Packaging Study

This is the final exercise for Understanding Painting Media with The Open College of Arts. For this exercise I was tasked with making a study of packaging or rubbish from something I’ve bought or rubbish I’ve found in my house. I was required to make three paintings using either acrylic or oil. The packaging should be placed on white paper and painted in strong light. Before starting I was instructed to complete tonal studies using soft pencil, and to try and identify at least ten different tones.

I decided to choose four different images to work from so I could experiment further using acrylic paint for two, and oil paint for the remaining two. Interestingly I have found quite different outcomes for both. Surprisingly I have also seen different outcomes on the different days I produced the preliminary sketches. The above sketches were completed first in preparation for the acrylic paintings and are quite heavy with pencil and line, I don’t know if this was because I was taking more risks or because I had less patience, it’s hard to tell.

I then completed a second round of sketches on another day, I think the above sketches are actually a lot smoother and more considered, but again, it’s difficult to tell whether I was feeling more reserved or if I was just happy to take my time and be a little bit more light with my pencil marks. Nonetheless there appears to be a distinct difference in the style of sketching given that the subject matter is the same.

The above two paintings have been created using acrylic paint. I used warm pink and warm orange as the ground as I wanted to experiment with this and to see how I could achieve the glow effect from the ground, which you can see slightly on the tablet packets. For the painting on the left I used white, black, and also introduced a purple/lilac to the colour palette as I wanted to see how this would effect the tone and temperature of the whites. It definitely has a cooler feel in comparison to the painting on the right in which I used white, black, and brown, which does feel warmer. I only used a slight amount of colour so its interesting to see how this small introduction has impacted upon the overall image.

Much like the sketches where the second round were slightly more refined I feel the same way with these oil paintings. I much prefer the way I have painted these in contrast to the acrylic painting. Although there is probably less precision there is something in the thick oil paint that has still allowed that transfer of imagery – indicating the smooth untouched tablets in contrast to those that have been crushed. For the oil paintings I decided to use yellow ochre and then a pink/orange made form yellow ochre and cadmium red. I only used white and black to depict the tablet packets and used a thinned down white/grey over the background to pare down the brightness.

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