Sunday, October 15, 2017

"Just Being" Mixed Media Painting By Donna Holdsworth

Hello!  I continue with this post on my working figures with a background.  I used the image of the girl from a site on the web offering free images.  I liked the drape of her dress.  The original dress was white which I loved but I decided to go daring and instead opted for red.  Red is not a comfortable color for me and although I feel it really pops in this painting I still have mixed feelings on it. 

I painted the figure after an initial graphite sketch on a toned canvas.  I used only acrylic for this stage.  I then added the woods also in various layers of acrylic.  Once I was satisfied I added highlights and deepened shadows.  I finished with a few glazes in oil on the dress.  I also used oil paint for highlighting the moss.

The colors were inspired by beautiful Northeastern autumn.

Life is short.  Remember true beauty is in the little things.  Take a deep breath and embrace just being! Peace to you!


Monday, August 28, 2017

"Stillness" A Portrait In Oil

I have not used my oil paints for a while and decided to get them out and use them.  This painting was started on a black gessoed canvas.  I did not work from a sketch this time but just dove right in to the painting.  If I would have sketched this piece I think I may have painted the girl one size smaller.  There were quite a few layers involved here and I tried to keep the background abstract. I used many glazes. The final one was more opaque to give it a hazy feeling and add to the Sfumato effect I was trying to achieve. Here is the finished painting:

My daughter and I walk quite a bit.  I took the camera with me to one of my favorite spots near my house.  You can walk through the woods yet end up on the beach.  I have to admit my inner beach bum has really reappeared this Summer. It is so beautiful to sit by the water I swear you can feel it in your soul!  This painting was inspired by this photo of my youngest daughter in the wooded area.

May God's stillness and peace be with you always.  Prayers to those suffering in Texas.

Until the next time....


Friday, July 14, 2017

Giving An Old Painting A Face Lift

Last December I completed a painting.  I will post it later but it was of a girl and a dandelion.  I had never painted a dandelion puff before so I watched a few You Tube tutorials. This is the one I found that worked the best for me:
Then I set off to practice & finally applied the technique to canvas.  I was very happy with the way the painting turned out.  The dandelion was just what I wanted and the little girls face was cute too.  I had painted her before but liked this face better.  The painting hung in my house and I got many compliments on the dandelion.  After living with the painting for 6 months I decided that it was lacking something.  I have started a new group of work and am really trying to concentrate on incorporating the figure with a background. There just seemed to be too much space.  Plus I did not paint her arm the first time around & that was bugging me as well.

The other night I drew her arm.  I then watched the dandelion video again as a refresher.  This morning I updated the painting.  I also glazed it to warm it up.  I think it is much better now.  I guess what I am trying to say is do not be afraid to change your mind.  Sometimes I think a work is done but after I live with it for a while a creative jolt hits me over the head and pushes me to do more. Trust your gut.  It is only paint.  If the work is lacking you've got nothing to loose.

Here are the before and afters.  I hope you have a wonderful weekend!  Until the next time... Peace!