Wyn's calm demeanour and well-prepared power point presentation on how to approach a painting,
backed up by sketchbooks full of daily inspirational studies - to show that she practices what she
preaches - led us to understand why there is such beautiful depth to her work.
|Wyn Rossouw with the painting she did at the meeting.|
|The finished work|
Through careful thought, experimentation, research, to learning from others and an in-depth understanding of colour and her chosen medium, she is growing daily.
The soothing piano music and Wyn's focus on the job in hand, kept everybody spell-bound.
The end-result had a beautiful 'Wyn character' - harmony of colour, great composition, interesting broken
edges and brushstrokes...underlined her words spoken at the beginning of the talk/demo:
'Use the best quality materials you can afford!'
I guess we all wish we can spend more creative time in her presence, as she is a Master! Thank you.
Words: Karin Davel
Wyn has very kindly sent us her notes of the evening demonstration:
I chose a very simple still life. The concept was to capture the essence of the pomegranate fruit, especially the gem like pips. My subject was well lit with background and foreground as sparse as possible, to enhance this.
I laid out the following pigments:
Naples Yellow (light) / Naples Yellow reddish / Yellow Ochre (light) / Yellow Ochre (dark) / Cadmium
Yellow (light) / Cadmium Yellow (medium)
Mars Red / Cadmium Red (medium) / Permanent Carmine
Cobalt blue / Ultramarine
Burnt Umber / Burnt Sienna
I used Italian Art Shop odourless spirits and Medium No 1
I used the following brushes...
Dynasty 2,5 cm flat
Raphael flat bristle No 22
Rosemary & Co long flat Nos 4, 6 & 8
I had a palette knife and a painting knife on hand.
My support was a Supawood board, painted with 4 layers of gesso, lightly sanded in between.
Using the Dynasty flat brush, I began with a notan sketch of my subject. I used a mixture of
Cadmium Red and Burnt Umber, loosened with a little spirit (turps).
Before it dried, I worked with a rag, dispersing as well as wiping back paint. I also put in more darks where needed. A tonal sketch resulted.
I checked that it was still working compositionally ... the picture plane roughly divided into thirds, with all the ‘action’ centrally. In addition, a rabatment division to align with the most eye catching arrangement of pomegranate seeds, roughly 5/8ths into the picture plane. I also planned an ‘L’ shaped lead in. All this can be checked with the final result.
Since I prefer this stage to be dry before I proceed, I prepared another similar tonal sketch beforehand, which I continued to work on. Now it was time to add colour. I used my other brushes, generally from the broadest to the smallest, to apply the paint to the tonal sketch. I used a little of my medium to keep the paint at the buttery consistency I prefer.
I started working in the classical way with oils, from dark to light, and from thinner to thicker paint.
I continually referenced my subject, carefully observing and comparing tonal values, dark and light massed shapes, positive and negative shapes, colour shapes and temperature, and lost and
found edges. I was careful to include some background and foreground colour into the subject
and vice versa.
I remained aware of any lead in to my subject, especially to the jewel like pips, and emphasized this.
I needed to effectively capture the shiny dark jelly surrounding the pips and the contrasting white pith.
This latter, I rendered in impasto paint.
Using my fine rigger, I finally applied very careful touches of titanium white mixed with cadmium yellow light, to highlight some pips. I wanted these to really ‘pop’.
The music I played during the demo was ‘Islands’ by Ludovico Einaudi.”