"Paeonia the Nymph", 18x24" oil on panel $4,500.00 A beautiful Nymph sits down to admire the beautiful flowers in bloom, and quickly falls into dreams.My wife and I are often helping each other with our creations, and are often ispired by the same things. We were hosting my children in Savannah this summer while they were visiting and were dining at one of Savannah's most delightful restaurants "The Vault". The food was delicious and the conversation engaging. We both noticed a beautiful young lady waiting on our party and both thought at the same time that she would make a wonderful model as a "Sprite" a "Fairie" or "Nymph". My children have grown up with dad often asking total strangers if they would be interested in modeling for a particular character in a book or advertising campaign, so they were not surprised when my wife and I asked our hostess if she might pose for us? It is always startling for those who we ask, but when we show them our work and then get to know us, it is soon obvious that we want to be part of something that everyone can be proud of. When my wife set up the phot shoot at the park, I was there to mostly follow with the camera and equipment but also took plenty f photos from a distance. This was one of those lucky observations. Jime had asked her to pose in the rose garden at Forseyth park and when she lay down I was captivated by the casual pose of a garden nymph lying down to take a nap, as the quiet and stoic cherubs patiently watch over her.
Oh boy, the flowers. I premix a number of warm and cool pink variations in various value ranges and start laying the flowers wet into wet, dark to light and all the while being careful of the hard to soft transitions needed to capture the softness of the petals. This just takes patience and some inspiring music.
I've repainted the legs with a translucent scumbling of colors in a mottled approach, pressing in the color with a small palette knife. I learned of this technique reading the painting methods and biographical notes of William-Adolphe Bouguereau. This gives a very subtle skin-like quality to the finish, and then subtly paint over the darks and shadow transitions.
Towards the end, I allow the painting to dry completely and then will oil in areas to check the color brilliance and while the surface is wet, glaze in very delicate variations such as lips, eye shadows, shadows temperatures, (i lightly glazed a bit of sap green in various places to mimic the reflected green light of the garden). This is done all over the painting. It's a matter of taste and judgement, always standing back, squinting, hmming and harruffing and then finally calling it complete.
“Such were the travelers along the way; but fat abbot, rich esquire, or money-laden usurer came there none.”
Howard Pyle The Adventures of Robin Hood
This is a painting inspired by the conversations I have with my students, when we talk about color as an element of the narrative...how important proper research is. In order to achieve believability, one must bathe themselves in authenticity. Walk through the woods, draw fro life. Attend a Renaissance Fair reenactment. Put it all together with a good story and shake it up, take your time, and give attention to the details. This painting was painted on a gessoed 30x40 panel, with a monochromatic underpainting and then build up colors and textures carefully.
"The Best Journeys Take you Home"
A cheerful but weary gnome makes his way down a winding path towards his quaint little home under an old oak. The last rays of the day light the path that leads to his home nestled next to a babbling stream and where he has left a lamp burning on his front porch and the light inside, the praises of a warm welcome.
I walk almost everyday, exploring different neighborhoods and parks while I work out the troubles of the day and taking in the newness of the area or in new the simple visual treasures that a different lighting effect brings to my attention. I always have my phone with me so that I can take pictures of anything that catches my eye. I allow my imagination to create small narratives inspired by these sights and this is the result of one of those narratives. My wife and I were able to get away during the summer Covid isolation to a cabin in the northern woods of Georgia where we discovered many walking paths and streams that served as some of the inspiration for this painting. I filmed the painting in progress and made a video to share with my students who are curious about oil painting, but it also serves as an example of creating an enticing environment. You can see the painting in progress below.
NEW ALEXANDER HAMILTON BOOK RELEASED.
Mike Wimmer and Frank Keating's 6th book is released.
September 22, 2020
Savannah, GA and Oklahoma City, OK
Former 2-term Governor Frank Keating and Oklahoma's most prolific artist Mike Wimmer are noting the release of their 6th collaboration. This time they have combined their talents to celebrate the life of America's founding father Alexander Hamilton. This is the 4th book in a series of books documenting the lives of America’s Founding Fathers. The book was officially released on September 22, 2020 by Simon and Schuster Publishing. Governor Keating is now retired in Oklahoma City, OK with his wife Cathy and Mike Wimmer moved to Savannah, GA in 2017 where he has shares his love of art with his wife Jime and where they both serve as Professors at the renowned Savannah College of Art and Design. Governor Keating and Mike Wimmer are hard at work on their next collaboration on Founding Father John Adams.
Alexander Hamilton, Founding Father, a Constitutional Convention delegate, author of the Federalist Papers, and the first secretary of the US Treasury, is brought to life with this vivid and accessible illustrated biography.
Alexander Hamilton was an unknown immigrant, an orphan, a boy of no connections but, still, despite all odds, had an important role in transforming the world. As George Washington’s right-hand man, Hamilton helped bring victory to America during the Revolutionary War, wrote most of the Federalist papers, and helped to build a country.
Author Frank Keating’s detailed historical facts are complemented by stunning paintings from Mike Wimmer to form a portrait that will fascinate young readers.
(author’s note, artist’s note, bibliography) (Picture book/biography. 8-11)
Pub Date: September 22, 2020
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Paula Wiseman/Simon & Schuster
Mike Wimmer is Professor of Illustration at Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) in Savannah, GA and formerly served as the Distinguished Visiting Artist at the School of Visual Arts in the Petree College of Arts and Sciences at Oklahoma City University. He maintains his studio in Savannah, GA.with his wife Jime. Together they have 4 children and two grandchildren.
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