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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Painting Hands

I feel like I'm getting there with Sofia's portrait, though I have had to take a short intermission for a unique project/commission that has taken me away from my basement studio and into a paint shop.( I'll tell you more about that - soon.)
Her hands were challenging for me because of the way she was holding them, one resting inside the other with the light focusing more on one than the other.
And now, on to the stairs.The complicated pattern of the carpet on these stairs was not easy to paint in Julia's portrait so I cannot imagine them getting any easier this time around. Perhaps I'll paint tonight when I get home.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Sofia's Dress

The dress is identical to the one that was worn by Sofia's sister, Julia, for her portrait on the same stairs. Matching dresses worn in matching portraits of two young sisters - how fun! The hands are next.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Starting With The Eyes

The eyes tell so much about a person. Especially when they belong to a little person who doesn't worry about who she is and is very comfortable just being herself. Young and confident. Not afraid to look you in the eye. With a summer week spent enjoying out of town guests, I knew that opportunities in front of my easel would be limited. It was very satisfying to set a small painting goal for myself, to paint just the eyes, and then accomplish that goal.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

South Africa: Portrait #2

Enchanted II, oil on canvas, 16x20,
Rita Salazar Dickerson (c)2011
There is always a sense of relief when I get to this point in a painting. I've signed it and right now it feels done though I really won't be sure until I wait a couple of weeks and then go back and look at it again. The variety of textures and contrasts in this painting made the experience of working on it so enjoyable. My hope is that the interplay between this young woman's colorful, detailed costume and the rustic South African landscape will tell an entertaining story.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

South Africa: The Bracelet And The Skirt

Ah, yes. The bracelet and the skirt were just as fun as I imagined them to be plus they had the effect I was hoping for. The skirt adds contrast and visually anchors down the fantastic yellow shawl; it also balances out her black hat and hair. And the bracelet simply enhances the entire outfit. But before I allowed myself to paint them, I had to do her right hand. Underneath her hand she is cupping a yellow flower that is attached to the shawl. This poses a bit of a problem for me because right now I feel like it is hard to read visually. (Or maybe I'm just tired.) I'm not sure I will keep it in the painting. I'll do the background first and then decide.  

Friday, July 1, 2011

South Africa: The Yellow Shawl

When I painted the first twin's red shawl I knew it was going to be powerful because it was red. This yellow one seemed alright but definitely not as dramatic. Now, I take it back. I cannot believe how this color of yellow makes the painting pop. The hat and the earring are exciting yes, but where would they be without this yellow shawl to compliment them? I can hardly wait to paint her skirt and bracelet.