Flower Pots at Heathcote

Flower Pots at Heathcote
9x12 acrylic on canvas

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Starting an Egg Tempera Painting

Hi everyone,

This past week was a busy one and I really did not get to paint as much as I would have liked.

I have heard other artists complain about life's necessary chores, such as tax prep, house cleaning, getting the car serviced, etc, etc. getting in the way of painting. Then when you have to be off a few days, getting back into your groove is a little hard, too.

I have started another egg tempera painting. This one is of my grandmother who passed away in the 80's and I am doing it from memory and a very small, bad front view photo of her. She was a quilter, so I have her sitting at a quilt on a frame threading a needle. This photo just shows a barely begun painting! Egg tempera requires a lot of layering and I have only begun, so there is much to do.

I use a granite ware tray to put my paint on, as you can see on the left of the painting. I paint right handed, but most always am more comfortable with my paint on the left. I do other things left handed, such as sweep and play miniature golf. Oh, well, that is neither here nor there!!!

Hopefully I will be back in the swing of things now and in a few days will show you how I am doing on this painting. I know it will take a while to get it done. Keep watching!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Finished Egg Tempera Painting

"Girl with Harp"

6 x 6 egg tempera on panel $125.

I got the painting finished and as you can see, I made some changes.

I wanted to repeat the verticals of the harp, so at first I put in some palm fronds. That didn't work well as they overpowered the focal point, which is the girl and harp. I took them out, which is fairly easy with egg tempera. Before it hardens, it is possible to lift or rub out areas and I did that to some extent, then did some more sponging for texture.
I did some shadows on the left that looked vertical and added interest. I also did some horizontal shadows on the right of the girl which draws your eye toward the girl. Her head is "framed" by the lighter and brighter greenish yellow color. I love the shadow under her hand that gives the illusion of movement.

It is a pretty successful painting in terms of composition, I think. The background is subtle, yet textured. Like many musicians, she is so comfortable playing her instrument that she looks away, but her eyes tell you that she is into her music more than where she is looking. There is often a hypnotic look in a musicians eyes---I notice it so often, as if they are in another world. Click on this to see the details.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Starting a new Egg Tempera painting

Hi folks, I just started an egg tempera painting yesterday. It is of a girl playing a lap harp. Egg tempera is done on a very smoothly primed hard board. It consists of powdered pigment mixed with egg yolk and is applied in thin layers, building up transparent layers. I use soft sable brushes and man made sponges. I cut the sponges into small pieces and dab on color, let dry and add color. Egg tempera dries fast, so you can layer again as soon as a layer is dry. If you try to layer over a wet area, you will pick up the pigment and leave a spot without paint! So it is a bit tricky, but so much fun and such an interesting challenge. This is a small painting, but I plan to do some larger ones. Hope to finish this one tomorrow and if so I will post the finished painting, so keep looking. Click on it for a closer view and maybe you can see where I have been using the sponge.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Painting thoughts and plans

Hi everyone, I have been taking some days to contemplate exactly what I hope to achieve in the coming year. As I told you on my blog anniversary, I feel posting a painting daily makes me rush sometimes to complete something. I am more interested in quality than quantity. So I won't be posting daily, but just whenever a painting is done to my satisfaction. Then I have been thinking about specializing in one medium, so I have looked carefully at all my body of work for the year and I feel the egg tempera ones really are my best and most expressive works. I love the luminosity of egg tempera, I love the layering that one can do to achieve the luminous quality and I love the fact that one can get very nice details with egg tempera. After deciding that egg tempera will be my medium of choice and the one I will focus on, I then began to search myself for the answer as to what I want to achieve with that medium. What subject matter will I focus on? I am still pondering, examining my work, etc. So I have not been painting for a few days. Bear with me and hopefully I will soon have something new to show you and a clear and concise view on what I will be trying to do. More to come, Egretta

Monday, April 11, 2011

"Yellow Rose"

"Yellow Rose"

6x6 acrylic on hardboard $45

I love close up paintings of roses! Somehow they can look modern , Victorian, or just about any period. Time consuming to paint, at least for me, I feel roses are fairly hard to paint, especially if you are looking at one closely and seeing all the colors within it! So a yellow rose is not JUST yellow, but like anything else, there are many colors within it. Hope this reminds you of Spring and Easter on the way!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

"Pink Geranium"

"Pink Geranium"

6 x 6 acrylic on hardboard $45

I am in a flower kind of mood! Flowers are everywhere here in Florida and I am seeing so many colors.....Spring is in full steam. I was at the garden center snapping photos recently and just loved the pretty pink geraniums. I love their ruffely leaves and cluster of buds, too. Click on this to get a better view.

Thursday, April 7, 2011



6 x 6 acrylic on hardboard $45

I was quietly painting a bunch of pink geraniums today and got to thinking about the news of another earthquake in Japan, so I thought about the Tsunami and how much I hope there is no more of that. I discarded the geraniums for the day, and began just painting my feelings on a fresh board and here is the result! I think it shows the emotions very well. It has some movement, too... you can feel the black water coming on shore. As a work of art, I like it, too. The colors...the push and pull of shapes, the movement. I think it works!

What do some of you abstract art fans think? Let me hear your comments!