My Blog About Art

The Necessity of Changing My Style June 17, 2017 20:08

There's another reason now for me to move away from incorporating so much line work in my painting. My hands are shaking. Read more...
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Supports: Wood Panels June 05, 2017 11:45 1 Comment

Misadventures with panels... For the past year I've been using more wood panels than canvases to paint on, because I like how I can lean my whole arm on them, which helps steady my hand. Read more...

 

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Rose Moon and Vibrating Color June 03, 2017 08:18


In Spirit of Rose Moon, I let myself play with color a lot more. I worked hard with many layers of glazing to get a good gradation in the sky area of pale yellow to pink to blue. My efforts paid off, I think. Read more...

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Painting Gimmicks March 26, 2017 18:05

I was sure surprised when I looked at the Dutch still lifes up close and personal and saw that some of them featured way more gimmickry than I had ever imagined. Read more...
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Gesso & Brushes January 24, 2017 09:31

I've been messing with gesso a lot. I love the smooth surface I get from using the clay scraper, but it is incredibly messy, so I tried applying it with rollers and then sanding. Read more...

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Almost finished with "Hope of Transformation" December 26, 2016 14:18

Hope of Transformation, work in progress, acrylic on wood panel, 18 x 24" by Harold Roth I've been having a very difficult time doing fine detail on some of my paintings. Last night I realized that I could remedy some of that issue by resting my entire forearm on the painting. Read more...
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Vessels Series: The Black Crow December 07, 2016 10:43

The Black Crow work in progress, sketch inMy next work in the series is "The Black Crow" (sometimes also called the Black Toad) which is based partly on the alchemical idea of the first stage in alchemy, which involves, yes, rotting or putrefaction. Read more...

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Vessels Series: Moon Vessel Finished December 06, 2016 18:46

Moon Vessel surreal landscape by Harold Roth acrylic on canvasI like the vibe of this painting as somewhat like a tarot card. I'm really glad that I started this series. It is much more to my taste than anything else I've done recently. It gets my imagination going and I feel like I am producing much more interesting images. Read more...

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Vessels: Moon Vessel November 20, 2016 19:35

Moon Vessel work in progress 112016The symbols of alchemy and magic were the main things that drew me to those paths in the first place, and I want to make them a major part of my art, incorporating them with my interest in natural forms. Read more...
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Aquarius Moon is an Asshole + Finished But Not September 18, 2016 15:59

I finished that painting, which became the somewhat odd "Nymph and Her Children." This was my first real step into surrealism, if I can call it that. Since then, I have set off boldly in the surrealist direction. Read more...

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So much for that decision September 16, 2016 14:52

Work in progress, Harold Roth, 2016As I sat there letting rock shapes arise from the deliberately uneven colors, I had a sudden flash of not rocks but the shapes of human bodies. I stopped painting and focused on seeing that more clearly. Not bloody bodies or dead people. But just human shapes. Mysterious. Read more...
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Indecision: Post-Modern Vanitas vs. Spare Luminism September 11, 2016 15:16

Kensett, Eaton NeckI have been thinking about starting a new series (well, two, actually) of paintings based on industrial buildings and having a connection to the vanitas genre. Read more...

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Finally Here! September 06, 2016 10:01

My Blick Light-Duty EaselI moved from Elmira, NY to Pawtucket, RI on August 18/19, but it's taken me all this time just to get sort of settled in. Read more...
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Politics and [My] Art July 30, 2016 19:55

Belly of the Beast, acrylic landscape painting by Harold RothSome people believe that the combination of politics and art in general is a deadly mix, but I'm more of the school that art can never be free of politics--that even "art for art's sake" is a political statement (thank you, Russian Formalism).  Read more...

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The Intimidations of Canvas June 05, 2016 10:49

Rabbit not wanting to give up its skin for gessoWhen I switched from watercolors to acrylics, I considered painting on canvas--the readymade stuff that comes all stretched and gessoed (with acrylic, not rabbits). But since I did not do brushwork or impasto, which would rule out using paper, and since I was still intimidated by canvas, I ended up continuing to use heavy cold press watercolor paper. Read more...
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The Spiritual Landscape April 25, 2016 11:09

Work in progress, Harold Roth, 2016For me, a painting has to be more than a nice bunch of colors and shapes. It has to reveal that hidden world as much as possible, and to do that, I have to reach deep into myself. If I just stay on the surface of myself and focus on technique, then those paintings feel like just work and they don't satisfy my soul. My soul starves with that, and for me, that is not art. That is just paint on a piece of fabric. I want more. Read more...
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Whistler and Lautrec April 08, 2016 20:40

The Falling Rocket by James MacNeil WhistlerWhistler would work on a painting for hours and be all happy about it for 15 minutes, "It's GREAT!", bragging all over about it, and then an hour later he'd go and scrape it off the canvas, terrified that someone would see it and think what a crap artist he was. Read more...

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Water March 06, 2016 18:35

Morning Star by Harold Roth

I finished a painting I've been working on for a week, Morning Star, but I was not pleased with the way it turned out for a number of reasons. One of them was the water. Read more...

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Competitions February 21, 2016 15:01 3 Comments

The various requirements of competitions have forced me to think about how I describe what I do not only to the rest of the world but how it feels to me, to put that feeling into words so that I can examine it and think about it further. Read more...

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It's a Size Thing January 15, 2016 11:41

Nightwatch by RembrandtI've been thinking about size a great deal in my own work. For a while, I fantasized about painting on very large canvases (and I mean canvas as opposed to the heavy watercolor paper I've been using for years). Read more...
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Letting Images Arise: Automatism December 28, 2015 18:25 1 Comment

Water WitchI allowed the image to arise as I painted. I hoped that if I were open to a connection with the spirit world while I painted and at the same time tried to focus on a particular concept (like spirits of Mars or Water magic), that whatever came out on the paper would simply take the form most appropriate for that energy or work and for me. Read more...
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