Intriguing interior, night scenes

This one is called “The study”.

The wifey thought this painting was a bit creepy… I don’t think I agree, although I have an idea why she would think that. As you can see, I kept the colors mostly on the warm side. I was actually thinking beforehand that if I use many cool colors here, the picture could turn gloomy or “creepy’.”The only cool colors are on the figure itself, everything around him is a mix of yellow ochre, burnt sienna, burnt umber, cad yellow, cad red and one of Daniel Smith’s flagship colors, quinacridone rose. A bit like the overly popular Alizarin crimson, but better!

EberFrank_TheStudy, 2012

This is a two wash painting, believe it or not. That basically means your first wash has to have some “oomph” to it. Stay too weak and you’ll never get any strength in a piece like this. Limiting yourself to just a few washes has the added benefit of never losing the luminosity of the white paper underneath, something that happens easily when the glazes add up.

Interiors and night scenes both require a fair bit of pigment, water and confidence. It is almost “alla prima’ painting. You have to work boldly and take big risks. Not for the faint hearted, since it could easily turn into one for the garbage can…

EberFrank_TheStudy_detail, 2012

I tried to keep it mysterious, not many shapes are “spelled out”. The eye of the viewer is in demand! I was hoping that even the figure would be sort of no descript, sexless, but there’s something guy-like about him. He could be on the phone, or just thinking about how his life is going lately.

Notice that all the lines go to him, the shadow behind, even the piano sort of points into his directions. The intention is to make the viewers eyes rest on him. The lit up paintings above him are pretty well worked out and I am afraid I may have overdone it? I hope not, because the real focal point is, of course, the person in the armchair even though he is barely there. Also, the lightest light behind the figure is the white of the paper. Thanks for looking!

10 thoughts on “Intriguing interior, night scenes

  1. mimi

    Except for the size of the room, I saw this and thought “Grandpa, resting in his livingroom” It’s quite an evocative painting. I like it a lot. Restful. serene! Makes me want to run in there and give him a hug.

    1. frankeber Post author

      Hi Mimi, thanks for that comment! I like that: ‘Grandpa, resting in his livingroom’..evocative is good, too. Thank you for your visit!!

    1. frankeber Post author

      Nice comment, Aubrey – softness and drama…I like it! I do think it’s important to have a soft ‘feel’ in a watercolor. It’s harder to do with watercolor, but possible! thanks for your visit and happy painting!!

    1. frankeber Post author

      thanks, Leslie…will do more interiors, working on a restaurant scene right now from one of my favorite eateries around here! Stay tuned..

  2. Carol King

    Hi Frank! What an interesting painting and slightly different than the ones I’m used to seeing here. I don’t think your painting is creepy, but it is, to me, moody and mysterious. The figure is definitely male to me and I don’t think you over did the light over him.

    Thanks for talking about what you did and why. Like how all the lines point to the figure. I only wish I could see a bigger image. When I clicked on the photo it stayed the same size.

    Bravo to you for bring brave and doing this with just two washes. You are brave! Probably why your paintings are so successful.

    1. frankeber Post author

      Good feedback, Carol! Thank you. I am a bit mystified as to why it wouldn’t show up bigger when you click on it. I can upload only small res pics as you know with the internet being what it is…someone at the National watercolor society told me that there are supposedly companies in China who rip off art everywhere and sell prints!
      It’s easy to do..thank you for your visit and another great comment!

  3. May

    This painting illustrates the quote you used, “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication”. It looks simple, but it says so much and it is hard to accomplish. Thank you for the pointers you gave us, it helps me to appreciate your painting more.

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