Friday, March 21, 2014

a duck for Laura

In January, my sister Laura was cast as the duck in the ballet "Peter and the Wolf," which my dance company is performing this May.  I told her I would paint a duck in her honor :)  There have been casting changes since then, but I still decided to paint a duck.  Well, a duckling, actually.
(Side note - we are also performing "The Ugly Duckling" so we get double ducks :))
look at those cuties
 I painted it on a cute little 4x4" canvas I found at AC Moore...

I'm pretty happy with this one.  It could use a bit more value in the feathers (plus this picture is kind of washed out... sorry) and I'm still working on the grassy parts...  Turns out most of my oils are transparent or semitransparent, so it's tricky trying to get good coverage.
Artist behaviors:
1.  Artists Develop Art Making Skills - For this project, I used oil paints, which I am becoming more and more familiar with.  I practiced manipulating the paints to get the textures I wanted, such as the down on the duckling's back.  I believe I built my skills with this medium through this project.
2.  Artists Solve Problems - As I mentioned before, many of my oil colors are transparent or semitransparent.  This was especially a problem with the background, because I was trying to use transparent green paint over and orange background.  To cover the area like I needed to, I used less medium so the paint was thicker and mixed the sap green with other colors that are more opaque.  I also intentionally left some of the orange showing through to give the color more depth in some areas.
3.  Artists Communicate Through Their Work - When I chose a picture to paint, I chose a duckling that seemed "dignified" rather than just cute or goofy-looking.  This was important to me because I was trying to portray not only the duck from "Peter and the Wolf" but also the ducklings from "The Ugly Duckling," which are very proud in their rejection of the ugly duckling.

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