4 and 300

22" x 22", watercolour, 2000

Not only is this my fourth anniversary of blogging about my artwork, this is also post #300. I started this all back in 2008 by posting Stojan Fixing the Mower, and for this personal celebration I wanted to revisit it with a larger image and some close-up details for your perusal.

Highlights are key.
(pun intended)

I've mentioned in other posts (Coke Addiction 3, Cabernet Franc, etc.) that contrast is a very important element to me and I try to have an area or areas that are very dark and ones that are very light while having a good range of values in between (rather than only having that medium range). The hot spots on my father's leg and shirt (and elsewhere) are bare paper and this contrasts nicely with the background and the shadows on the mower.

Leveraging the crux of the painting.

The above detail is really what this painting is all about: my dad fixing machines. He can figure out just about anything mechanical and, if it needs repairing, it's a safe bet he can handle it, but good. I've always been impressed by this and that's why this will always be the best portrait of my father, no matter how many times or ways I paint him (like here, here, or here).

Also, it was the "energy" of this painting which inspired art director extraordinaire Cathy Solarana to choose me to work on Union Pacific's celebration of Abe Lincoln's Bicentennial, a very fun and rewarding project to work on.


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