Monday, July 7, 2014

#19: Windows on the World

Inspiration: I borrowed Acrylic Painting Step-by-Step, by Jelbert, Massey & Hyde, from our local library. In the first section, Wendy Jelbert illustrates and describes step-by-step instructions for painting a sunlit window. As I looked at her picture it brought back memories of a trip I took to France. I remember walking narrow streets in several towns with beautiful homes. I knew I had taken pictures of several homes, similar to Jelbert's painting. After searching through my photos I found one I wanted to try to paint. I took this shot in Arles, France. To be honest, I can't recall why I took the picture, but painting it would present a challenge!

I cropped the photo, and then to add another challenge, created a sketch as if seen from the street, looking up, similar to the picture Jelbert used for her painting.

 #19: Windows on the World

What I like about the painting:
  • I liked the way the masking worked.
  • I was pleased with the transition I made between the view in my photo to the perspective I used in the painting. 
  • It would have been easier to use the earth-tone colors Jelbert used, as she included mixing instructions. However, I decided to try to maintain the original colors of the photo. I was really pleased with the colors of my blocks.
What I might do differently:
  • I liked the lamp in the photo. I regret that I didn't incorporate it in the picture.
  • I'd make the flowers stand out by using larger flower pots
  • The painting seems static. I'd like to find a way to pull the viewer into the picture.
What I learned:
I used several new techniques in this painting. The first was using masking fluid to block areas I didn't want to cover with paint. I also used paint straight from the tube and applied it to the canvas with a palette knife to create texture, an impasto technique. The texture is more apparent in this view:

Many of the techniques Jelbert demonstrates in this painting are similar to painting with water colors. I have been leery of this medium. It was interesting to experiment with painting some details first, and then painting around them, blending paint on a wet canvas, and using a wash several areas.


  1. I thought your painting was awesome! I liked how you painted it from a different angle than the photograph's. My Uncle Kelsey, who was a well known Nova Scotian artist, always painted with a palette knife. Some of my best childhood memories are sitting in his paint shop on rainy or foggy afternoons watching him paint. You're getting better and better!

    1. Thanks for the comment and the positive feedback. I really appreciate it.
      I can just see you watching your uncle in amazement! I love watching artists create their magic with whatever materials they have on hand. Do you have any of his art?