Thursday, March 30, 2017

PAINT! with Alex Episode 3: Monochrome Master Copy


Episode 3: Monochrome Master Copy
     This show starts off with a PRO TIP how to reduce-recycle-reuse your solvent; save money and be good to the environment!
    We also bring up the reasoning behind and how to "square-up" an image and canvas in order to use that technique to transfer the placement of the composition.
     Then like episode 2 we are working again in MONOCHROME and we start with our darkest dark BLACK (mix 70-30 burnt umber - ultramarine blue) and WHITE and between them we mix MIDDLE GRAY! expanding on our value scale we also mix another HALFTONE between White and Middle Grey and another one between Middle Grey and Black.
     With squaring up and five "notes" of grey on our palette we are ready to tackle blocking in our copy of renowned painting Washington Crossing the Delaware by Emanuel Leutze

Thursday, March 16, 2017

PAINT! with Alex: Magic Middle - the First Halftone


Episode 2: Magic Middle: the First Halftone

This episode we start with Black (mix 50-50 burnt umber - ultramarine blue) and White and between them we mix MIDDLE GRAY! It's visually HALF WAY between white and black and so it is the first HALFTONE. It might not seem exciting because it doesn't say anything smart sounding or fancy, but we will learn more and more that this simple "value" on the scale of the "notes of the painter" gradating from white to black, is a fundamental, primal force for creating visual impact; easily as important as the concept of OVERLAP from episode 1.

Once we find that middle gray value I ask viewers watching to start an "eye keyboard" of their own and painting an 8" stripe of that middle gray mixture down the middle of a 14 by 18 inch canvas panel, then to the right and left of that paint straight white and straight black.

Then we take those piles of paint on our palette, white, middle gray and black, and whip out a cute Cat in the Window picture with a simple solid design easy enough for anyone to have fun with!




Monday, March 6, 2017

The Supplies To Get Started Learning To PAINT with Alex!

A viewer requested a "supplies list" that someone wanting to learn to paint needs to get started. It's not too much stuff and you can find it all online. I don't endorse any particular brand or online store at this time but I'll post links to specific supplies from Jerry's Art-o-Rama so you can get an idea what you are looking for... there are plenty of places to buy art supplies online so look for the best deal


OIL COLORS (to paint with)
Just three colors is all you need to start with: Titanium White, Burnt Umber, and Ultramarine Blue
http://www.jerrysartarama.com/gamblin-artists-oil-colors

BRUSHES (to mix paint with)
A few different sizes of FLAT brushes is all you need: #2, #4, #6, and #8. Brushes also come in BRIGHT, ROUND, FILBERT, etc but for the beginning , FLAT is fine
http://www.jerrysartarama.com/princeton-6300-series-brushes

PALETTE KNIFE
A simple "trowel" style is all you need to start with
http://www.jerrysartarama.com/liquitex-small-painting-knives

PALETTE (to mix paint on)
I recommend a GRAY PAPER PALETTE, 40 sheets of coated disposable paper for painting
http://www.jerrysartarama.com/grey-matters-paper-palettes. (Along with the paper palette, you can get an airtight box that is made to fit the 12 by 16 pads to keep and transport your palette with less mess: http://www.jerrysartarama.com/masterson-air-tight-palettes-and-accessories For oil paint you just need to blue box)

BRUSH WASHER (to wash brushes with)
the small metal type is the best
http://www.jerrysartarama.com/petite-air-tight-brush-washer

SPIRIT (the liquid that cleans brushes)
I recommend GAMSOL, by the Gamblin Brand of paint supplies. This goes in the Brush Washer
http://www.jerrysartarama.com/gamblin-gamsol-odorless-mineral-spirits

MEDIUM (makes paint dry faster)
Look for an oil painting medium that speeds drying and contains "alkyd"
http://www.jerrysartarama.com/gamblin-galkyd-mediums

(not pictured)
EASEL
This is up to your taste. there are kinds for standing, kinds for sitting, big ones, little ones, indoor ones, outdoor ones.  You can find them for sale used all over the place. Lots of art easels on Craigslist. I recommend a simple "A-frame" type easel for standing or table top, or a portable "French" easel which can be both
https://losangeles.craigslist.org/search/sss?query=easel
https://losangeles.craigslist.org/search/sss?query=french+easel

CANVAS or CANVAS PANELS
inexpensive is ok, especially to start with, and 16 by 20 is a good size, or smaller
http://www.jerrysartarama.com/fredrix-hand-turned-canvas-panels
http://www.jerrysartarama.com/practica-economy-stretched-canvas

Monday, February 20, 2017

Life and times of Alex Schaefer from 2009 to 2013

Originally published 2014

I'm taking over an old post so I can add a "recap" post that I can link to so folks get a timeline of my more "political" work: I never intended to be a political artist. I like plein air landscape painting and nudes and cityscapes. I always say that in an ideal world there would be no political art because we would have good government and peace, but we are so far from that. Starting in 2003, reading alternative news sources online, I started to see a different future than the one being painted in mainstream media outlets; there were reporters out there who were predicting the economic state we are in but they were called "fringe" news and conspiracy crackpots by the mainstream news readers we were supposed to be carefully listening to. Everything that has happened was already spelled out in articles and analysis I was reading years before. The subject of this global crashing economy I find compelling and I feel outraged and shocked; as an artist this eventually comes out into the world. The earliest political statement I could see was in 2004 I started a series of paintings of tract homes that were springing up along the freeways and coming over the tops of hills. I don't have any links on my blog because I started that in 2006, but I did find a couple recently that were unfinished and I've painted foreclosure signs on their lawns: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2011/09/house-for-sale.html and you can see some of them here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/alex-schaefer-art/5165776735/in/set-72157601014971125 In 2009 an obvious political turn came in my work with a drawing of a parody ad for Chase Bank with a group of kids at the beach drinking Cabernet Beer Bongs http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2009/08/chase-freedom.html http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2014/09/party-like-its-1999.html http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2011/12/chase-freedom.html I started making drawings of money: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2009/09/money.html I made a wood block print of a dollar bill: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2009/09/printing-moneyhtml http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2014/09/money-at-hive.html in 2010 I started a series of "fuck the 80's paintings: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2014/09/fuck-eighties.html http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2011/06/fuck-80s.html http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2014/09/fuck-80s.html http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2012/06/fuck-80s-bummer-games.html Then the gulf oil spill happened http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2010/05/happy-treea-and-oil-spills.html http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2014/09/teton-idyll.html At the end of 2010 I painted my first riot scene: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2014/09/riot.html In 2011 I started the first of a burning building series for a show at the Hive, this is a painting of the B of A building downtown: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2011/01/lovers-and-haters.html In July of 2011 I made my first protest video at the Federal Reserve building: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2014/09/lets-protest.html Later that month I made my first plein air burning bank http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2011/07/chase.html. The second one I did got me the visit from the cops on the street and then detectives at my house 3 weeks later and the rest is art history, I've been a 'terrorist' ever since: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2011/07/chase-bank-painting-en-plein-air-and.html I was on the Keiser Report over the painting on "The Art of Burning Banks": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FaRVJj3JLmE September 17th was the day Occupy New York broke out and in LA it was called the Day of Rage so I went out that day to paint the Federal Reserve burning: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2011/09/day-of-rage.html October 1st Occupy LA broke out: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2014/09/occupy-los-angeles.html Max Keiser tapes a show in Los Angeles, "the Guernica of Financial War": http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2012/05/keiser-report-guernica-of-financial-war.html http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p2havcDPMbA In July 2012 I did a chalk protest at Chase Bank in downtown LA and got 12 hours in jail for vandalism http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2012/07/chalk-protest-with-alex-schaefer.html http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKUHw5YLY4g I made another appearance on the Keiser Report, "I did more time than any Bankster": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZtuyK8ZcXI Then I gave Wells Fargo the same treatment: http://alexanderschaefer.blogspot.com/2012/09/alex-schaefer-chalks-wells-fargo.html http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=so9Fzn5W5cs