Sunday, April 25, 2010

I ♥ Skulls, sunshine and Moofie the cat..how was your day?















I gave myself two assignments today. I set out to do a self portrait in only black and white with one flat brush, all to be completed in 25 minutes total. Even though the outcome is not 100% me, I achieved what I set out to do. Side-note: The portrait reminds me of a comedianne who used to appear in things in the 70's--She had huge eyes. I just can't think who it is. (I realize the eyes are too big, but I kept to the 25 minute thing and I'm not going to revisit it).

As for my other assignment...well, Thomas Kitts has convinced me that I should try what he does to prepare panels. He takes a panel (any type) and scrapes lead white over it, forcing the paint into the weave of the canvas. I found some Schmincke lead white, donned my gloves and had a go. (I had asked Thomas if he was worried about toxicity.... he replied, "Well, I am not going to chew it or sand it....so, no". I wasn't crazy about this support/ground project, I found it taxing--it made my hand hurt, scraping scraping scraping, and I just could not get it smooth. I wondered, can't I just buy better supports that require no scraping? On the plus side, I did this outside and it was a super-nice day.

I noticed that the skull on the lead white tin was really quite friendly looking. Interesting design decision. I like skull imagery...I guess I can attribute that to my penchant for cemeteries and pirates. I will try these new surfaces after they've dried in about a week.

I've tossed in a photo of my beautiful brown Maine Coon cat Moofie into this post...he can often look menacing too-------but not really.

UPDATE: I really wracked my brain trying to think who my self portrait looked like (more than me) --finally the name registered with me! It is Carol Kane. I am quite certain the idea behind self portrait painting is not to paint all these other people. Funny how many of my portraits seem like people aside from who I mean to paint. Some sort of attention lapses. I'll work to correct this.

15 comments:

Kaylyn said...

Great job in keeping a range of values in 25 minutes with one brush! Do you do jumping jacks or push ups to get pumped for speed painting?

Moofie is adorable. Love Maine Coons, but all our cats are foundlings with no pedigrees. This does not prevent them from acting like blue-blooded masters of the house.

-Don said...

Painting, skulls and cats... what more is there in life?

-Don

Kerri Settle said...

That is a pretty happy looking skull you have on that can; hard to hate him when he just seems so darn nice.

I could see those Maine coon ear tips on Moofie even on the thumbnail. He's a gorgeous boy! We have a hand-me-down rescue that has some coon traits to her. I love their massive paws and...well, just their massiveness in general.

martinealison said...

Bon challenge que la réalisation de ce portrait et que je trouve réussi.
La photo de votre "minou" est excellente, j'aime les regards qu'ont les félins et les chats en font partie...
Je vous remercie de votre gentil commentaire laissé sur mon blog.
J'aime le Douanier Rousseau, Jean Eve, Gaugain, Piassaro et tant d'autres...

AutumnLeaves said...

Didi Conn? I don't know...LOL But I think it is fabulous! Moofie is beautiful!

Kathy said...

Only 25 minutes?? Good job! Your cat is beautiful.

Dan Kent said...

Don, Don, Don..anyway, I tried one of Kathy's twenty minute challenges last month, and couldn't do a thing with it! I'm determined to try again. Great job in such a short time. I don't know what comedienne she was, but she was cute - must be the big eyes.

Caio Fernandes said...

i love skulls ... hahah! sonds like the title of some heavy metal song .
what a beautiful Maine coon .
this painting is very good , i didn't notice the size of the eyes till you talk about , even so i thing very normal ( proportions aren't my thing ) .
see you Celeste ! have a nice week ahead !

Fresca said...

Not related to this post, but I saw on Art Sparker that you like Pema Chodron too and want to say I LOVE the quote you chose for the sidebar.

It's cool to see the working process of an artist--thanks!

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

Great job! Moofie is a curious guy. Last time I saw him, he was trying to eat my paintings!

Gary Keimig said...

Keep at it Celeste. A few more under your belst and you will be a 25 minute expert.
Interesingly I have decided to work on some oils within a time limit as the last two shows my gouache watercolor quick-draws have fallen off in auction prices. Seems Oils are more popular so....
Today I am off to trying 45 minute quickies in 9"x12" and up.

ArtSparker said...

I actually like using gesso and doing tedious sanding...maybe I like mindless repetition. Your cat looks well-brushed.

Dan Gliubizzi said...

I knew it was Carol Kane before I got to the bottom! Nice

hwfarber said...

I'm glad I checked back--Carol Kane, yes. I was thinking of Latka's wife on Taxi.

As your quote says--we're connected to everything, so self-portraits may be about more than what we see in the mirror.

Tonya Vollertsen said...

I took a portrait class with Patricia Whitty once where we painted from the same model in the same position for 10 weeks. It was interesting because there were 15 or so people in the class and we had all made the model look a little like ourselves. P. Whitty told us that it was very common for artists to make others look like themselves so I find this interesting that in a self portrait you are painting yourself to look like someone else.
Your cat is beautiful!