deLorge's Jazz Art Blog

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How My Paintings Happen

See the rhythm (and sometimes, lack of rhythm) of jazz come to life through this step by step photo demonstration of how I paint.

All the paintings on this page are of one painting from beginning to end. The canvas is wrapped around the stretchers instead of stapled onto the sides. I paint around the edges, giving the painting a more finished look so frames are not necessary.

The painting I will be working on is commissioned to be hung between two 36"x24" paintings I did many years ago. My client wants this one to be in the same style as the two it will hang between... Quite a challenge since I don't paint like that any more. The two paintings my new one will go between are posted below.

If you want me to let you know when I am working on this, go to my contact page and let me know your email and that you want to stay in the demo loop, so I can contact you. I will not share your emails with anyone. Thanks, Ann

Studio with a new canvas I sketched in with charcoal yesterday. This will be a scene with several New Orleans jazz musicians in an open-air café between 2 columns on either end and a little edge of awning that hangs from the roof.
Begun August 9, 2017

Step 1

I plan to start painting on this sketch on 8/11/2017. I started by mixing colors I used many years ago when I was on a red, yellow, blue kick. Mainly cadmiums and thalos. Strong colors. I wanted to put them down somewhere just to get started. I'm starting from left to right in this painting because I need to get the bass player in proportion and fit everything else accordingly.

Step 2

Looks like a mess as I'm just working on proportion, putting in and taking out color until it works.

Step 3

End of day 8/12....Finally got the proportions more or less like I want them with some idea of where the colors will go..All close enough to move on to other areas.

Step 4

End of day 8/13...I spent too much time working on drummer and trumpet player, proportion as usual. Not DOING so much as THINKING about how to combine ceiling with awning and sky colors with figures. I think I'm goin to break up the light blue with some darker blues and maybe throw in some of the red and yellow in small lines?? Have to wait and see how it all looks as I progress.

Step 5

End of day 8/15...Working on more details and proportions. Starting to play more with what colors should go where. The column on left is way too big so that's got to change. also, I want the colors around the bass to be lighter and more rhythmic.

Step 6

Not much happened today as I had several errands to run and not much time to paint. I finished getting all the figures in reasonable proportion with their placements and I narrowed the left column. Not much time tomorrow either but maybe I can get some better definition of colors and resize a few body parts, etc and make some progress on color shapes..This is where the fun begins. I'm starting to see some rhythm happening. Are you?

Step 7

End of day 8/18...Haven't spent much time on painting because of all these interrupting errands (to say it nicely!). Anyway, I think the figures are close to where I want them and in pretty close proportions to what I want so I've started working more now on color and bringing out a rhythm with color and line as well as space. I want you to hear and see the music as you sip on your drink and maybe munch on your Po-Boy at one of the tables up front.

Step 8

Yesterday-Sunday, I moved the keyboard player and the trombonist's hand in front of his face. I also gave more definition to bass players face that I still am not sure about. Awning is probably going to change but I might wait until other things happen.

Step 9

I am gradually working my way over to my right of the painting. I'm trying things. Some are working and some are not. Since everything influences everything else, it's going to be a matter of putting in colors and lines and taking some out. I think I'm going to create a special color for shadows and where they will go to help with the design.

Step 10

Yesterday-8-26, I'm getting more involved with pattern and rhythm now and movement through the use of colors, shapes and lines. Each element needs to lead your eyes to various spots around and through the painting and point to the various musicians so you can be there with me. More tomorrow.

Step 11

I'm now in the process of clarifying shapes and movement with colors and lines. This should be complete or ready for feedback from client within a week.....if I don't have too many errands to run.

Step 12

today-9-6, I might be finished. See what you think. Feel free to offer your comments on my contact page. Thanks.