Remembering New York, Summer 2014 (Part 3: Abstract Paintings)

I loved waking up to a painting day everyday at the Art Students League.  My schedule ran from 1:00pm-9:30pm, which now seems long and exhausting, but I especially enjoyed staying late nights at the studio, working on Abstract Paintings under Frank O’Cain.

Here’s my very first output from his class:
I am still; I am moving. Acrylic on canvas paper 18x24 inches July 2, 2014 My first completed work under Frank O'Cain, abstracted from a doodle I made in January. Frank was my top choice for a teacher at the League. I really wanted to find creative dir

I am still; I am moving.
Acrylic on canvas paper
18×24 inches
July 2, 2014

My first completed work under Frank O’Cain, abstracted from a doodle I made in January. Frank was my top choice for a teacher at the League. I really wanted to find creative direction in abstract painting, and I resonated with his works and statements when I first saw them online. I met him last week — he’s a jolly old man with a sense of flow about him. The class I’m taking is Painting, Composition and Abstraction, and he kept reminding everyone to be aware of movement and balance in our work. He told me to come back today with a painting to show him. I came up with three works. He liked two of them. It was a happy moment when he smiled and said, “You’re good. You’ve got it!” I still have so much to learn and I don’t want to be a one-hit wonder, so I will just let loose and be as playful as I can be. Frank said I can be bolder or surer of my strokes (as opposed to having wishy washy and “safe” strokes). His parting words were very encouraging though: “You’re going to have a lot of fun here!”

#painting #acrylic #abstract #art #artstudentsleagueofnewyork #nyc #sea #alone #stillness #quiet #flow

Process pics:
Montalut NYC 2014 (11)

Montalut NYC 2014 (12)

On my second week, Frank did a demo, abstracting from still life:
Montalut NYC 2014 (18)

He went from this…
Montalut NYC 2014 (20)

…to this:
Montalut NYC 2014 (21)

…in 1.5 hours. The overall spirit of the demo was lighthearted and cheerful, and Frank was indulgent with our questions and excited interruptions. It’s always a pleasure to watch an artist get in the zone and have his way with his medium, but when a teacher is doing it to deliberately share his creative process, it’s even more rewarding, for everyone.

Here’s the aftermath of his palette:
Montalut NYC 2014 (22)

 

Looks straightforward and honest.  I like that about acrylics.

Other works I did under his watch:
Brooklyn Bridge Acrylic on gesso board 12x16 inches July 2, 2014 #painting #acrylic #abstract #art #artstudentsleagueofnewyork #nyc #brooklyn #bridge

Brooklyn Bridge
Acrylic on gesso board
12×16 inches
July 2, 2014

#painting #acrylic #abstract #art #artstudentsleagueofnewyork #nyc #brooklyn #bridge

Black squirrel 16x20 inches Acrylic on canvas paper July 3, 2014 Just playing! Learned to use bigger brushes today -- enjoyed my strokes here. This one is for that nice day I saw a black squirrel at the park. #painting #acrylic #abstract #art #goodvibe

Black squirrel
16×20 inches
Acrylic on canvas paper
July 3, 2014

Just playing! Learned to use bigger brushes today — enjoyed my strokes here. This one is for that nice day I saw a black squirrel at the park. #painting #acrylic #abstract #art #goodvibe

Abstracting the black squirrel…
Montalut NYC 2014 (23)

Remember the Black Squirrel painting from last week? This is how it looks now. I've been going deeper into abstract painting, which for me is an even more demanding process than realism. You can't do abstract work if you're not centered. The piece may be

Remember the Black Squirrel painting from last week? This is how it looks now. I’ve been going deeper into abstract painting, which for me is an even more demanding process than realism. You can’t do abstract work if you’re not centered. The piece may be overworked as it is, but I feel as if something else still wants to pop out. My teacher says that with every abstract work, you come out with either something insane or something that works. Let’s see where this leads. 🙂 #painting #acrylic #abstract #art #artstudentsleagueofnewyork #nyc #wip #workinprogress #justplaying

Here's another one I'm working on, inspired by that lovely Sunday bike ride in Governor's Island. #painting #acrylic #abstract #art #artstudentsleagueofnewyork #nyc #wip #workinprogress #justplaying #biking #governorsisland

Here’s another one I’m working on, inspired by that lovely Sunday bike ride in Governor’s Island.

#painting #acrylic #abstract #art #artstudentsleagueofnewyork #nyc #wip #workinprogress #justplaying #biking #governorsisland

Montalut NYC 2014 (16)

Here’s my favorite output from Abstract Painting class, an image from a dream I had.  What do you see in the work?

 

 

Dream I Acrylic on canvas 18x24 inches July 16, 2014 #painting #acrylic #abstract #art #artstudentsleagueofnewyork #nyc #sea

Dream I
Acrylic on canvas
18×24 inches
July 16, 2014

#painting #acrylic #abstract #art #artstudentsleagueofnewyork #nyc #sea

Below is the last work I completed in class, done the day before I left NYC.

The Night of Many Firsts 18x24 inches Acrylic on canvas July 23, 2014 I'm at the tailend of unpacking from NYC and now going through the works that I actually want to hang on my walls. I love staring at this one. I'll keep it up until a new stirring come

The Night of Many Firsts
18×24 inches
Acrylic on canvas
July 23, 2014

#nyc #art #abstract #acrylic

Also documenting unfinished attempts:
Montalut NYC 2014 (5)

Montalut NYC 2014 (9)

Montalut NYC 2014 (30)

Work in progress Inspired by those bright orange lilies in Tita Bebot's garden 16x20 inches Acrylic on canvas paper #painting #acrylic #abstract #art #lilies #orange #yellow #artstudentsleagueofnewyork

Work in progress
Inspired by those bright orange lilies in Tita Bebot’s garden
16×20 inches
Acrylic on canvas paper

#painting #acrylic #abstract #art #lilies #orange #yellow #artstudentsleagueofnewyork

Process:
Montalut NYC 2014 (7)

Montalut NYC 2014 (8)

Montalut NYC 2014 (10)