Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Still Life Training

Still Life is an art genre all on its own.  After a long long time away from it, I decided to get into it weekly as a training.  Some of this enthusiasm came from studying Money, Hawthorne, and Hensche.  More on them later.

Now this requires some discipline.  Not an artist's forte perhaps.  First I built a still life station to suit my purposes.  I took a cardboard box, medium size, well made.  I took one end out of it and laid it on its side.  I left the one flap on what was the top - it forms an extension on the bottom as seen below.  Then I built a frame for the open end to give it support.  The whole thing is on an antique soap stand in which I house part of an art library.  I added a light.  The bulbs can be changed for different types of light, or just go natural.  The open end is facing west.  Then I bought a few mat boards of various colours.  These can be inserted into the box for the floor, the far end, the back, and the top.  Lots of other surfaces can also be used.  The box can be elevated.  Then I add interesting subjects.  Here is a pot with a pomegranate.  In the wings the stars are a ceramic milk jug and a red onion.  You get the idea.  What a great way to do series.  Put another log on the fire.

Still Life Box

Then I use one of my out door easels.  That way I can get an infinite variety of angles and elevations.  Here is an example, the bottom flap has been modified to accommodate this easel.  I wanted it close for developing eye scanning and comparison.

Pomegranate and Pot

Even in the photo you can see that the grey on my pot has to get warmer.  Then after seeing that, you see that everything has to get warmer.  Then there are some texture considerations and hilites. 

Now, if I can just figure out how to get a live model in there.....


  1. Great set-up. Thanks for sharing! Good explanation. Look forward to watching the series.

  2. Lovely blog you have here. Im following it!

  3. It's still life Thursday. Today it is a wine aerator in brushed stainless with a bottle.