Sunday, February 24, 2008

CHENG KEE CHEE'S SATURATED WET TECHNIQUE FOR PORTRAITS


I have noticed on Sandy Maudlin and Rhonda Carpenter's blogs some beautiful paintings done in the saturated wet technique first introduced by Cheng Kee Chee, the master of this idea. I have developed a modified version for portraits that I thought I would share. I have not had the privilege of taking a workshop with Mr. Chee but learned this process from a workshop in Michigan from Roland Roycroft. I love his landscapes and wanted to learn how he did them, so I took a workshop vacation up in Michigan a few summers ago. I was not capable of mentally processing the way Roland does in his poured landscapes. He masks out both positive and negative shapes at the same time. My brain could not think this way. I could do one or the other, but not both at the same time. In the middle of the week Roland introduced the saturated wet technique and I fell in love with it. I always want to do portraits but I found that I could not wipe out accurately without some markers. I reasoned that if I drew the image on the page and then painted in the darks with a staining thalo blue I could then wash it off, soaking the paper and load it back up with beautiful rich color and wipe back out with accuracy because you could see the thalo blue on the paper. It worked!!! I love the unexpected color in untraditional places that this process produces. This image is from a photo that my father took of me as a little girl. I made the mistake of stapling the paper too close to the image so it is not able to go successfully under a mat. Perhaps I could trim the paper and float the image. It is these small details we need to keep in mind or they will trip us up in the final result.

4 comments:

Michelle Himes said...

I love this, Myrna. The wipe out technique left a softness that lends itself to the innocence of a child. Beautiful! You must find a way to mat and frame this!

Sandy Maudlin said...

What an innovative painting. You are right that Chee is a master, and he's able to inspire each of his students to paint masterpieces. And I think that Roland Roycraft is a master at learning many, many artists' techniques and being able to teach them, too. Sounds like his landscapes might be Nita Engle inspired. She's one of my favorite artists.
I check your blog each day and can't wait to see what's next.
Love your creaivity and how you inspire so many of us!

Nava said...

Nice!!!!! Love the color scheme. The texture on her sleeve and dress adds a lot of interest.

I admire that you managed to not slip into the awwwwww-how-sweeeeeeet painting. The expression on her (your) face is wonderfully contemplative.

RHCarpenter said...

Beautiful use of this technique - you truly take everything and make it work for you - which is a real plus when learning from others. I sooo want to take a workshop with you someday - soon, I hope! (I learned the Chee method from a dvd and from Sandy showing it to us in class, too. She learned from Chee himself :)

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