Monday, September 28, 2009

"Oracle", Fairy Tales, Myths and Legends

This is a painting called, "Oracle" it's part of my Fairy Tales, Myths and Legends Series. It's 20x16 in an oval format. The idea of an oracle as a medium for revelation is provocative and one I have enjoyed exploring. Technically this is one of the trickiest faces I've every painted because of the strange blue reflected light and the golden up-light from the lamp.
I used a combination of different exposure photographs for reference because of the nearly impossible lighting situation and to get the various levels of detail I wanted. I left the still life set up and painted that from life sheltering the still life from the light shining on the canvas and palette.
Too much studio light killed the drama and the color in the still life so I was practically painting this in the dark. The colored lights reflecting on fabric and flesh were luscious to look at and a challenge to paint.
 I thought this image was so strong and the expression so mysterious that I decided to do another version in charcoal and pastel on a warm gray paper. This piece is 30x22.
Both of these pieces will be in my Mississippi University for Women show at Eugenia Summers Gallery, Oct 8-Nov 4, 2009, Reception Oct 23. More about this show on my blog from Sept 13.

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