Thursday, 1 March 2012

Artist of the Month Daniel Vangeli PWS, BWS

My, the months seem to be flying past. It’s March and time for me to introduce our new artist of the month Daniel Vangeli. I had the pleasure of meeting Dan and his wife last year at the PWS exhibition. Dan is a fabulous but very modest person. He has huge talent and has just won a major award at this years American Watercolor society 2012 exhibition with this painting. 



I know many of you are starting to enter juried shows locally and some are thinking of spreading their wings and trying further afield. So why not ask Dan about his experiences. 

I will now pass this post over to Dan

Hello Everyone,

First of all thank you so much for having me. When Ona asked me about sharing what I do, I felt honored, as well as  inadequate. I have been painting watercolors for a little over 3 years total, with just finding a passion for it within the last 2 years.

   I had left painting all together several years ago, only giving watercolor a second try in 2010. Something just "clicked" for me this time, and I haven't stopped since. My first painting back was "Lost and Found", which  is the painting above and is also the painting that has launched my career. 

    In 2010 I entered my very first watercolor competition, the Pennsylvania Watercolor Society's International Juried Exhibition. Not thinking much about having a chance in entering, my painting won first place.  This gave me the confidence I needed to keep going, and over the last 2 years I've won awards at other societies, have had work published in a few magazines. 

 Here are a couple more of my paintings.





 I look forward to sharing what I do know, and hearing from you as well. 

Thanks again, and I look forward to hearing from you!

- Dan Vangeli

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Some fabulous work Dan. What do you use as inspiration for your paintings? Joyce

Dan Vangeli said...

Thank you Joyce! Most of my inspiration comes from everyday people. Almost all of the people in my paintings are family and friends. I enjoy trying to show a little of their personality, and telling a story.
Right now I am starting a series of paintings of people from my hometown area, and telling their stories. People I see everyday, but never had a chance to get to know them.

Rebecca said...

Wow Dan! Your paintings are amazing What colours do you use to build up those gorgeous skin tones? And how do you prevent the shadows from becoming "muddy" looking? Great work, and thanks for being our artist of the month!
Rebecca

Dan Vangeli said...

Thank you Rebecca! for all my paimtings I use a relatively small palette of about 10 colors.I use:
Transparent colors:
-cobalt blue
-aureolin yellow
-rose madder genuine
-veridian green
Staining colors:
Alizarin crimson
Winsor green (blue shade)
Olive green
Scarlett lake red
Burnt umber
As for skin tones, it varies with each piece. but most of the time I start with the rose madder, alittle aureolin yellow, and add a little olive green. It gets a nice base skin tone. I start very light, and build up from there adding scarlet lake, and cobalt blue to the mix. I wish I could demonstrate this. I use a large palette, and really use the mixing area to experiment until I find what I want.

Dan Vangeli said...

As far as avoiding the muddy darks, it gets a little tricker. I try first to just get deeper with the colors I am already using in the face, but sometimes, I do add a little burnt umber. I also make a mixed black using the alizarin crimson, and winsor green (blue shade) which I sometimes add to mix, but VERY little as it is overpowering. Alot of what I do is just experimenting. As I paint, I don't really think about the paint itself, I literally just mix things (having a basic idea of what colors make what I am looking for and pulling out what I like. I hope to be able to fine tune my methods and someday teach workshops

Ona Kingdon said...

Hi Dan,

I love to hear about different approaches to portraiture. Can you e mail me the photos you posted on Facebook in the early stages of the one you are working on now which, i think illustrates what you were explaining and I will add it to the thread :)

Ona

Anonymous said...

Hello Dan,

One problem I have is that I paint what I see. I don't have the confidence to alter things in a reference photo. I'm always worried about getting the shadows or perspective wrong. Do you just use really good reference photos or do you change things to make the composition more appealing? Jean

Dan Vangeli said...

Hi Ona,

I will get those photos to you in the next day or two. I also am going to take a photo of my palette and show my skin tone mixing on it. I just finished my painting on Wednesday, and have gotten a photographer to take photos of it. I need to color correct them a little.

Dan Vangeli said...

Hi Jean, I too pretty much paint what I see. I have a graphic art background, so take all my photographs, and combine them using Photoshop on the computer. I will do all my alterations there, adjust colors, add effects, and do my cropping. Then I do a grid on the computer, and on my paper. I then I just draw grid by grid exactly hownit is. Then I actually paint from my computer, where I can blow up the sections I am working on. So all of the creative stuff happens on the computer first, the the painting is just what I see from the computer.

Anonymous said...

I love the painting of the woman in the car. What do you start with in a painting and why? I know some people do the background first and others the subject. some do a little of everything and build it all up in one go.
Sandra

Dan Vangeli said...

Hi Sandra,

With almost every painting I do, I start with the eyes, and then work my way around the face. There is just so much that can be expressed through a person's eyes. Once the face is done, I continue with the subject, doing the background last.

Anonymous said...

Dan, How do you go about getting your reference photos? Do you ask the people or just take photos without them knowing? I like painting people too but always feel conspicious with a camera in my hand so i'm restricted to painting family and friends. kathy

Dan Vangeli said...

Hi Kathy,

Every person I have painted so far, I have gotten permission first. most of them are friends and family. I would recommend making a paper to have your "models" sign to give you permission to paint them. It haven't done this myself, but am going to be starting this as a practice. Especially if you intend on entering shows in the future. You never know sometime down the road, if someone will come back and say otherwise, causing problems. I hope this helps! Good luck with your paintings!

Dan Vangeli said...

Kathy,
to answer your other question, I take all my own reference photos,then Photoshop them together in the computer to get the final composition. I use a Nikon d3000 camera, which is Nikon's entry level digital SLR camera.

Anonymous said...

sorry ive only just got around to commenting. I love your work.`How long do you spend on each painting

Margaret

Dan Vangeli said...

Hi Margaret,

Most of my paintings take between 60 - 100 hours. This includes the Photoshop computer work, drawing, and painting. On my bigger paintings: 4 - 20 hours photo shopping, 10 - 20 hours drawing, 30 to 60 hours actually painting. Thanks for the question!

Ona Kingdon said...

I just wanted to say thank you Dan for giving us so much useful information this month. Thank you from us all at BWS

Ona

Anonymous said...

yes, thank you Dan. Your work is just awesome! Vicky

Dan Vangeli said...

Anytime! Thank you so much for having me! If there are any more questions, please feel free to contact me via my website, www.danielvangeli.com