Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Untitled (but Lucy)


I have had the inspiration photo for this painting for about 6 weeks now. I knew I wanted to soften the image, but wasn’t quite certain how to go about that. So I tried several smaller studies, which have been staring me down from my desk – none of them quite captured the modified sense of light I was looking for.

So how did I solve this problem? I went bigger and I chose 4 completely different colors. Yeah, that doesn’t make any sense – to step away from all the studying I had been doing with the new palette these last few months, and try something entirely different on an even bigger scale.

But somehow it worked.

So here’s Lucy, almost finished. At 18x14 she’s larger than life, but serenely unpretentious. I used primarily Quinacridone Red, Cad Yellow Dark, Azurite Hue and Cobalt Blue. I reached for some Raw Umber, Cad Red Med, and Bone Black for minute details around the eyes and collar. The two blues combined to give some interesting green to blue to violet shadows, but one thing I did realize was that this combination of colors did not give me a dense enough neutral (hence the addition of bone black).

I want to make the ground richer and darker still, and might lay down another layer or two of a red glaze, but I’m going to live with the painting for a little bit first, and see if she tells me anything else.

And she needs a title, too - I'm open to suggestions. Usually they come to me while I’m working, but nothing rose to the surface today. Initial thoughts are “Bells” or maybe “Wren” or “Sparrow” – something alluding to her bird hunting skills. But then the old standby is just her name, “Lucy.”

Thanks to Erin Chop for allowing me to “borrow” Lucy for a bit – I would love to paint her again. Hint, hint, Erin - send more photos!! (grin)

Actually, for those of you reading this - I am always looking for inspiration. You are welcome to send me photos of your dog or cat for consideration for my next painting. You may send your materials via email to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com, with the subject line of "New Model." I am currently preparing work for a number of shows that call for canine, feline, and equine characters.

Meanwhile, I’m planning to enter this painting in the Birmingham Michigan’s Community House October 2006 juried exhibition, titled “Our Town.” I will keep you posted if she makes the cut.

Kimberly Kelly Santini
www.turtledovedesigns.com
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

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