News from the Studios



The Treasure
(Mary Elizabeth Rollins)
by Elspeth Young
The Treasure (Mary Elizabeth Rollins) is the newest oil painting to be added to the Pioneers of the American West Collection of original artworks from Al Young Studios.  Thirty seven fine-art print styles and sizes of this new image are now available at www.alyoung.com, ranging in price from $4.10 (4x5.5 poster print) to $367 (full-sized reproduction giclee canvas).

Click here to see a larger copy of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of available prints.

In 1830, with the morning sunlight of the latter-day restoration of the gospel filtering in through the windows of the home of her Uncle Sidney Gilbert, 12-year-old Mary Elizabeth Rollins devours the pages of the first printing of the Book of Mormon.  The night before the morning depicted here, Mary had convinced a reluctant Isaac Morely to lend her his brand-new copy of the Book of Mormon--the "only one in that part of the country."

The Treasure is the 6th original artwork in the Studios Pioneers of the American West Collection, and the 151st image in the Studios commercially available fine-art portfolio.

The 37 open-edition prints of this new painting bring to 2,102 the number of prints and giclee canvases available at www.alyoung.com -- exclusive retail outlet for all of the artworks produced by the artists of Al Young Studios.


By The Wayside (Tamar)
by Ashton Young
By The Wayside (Tamar) is the newest oil painting to be added to the Women of the Bible Collection of original artworks from Al Young Studios.  Thirty four fine-art print styles and sizes of this new image are now available at www.alyoung.com, ranging in price from $4.75 (4 in. x 7.25 in. poster print) to $369 (22.25 in. x 39.75 in. reproduction giclee canvas).

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of available prints.

Tamar wears the signet ring of Judah and appears as described in Genesis.  The fact of her place in the lineage of the Messiah is noted in I Chronicles 2:4 and Matthew 1:3.

By The Wayside is the 47th original artwork in the Studios' Women of the Bible Fine Art Collection, and the 162nd image in the Studios' commercially available fine-art portfolio.

The 34 open-edition prints of this new painting bring to 2,394 the number of prints and giclee canvases available at www.alyoung.com -- exclusive retail outlet for all of the artworks produced by the artists of Al Young Studios.

The new painting is also featured in a bookmark, which brings to 81 the total number of different bookmarks now available at Al Young Studios' online art and publications gallery.


What Is Truth
by Al R. Young
What Is Truth is the newest oil painting to be added to the Women of the Bible Collection of original artworks from Al Young Studios.  Thirty three fine-art print styles and sizes of this new image are now available at www.alyoung.com, ranging in price from $3.90 (4 in. x 4.5 in. poster print) to $278 (24 in. x 27.75 in. reproduction giclee canvas).

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of available prints.

Bernice is presented in the attitude of prayer, as one searching her soul alone in the darkness yet illumined by that Light which searches for each of us.  It is a moment of decision to which everyone comes time and time again--the moment of choosing whether, as Paul describes it, we shall be almost or altogether (Acts 26:28-31).

What Is Truth is the 46th original artwork in the Studios' Women of the Bible Fine Art Collection, and the 161st image in the Studios' commercially available fine-art portfolio.

The 33 open-edition prints of this new painting bring to 2,360 the number of prints and giclee canvases available at www.alyoung.com -- exclusive retail outlet for all of the artworks produced by the artists of Al Young Studios. The new painting is also featured in a bookmark, which brings to 80 the total number of different bookmarks now available at Al Young Studios' online art and publications gallery.


Nothing Shall Be Impossible (Elisabeth)
by Elspeth Young
Nothing Shall Be Impossible (Elisabeth) is the newest oil painting to be added to the Women of the Bible Collection of original artworks from Al Young Studios.  Eighteen fine-art print styles and sizes of this new image are now available at www.alyoung.com, ranging in price from $4.15 (4 in. x 5.75 in. poster print) to $150 (14 in. x 18 in. reproduction giclee canvas).

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of available prints.

Paul's description of God, as One who calleth those things which be not as though they were (Romans 4:17), applies to Elisabeth; indeed, to anyone who receives a promise from God. Whenever the Lord makes a promise, it is not uncommon to be left alone with it--or to feel thus--until it is fulfilled. During such times, gratitude to God for the promise of His word, and faith and hope concerning it, invite His Spirit to remain with us and sustain us as we journey toward its fulfillment.

Nothing Shall Be Impossible is the 44th original artwork in the Studios' Women of the Bible Fine Art Collection, and the 159th image in the Studios' commercially available fine-art portfolio.

The 18 open-edition prints of this new painting bring to 2,286 the number of prints and giclee canvases available at www.alyoung.com -- exclusive retail outlet for all of the artworks produced by the artists of Al Young Studios. The new painting is also featured in a bookmark, which brings to 78 the total number of different bookmarks now available at Al Young Studios' online art and publications gallery.


Waiting For The Promise (Rahab)
by Elspeth Young
Elspeth completed Waiting For The Promise (Rahab) in 2005, but we have only recently been able to obtain a higher-resolution digital image of the original oil painting, making it possible for us to offer a more complete selection of print sizes featuring the painting. Accordingly, we are pleased to announce that 33 fine-art print styles and sizes of this new image are now available at www.alyoung.com, ranging in price from $4.05 (4 in. x 5.25 in. poster print) to $326 (24 in. x 32 in. reproduction giclee canvas).

The 33 open-edition prints of this new painting bring to 2,268 the number of prints and giclee canvases available at www.alyoung.com -- exclusive retail outlet for all of the artworks produced by the Artists of Al Young Studios.


In the very early stages of the painting,
Al uses a small floodlight and a painting
knife as part of the laborious process
of creating the desired surface texture
of the ground for the painting.
By Al R. Young

This full-length portrait of Ruth the Moabitess, based on Ruth 2:12, will be the 48th oil painting in the Women of the Bible Collection.  It was completed to meet the production schedule for Women of the New Testament by Camille Fronk Olson.  The book, currently in press, is scheduled for release through Deseret Book later in 2014.

Dimensions (width x height)
35 3/8 in. x 76 7/16 in.

Support
Panel

Milestones
Research begins - January 2003
Composition begins - August 2012
Brushwork begins - December 2013

Equipment
Creating a painting often involves creating or modifying tools or making improvements to the studio itself.

Installing a scrim
Simplifying mounting of tray and trestle on the $10 easel
Simplifying mounting of panel clamp extenders on the $10 easel
Making a tree-limb brush holder
Enlarging the clamp-on mahl stick

Methodology
This section presents only one or two items that may be of interest to professional artists, amateurs, and others interested in the work of the Studios.

During painting projects like this, that can last for months or years, I sometimes use photographs in addition to or in place of color-formula notes to record crucial color detail from a painting session so I can more readily pick up where I left off.  Images like this photo of the palette cart are part of individual project journals that we maintain in WikiStudio, our online operations document on the Studios' intranet.


St. Joseph the Carpenter (detail)
by Georges de La Tour

Initial application of grisaille for What Is Truth?
by Al R. Young

What Is Truth? (detail from completed painting)
by Al R. Young

By Al R. Young

This painting of Bernice (Acts 26:28-31) will be the 46th oil painting in the Women of the Bible Collection.  Its completion correlates with the production schedule for Women of the New Testament by Camille Fronk Olson.  The book, currently in press, is scheduled for release through Deseret Book in the latter part of 2014.

Dimensions (width x height)
24 in. x 27.625 in.

Support
Panel

Milestones
Research begins - November 2013
Composition begins - January 2014
Brushwork begins - January 2014

Equipment
Creating a painting often involves creating or modifying tools or making improvements to the studio itself.

Modifying the bedpost easel attachment for the $10 easel
Installing a scrim

Methodology
The inspiration for a painting can span many years.  For example, I no longer remember how long it has been since I was first captivated by the spell of dramatic lighting in the work of Georges de La Tour.  Even so, of all the painting subjects that presented themselves to me during those years, only Alma the Younger and Nephi the Patriarch wanted such dramatic contrast.  Then, last summer when I was sifting through images from a model-session several years before, a compositional possibility jumped out at me, all but waving its arms and stamping its feet while demanding to be brought into existence not only as a tenebristic painting, such as those by de La Tour, but one in which the background was completely black.

The next image, at right, is a photograph of the painting in progress, excerpted from my project journal, and shows a slice of the initial application of the gresaille.  I paint by layering various kinds and qualities of glazes, being greatly inspired by the technique of such artists as John William Waterhouse.  Such a methodology, of course, requires that the work of creating a painting be decomposed into stages, layers, or areas, with the desired impression to be made by the outcome materializing only gradually.  Thus, while attending to detail along the way, it is necessary to hold in view the outcome of the whole so that painstakingly rendered detail can coexist there with that which is rendered only by flourish or suggestion.  The balance between detail and summary exerts a powerful influence on the lifelike quality of the painting; that is, the degree to which the painting can serve as a vehicle for the Spirit that inspired it in the first place.

Throughout this process, I often recall something Arnold Friberg once said; something else--like the work of de La Tour--that I first encountered many years ago.  I paraphrase it here.  By now it is dog-eared and exists in my own expression of the idea to which he introduced me: The fire or spirit that suffuses a painting is not added at the end, but is there from the very first.  If it is not there, nothing can compensate for its absence.  It cannot be added at the end.  (See "The Prayer at Valley Forge" by Arnold Friberg - Ensign Magazine vol. 3 no. 2 (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, February 1973), center insert.)


Pencil sketch from Elspeth's research
journal in March 2003
By Elspeth Young

Elspeth's new portrait of Elisabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, will be the 44th oil painting in the Women of the Bible Collection.  It was completed to meet the production schedule for Women of the New Testament by Camille Fronk Olson.  The book, currently in press, is scheduled for release through Deseret Book later in 2014.

Dimensions (width x height)
14 in. x 20 in.

Support
Panel

Milestones
Research begins - January 2012
Composition begins - September 2010
Brushwork begins - January 2014

Methodology
This section presents only one or two items that may be of interest to professional artists, amateurs, and others interested in the work of the Studios.  The following journal entries are excerpted from Elspeth's painting diary, and emphasize the important influence of studying original artworks throughout the creative process:

19 November 2013

Yesterday it was time to refill the creative tank and I did.  I had felt in my bones that the new “sacred gifts” exhibit at BYU's MOA had artistic answers for me.  So yesterday morning, tickets in hand, Mom and I slipped out of the house and spent a good chunk of the morning at the museum.  We enjoyed (savored, really) Frans Schwartz, Carl Bloch, and Heinrich Hoffmann.  I was surprised that Schwartz actually contained the most answers, this time.  I've never seen an artist work so wet—the paint still seems to be dripping a century since he painted it.  And his reflected light! O my.

26 November 2013

Seeing Frans Schwartz's paintings has changed me.  I've always wanted to exude more painterliness—to luxuriate in the freedom of brush strokes and the energy and elasticity of what I consider “real” painting.

Others might not perceive a change, by my highlights are more sculpted—having a texture of their own, which is independent of the form without “breaking form” as artists would say.

8 January 2014

I've blocked-in Elisabeth's face and am already thrilled at the sweet, peaceful expressiveness of the piece.  She's got the loveliest ear I have yet painted and, as for her bones, she is one of the best boned-figures I've ever seen.  Everything about her is ethnic elegance.


This new spiral-bound diary sells for $27 (plus shipping) direct from Al Young Studios.

Derived from the Studios' 2013 art calendar, and entitled At Home, this full-color, blank book features 128 artworks that include 51 original oil paintings by Al R. Young, Elspeth Young, and Ashton Young.  Augmenting these images are 45 limited-edition lithographs by Al and Ashton, nine pen and ink drawings and block prints by Ashton, as well as seven of Al's exquisitely crafted pencil drawings.

Twelve watercolors from Elspeth's private portfolio are also featured as watermarks on the date pages throughout this edition.

Text accompanying these images features 53 inspiring quotations about the making and keeping of home, drawn from The Papers of Seymore Wainscott by Al R. Young.

Printed on heavy gloss paper, the book is bound with black plastic spiral and rests flat when open.

Opposite each of these illustrated pages are 53 ruled pages that can be used throughout the year as a personal journal or diary.

The Studios now offers two blank books: At Home (derived from the 2013 art calendar) and Inspirations (derived from the 2012 art calendar).



2014
The Miracles of Jesus, published by Deseret Book, featured I Shall Be Whole, by Al R. Young.  The painting is part of Al Young Studios' Women of the Bible Fine Art Collection.

I Shall Be Whole
(The Woman with
an Issue of Blood)

original and prints