A blank canvas or piece of paper affects artists in different ways, even causing some to say that it paralyzes them. But I always feel excited when that blank piece of paper is before me, waiting on that first brushful of paint to liven it (and me) up.

A friend and I were together painting as I started this piece by first pressing pieces of torn masking tape onto the white paper, then painting randomly over them with colors I liked, drying it, adding more tape, then more paint, and so on until I had seven layers of tape and paint. The pic shown here is a bit lighter than it was - there were seven different values from light to dark.

This beginning stage, above (which is upside down from how I originally painted it,) shows the paint shapes and colors left after I'd removed all the masking tape. I had no pre-conceived idea of what my final painting would be, so at this point, my imagination had to get in gear to help 'find' the hidden painting.

Possibly because it was close to Kentucky Derby time, and we live close to Kentucky, one of my Kentucky art friends said she 'saw' a lady in the painting with a big Derby hat on. I liked the idea, so when I could finally imagine seeing her there too, I began to develop the painting in that direction. Thank you, Barb, for 'seeing.'

I took a photo of the original painting and overlaid it with tracing paper. Next, I laid out a design on that tracing paper to show where the medium and dark values would go. A paint brush, an elephant ear sponge to lift color off, and several hours of painting produced these results.

This turned out much more romatic than I usually paint, but it's proved to be a very eye catching painting. The finished painting (below) sold the day after it was dry!!! and many smaller giglees have been sold, also. Whatever the appeal of the picture is, I do not understand. In fact, it's not at all on of my favorite pieces. Funny how everyone's taste is different! I do know that I like to paint from chaos to control, from not knowing, to finding out what's there.

"FOREVER FREE" Transparent Watercolor and Gouache on 140# Hot Pressed Arches, 54 x 22" SOLD (giglee prints available)


RHCarpenter said...

To me, this painting tells a story of a strong woman - but not a KY Derby girl - probably an island woman with flowers woven in her hair. She's proud and strong but also gentle. Good qualities to try to maintain throughout life.

Myrna Wacknov said...

Sandy, thank you for sharing this wonderful technique. I have never painted this way but it sounds like so much fun. Your final resolution is terrific! I can't wait to try this. With your permission, this may wind up being a monthly challenge.

Nava said...

What a fun way to being a painting!! I also like to start with a mess of colors and shapes, and then try to make something of it.

There are so many wonderful shapes and little things to explore in this painting - it's not just about the girl. But I see what you mean - your paintings are usually more soulful. sometimes, people would rather buy what I call easy art - something that doesn't force them to think too much, but just makes them happy to look at. You never know.

Sandy said...

From one Sandy to another..I congratulate you on this beautiful painting.What an original way to start and what a wonderful finish.