Friday, September 25, 2009

Yellow Umbrella: Oil Painting


I am delighted to have this painting realized(instead of saying finished)to the most of my efforts. As always I feel a mixed bag of emotions when a project is completed. Sense of accomplishment, conveyance of mood, and then emptiness for some unknown reasons. It happens pretty much every time. A void, a vacuum, something like that.

The journey of this project was full of surprises, encounters with nice people and an array of unexpected twists. The very idea of starting this project stemmed from my desire for originality, challenge and realism. So, I started looking for the appropriate subject and one day leafing through the pages of Portland I saw this picture that I would use as a reference.

Reference Photo

I guess it arrested me for it's uniqueness. It was all I was looking for. To paint a human in it's likeness sounded like a challenge for a novice like me. Plus it has color, mood, and sensitivity of a moment captured. So, I sought blessings of Tim Jewett to use his picture for my work and he gladly did.

18 x 20
Oil on canvas

I was so excited to put my skills to work that first thing I did was to paint the woman. The rest of the work has been developed after and around her. It was not the most common thing to do, but I am glad I did that because once she came alive on the canvas, rest got painted all by itself.

Despite my efforts, I haven't found a suitable title for this work that took me nearly 2.5 months to finally get it off my canvas. Hope that changes soon. I borrowed the book from library and after multiple renewals, I had to return it back. I hoped to get it back in a few days but that never happened as the book got lost. It still is missing! Buying the book was prohibitively pricey. So, the project was forcibly suspended.

In August, I received an easel from hubby dear(xoxo - I heart you!) and I couldn't resist to work on it. It's around this time I had a light-bulb moment! I had taken a picture of the picture in the book and thought why not take a printout of that to see if that might work as a reference picture! I did and it did. I put up the canvas on easel and it was absolute fun to paint using this.

Once I developed this background after a couple of different combinations, inspiring from another picture of a rainy day I stopped on further build-up. I realized that has to be it.

I used only one brush for everything and seldom used any medium, just the paint. I think for the future projects I would need some more brushes but for now, this is just right. Before I end this post, I must mention that my work has been incomplete without art encounters with Steve Allrich and Lee Hammond via their books. They are very talented people.