Showing posts from July, 2018

Number 35: Australian WWI Nurse

So I have been a bit busy getting 36"x36" paintings ready for a little art show at my church. Which means my comfortable "lead" on getting 52 portraits done in 52 weeks has been whittled down to about a week. Oops. On my "list of portraits" to paint, I included "Australian WWI Nurse". This was part inspired by a WWI mini-series about nursing that came out in 2014 called "ANZAC Girls" that I watched, oh, some time in the last six months, I think. I'm on to "iZombie" now, god help us all. Also, I had listened to a "Talking with Painters" podcast where Maria Stoljar interviewed artists who went to Gallipolli, Turkey and other WWI sites to paint them for the 100th anniversary of the end of the war. It was really moving stuff. This piece is also inspired by Effy Wild 's Lifebook 2018 lesson that came out last week. I love Effy's lessons and I was really intrigued by her glazing method for the face. Did I

Number 34 of 52: Found

Last weekend Galia Alena hosted a Creative Weekend Retreat. There were a lot of classes over 48 hours. One of the ones I watched was Mystele Kirkeeng who showed us how she did muck paintings, paintings that she created out of the wipings of left over paint. As it happened, I had a page started and then I took it to the nth degree: I brought it back a little bit and that's when I found the jawline of the face. I sketched her in with white charcoal. Mystele used chalk pastels as a beginning to laying in the face before she went on to use other media. I did a round of pastels: But nothing was really gripping the paper, so I carefully painted the face with clear gesso and then reapplied the pastels. That's how she looked before I sprayed her with workable fixative, and then more of the background came through. I needed to fix her nose and add highlights so I finished her with a bit of paint pen and brush marker. Another of the creative retreat teachers

Number 33: Looking back / Memory's ghost

I found some loose pages in the back of my Portraits journal and then I remembered I put a sketch into the envelope pocket at the front of the journal. It was a sketch from a Misty Mawn's class "Embrace Yourself" that I really liked, but it was a warm-up before the actual sketch book page. The reference image is a vague memory, but I loved this sketch and I'd put it in the envelope with the thought of using it later. I scanned it in, enlarged it, and then glued the original sketch into the journal with matte medium. This is where I discovered that the pencil I used was actually a watercolor pencil which smudged when I glued it down. Oops. I used charcoal to trace the enlarged sketch onto the page and then fixed that with sepia ink. Then I blocked out the background with some dark blue paint from Jane Davenport. It dries matte, so I was thinking of making more marks on the top. I did this painting without a palette. So I would put a daub of paint on the nei

Number 31 of 52 Portraits: Viriditas Sancta Spirita

I finished this last Thursday and totally forgot to write about it! This was not meant to be one of the portraits. I was working on a new abstract on a 36" x 36" canvas when lo, she appeared. (And why "lo"? Because this is a religious painting...) I began it while working on Number 28. I started with listening to a playlist I call "Spirit of Good Sam", songs of the choir I am in have sung over the years, or that are in the spirit of what we sing. Mostly gospel-style. That's how it went through the first few stages. And then there were flames. (going sideways here) Which then became hair. To paraphrase Jane Davenport, she just fell out of my paintbrush. And I knew she was the Holy Spirit. More blue and more green and my playlist changed to Hildegard of Bingen who spoke of "greening", the creative power of life, of the Divine. The face stayed as it is, although I added a reflected light on her jawline. The pi