"Pear & Jug"

I recently found this pair of old drawings while hunting through my studio shelves.  Here are a small stoneware jug from my collection and a red pear from the kitchen.  As is my usual practice and that of most artists I know, the two drawings were variations on a theme.  I find I learn more by doing at least two versions of each idea and many do much more!  I remember being quite happy with them when finished, but now I'm having second thoughts.  I really like the drawing of the jug on the right with its fine, clean edges, subtle color changes and soft reflections, - but now as I look at it,  that pear is a bit of a problem.

In that position it seems to be turning its back on us, almost hiding its true form. It flattens out toward the stem end, loosing some of its 3 dimensional quality while fading into the near distance.  It shares some of the jug's color, - probably warm color from the artificial light, keeping the two compatible, but  I think it needs more personality, - more "Pearness",  so I turn to the "Pear & Jug" below where the stem end is toward us.  

In this drawing our pear is crisper, more solid looking,  with more vibrant color.  It pops out away from the jug and the background paper color, -perhaps a bit too much so! This jug, if you look closely, is rendered more loosely, the color laid on more heavily, with pencil marks more evident. Because the drawings were done at different times of day, the overall color effects vary markedly. You can see the bluer daylight color bathing the left side of the first jug while the warnth of indoor lighting dominates the second.  The effect is quite different in each, - warm strength in one,  cool precision in the other.   I've decided I like them both!

As you see, there's no need to go farther than your kitchen counter for subjects worthy of your time and attention. OK, you may not have old jugs, but look around! As usual, the name of the game is observation.  Speaking of which, I have a small confession. I said the pear came from our kitchen counter. I lied!  (Again!)  It came from a shelf in the kitchen.  It's a nice wax pear, a gift from an admirer!

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