Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Still life: Pete's essentials

Another try of my painting from life has happened merely 3 months back when it was still quite cold to go outside. I set my self a little still life made of things that I use for cooking the most. Healthy stuff, Isn't it? On the attached pictures you can see my setup in the final stages. Unfortunately in the beginning stages I don't usually feel compelled enough to make some photos because these moments when I don't know what's gonna happen always put a lot of anxiety in to my soul. But briefly - I started on stretched canvas over the drawing board with tape. I Use rolled primed canvas (https://www.jacksonsart.com/jacksons-339g-10oz-universal-primed-cotton-duck-canvas-medium-grain-183cm-width-10m-roll). Than I proceeded with underpainting in this case directly as a colour wash. In this case it is more difficult track your values so I had to be especially conscious about value changes. Afterwards I stared with all the high chroma objects (i.e. yellow pepper, vinegar bottle and tomato) One may start with oil can but I thought that I needed warming up :-) It looked so cumbersome to start with the oil can. Once I gained confidence the finish was quite pleasing process. Only thing that I edited was the background of the picture towards the edges - I made it more darker so that my subject could appear with a more gleaming effect.  



Picture of my setup and a "selfie" with a better expression than at the beginning stages.


Completed thing - Pete's essentials (oil on canvas 9x11 inches)

Friday, 7 April 2017

Why I try to maintain a physical fitness

My regime of my sportsmanships conveys 4days per week of disgusting exercises - Why Do I do that? Basically It's three-fold!

First reason: TIREDNESS

As an artist who always strives to learn more and more artistic stuff I always have a feeling that I don't have enough free time to do my learning. But If I had just a free time and wasn't tired physically I wouldn't be able to concentrate on the process of learning as much as I would want. If you're tired you can relax more and you have a feeling that you deserve your relax time. And because the pure essence of relaxation for me is art it's a good idea to wreck myself with some exercises.

In addition to that reason I would like to mention that I've learnt how to compress my exercise time to a minimum with a same amount of tiredness. The only problem is that is so painfull! :-) It's a usually crossfit kind of training for time with some handstand pushups, pull ups, squats, deadlifts and so on. It takes me usually 20 minutes per session. I have this kind of training twice a week usually on Tuesday and Thursday straight after work. Through out a weekend I have both days a Sprint session in park in Beeston here in Leeds at 5:45 sharp. It's literally 10 minutes of compressed pain which contains 8 bouts of sprint at my top speed (nothing to brag about I think but I have to mention that I always put 100% effort on them)

It always help me to collect some references of facial expression (before and after session :-D ):

My self-portrait after session - endorphines at their best
 
In the picture at left that's me with my cuppa before session (not so exited) and on the right that's my self-portrait straight after session with endorphins at their best.
Second reason: MY OWN ANATOMY REFERENCE

Since I believe that for maintaining an optimal body composition it's wise to look in the mirror instead on the scale I took photos of me in the mirror to evaluate the hard work and to see If I'm able to maintain solid shape - I know it is somehow narcissistic but it is way more accurate that a scale trust me.

But that's not a point. These images provide me a great learning tools for anatomy of a human figure. Some of the studies are shown down below:







Third reason: I CAN EAT MORE! (I know - not art related)

I don't eat junk food and I eat considerably low carb diet so I know that If I want to binge on carbs, I have to deserve them. I think only appropriate time for carbs is post exercise and that is the time when I have my high healthy non simple sugar home baked sweet potato pancake with some yogurt, strawberries and nuts on top. For sweetening everything up I usually use stevia powder.  

If you would be interested for exact recipe for this pancake give me a shout! Here's the picture of the final product down below. It doesn't look so great because there's a loads of cinnamon and cocoa powder on top but trust me it's gorgeous! Maybe I'll do a still life in the future from the ingredients of that pancake - I think that would look alright - strawberries, sweet potato, eggs, yogurt in some nice glass jar... What do you think?


My sweet potato pancake with some heavenly stuff on top...(caution! - only allowed after exercise)

Have a blast all of you,

Best regards Pete!