Several months ago I sketched four figures on 4 x 8' sheets of plywood. (Parts of two panels are shown in "A fun project . . . " posted on December 17, 2009)
When the figures were finished, they became part of a display used by the Seattle Dickens Carolers in late October and mid November this year. When I receive a photo of their final use, I will post it. I have put together a series of images showing the figures in the shop during the painting process and will post after they are turned into a short video.
In late October I painted four Dickens Carolers for a friend.
The project began by sketching four life-size figures with chalk on three 4x8' sheets of plywood. Next they were then cut out by Nathan Rodda, the model shown here. I might add, Nathan is the fantastic set designer for the Seattle Gilbert & Sullivan Society and heads the Seattle Dickens Carolers.
When I figure out how to post images of the project in process, I will post that here as well.
These were down the road from an Orcus Island cabin rented with friends. We stayed and painted for a week. This was, of course, when the flowers were actually in bloom. It has been below freezing for a week and actually dropped to 17° one day, very unusual for the area. I decided to post something from a warmer day.
I found some cherries with stems still attached and had such fun, I ended up with a series of paintings. I will continue to add new paintings until the cherries are gone. Some have been painted five times before eaten! Such restraint.
On the shop floor, shot from the top of a tall ladder. It is now on the wall in Act II of Utopia, Limited. The show opens a three week run at the Bagley Wright Theater in Seattle tonight. Show dates: July 10-11, 16-18, 23-25. Ticket information.
The upper right section of the shield set out on shop floor.
If you click to enlarge, you will see the spattering over everything, the final step in coloring. This spatter softens the effect and makes everything appear more believable from the audience. In the larger image you can also see the chalk marks, guides for the person who will screw all the carved parts to the circle base, finishing the shield.
The set designer, Nathan Rodda, asked me to make the lettering casual, loosely Roman, not perfect. The Seattle Gilbert & Sullivan Society's production of Utopia, Limited opens Friday night, July 5th. For more information click here.
A little more of the 'shield' for "Utopia, Limited." They are probably ready to deliver to the theater by now. The painting was finished on July 3rd. This image shows the carved characters before they were spattered, the final touch.
The alligator, carved by Mike Andrew, is made of styrofoam mounted on 1/4" plywood. Mike adds as many layers of foam board as need to make the required thickness for the various parts of the design before he begins to carve. He comes to the shop in the evening and works well into the night. I think he can make absolutely anything! He has also carved the flamingo and pineapple for the shield. I will post them in a day or two.
Nathan Rodda, the set designer, has everything painted black as a base. The white is added next, then the coloring layers which are made with a clear acrylic medium (house paint) with color concentrate added, just as you would have custom colors mixed to paint your house. We mix very small amounts in recycled plastic ice cream and yogurt containers.
Getting the center of shield ready for coloring. It is made from foam board mounted on 1/4" plywood. The lower portion of the carved pineapple can be seen in the upper right. It will be added to the center top of the shield.
Next week the Seattle Gilbert & Sullivan Society opens its 55th season with "Utopia, Limited." I have been at their shop working with the set designer and thought I would share something from Act II. This sketch was made several weeks ago. I went to the internet for reference photos of flamingos and alligators. You can see some of them here, scattered on the platform, which is also part of the set. The platform was painted and taken to the theater earlier this week.
This was my breakfast one morning. The shapes and colors were so exciting when I set this on the table, I ran inside for my paint box. By the time the painting was finished, the egg no longer looked so great. I fixed another one to eat.
I added the "painting in process" to show you the little paint box my husband made for me to take on an overseas painting trip quite some time ago. I like it so much I often use it at home as well.
I had painted all day in this pasture, packed up my gear, turned around and saw the late afternoon sunlight catching this tree as the sun was sinking behind the hill. I grabbed my paint box and very quickly painted this. I loved the moment and am glad I stopped to catch it.
This is a young friend of mine. She is great company and very fun to paint. The colors in the painting are very rich. On my monitor they look more like the painting when you click to enlarge the image. I don't know why the colors in some of my paintings are so washed out when I upload the images. Would love to hear from you if you know how the solve the mystery.
Mystery solved - Thanks Miro! I have uploaded the images again.
This lady was so much fun to watch and even more fun to paint! She was head-over-heels “in love” in a theater production. Her expressions were wonderful. So was her dress - black bodice with bright red long, full skirt. Click image to enlarge.
A view from our favorite spot along the Olympic Wilderness coastline in Washington State. We backpacked into this beach every summer for many years. The sketch posted on March 31st was the background for this little painting.
This little painting is from a sketch I did long ago on a trip to the ocean. The model is one of my daughters. I was interested in thick, juicy paint and loose brush strokes. A joy to paint. The sketch is below.
I have just received word that my painting of "Rustler" has been accepted into this year's 2009 Oil Painters of America's National Juried Exhibition of Traditional Oils. The exhibition will be held at Sage Creek Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico, May 1 - May 31, 2009.
Blue and white ceramics always catch my attention. I have wanted to paint this grouping for a long time. On this evening’s visit I really liked the deep shadows cast by the near by lamp so much, I painted them. Great fun!
Click image to enlarge.
Note: The painting's colors may be much richer that they appear on your monitor.
Another painting from Normandy Cottage. I have wanted to paint this spot ever since my first visit years ago. This space, with its simple shapes, warm colors, light and shadows, is so appealing. It always captures my attention and I find the atmosphere delightful.
Note: The colors are very rich but may appear more subtle on your monitor. Click images to enlarge.
I was at the Seattle Gilbert & Sullivan Society shop recently. The globe I painted for their production of Princes Ida had been taken out of storage and was sitting in the rehearsal hall. It was such fun to see it again, I thought I would share it with you.
The land masses are patterned after the 1616-1622 map covering a small table globe I was asked to use as a model. Most of the words are also from the little model. The illustrations are a mix of the old map and my own creations.
The globe is made of many layers of kraft paper pasted over an exercise ball. When dry, a wooden disk was added to the North and South Pole, holes drilled, metal pins added so the ball could be held within its wooden rim. Acrylic house paint was added and the globe was ready for decoration.
Click images to enlarge.
I drew in chalk first, just to be sure I wouldn’t run out of space for land or end up with an extremely huge ocean. Then I drew more carefully with a brown laundry marker and added the little illustrations and all the words.
Next I colored the inside edges of the land masses and illustrations with water based paint, and finally the rest of the land mass color was added.
The base is solid wood with carved styrofoam added to the legs, which were then covered with cheese cloth for extra protection. The base was also painted with acrylic house paint. I added the zodiac to the top of the stand.
When all of the illustration was finished, Nathan Roda, the set designer, turned the base into ‘old oak’ and added an oil sepia wash over all the illustration to complete this ‘antique.’
Normandy Fireside is the second painting from an evening with friends. Every time I glanced at the table, I wanted to paint those rich colors and wonderful shapes I found in both the objects and their reflections. Great fun to paint!
Note: The colors in the painting are very rich. They may appear more subtle on your monitor.
On the Eighth Day of Christmas we spent a delightful evening with friends. This lamp and the light it cast on objects near by, were enchanting. Sometimes I just want to paint those moments! This is the first from that evening (there will be more!) and also my first painting in the New Year!