Analogous tomatoes and ice cream

16 03 2013

Here, showing off their “Analogous Tomatoes” at this morning’s art show, are my 8- and 10-year old pupils from the neighborhood. Bright and early at 8 a.m. they came with their families, friends, and refreshments to share what they did for the past six Saturday mornings at the studio. Everyone pronounced it a success. There were requests for another round of classes.

Youth art March 2013

Of course, the boy on the left is not holding a tomato. It is a balloon, that is a type of ball or sphere and his 3-D choice for the BCCC (ball, cube, cylinder, cone) lesson.

The tomatoes are analogous because to model their form they are painted with colors that are analogous on the color wheel. I teach the “Tomato Theory” so called by my late fine art teacher and oil painter Gloria Foss.

To warm and lighten a bright red tomato, we use red-orange and just a little bit of white. To darken the red, we move in the opposite direction on the color wheel to a red-violet. This method makes the object appear most vibrant and is preferable to darkening a hue by adding black or the complementary color.

ice cream truck

Ice cream break

The ice cream truck came later in the day during my Painting I class for adults, just in time for lunch. Dessert first!

Copyright 2013 Rebekah Luke

Grapes and drapes painting lesson

5 09 2012

Grapes and drapes still life setup, Painting II, Rebekah Luke, instructor.

Today my Painting II class is painting “Grapes and Drapes.” This lesson, originally from Gloria Foss, is practice in the studio for painting the Ko‘olau Mountains and trees in the landscape later on.

We pay attention to where the light is coming from in the scene and turn the form with values from light to dark.

We review the “Tomato Theory” we learned in Painting I, that is lightening and darkening the form with colors that are analogous on the color wheel instead of adding white or black, or instead of adding the complement to darken. In addition, we remember the mantra, “Warm it in the light; cool it in the shade.”

“Tomato Theory” can be a hard to get used to at first, but practicing it makes objects pop with vibrance and gives the overall painting more pizazz.

I find it satisfying to be able to pass on the techniques I learned from my own teachers Vicky Kula and Gloria Foss. What they taught me and what I am passing on to my students is the logic of light.

Copyright 2012 Rebekah Luke

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