Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Heaven and Hell

32x36 oil on wood. Here is a typical modern tract apartment in Monrovia. What makes it interesting is the night lighting from my reference photo at twilight. Lucky for me the cement wash has dramatic foreground elements in the dark. During the day you couldn't find a duller view. Lighting can so so much.
Ordinarily the area is off limits to the public, but the city had been doing work on the paved part and had left the gate open, so I serendipitously took advantage and rode my bike though and took some photos. The title derives from the contrast of the dark fence elements and the pretty sunset remnants of color.


Blogger Miles Thompson said...

totally fucking great man! beauty!

9:20 PM  
Blogger william wray said...

I have a suggestion from a friend to darken the sky... I just might.

9:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It certainly has that feel of heaven and hell.I'm not certain I would change the sky...you may have to alter your title along with it.Nice work !

10:12 AM  
Blogger Urban Barbarian said...

Might make that beautiful orange lighting pop more. Love the composition and feel of this one. How many paintings have you done with the urban theme?

10:27 AM  
Blogger william wray said...

Hey Sheri,

Looking at the painting part of the problem is the sky scanned lighter that it really is. However I might still mess with it a little. I do see your point about the title...

12:05 PM  
Blogger william wray said...

So many Dan, yet none hags in your luxury apartment. Why is that?

12:06 PM  
Blogger Steve Hearn said...

Bill, I really like what you have done here. Looking at your earlier posts/paintings, it is clear to see that your work is exciting and a pleasure to view. This is so cool to post here, found your blog by mere chance and have to admit to being a FAN of your cartoon work, as I am a regular subscriber to MAD. If its OK with you, I would like to add you to my Friends & Links on my own blog?

1:03 PM  
Blogger Urban Barbarian said...

One day I hope to have some. Currently, if I had one there wouldn't be any room to hang it! Every wall is lovingly filled. I'd like to move in a year or so.

I really like the urban theme mixed with the beauty of that plein air palette usually reserved for woodsy landscapes. You've really hit on something unique.

1:27 PM  
Blogger Mitchel Kennedy said...

Beautiful contrasts. I love your strokes.

1:43 PM  
Blogger Tracy Helgeson said...

I like how the line of the fence pulls the eye right to that beautiful sliver of orange light on the house, which then ties together the dark foreground and lighter sky. Dramatic and yet subtle. Very nice.

3:45 PM  
Blogger william wray said...

Thanks Steve , Link away.

12:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

God Damn that's beautiful Bill. You really captured the atmosphere of this simple yet lovely scene here. I think it's the best of what I have seen from you so far.

Hope all is going well with you and your new endeavors.

8:06 AM  
Blogger william wray said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

11:36 AM  
Blogger william wray said...

Hey Dan , It's time for the John Byrne to come down, sell them and replace with adult decoration.

11:38 AM  
Blogger william wray said...

Thaks Mitch, I like stroking.

11:47 AM  
Blogger william wray said...

Thanks Tracy, Either you have a good eye or I need to be less obvious with my compositional elements. ;-)

9:20 PM  
Blogger william wray said...

Thanks Clark,

Things are working out pretty well. Step by step I'm getting out there. A year form now will see some very positve stuff. I have faith.

9:22 PM  
Blogger aw said...

Well done! I love the swirly bits in the sky and the building looks so warm and crisp! The contrast is super. :)

6:44 PM  
Blogger Mitch said...

Hey Bill! Just saw your stuff at MJ Higgins! It was nice to finally see all the details in person. I love your use of texture and color. It impressed me 10x more seeing it up close; things jump out that the computer can't really show.

A girl there told me a funny story about you being late on opening night because of mismatched shoes :) Nice.

You and that Jane lady, I need to remember her last name, were my two tops of the show.
Very awesome. I'm glad we wrestled our way downtown.

9:17 PM  
Blogger william wray said...

thanks AW.
Good feeback keeps me ging.

11:34 AM  
Blogger william wray said...

Thanks Mitchl.

Glad you made it. It's a nice big space isn't it? Pretty tough to have a solo show there unless you work really big. The only way to really enjoy art is to see in in person. I like Norman Rockwell, but it wasn't until I saw his original paintings that I was blown away. His stock went into the old master category after that. Was that Jane artist your referring to the one who did the old watercolors? I was sad to find out that she's dead and he husband is selling off her estate. She was very good.

11:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just wanted to say how much I admire your work, and this piece is stunning .... please don't change a thing!

12:02 PM  
Blogger RGrantham said...

mmmmm I love the mood and contrast, truly striking moment, it must have been a pleasure to capture!


7:21 AM  
Blogger william wray said...

Thanks Rebecca,

I love riding around on my bike (or hiking) and finding that elusive moment where the light is only going to be interesting for a few minutes. It’s gratifying to capture it (you hope) and the the moment gives way to a sense of urgency and energy to get just one more shot and I get on the bike again or start walking faster. It’s a good work out carrot. The bad part is when you download your photos and realize 90% of them aren't as interesting as you thought they were when you shot them. However, if you get even one worthy of a painting it makes it worth it.

11:12 AM  
Blogger william wray said...


Thanks we shall see if the mood strikes.

11:14 AM  
Blogger william wray said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

12:41 PM  
Blogger Mitch said...

Ahh, that's sad news that she's dead.

I noticed that space was quite a bit large, and I agree with what you had said before about it being in a good spot. They have their own den!

9:55 PM  

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