I've been spending long stretches of time at the computer, inputting exhibit entries. So, in the interest of keeping my sanity, I have been taking little 20-minute breaks to paint little bird sketches for a book I'm doing for my grandchildren for Christmas. These little oil sketches are not great art, but will work well for my purpose, and they are a lot of fun!
Several people have asked how I do an oil sketch so quickly, so I decided to photograph the last one, and show you. Note: these are only about 7" square, and I don't do any preliminary drawing - or any drawing at all except with the brush. I don't wait for anything to dry; everything is done wet. It truly takes only about 20 minutes to do a sketch like this. (Uploading it to the blog took longer than painting it did.)
Step 1: (less than a minute) Smoosh a background color thinly all over the canvas.
Step 2: With a mostly dry brush, wipe the shape of the main figure (in this case, a bird) out of the background. (another minute or two)
Step 3: Paint the bird. (3-5 minutes)
Step 4: Add some brushwork areas. (Another minute or two... don't spend much time on the brushwork or it will be to fussy.)
Step 5: Do detail work and clean up background. (This step takes me the most time, but I force myself to stop after several minutes, or I will work it to death. It IS only a sketch, after all!)
The story I have written for the kids has a total of 7 birds in it, so I'll be playing with them for a few days. I did the cardinal and a magpie today. A fun distraction!!!