Friday, December 25, 2009

Cessna 180 N2294C

Oil on illustration board, 40" x 20", 3 days

I did this for my dad for his Christmas present. I really don't know how long it took to do but it happened over the course of 5 days, but I didn't work entire days. Anyhow, I painted it from a photo of my dad and his airplane, a Cessna 180. I think the photo was taken at the Kustatan River on the western side of Cook Inlet here in Alaska. My dad no longer has the airplane but it was a big part of all our lives. My dad got his pilot's license only a month after he got his drivers license and went to college to be a professional pilot, though that is not what he ended up doing. He got this airplane before I was born and my sister and I pretty much grew up in that airplane. We would at least fly once a month if not once a week until I went to college. I miss flying and I miss that plane terribly. I think my dad is content with his boat now but hopefully he'll like this painting. :)

Below are some in-progress photos. All of these are a bit warped because the illustration board is a bit curled. Ah well. There are 4 pictures, one for each day, basically, not counting the final piece (click on the above thumbnail to see the final piece larger).

Penciled in. That took several hours. O_O;

Blocked in. Normally I'd stain the entire canvas but time was not on my side - see, one nasty thing about illustration board is that it sucks up the paint so it takes a LOT more paint (and more time) to block in the piece.

Plane underside shaded and clouds done.

Airplane and other items colored in and grass added (I hate it).
After this step the only things that were added were the plane numbers, the corrugation on the tail flap, highlights on the white bits of plane, Pop's fishing pole, and my signature - things that couldn't be done with so much wet stuff going on previously.


Overall it looks pretty sharp I think. Its an awesome photo of the plane anyway and I am pretty pleased with the saturated colors and the clean lines I managed with the plane (as in, how crisply I painted the whole plane, not just the stripes on it, though I gotta say those were a pain. Steady-handed surgeons watch out!) I hate painting grass and rather like it all impressionistic and I think maybe the whole piece could be more successful if everything but the plane and Pop were blurry but your eye doesn't really ever settle in the grass so I don't think it matters. It's a gift, not a gallery piece and a good chance to try things out and learn.

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