Today I am thankful that I started oil painting lessons last January. I have completed several pictures and have had a great time learning new techniques. I strain; I work hard; I get paint all over my hands and sometimes my clothes; I load up everything every week and go to class where I have made some great new friends; and I am having fun doing this. Now for the "show and tell" part.
The first painting I did is on the left--I had it framed and it is hanging in my den and I LOVE it! It makes me yearn for another trip to the beach when I look at it.
The picture on the right was a photo from New Mexico that I liked. I have it hanging in my hallway and look at it every time I leave my bedroom.
This next picture on the left is one that I did on my own at home. I found the picture at church and was fascinated by the hands. I wanted to see if I could get the skin right. I was also fiddling with the concept of the painted "frame" around the edge of the picture. It turned out okay, but I am still hesitant about beginning a portrait, although I have one ready to draw on a canvas. Anyway, I am not sure what I will do with this picture of the hands.
After bluebonnet season came and went, I had some lovely photos of bluebonnets and decided to paint a single bluebonnet. It was an interesting project. At first I made the background very dark, but later went back and made the background a little more misty. I liked the picture when it was finished and planned to paint a companion picture to hang over the bed in our blue bedroom, but gave the picture away instead.
I fell in love with a photo from a Santa Fe plant magazine and decided to paint this picture on the right. I loved working with the weathered old wooden door, the brick step, cobblestone walk and the stucco wall. The pot of flowers was tedious and time consuming to paint. Those grasses above the pot really were a challenge to get curved just right and keep them even. However, the art instructor taught me to use a specific brush that made the task much easier. I learned a lot with this picture.
A neighbor asked me to paint a picture of a sunset that we took in Hawaii a couple of summers ago when she invited me to go with her at the last minute. Our painting classes had been postponed for the month of July so I thought I would just whip the sunset picture out while the teacher was on vacation. Wrong! I struggled the whole month with that picture and finally gave up. I just could not get the sky colors right, so I put the canvas up and bought a new one for our first class in August. First of all, the teacher told me to use a limited palette of colors--a new experience for me. I was to use just 4 or 5 colors, plus white, to create the picture. She also said that I was being too tentative with my colors--just splash them on and make them vivid! Whew! That was hard for me. But the picture turned out okay and my neighbor LOVES it. I kept the other one which is softer and I like it also. She has put hers in a big gold frame and put it in a favorite place over her TV. Mine is still unframed but sits on my mantle.
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