The Campfire is a finished product that was intended to be just a practice piece. The scene is of a college campfire trip. Edward Hopper, was my inspiration to the design of my figures. Everyone in the painting is color blocked. So, an arm is a long rectangle, a head an oval, and hair are strikes of lines.
And like Hopper’s painting style, I tried to incorporate the idea of using shades and tints right beside each other to to give light and silence to a painting. Sound is a strange thing to try to capture in a painting, and with little change in light direction, I reduce the movement and noise of the piece. For example, the dark brown sky and background is abysmally silent.
The only part of the painting that is wild and shoots plumes of white-hot light is the fire. With all that white color movement in the pit, your suppose to imagine the pops of the sparks, which gives sound (and texture) to the painting. The colors are all warm, in an attempt to mimic the obvious warmth of fire and the figurative warmth of the gathering.
In the front figures hand is a glow stick. Without knowing what that object is, most people have guess that it was a cell phone or game-boy. But, even if the objects lines aren’t defined, I believe that I have captured the same oscillating incandescence that a glow-stick radiates.
There are also lots of lines and shapes connecting the subjects. For instance, the the light coming from the tent, is the same brightness as the spot on the hat, and the glow-stick. Following the brightest spots creates an imaginary line that separates the painting into a two triangular areas. The tent is a triangle, the fire is a triangle, the heat smudge and hatted figure makes a triangle, and the rod the hatted figure holds, his legs and the ground make a triangle. Their is a triangular motif throughout the piece.
The girl in the center has hair that resembles the golden hay bundles, on purpose. My friend’s, the foreground figure, face is shaded like a heat radar map, again as a reference to warmth. Finally, I added hints of blue just to experiment with how much spec of coolness would stand out in warm paintings.