Bernard Dick - Artist

My steps in creating a digital painting are pretty much the same as it is in creating a traditional oil painting. After determining the composition I paint-in large areas of color. Below is the original photo from one of our travels to Venice. You can see some changes in the composition from the original composition. The overall scene has been cropped on the right to create an arrangement according to the 'rule-of-thirds'. Some areas (the canopy, especially) have been repositioned to create a more compact design.

 




 Second Stage

 
Final Painting


Original Photo



Twenty page 12 x 12 inch hard cover book of some of my art has been delivered. I did this for my children and granddaughters. Something to leave behind.









 


How were these “digital” paintings made?

 

My “paintings” are actually digital prints (giclee prints) of virtual paintings created by using a computer software program and digitizing sketch pad.

 

The process used in creating these works is a combination of a ‘digital photo-art’ technique and a stroke-by-stroke, brush-in-hand type technique but the canvas and painting tools are digital.

 

In the first stage known as 'digital photo-art' a photo or sketch is opened in the painting software program and manipulated into a new image with the help of digital tools. The photos can be manipulated by repositioning and distorting shapes or areas within the photographs. Colors and textures may also be manipulated or ‘played with’ to discover possibilities.

 

Once a somewhat basic composition is developed, a traditional stroke-by-stroke, brush-in-hand type technique with digital colors and brushes are employed on separate layers to develop the work.  The compositions may continue to undergo change even in this stage by adding new shapes or colors or textures.

 

The stages of development in the works are the same as in a traditional oil painting: simplified large areas of color and tone are filled-in first. Increasingly more specific details are then added until the work is finished.

 

When a digital artist is done, there is nothing to hang on a wall. The painting is on the hard disk of a computer. There are only two ways to view such images: (1) on a computer screen/monitor or (2) as a print-out of the digital image. The files are printed out for the purposes of display and sales.


Thirteen of my works are are display in Brockport, New York through the month of October 2016 at "Java Junction", 56 Main Street. Harvey of Java Junction is shown in the botom picture hanging one of the pieces.











With my two newest pieces I have changed my approach to a more painterly one. This is mostly the result of aquiring "ArtRage" a digital paint program/app. It has a wonderful oil brush tool that feels almost exactly like the real thing. It acts just like I am working oil paint with a brush! I still begin with one of my photographs in Phoroshop Elements --composing, stretching, repositioning, distorting and so on but then I switch to ArtRage and use a white layer to define edges and shapes, further ajusting the composition's rhythm and movement. I switch to the oil brush to actually paint the composition. The result is the look of an oil painting. The question now is whether to print on canvas or watercolor paper. I'm having proofs done on both to compare.

 

Below is "Church in Poland". At the bottom is the oringinal snap.





 





There are a couple of different ways I begin a painting. Here is one way.

 

1. I select one of my photos, usually from our travels.

 

2. The photo is manipulated: portions distorted by stretching, enlarging, pulling, turning, flipping, etc. I usually look to create drama through opposing diagonals/movements. I like to tilt things. Normally, I do not know exactly where I am going at this stage. I just start changing something that suggests intself to me and then I react to that.

 

3. I create a layer above the manipulated layer and begin to search out, by drawing in red on the top layer, a further developed composition of lines and shapes that will form the underpinning design of the image. This will, in later stages, help me to organize colors, lights and darks and edges of shapes and forms to create a rhythm or movement in the work. I try, especially, to create unity by a repetition of elements; e.g. a predominance of curve lines.

 

These stages will be followed by laying down some basic colors starting with the actual local colors from the original photo --just large shapes of color.


Three works were sold in the Gallery Espresso (Bull Street, Savannah, Georgia) show during the month of July.

 











I took this snap while in China a view years ago. I enjoy searching out and shooting pleasing compositions or, at least, compositions that might become pleasing by manipulation. Below the snap is the digitally altered version.






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