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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Bike Trip I and II - color options

Bike Trip I by April M Rimpo
Bike Trip II by April M Rimpo

I used two versions of the same composition to explore color options. In the first I wanted to use the three primary colors red, blue and yellow for the color scheme, believing this triad would help emphasize the bikes on the back of the SUV and augment the playfulness of the concept behind the painting. When composing this painting I had also considered a color scheme of just blue and yellow.

After the first version was done I thought I should go ahead and try the second color scheme.  I found the yellows in the painting really brightened up the scheme and it felt happier to me than the original. Normally blues are associated with calm and quiet moods and since there are more blues than yellows I didn't expect this result.  I think the lighter background and yellows end up making this a warm and cheery painting.  Perhaps it is because yellow is sometimes described as the most visible color, so even though I used much less yellow than blue it still draws us in and makes the scene happy, which was my original goal.

Bike Trip II
Fluid Acrylic and Watercolor
12" X 14" gallery wrapped and varnished

The title Bike Trip was a play on words, so I feel the happy effect of the colors I chose in version II augment the playfulness I intended.  Let me know which painting appeals most to you and why.  I'd like to understand other interpretations of these two versions of the same design.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

"Bike Ride", 14" X 11" acrylic and watercolor

Bike Ride by April M Rimpo
Bike Ride
fluid acrylic and watercolor
14" X 11" varnished in brushed silver frame


I am really enjoying my bicycle series paintings. I've been taking photographs of bicyclists every time I see them along the road. In this painting I decided to combine a couple of lone riders into one scene to add some energy to the image.  I also liked the idea of them having someone to ride with.  There is a couple who live near me who ride together nearly every day, but somehow I never have my camera with me when I see them.  I think in a way this painting is a tribute to them.

Since the focus is all about the riders I chose to abstract the background providing only hints at the trees and landscape behind the riders.  While I was in the mood for abstraction I also decided to use colors that would energize the scene.  This painting was done almost exclusively with Dioxazine Purple (ASTM# PV23), Alizarine Crimson (Quinacridone) (PV19),  Gamboge (Hue) (PY97/PY42), and Viridian Green (Hue) (PG7/PW6).  You may wonder where the Viridian Green is hiding.  I used it with the Alizarine Crimson to create the muted maroon shades.  It is amazing how a color can nearly disappear when used in combination with other colors.  Although the two pigments were applied directly to the paper they blended on the paper to make these wonderful shades. Only a few hints of the green remain. A similar approach was used with the Dioxazine Purple and Viridian Green.  So those of you who found this post based on the triad color scheme, be assured the green really was used it just hid itself among the other colors.
After Gallery Wrapping

* Although the flat painting size is 17" X 14" I gallery wrapped this painting ove r a 14" X 12" stretcher bars which results in a painting surface as show at right, with the balance of the painting wrapping around the edges.  It is varnished so it can be hung without a frame or glass.  Let me know what you think.

Note: ASTM International, formerly known as the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), is a globally recognized leader in the development and delivery of international voluntary consensus standards. ASTM International defines pigment standards (designated in parentheses above), which includes the pigment's light fastness, transparency, and other characteristics.  Paint manufacturers use these standards allowing artists to identify the actual pigments used in paints, getting beyond the manufacturers name for the paint.

Links to my bicycle and other transportation paintings can be found in the "Smart Car Choices" post.

** Contact April regarding shipping outside the United States

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