Friday homework

I haven’t done homework in a long time but the past few weeks I’ve been taking an online class with Peggi Kroll Roberts called “Speaking the Vocabulary of Light” and this is one of the final exercises from the course. I love Peggi’s work — her simplified shapes and flat colours — and it’s been a wonderful three weeks watching her demos during the class and then doing the exercises on my own. We’ve done a lot of work in monochrome — naming the different types of light on objects in sun and shadow — and our last exercise was to paint something in full colour.

I was walking Alice this morning when I saw this scene and thought it might work for my homework. The cast shadows were easy to identify and I liked the composition of the foreground bins, the car and the buildings in the distance. If you understand Peggi’s main point that everything in shadow is darker than everything in sunlight, you will realize that the hardest part of this was the blue bin in sunlight and the cast shadow of the bin on the snow. It was homework that demanded a lot of comparing A to B and B to C, but once you start you get a bit hooked on trying to figure things out. Good thing I worked in gouache and not watercolour, since I painted different parts of the bin several times over.

29 Comments on “Friday homework”

  1. Gerry Draper says:

    You definitely nailed the light on this one!


  2. Judy Sopher says:

    Your use of blue is just stunning. And I will ditto Gerry-the light is perfect. What blue did you use? Just a lovely painting.


  3. Lori Zajic says:

    Love, love, love!!!!


  4. Peggi is incredible, and such a great person. I studied with her and also with Ray Roberts, in San Diego and at their home studio in Angels Camp. She has been a big influence on my work over the past 15 years. Her exercises on light, her way of teaching it, are wonderful. Your homework is so luminous.


    • Thanks Kathryn. It’s nice to hear about your experience. She is a fantastic teacher, even in the three short weeks that I learned from her. I don’t know if you’ve ever taken an online class with her. Ray is sitting next to her, operating the screen share so we can see her reference image. And because it’s a webinar format, they just chat the whole time. The occasional dog pops in to say hello from time to time. And it’s just a joy to watch her paint.


      • That sounds very much like being there in their studio, the interaction between them and the occasional dog! And so much joy in the painting. It all enhances the experience so much. I’m so glad you posted about this, thank you <3.


  5. cuzinevie says:

    Sounds like a good class, but it kind of makes my bra


  6. Denise says:

    Perfect-hope you get an “A” on your homework


  7. Tina Rude says:

    What brushes do you use for your gouache sketches, Shari?


  8. Tricky indeed. I give you an A+.




  9. Debbie says:

    Wow! Amazing work! Beautiful study. A+ for sure.


  10. TonyU says:

    Great job! Feels like I’m stood there looking at and feeling it for real.


  11. tylaraduncan says:

    how can it have the feel of a loose watercolour and a photo at the same time? incredible homework.


  12. AshleyWolff says:

    The blues of the bin, woven into stripes of blue shadow-challenging indeed. Love how you solved it.


  13. This expresses the morning sun so well. Beautiful job!!


  14. Excellent painting, Gouache I assume? You really captured an amazing sense of light and vividness with the thick opaqueness of this media. I’m glad to see that you are doing a lot of “Contemporary Scenes” Contemporary stuff like Recycling Bins at the Curb and High Snowbanks, as Blah and Mundane at these scenes may seem on the Surface. They really speak to people. Then some time far in this future (we never see this) people in some museum will look back and say… Wow 2020s Quebec, what a time and place. Just like the impressionists and their Still Lifes. Tomatos in a bowl, look nothing like the GMO Mutant Tomatos of the 2020s. Speaks volumes about the era when the impressionists lived.


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