Tuesday, May 31, 2011

#19 - Melina and the Llama

Melina and the Llama
8" x 10"
Oil on Masonite

This painting is taken from my favorite picture of my niece, Melina standing beside a stuffed toy llama. She's a super-smart, super-sweet kid who is completely ready to take on the world Pippi Longstocking-style. Last week she was very busy making reward posters for a friend's lost snail. The look on her face in the picture is a very obvious "Don't mess with me or my llama."

I would love any feed back on this one and #18. I'm trying to nail down flesh tones. I'm also trying to hold on to a more loose style. (Looser style? A style that is more loose?)

Friday, May 27, 2011

#18 - Hey Ladies!

"Hey Ladies!"
8" x 10"
Oil on Masonite

Meet Jack. My 2-year-old nephew. He's one of the cutest kids I've ever met. He had me wrapped the first time I saw him and the first time he said my name (before just about anyone else's, heh heh!) he assured his place in my "I will always have candy for you" Auntie soul. Even if he does blame me for just about everything. The danger of a kid being able to say your name, I guess.

Who made this mess? Dawn did.
Who ate that cookie? Dawn did.

Who stomped the flowers? Yep. Dawn did.

Oh the stories I could tell. And he's only two. Recently, Jack went to the beach for a week. Before going, some of us made sure that he knew some handy phrases for the beach. A kid this cute attracts the women, for sure. By the time he left, we had taught him "Heyyy Ladies!", "How you doin?" and "Can I have your digits?"

This was the first time I've ever painted on Masonite board. I had always known it was an option. One of my very favorite fantasy artists, Larry Elmore, whom I have admired all my life has for the longest time worked on Masonite. I had no idea how much I would love it! Why did I wait so long? It was just fantastic. Extremely smooth. The paint laid down like a dream. The only thing that I have to say is that after a bit, if your paint starts to dry and you go back to re-work, you can lift the paint that is already down right off of the surface. So, watch out for that!

Here are some work-in-progress pics!

Monday, May 23, 2011

#17 - Fleur de Stripes

Fleur de Stripes
8" x 8"
Oil on Canvas Board

Even with as many Fleur de Lis paintings as there are out there, it is still one of my favorite shapes/symbols. But how to make it different? Change up the background. Here is my attempt not only to paint another FdL, but to peek around the corner to more illustrative design elements. I whipped the background together first on the computer to make sure I got the stripes even, printed it out, and traced it onto the canvas. Then I added the FdL. It started out with a black and white striped edge, but that looked weird, so I painted over it.

#16 - Yellow. Peppers.

Yellow Peppers
18" x 18"

I wasn't so much painting as I was working with yellow. I think it turned out fairly successful and is one of my favorite works to date!

Monday, May 16, 2011

#15 - Rose (Unfinished?)

Pink Rose
8" x 8"
Oil on Canvas

I painted this last night. It's from a picture I took of one of my first roses of the year. I have two rose bushes in my yard. A pink one in the front yard and a yellow one in the back yard. I do not have a green thumb, so they've been left to their own devices over the past couple of years. Miraculously, they are still alive and are producing some lovely blooms this year!

Again, I painted this one on a black primed canvas and again, I was able to get the shadows as deep as I like them. Black canvas is well on it's way to becoming a regular part of my routine.

My favorite part of this one? Right now it's the little bud peeking up from behind the bloomed rose.

The problem with this painting is that I'm not sure if it is finished. Now that I've slept on it, I think the leaves need more emphasis. Maybe not more detail, but more color definition. They look a little blurry to me and blurry moves into the background. A little more detail is in order, perhaps?

What do you think?

#14 - Fleur De Lis

Fleur de Lis
8" x 8"
Oil on Canvas

This painting and several others you may see over the next couple of weeks are for an art fair that I'll be participating in on Saturday, June 18th. The "Fleur de Lis Art Fair" is a 1st annual event being held by one of our local resteranteurs and I'm really hoping that it's the start of an annual fair. As far as I know there is nothing like it right now in this part of the city. So, in order to stay with the theme, I will be painting several of these to sell.

I'm pretty happy with this overall. I was going for a more illustrated feel to it rather than "realistic" for what that's worth. I added some black lines for definition instead of relying on shadows to show separation. Not sure it's my favorite, but I like the background really well. This is also the first painting I've done where I've covered the canvas in black gesso before getting started. I have been having issues getting my darks as dark as I'd like and I read where a well-known artist Karin Jurick always starts on a black base. So, I hopped over to Preston Arts and picked up some black gesso. I think I got positive results with it.

Let me know what you think!