Anatomy of a Painting Part I

A short tutorial on a new painting.
20 x 20 cradle board....a new substrate for me, when working this large. I love it.  Before painting I apply several coats of gesso, or a gray primer paint.  Sand between coats for smoothness.  I left the sides "natural" and later whitewashed them.
Be sure to use blue tape to mask off the sides so that paint doesn't drip down.
paint your scene all the way around the deep board.

Damask Sunflowers

 I bought a fading bouquet of flowers from the local grocery store. Of course they faded and died before I barely got started. So I took a photograph and then didn't use it !!!  So much for painting from "life."


This started out as a traditional painting, but the next day I didn't like it and scrubbed off all that I could. You can see bits and pieces of the original painting. One reason to love working on a wood surface is its resilience.

After priming the board, I rubbed in various colors of light to medium: turquoise, white, yellow, magenta..achieving a mottled appearance.

The bottom half was painted a medium yellow ochre.

Selecting a delicate floral/leaf stencil, randomly placed on the canvas, I used  a palette knife to push lavender or turquoise paint, thickened with heavy gel medium through the stencil.  Remove stencil carefully.  
These first steps were all done with acrylic full bodied paint to hasten the drying time.  

It is not unusual for me to start with acrylic, but do all large design work in oil.

I had a fabulous piece of tri-designed paper from Anthropologie, cut it into a vase shape and attached with gel can see the original flowers I could not remove.

From here on I "winged it" and painted the flowers without photos, still life, etc.

The entire floral design, scrolls, detail work are painted with oil.  

I lightly painted over the collaged vase to blend it back into the painting.
Up close you can see the paper design and heavy stencilled background.

Although I am slow to wipe a painting off, it does happen. And in this case it led me to a knew way of looking at something.

You can see this painting on my website.  (It sold just before posting this blog! ) 

I have one more piece to share with posting.  There are many ways to approach a painting when the first idea is not the greatest....
Isn't that what LIFE is all about?

1 comment:

  1. Loved following along with your painting process, feeling a part of your creativity. A gorgeous final result. Your abilities continue to amaze me.


Thank you for visiting my blog today. I appreciate the time you take to say hello. Warmly, Sharon