"Paintings have a life of their own that derives from the painter's soul." Vincent Van Gogh

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Ballerina #27 as a Work in Progress

Ballerina #27 / oil on linen panel / 20x16

A few final small tweaks and she is finished (highlights on lips and softened edges here and there). As promised here is her work in progress from beginning to end:

Stage 1
Once I have the idea for the painting in mind, I always begin with a rough oil sketch directly on the canvas. Once in a while I will do preparatory drawings but not generally. Once the proportions are correct and the oil sketch has the right amount of energy and motion, I begin adding color thinned with mineral spirits to get an idea of the value structure.

Stage 3

 In this stage, I continue working on values and have refined her face and tutu. At this rough point, I decided on a dark background with lots of intersting things going on.

Stage 4

The back ground was painted with a mixture of burnt sienna and ultramarine blue in just the right amounts to create this gorgeous grey.  I also added some raw sienna here and there to warm the grey.

Stage 5
Refinement of her slippers and clothing, adjustments to the skin tones and continued work on the background elements. This is the photo that I posted yesterday.

Stage 6

 The final painting with softer edges and some additional highlights.  Actually the color is more true to the previous photo but the lighting today was different in my studio and this is the best photo I could get.

And a close up of the face.

 Thank you to everyone for looking and thank you to Sandra Busby for asking to see a wip.
Happy Spring and Happy Easter to everyone!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Ballerina 27 - A Celebration of Spring

Ballerina #27 / oil on linen panel / 20 x 16

She was a long time in coming but made it here just in time to celebrate spring! My forsythia is brilliantly blooming and the grass is beginning to green. My pink day lilies are beginning to sprout and the magpies and flickers are busy building nests and starting families. For some reason, all this rebirth and renewal put me in the mood to paint a ballerina.  I have taken a series of photos of her progress along the way and will post them tomorrow as a work in progress for anyone who might be interested. Thank you to Sandra Busby for suggesting I do that. Happy Spring to everyone!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

The Return

18x24 oil on linen
Its been quite some time since I posted a new painting in my blog. This past month has been one of struggle and introspection. I would like to begin painting and posting regularly and hope this painting marks the beginning of a new and productive phase for me.

One of my clients was kind enough to send me a photo of a painting that she recently purchased and framed. I think her attention to framing the piece so beautifully has really made this little painting sing.  As I always have a bit of separation anxiety when a painting is sold, it helps immeasurable to know that it has found a good home and is highly valued by its new owner. Thank you, Dana, for cherishing this painting.

Equine #7  14x18 oil on linen, framed