Monday, November 16, 2015

The Orchestra Now's "Sight and Sound" Program

Last night I attended an orchestral concert at Bard College conducted by James Bagwell. I did these sketches during the concert to try to capture Mr. Bagwell's movements.

James Bagwell, Conductor of "The Orchestra Now" (TŌN) at Bard College
The players are part of an innovative training orchestra called "The Orchestra Now" (TŌN). One of the goals of this organization is to explore new ways to engage with the audience.

For example, many of the players came out into the lobby during intermission to talk with concert-goers about the music. We talked with bassoonist Wade Coufal, who has taken his music into children's hospitals (Here's his essay about the experience).

Another vision of the orchestra's founders is to connect music with art.

In a program called "Sight and Sound" on December 6th at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, curators will talk about Louis-Léopold Boilly's painting "The Public Viewing David’s Coronation at the Louvre," accompanied by a performance of Beethoven's Eroica symphony.

They'll also be doing free concerts throughout the New York City boroughs.
Official website of The Orchestra Now
The sketch is done with watercolor pencils and water brushes in a 5x8 inch sketchbook.

Previously on GurneyJourney:
James Bagwell Conducts
Maestro Bagwell
James Bagwell at a Rehearsal

Previous posts on concert sketching:
The "Flash-Glance" Method
Gouache portrait of an Irish whistle player
Sketching a vocal concert  
Violinist in ink wash
Horn Player
Mirko Listening
Club Passim Gig
Shapewelding Sketching 
The Cello and the Pencil
Mass in C
Handel's Messiah


gyrusdentus said...

Hi James
Is there a specific reason why you do not use acrylic?
Is it because the colors are sometimes off? I thought that the rapid drying time is actually a good feature to hone one ´s technical abilities.

James Gurney said...

Gyrus, I do use acrylic, mainly for painting maquettes and for priming panels, and sometimes for laying in an oil painting. I also have used acryla gouache for a lot sketching, and you might think of acryla gouache as acrylic, really, because the binder is acrylic based. I also did the animation backgrounds for Fire and Ice with cel vinyl, which is another kind of binder somewhat like acrylic. There are many, many formulations of acrylic nowadays, depending on what properties you want.

gyrusdentus said...

Hi James. That is interesting.
Using gouache (because you introduced me to the medium), i thought about the pros and cons of its retouchability from a educational point of view.
Nice rythmic lines in that particular picture!
Best Regards from Germany

Kasey Snow said...

Your observational paint sketches are always so fascinating. How much of this one did you do on the spot and what did you complete at home? As someone just starting to get into observational painting I'm curious to know what I should be aiming for.

Also, I just wanted to say that I have been following this blog for years and am SO impressed that you have somehow found the stamina to not only work prolifically but also keep up with this blog and make so many interesting and relevant posts. Doing so on a daily basis sounds like such a daunting task, but you make it look so easy. I am inspired by your enthusiasm for your craft and hope that my fire for art stays bright like yours and does not burn out as I have seen happen to so many others.

James Gurney said...

Hi, Kasey,
I did almost all of the sketch on location, certainly all of the three poses of Mr. Bagwell. After I got home, I did add the red and yellow color with gouache, and I added the lettering. I was very limited in what I could do on location, and of course didn't have a camera.

Thanks for your kind words about blogging. I assemble the posts in the morning after I start the coffee and while Jeanette makes the bagel and oatmeal. Then we talk about it and try to fix the goofs during breakfast. Ideas for new posts arrive like floating dandelion seeds, and I always see more of them floating by than I can ever capture. I give myself permission to do a very short, easy post when I don't have time, assuming that my readers are moving fast, too.

Carlos said...

Hi James. Could you comment on painting reproductions? Do you scan your paintings or take photographs of them? I was wondering that, while looking at the images you post here in the blog. Cheers, Carlos.

James Gurney said...

Carlos, Sometimes I scan, especially if I need to flatten a page that's bent or curly or if I want to show the edges. I also photograph with a Canon DSLR. The quality is often better with the camera.