Thursday, June 6, 2013

New Splashy Flower Painting

Starting a new painting. I've been wanting to do a big splashy floral for a long time. So I sifted through my folder of "To Do" photos and found this one I took last summer. I'm not sure the name of the flowers - does anyone know? But I love the color and splashy form, with bright sunlight and shadows. This should be a fun one! With my daughter's encouragement I decided to go for the largest canvas size I have on hand which is a 24" x 30". That's going to be a big flower! Not sure what I will do with the background, but I'll solve that challenge when I get to it :)
Here is the reference photo:

I put the photo on my computer screen in Photo shop Elements and used the crop tool to make a grid of thirds over the photo to help me with my placement. I sketched the same grid on the canvas.
Then sketched the major elements of the image. There is a house in the background which is creating some interesting directional lines that might be useful in the composition. On the other hand, I don't think there will be any question as to where the center of interest is! The challenge might be to move the eye to other parts of the painting as well. I might create a circular kind of pathway by adjusting and exaggerating the way the flower buds are pointing... Time to block in!
Here is where I'm starting today. Establishing my darkest darks. What looks like dark grey in the photo is really almost black, it's getting some glare from the window. I like the idea of very muted background colors to bring out the chromatic vibrancy of the flowers. We'll see how it goes!

Done with the block in. Pretty happy with it, but contemplating a couple of things. Do I like the background that dark? Do I want a petal to go off the edge on the right? Decisions, decisions!

Some work on the background and experimenting with taking a blossom off the right side. I can see from this view that the shape is almost even with the one going off the left - that won't work! I'll have to rethink that one :)

Worked on the main flower today. Tomorrow more of the loose stuff.

 Starting to develop the background flowers. Trying to stay loose and just get shapes of color.

As you can see I moved the petal on the left side lower so it wasn't on the same level as the ones on the right.  This is the fun part. a lot of squinting, matching colors and placing shapes of color. I'm thinking about the pathway the eye is taking and adjusting the position of the flowers and buds to revolves around the focal point. Trying also to keep to my original values.
I decided I didn't like the area on the right with the ground showing. It kind of distracted from the center of interest I thought. Brought back the dark area on the left center from my original value block in. Enough for today. Pretty happy with it, but I need to live with it for a day or so. What do you think?
A few finishing touches on the stem and bud area under the main flower, some tweaks to the darker flower on the bottom. I think that's it! Thanks for following! I'm calling it "Sunny Daylilly" it's 24"x30" and will be available in My Etsy Shop


  1. This is so lovely. I liked your photo and wanted to do it and post it for you to see.
    I didn't do it in acrylic, however, but in

    How do I post a photo to your site?

  2. Hi Maria! Thanks so much! This is my blog, so you aren't able to post photos here. But if you go to my teaching website: you can post it there. This is a free website where I post classes and videos and do critiques and you can share your work. You can find an active link to the site in the "links" section here as well
    Take Care,