Dennis Parrish

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Posts posted by Dennis Parrish

  1. Slowly coming into focus.  I think I'm maybe 1/4 of the way done at this point. Easy to get lost in the years of weathered wrinkles on this talented hand. Untitled, 18"x24", charcoal and pan pastel on paper. 

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  2. 13 hours ago, Lisa Lawrence said:

    Thanks Dennis, I didn't realize you can get so much out of graphite and get different values. Thanks for sharing!

    I didn't for a long time.  I have the benefit of working with a well known painter here in Lexington.  We figure draw once a week.  He once substituted the live model with a a mannequin.  We drew the mannequin for about 3 months, one drawing, with only a 2b pencil.  Tedious but a great lesson is value!

  3. Thanks Lisa and Matt.  Lisa the water is still in the very early stages and is a challenge, much more to do there both at the surface and below.  Other areas awaiting some detailing include the face, gill slits, and mouth and teeth. Slow and steady is the plan for this year!

  4. 13 hours ago, Dave Corcoran said:

    Looking great, Dennis 

    Care to comment, please, on issues to do with the hardness/types of graphite/charcoal - and the order in which you are using them, please?

    Humbled that you've asked!  


    I always start with graphite 2b and try to gradually work up before transitioning to another pencil or charcoal.  Easier to cleanly erase and not damage the paper.  I use sable a variety of sable brushes I've had for years for smoothing and getting a nice tonal effect.  I also will use dirty stumps to draw a lot with at this stage and Bounty Basic paper towels a la David Kassan.  I then work up through 3b and 5b, again lightly.  I am always cautious to try and avoid burnishing the paper.  Finally I come in with 7b and 8b and a sharp pointed med charcoal pencil (I really prefer Wolfe carbon pencils when I have them) for the really dark areas while using a kneaded eraser to lighter up the brightest lights.  I may go back with a HB for details.


    I'm currently using General Charcoal pencils, Wolfe Carbon pencils, and Staedtler Mars Lumograph graphite pencils.


    I picked up on the Staedtler pencils from David Jamieson (Vitruvian Fine Art Studio) a few couple years ago.  The 7b and 8b pencils WERE made with a black pigment added to the lead that is significantly darker than graphite and doesn’t burnish as easily.  If you want to try them, they have recently changed in 2016.Per David's email this past December, "those darker pencils haven’t gone away, they’ve just been re-branded. Staedtler has introduced a new line of pencils called Staedtler Mars Lumograph Black which includes a range of pencils with the same black pigment found previously in the 7B and 8B. The new black pencils are available in 2B, 4B, 6B and 8B variations, and offer similar capabilities for achieving dark values with minimal shine. I’ve not tried these pencils yet, but I’m optimistic that they’ll provide a suitable alternative to the older version – and may in fact be an improvement."


    Hope this is helpful. 

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  5. Thanks Dane.  Much appreciated.  I'm slowing my pace with drawing and I'm much happier with the results.  I figure i'm about half way done with her.  It shows more of what I know I'm capable of.  I'll never be a quick sketch artist or an Alla Prima painter! 

  6. Thanks David for your thoughts.  Perhaps it was just of case of certain clientele.  As a side note about the German collector, I don't believe it would be such a issue outside the US. I was at the National Gallery of Art, London and their were grade school kids on field trips and none of the snickers or behavior that would be typical from kids in the states.  Just my observations.

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  7. While going through some of the threads, joining the last visiting artist session with Lee, and seeing the lineup for December Critiques it seems to me that the numbers in the ACA have reduced. I know some members joined for 3 months and may not have renewed.  Perhaps that was to test the waters so to speak.  It may be helpful for all involved to have a monthly roster available to see who's still in and who has left the groups  (drawing path and painting path)  

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  8. I agree with Dave.  While i am perhaps one of the most seldom of visitors, it's partly that when I do lurk, i see little new material.  Maybe thats just me.  I will also jump on the grenade and say that maybe we are all a little confused with the intent and what is trying to be achieved through the ACA.  I know I get lost often. I think I know what it was meant to be but it seems a little out of focus.  No disrespect, but maybe David and Shana (and Dave) didn't know how time intensive such an endeavor could become.  


    Dane I know we follow each other but for me IG is a whole different outlet for me.  I don't seek the technical and insightful advice from IG or other social media as I do from the ACA.  I just put stuff out there on IG and other outlets to gauge the public response.  Yes, I am looking for feedback and critiques through the ACA, but (and maybe this was my own misinterpretation) I was thinking there would be more technical discussion or instruction.  

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  9. Thanks Dave, but even though I live in Bourbon country I try to avoid whiskey these days!  Copious amounts of rum haven't helped!  This I can attest to.  


    I was able to salvage the mid point photo for my portfolio deadline.  Even with it being a crappy picture I tweaked it with photoshop and it worked to submit a digital entry.  I'm even going to print the digitally corrected version on art paper, sign and send it of to the friend who's source image I used.  I think he'll be almost as happy as having the original.


    Photoshop, though I held off for years, has been a true blessing for my medical illustration work when it comes to corrections!


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  10. My question is basically the same as Sonia Reeder-Jones asked about portraiture, but in regards to the nude.  I like figurative work and lean towards the female nude .  I know that it's typically seen as a hard market in that in galleries, the red dots don't typically appear during opening, but rather when clients come back alone.  Kind of a I like it but don't want anyone to see me buying it mentality.   Typical American hangup with the nude human body.

    I totally agree with David's response in Sonia's thread, "I think if you develop a personal vision that is authentic and well executed, there will be a market for it."  From a realist perspective,  half or more of what I see in galleries might be hard to describe as well executed or even interpretable without rum glasses on! 

    I'll be watching the Q&A this month with Lee Vasu with interest, but in the meantime I would love to know David, Shana, and anyone else's thoughts or experiences with this.

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  11. Sorry I've been MIA a lot.  Busy, busy, busy.


    I know this isn't really for critiquing so let's say I'm looking for "advice/suggestion"


    The attached piece is of a friend of mine who is a professional bodybuilder.  He's knows I was doing the piece and saw it about half way through.  I also needed this as a last piece for a portfolio for consideration for a drawing/painting competition next year.  The deadline to submit the portfolio is 15 December - TOMORROW!  Now all was fine as I finished the piece yesterday evening and I was fairly well satisfied with the results.  I took a photo (Thank God) with is attached.  I then began adding some lined background to try and make the image "pop" a little more.  That went ok and I should have stopped.  BUT, I thought I'd try and go darker so I started using black pan pastel.  Then there was TOO much dark and I wanted more transitional lightening to the so I started adding charcoal shavings and acetone (a la Casey Baugh), A technique I haven't used in a long time and never really mastered to begin with, and now I have wreck!  (also attached)  


    As for the portfolio, I'm searching files to see if I have anything I can substitute.  If not, I will use the mid point photo.  I tweaked the drawing more after that picture but it beats the finished piece!


    My question is: Is there a way to salvage this at all?  I'm willing to do the whole background solid black if it would help but I'm thinking it is probably a waste of time and material.  There's no cleaning it off I know.  Ideas?  Suggestions?   

    Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 3.42.44 PM.pngScreen Shot 2016-12-14 at 3.43.02 PM.png


  12. Dane another option is to look for an older version.  I use the whole Adobe Creative Suite for my medical illustration work.  That being said, I still use CS 3. They went to 6 before going to the cloud and strictly a monthly "rental" fee.  CS3 is still more than enough for my work.  An older used version can be re-licensed through Adobe to the new buyer.  Just another option to consider.

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  13. Untitled WIP, oil on linen panel, 12" x 24"  I figure I'm about half way through this one.  Areas that still need attention: hair detail, eye and lip detail, drapery, another couple of glazing layers to skin to bring more yellow and a little more pinks in areas, background was just washed in a few days ago to see how the purple would pull the yellows out.





    Another untitled WIP, 14" x 18", oil on linen panel.  More details to add to hair and a few layers to glazing to the skin tones to get the colors where I want them and to build some "glow" to the skin.





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