I love color soooo much that I rarely limit myself to just one! But there was a call for monochromatic work that got me thinking about what would I do if I had to just pick one color? I was fresh off the Women’s March, that sea of pink still swirling in my mind and I knew right away that I wanted to paint a still life of a pussyhat! I have to say I’m tickled pink with the way it’s shaping up!
Here’s today’s progress:
I just listed Magnolia Tea II on the website and will be bringing it into Gallery 25 with a flock of other Birds and Teacups. In this painting, I tried to bring home some of the magic of spotting a white hummingbird in the wild to capture it in a domestic still life with this unusual, unpainted Limoges demitasse set and Magnolia Grandiflora bloom which represents nobility and perseverance in the Victorian language of flowers.
I love how these paintings come together, often the teacup is the inspirational launching point, but this time I had spotted a Townsend’s Warbler in my neighbor’s camellias and while photographing it (such a shy bird) I began to imagine what flower might suit its sweet masked face… and knew right away that it had to be the black and yellow striped petunia which I picked up in one of my local nurseries, and finding a matching teacup turned to be a cinch on ebay – a Royal Standard bone china classic from England! When I discovered the Victorian meaning of the petunia was “your presence soothes me”, I thought of the mourning jewelry I’ve been quietly obsessed with as of late and included a braided hair locket in my vignette. Of course, it wasn’t complete until I had a backdrop worked out and my yellow cotton dress with black and white feather embroidery seemed perfect. I’ve framed the painting in a sculptural, undulating black frame with a rich patina. I liked this combination so much, I went on to paint a matching Petunia Tea II with a gold locket.
Both of these paintings were just listed on my website and I will be taking them into Gallery 24 in Los Gatos, California this Friday along with a flock which includes a Steller’s Jay, a White Anna’s Hummingbird and a House Finch, which I’ll be posting, post haste!
So happy to get to my first painting of the white hummingbird I had so gleefully stalked with my telephoto at the Arboretum in Santa Cruz a few months back. I have lots of plans for all photos I took of him but I wanted to start with something for my Birds & Teacups series. I paired him with a white Limogues T&V demitasse, which is a delicate and glowing as the bird, and a magnolia grandiflora bloom. If I’s wanted to be matchy-matchy I might have painted whit ivy, which seems to be depicts on the handle of the demitasse, but there’s enough magic and mystery going on in this image and I really loved the the scale of the flower compared to the bird and the cup.
Quick oil sketch in rose and vilolet tones.
Blocked in a whole lot of loose color, working largely dark to light.
Placing more halftones and highlights.
Good day’s work but I ran out of daylight and objectivity. By Monday I should have more of both!