04 August 2007

jesty's geometry

copy of a jesty painting
Arches CP 300gsm 10" x 14". 4 hours.

in shirley trevena's second book on painting i found a few paintings by ronald jesty. i copied this one to understand its composition primarily, but also the illusion of light through the clouds.

i made a careful inquiry of how one makes a good composition within a rectangle, which i call the format proportions. i found jesty's composition was very careful to reflect the left to right spacing of landscape features to echo the vertical bands of clouds and landscape.

i also found that jesty worked with much thicker paint mixtures than i assumed just by looking at the painting; to approach his value structure i ended up using many more layers of paint than he did. and this is visible, because each of his wash edges show clearly in the reproduction.

despite the fact that he has been published in at least two watercolor tutorials that i know of, jesty is a bit of mystery. he has no web site, has authored no book, and seems to have no current gallery representation. i've written to one of his students to see if i can track him down.


Nick said...

I like the idea on that one, will check into Jesty. Yoshida has some pieces in this vein, as does the great Marvin Cone.

Anonymous said...

Also trying to track down more info on Jesty. Please let me know if you find anything more..Thanks!
Jim W

Anonymous said...

Your observations about Jesty's style are very good. His paintings appear as examples in a number of books (making note to self to make list) and he has done one book that I know of "Learn to Paint Seascapes" published by Collins in 1996. A quick search online turns up used copies of that book going for about $300 -- must look around and find my copy and put it in a safe(er) place. 8 )

Anonymous said...

A couple of weeks ago, I was walking on the High Street in Swanage, Dorset (south coast UK), and stopped to stare at a beautiful giclee print of a watercolor of "Old Harry," a dramatic bit of local coastal geology. I was thrilled to see "R. JESTY" as the signature, having made a note of the name after seeing teeny reproductions of his beautiful work in some "how-to" art books originally published in the UK. There is such a sense of tranquillity in his work. Here's the picture:

The site is that of Quarr Gallery in Swanage, Dorset; they offer giclee prints of his original watercolors. Jane Ramsay, gallery owner, told me that when they unpacked a watercolor to prepare to make giclee prints, the original sold within an hour. She said Jesty is now in his 80s and looking after his wife, perhaps not so active anymore.

I have appreciated the Handprint site since I started painting a few years ago. Beautifully done in both content and presentation.

Jacqui said...

I had a cup of tea with Ron Jesty this morning. He is well and as bright as a button but not painting right now.
Richard R