Monday, 15 August 2011

Top Tips: Lois Dodd and Frank Hobbs

'Winter Sunset, Blair Pond', Lois Dodd, oil on linen, 54 x 48 inches

After nearly three years of writing this blog I finally received a comment the other week (the only other comment I have received was about a post I wrote about Andrew Tift’s work not mine!). It was from a Frank Hobbs, who commented by wondering if I seen the work of another American painter, Lois Dodd, who he thought may be ‘a kindred spirit’. I had heard of Lois Dodd as I know a lot about post-war American painting, and seen some things, but was really curious about the suggestion, as I couldn’t imagine many people this side of the Atlantic having heard of her. This got me trying to find out who Frank was. I discovered he is a painter, printmaker and teacher from Ohio in the USA, who has a great website here:

Frank Hobbs

I really like Frank’s paintings, and the statement about his work he has on his website. I think we share many of the same values in painting, like many of the other American painters I am passionate about, and a commitment to working ‘en plain air’. This is something I do a lot to generate studies and ideas, and so does Lois Dodd, I found as I looked further at her paintings. Both her and Frank however, seem to start and complete many of their paintings entirely on location, which I guess from the modest scale of many of their works, whereas mine are definitely studio based paintings. It is something I’m continually thinking about trying to do too however, and I think with some of my recent small studies, and my experience at the Art Fair with my portrait paintings, I’m gaining confidence to try this in the autumn.

Lois Dodd, 'Two Trees and Distorted Metal Roofs', oil on masonite, 18 x 11 inches

Lois Dodd, 'Broken Windows Study', oil on masonite, 17 x 18 inches

Lois Dodd, 'Thistles', oil on linen, 24 x 28 inches

I can certainly see the link with Dodd to my own work, but her work goes much further in simplifying and paring down in response to the subject, usually a landscape scene outside, and is much more successful because of it. There is a big emphasis on pattern and shape, two elements I really like working with. I’m really excited by it. There are many lessons to learn from Lois Dodd for someone like me.

Thanks for the tip, Frank!

Lois Dodd, 'Night House', mezzotint, 11 x 14 inches

1 comment:

Frank Hobbs said...

Shaun, you're most welcome. Thanks for your post and your observations. F.