Sunday, 19 June 2011

Abstract painting DIY-over

First of all... Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there! I want to give a special shout-out to the greatest one who ever lived (no, seriously.... he is)... my daddy :)

Christmas 2006 on New Melones Lake... remember this dad?
Moving along....

Remember these paintings I did back in February?

Well, I was over them. They ended up drying a looot darker and brighter than they appeared while I was painting, and I was way too exhausted to change it that day. So they've been hanging there like that ever since.

With the recent life events, I need to start focusing on smaller (read: cheaper) projects around here since the big stuff is put on hold for now. I knew it would be the perfect time to re-do these paintings that have been bugging me for months.

I stumbled upon this picture somewhere on the internet (I really can't remember where) and I fell in looooooove with these paintings (or maybe it's just one big painting?):

It became my new official inspiration.

I noticed that the paintings seemed to have an iridescent/metallic-like quality to them. So I took a trip to Michael's to pick up some additive to give it that sheen (I also picked up a tube of black to give the colors a hint of gray, and some new brushes):

Total cost (with a 50% off coupon, of course): $11.75. Not bad.

So I took the paintings down and got to work.

Again, I had no plan or technique beforehand... I just started brushing and crossed my fingers it would bear some sort of resemblance to my inspiration pic.

Here's how the first one turned out (next to the original for comparision):

After repainting two canvases, I noticed they started to dry darker (oops, forgot) so I ended up redoing them again. This was not an easy process for me—trying to smoothly blend paint into a gradient without seeing a bunch of brush strokes with acrylic paint. So after two failed attemps, in frustration I just started squeezing a bunch of paint onto the canvas and smearing it around. Surprisingly, it seemed to work. So by the fourth and final canvas (which is six attemps if you count the two failed ones), I had the technique down.

So if anyone at home is planning to take on a similar project... here's the key with acrylics: LOTS of paint, plenty of water, and work while it's still wet.

In the midst of my painting madness, I looked up to find a familiar face:

Apparently Harry has a thing for the arts (last time he came this close was with my first painting experience).

He watched me paint for a good 30 minutes... while Susie watched him.

Pretty sure Harry could eat her.

At one point he started doing some sort of mating dance...

Can anyone speak bird? Does this means he loves my paintings?

Anyway... progress shot, 75% done:

A note on the iridescent additive: didn't do as much as I thought. Up close and in the right lighting you can tell, but in flat lighting, you'd never know it. Sigh, oh well, learning experience.

And finally, the finished product!

I'm much happier with these new colors. They are a lot more calming and less "look at me!" on the walls. Hopefully I don't change my mind cause I realllly don't want to go through a round 3 of this.

But I think these will stick around for a while :)

I've got a few fun things lined up for this week... so stay tuned!

(Pssst...the latest on the job search for those of you wondering is.. not looking great. Nothing promising as far as full-time work yet... please keep your fingers crossed for us!)

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