Sunday, June 07, 2009

And Now for Something Completely Different - Painting 6

Well, not that different - there's still a bird in there! Since Painting #5 I've been thinking a lot about backgrounds and looking at how other people handle them. Two artists inspired me to try a totally different kind of background than I'm used to - Ellen Morrow and Toni at A Spattering

I actually thought ahead this time, even going so far as to do a quick thumbnail of my idea (!). Then I masked off the basic shape of the owl, laid in thick wet washes of color, q-tipped out the moon, and then sprinkled salt onto the washes and impatiently waited for it to dry. Once the background was finally dry, I tried my best to get the salt off without ruining the paper (it was really embedded) and removed the mask from the owl form. I kept the owl fairly loose, hinting at its shape and details rather than using my usual tight painting style. As usual, I've hemmed and hawed as to whether the painting is finished or not, so perhaps letting it sit for a few days will help me decide for sure. Meanwhile, here it is.


Laure Ferlita said...

Good for you in trying something new!

Backgrounds ARE a challenge, but one of my teacher/mentor's talked about treating the background the same way you treat you center of interest - as in they're both equally important.

Like the looseness you've achieved. Now set it aside and begin again.

Heather said...

While I can't offer you any input regarding your technique (I work w/camera only, no paintbrushes here!), I will say that I love the coloring of your background, and what the salt did to it. The owl stands out so nicely against the background. I like it!

Maree said...

Your paintings are absolutely stunning and lovely blog. thanks for popping into my blog and I will certainly be back here to explore some more!


Kelly said...'ve totally capture the feel of night. I like the background because it is so peaceful and quickly puts me in night-time mode. The perfect time to see that lovely Barn Owl!!