If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen a couple of posts about this painting. I did this as a gift to my parents. My mom was diagnosed with brain cancer earlier this year and they have moved into an apartment…they were previously “snowbirds” traveling back & forth from Canada to Arizona. Anyway, I thought that it would be nice to paint this for them so they can put it up in their new place. The house and yard was a very special place for my family and we have many great memories growing up there.
The two people in the painting are my mom on the porch and my dad working in the flowerbed. I wanted the end result to be somewhat symbolic of what our family has been going through this last year with my mom and so I wanted the sky to be a little dramatic but I also wanted to it to be peaceful and serene. It is a crazy thing this cancer. Sometimes I feel so devastated that I wonder if I will ever be able to paint again nevermind get out of bed. The next time, I feel desperately like I MUST paint & I’m not even the one that has the cancer! Here is a quote from my dad that he just wrote today about all this cancer craziness
“…and He has done this to pour His grace more abundantly on us to have Him more alive in our souls. Yes, these are days of desperation, and deeper ones may well be on the horizon; but they are also days of our souls vibrant with God’s life within, in wonder and grace. “Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed…. Preparing for us a weight of glory beyond all comparison…And even today, cancer, does not rank on the same scale as the riches of His grace poured out on us in this present room; for He keeps track of every single cancer cell before and after the upcoming MRI.”
The biggest challenge with this painting was probably getting it from a place of blocked-in shapes, looking very basic and unoriginal to a painting that had depth and personality. It is one thing to be able to know how to paint in shapes, various elements and colors, it is another thing entirely to be able to paint intuitively where you are putting yourself in the painting, and viewers can observe that. It is what takes a painting from “that’s nice, you know how to paint trees and birds and shapes” to “this looks like it was meaningful to the artist, there is definitely emotion and passion in this painting”. I believe it is easy enough to learn techniques such as shapes, perspective, shading but if you can’t paint intuitively and with feeling than it’s not exciting and the result is very boring to the viewer.
For me, this process involves really thinking through the piece and figuring out all the details such as angles, how to get the important elements into the frame of the canvas, mixing colors, mediums etc. to turning off my brain and just painting intuitively. What I mean by that is to trust that I have figured out the details and now I just paint by instinct and what feels right. Yes, that means I may have to make corrections but the outcome is so much preferable to a painting that features a subject that COULD be beautiful and SHOULD be beautiful but yet still has no life on the canvas. There is always that stage for me in all of my works & it is the most frustrating, stressful stage. At that point, I just keep going and all of a sudden it starts getting away from me and the “magic starts to happen”
So with this video, keep in mind, it is just the beginning stages of the painting. I would say it was just before the stage where I turn my brain off and start painting by instinct. You will notice some re-workings of elements, a complete angle change of the house (which it still bothers me that I didn’t start out at a 3/4 angle…I know better) & many layers of paint to achieve a transparency and a glow in the painting. I also used glazing mediums on almost every brush stroke and an airbrush towards the end. This is an acrylic painting with oil added at the end to bring out colors & a little more texture. Materials listed below. To see more detail photos check out the gallery below and click on each thumbnail to see a larger image.
- Acrylic Paints- Chroma Atelier Interactive
- Liquitex Glazing Medium
- Golden Airbrush Medium
- Holbein Water Miscible Oil Paints
- Winsor and Newton Water Miscible Oil Paints
- Various bristle and synthetic brushes
Oh, one more thing…all of the music in this video was created by moi! I won’t say I wrote it because it was Garageband and Mixcraft, but I will say that I mixed it, I designed and I created it. Hey! I can’t have art as my hobby because it’s my job, and reading isn’t a hobby because it’s basically the same as living & breathing sooooo I guess I will start creating my own music as a hobby. Regardless, I’m the type of person that if I’m not creating in some way, I would legit lose my mind. I imagine it can be hard to live with me at times….Whether it’s any good or not? Well- I’ll let you guys be the judge of that 🙂 This will be the first time anyone has heard any of it other than my daughters. (YIKES) The music titles:
- Elixir (intro clip)
Hope you are all having a fantastic Summer so far! Just wanted to share another piece with you. This one is titled “Interlude”. I wanted to do a Spanish dance pe dress with a vibrant beautiful woman.
One of my favorite things about these pieces are the dreamy, abstract, slightly impressionist backgrounds. I love working on the backgrounds and discovering what colors come out. Then I just need to decide what colors to focus on and what to fade out.
I have sold the original of this but it is available as a Limited Edition Print and Giclee Canvas. Both come with a Certificate of Authenticity and they are available to purchase in my Store. Until July 13th, you can purchase this piece at a Promotional Price.
Original 20×28 Painting $3200.00
Limited Edition Print starting at $135.00
Limited Edition Giclee Canvas starting at $350.00 (no need for a frame)
Here are some detail shots. Click on each one to see a larger, clearer image.
Keep up with Janelle Nichol
Thank you everybody for the great response to my collection of watercolors! I now have another new series to introduce to you. This is my Fine Art Acrylic series.
It’s a collection of “moments”. We all have these moments. Moments when we are relaxed, moments when we are exhilerated, contemplative, melancholy, reflective. The list goes on. I did this series in order to bring out the loveliness and sweetness of all of those moments that seem to be so normal and regular at the time.
Here are some progress pictures of the first piece of the series I did. This is “A Meditation.” For the next six weeks I will be featuring a piece from this new series with a blog post. There are 6 pieces in this series with more to come. They are all available to view in my gallery and purchase in my store. The originals range in price from $3200-$3500. I am thrilled to say I have already sold one Original titled “Interlude”
They are also available as Limited Edition Prints and Giclee Canvases. Since I’m featuring “A Meditation” this week- it is available for a special introductory price this week only with $40 off the Limited Edition print and $50 off the Limited Edition Giclee Canvas. You will receive a Certificate of Authenticity with all my Limited Edition prints.
Here is the sketch.
Here’s my work started on the background.
Next, I had to transfer this lovely woman to the canvas.
And here is where I have started painting her dress. One of my favorite stages…
And here is the final result!
Keep up with Janelle Nichol