Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Painting Made Easy!

Back in the 1950s and 1960s, Walter T. Foster "How To ... Paint ... Animate ... Sculpt ..." art books were major sellers at art stores all across the land. Probably the best-known today are the "How to Animate" titles by Preston Blair.

In the middle sixties, Ralph Hulett (my pop) took a stab at the genre with two books he published with WF. The first was called "Painting People and Places in Oil, Acrylic and Watercolor." What follows is a fragment of the book ... a step-by-step painting of the small Mexican city of Taxco...

Taxco part 1

Above: #1 vignette

Taxco part 2

Above: #2 cadmium wash

Taxco part 3

Above: #3 mountains

Taxco part 4

Above: #4 local color

Pictured above is the development of "Taxco", photographed at different stages of the painting. Taxco is a beautifully situated hill town south of Mexico City. Its main claim to fame is that it was a very wealthy silver mining center around the turn of the last century.

Much of the architecture is Spanish Colonial, which gives it a great deal of character and charm. In this mountainous section of central Mexico, the sunlight is nearly as bright and clear as it is in Greece. In this study, I attempted to capture the unusual elements of this town as viewed from a nearby hillside. The problem was not unlike putting together a colorful mosaic that said 'Mexico' at first glance.

-- Ralph Hulett

Tomorrow, the final "Taxco" paintings of the series...


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