The painting is nearing completion now, and I have added much detail and flow to the composition.Below is the painting in its entirety, and once finished it will be rolled up, carefully packed and shipped away to be stretched onto a frame ready for hanging. I will post the final photos very soon…..
I have reworked the face of the lower mermaid, and am adding more and more detail and design to the composition, just on a free-form basis with paintbrush and paint – I love this intuitive style of painting and working the form and colour in.
Here is the entire painting, before I reworked the faces. Please click on each photos to appreciate them in their fullness of size – More photos to come soon!
Here are two shots of the progress of my mermaid commission so far – I have blocked in the basic colour and forms and composition, and started on the face details of both mermaids. I always like to do this initially to get a feel of the facial expressions and features that set the tone and nuance of the overall image. I have used acrylic drying retarder when painting in this technique, which gives flow to the polymer paints similar to that of watercolors.
Here are a few shots of my large acrylic Mermaids in Atlantis painting as it progresses from firstly a wash in greens and pthalo blues, with acrylic drying retarder mixed in with water to give a watercolour effect:
Then, in the second shot I have marked out all the figures and large details in white chalk, which is easy to wipe off with a damp cloth. I begin to block in the basic colours of the larger elements in the composition.
Recently, I had the honour of receiving a wonderful commission to paint a large format composition of a fantasy theme.
My enthusiastic American patron and his wife have commissioned me to paint a 6 foot x 6 foot (nearly 2 meter x 2 meter) painting on canvas of two whimsical mermaids swimming through the undersea ruins of ancient Atlantis. For those of you who are familiar with my work, I have only really painted small scale watercolours, though I have explored at times acrylic and oils. After some hesitation and much encouragement from my patrons, I took up the challenge to paint this beautiful theme on a large scale, and I am so glad I did!
Here are the beginnings of the painting (after a photo of the initial sketch), which is acrylic on polyester canvas sheet which provides optimal surface smoothnes, pinned to a makeshift board kindly constructed by my ever-supportive Dad. I am using acrylics as watercolours; relying on the wonderful Acrylic Drying Retarder by Australian paint makers Derivan for adhesion and flow upon the canvas. It is an enriching experience for which I am very grateful- now that I know I can paint as big as this with the same dreaminess and ethereal quality for which my watercolours are known, I will be exploring painting large canvases and posting them for sale on my Online Shop…
Here is a painting sketch of what the finished work will look like and I will post stages of development of the painting as it progresses!
This is the progress of “The Mermaid & the Sailor” painting- I got really carried away with the detail and flow, but enjoyed the meditation and depicting all the beautiful (and sinister) creatures of the deep.
Here it is as a beautiful print for sale in my online shop: “The Mermaid & the Sailor”
I realised after finishing this painting that whilst doing it I had been reading Possession by A.S Byatt-
an extraordinarily moving story encompassing love, passion and the mythology of the Mermaid along with Darwinianism, and Feminist and literary commentary. An amazing read…
The circus painting is also finished… phew…it was entirely fueled by cups of tea, red wine and Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds and it is my tribute to the Greatest Show on Earth which resides in all of our dreams and imaginings…
The original is a very detailed watercolour, acrylic, red wine,gouache and vintage lace & ribbon collage (you can see it’s progress in my previous posts). Below this is a detailed picture. It has been sold out as a Limited Edition print but you can buy a greeting card Here.
“The Mermaid and the Sailor”
( drowning lovers under a sea of desire )
….I don’t think this new painting needs much explanation – still a bit to do to it but I am not sure where it is leading me – it is entirely watercolor and I am just moving with the flow and emotion of it, and loving the greens and pinks – very relaxing and sensual…
Painting mermaids is a fascination of mine, and has been since I was a child. I love collecting any unusual pieces depicting them, from all around the world. Sensual, magical water beings, they offer so much to the imagination of the artist wishing to capture their elusive beauty. Mermaids are for me the ultimate union of humans and nature- the beautiful maiden with a fish’s tail appears in many cultures throughout time.
To see more of my mermaid artwork, please go to my online shop.
This is my new mermaid painting “Aqualina” – I have been experimenting with wax and gouache and this is what came of it !
It is a very illustrative and stylised painting, very reminiscent of Art Nouveau Era graphic art- especially that of Alphonse Mucha.
The wax was interesting to use; I just laid it down spontaneously in different areas (picture 1) to capture a watery feel, then started to paint over some more with watered down gouache. I love the opacity of gouache paint – it is really good for more graphic kind of work.
I thought it would be lovely to have a mermaid in an underwater realm surrounded by sea creatures – seals, jellyfish and even 2 Blue ringed octopus (on the finished painting).
She is listening to the sound of the waves above in a shell while the little fish whisper in her hair….
You can view the finished painting and my other mermaid designs/jewellery on my website: