Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Beginnings of a Painting

I'm going to hold your hand and lead you through the process of one of my paintings. It'll take a little while, because the painting itself has done so.

 My idea for this has sprung, to tell the truth, out of a very difficult year.  I don't know what 2015 will bring, but this painting is an outpouring as a result of things that have happened in our lives this last year.

The painting will be thus:
Two arms, reaching down from heaven, grasping and pulling up a desperate sinner's arm.  The arms pulling that sinner up are Christ's strong arms, coming down out of golden glory.  The sinner's arm is a cutter's
 arm.  That arm will be dripping blood.  There will be, I think, gold flowing down from Christ's wound to intermingle with that blood.

The top of the painting will be golden, the bottom will be very dark.

Okay, so here we go.  To prepare for the process, I did a lot of paint mixing.  Charts like these are invaluable.  They help me identify exactly what colors I want, what I need to mix, and what colors I don't want. This is a necessary
step, especially when working with acrylics.  Acrylics dry very quickly, which doesn't give you much time for mixing or a redo, so you have to be fast and sure.

First step - I did my background in blacks and reds.  Almost all of this will be covered up, but it will very subtly give that feeling that I want to come through.

Second step, which was actually part of the first, was to add the footprints.  I didn't really plan to do this, but my feet were present at the time, and they wanted to, so I agreed.  The carpet didn't get to answer to my decision, either, and now bears the prints as well.  Most of these prints will be covered, but the texture will be there.  I wanted this texture as this person feels trampled.

The third step was to lay in the arms and hands.  This is charcoal, so it's easily erased with the smudge of a hand.  Once I got the charcoal right, I lightly painted it with watered down black acrylic so it wouldn't rub off.  The canvas is about four feet tall.

Stay tuned for the next installment of 'Beginnings of a Painting' with Cindy Johnson!

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