|"Fit For a Queen" 8x10" Oil on Gessobord|
— Victor HugoI thought I’d share a 8x10” still life I was recently commissioned to paint for a friend who has a gift for collecting beautiful gems and finding perfect settings to complement each jewel.
I have to admit I wasn’t sure I could do justice to the splendor of the subject matter. This is the first time I've ever painted jewelry not to mention the intricate beautiful detail. However, once I let go of my initial fear and picked up the brush, I found myself totally engrossed with each and every spot of sparkle and glitter.
I began with a couple of photo shoots and then sketched the images onto my board. For me, the hardest part is not knowing where to start. Fear can have a paralyzing effect on all of us. Fear for me manifests itself as a fear of failure. This is when I have to take a deep breath, say a little prayer and force myself to put down that first stroke of color. Next I begin applying paint in either the darkest areas or a mid-value areas. From then on out, it’s a matter of intense observation to see all the tiny little spots of value changes, comparing them to the surrounding values, and mixing the matching colors. The process reminds me of working a jigsaw puzzle, searching for the matching shapes and colors. I get lost in this process like a meditation...time and awareness of self and surroundings vanishes.
It’s so important to build up a wide range of values from darkest dark to lightest light. If I get too light too quickly, it's almost impossible to ever regain the dark. When all the ground work has been laid correctly, the highlights make the painting pop, and it all comes together. Saving those gleaming bits of the lightest highlights are the icing on the cake. I love that last fun part.
I was delighted with the way this painting came together. Whew!
A ROYAL thank you for dropping by today!!! : )© 2013 nancy parsons