Friday, February 14, 2014

Here kitty, kitty

I was at the art supply store a couple of months ago, and I saw these little canvases for under a dollar each -- they are 4 x 4 inches, and I bought six of them.  I decided I wanted to paint a little series of portraits of Persephone for the kitchen - because she's black and white and she matches the tile!

When I lived in Indianapolis, I had a few favorite works at the IMA (the Indianapolis Museum of Art), and some of those were a couple of small portraits done by Cornielle de Lyon, a Dutch portrait  painter who worked in the 1500's.  This reproduction from the IMA's website is a bit dark:

But what I love about these -- apart from the size, they're fairly small -- is the lovely green background and finely painted details.  So that's my inspiration.  I captured the face of Miss Persephone in different views, and decided to do four of them.  Another thing I loved about the Cornielle deLyon portraits is the varnish, it makes the colors glow, so I put several coats of spar varnish on these, which will also help protect them since they're close to the stove.

The green is much more vivid than the walls, but goes wellwith them.  And I decided to make simple lath frames, nailed to the wooden stretchers.  That way they go well with the hanging wooden spoons.

I came home from class one night and just worked on them until I finished around midnight.  Varnished them and the next morning made frames.  They are really great, and I think they're the perfect addition.  However, Mercury is a little sulky, so it looks like I've got a portrait of him to paint in my future.

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