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DMP 8 - wip

edited December 2017 in Post Your Paintings

This is the painting I have been wanting to do forever! A very close friend took this picture of her daughters while they were in Japan and I just Love it! She has kindly given me permission to use the photo yay! 
So it will be a 16x20 I did have to crop the image to have it printed in that size - hence my drawing..... I also need to spray it with fixative before I start because I want zero interference especially the hand..... Also I really want to nail this one.... if it turns out good enough I would like to enter it in the local art competition come April...(and that is really stepping out of my comfort zone to do that) 
So as I go I know I will need help thank you to all forum members in advance!
ps.  My photo of the drawing looks terrible but I can actually see it in person and I am also a little terrified to paint it lol


  • That is strikingly beautiful and its going to make a wonderful painting.  Lucky you, I think this is gold.
  • @MoeyMichele when I asked her she said she was be so flattered for me paint it, I was like no don’t be, I don’t even know if I can do this lol. But I agree just beautiful and very greatful for the photo reference.
  • edited December 2017
    That is a stunning photograph!!!  I hope you don't draw lines all over it. The person who took this photo was either very lucky at a brilliant artist. I can't wait to see what you do with this. :)
  • edited December 2017
    @tassieguy she is not a photographer at all... just snapped a brilliant picture capturing a beautiful moment in time of her daughters relaxing and talking.... I don’t even think she knows (although we have tried to tell her many times) just how incredible this photo is. 
  • edited December 2017
    This is stunning scene in this photo. A very beautiful painting certainly to come out of it. May I ask, only if you wish, would you consider submitting this photo in a recent thread posted by Kingston named "Is this a good photo for painting?" before proceeding any further on this for now? Such a beautiful photo!
  • edited December 2017

    @forgiveness well here is the problem Because I wanted this in a 16x20 I had to crop it and order a print.... this photo is crummy and my print is under plastic but this is the image I will painting in my actual painting.... mostly just the floor missing and a purse. But something had to be sacrificed to get it printed and it print well.... I still think it will be nice.... not as stunning as the original of course but still pretty.
    I don’t have access to lots of places to take and do a better job, and already ordered my print when people answered the question about online places.... the one I ordered from wouldn’t let me get it all in frame
  • Ohhhh @jswartzart  is there any way you can get a different size canvas?  I feel like you reallllly shouldn't cut this photo down :0 :0  not that I know anything but the version you're painting looks considerably different to me after cropping....Im sure it will still be great
  • edited December 2017
    My only other option would be to cut my own board.... which I just got all the items I needed to seal them and make that work.... so thoughts? I could do the whole scene that way
    if I do that what size should it be?
  • I don't know what size but I would definitely cut the board! :)  To me it looks like it should be a decent size painting since theres a lot to put in it :)
  • Cut your own board, @jswartzart, rather than try to shoehorn a beautiful picture into some standard format. 
  • edited December 2017
                         I would definitely prepare a board for the original photo. To determine "size" and "composition", try submitting to Kingston, "Is this a good photo for painting?". You may even get better final results painting on board. Maybe 18" x 24" on the vertical?
  • Okay @MoeyMichele @tassieguy @Forgiveness

    I will submit photo to @kingston for some help with this and start over.... once size is determined I will have my husband cut my birch for me

    (one more question.... what do you think looks best cradled or framed.... since this will be my first board Not sure what would look better, thoughts) thx again!
  • I think it would look great cradled but others may disagree :)
  • Gonna disagree slightly with @Forgiveness and say make it the same dimensions as the photo, scaled up.  I don't think any of it should be cropped.  I agree to pass it by @Kingston and see what he thinks...ultimately it's your painting tho and you are going to see and be drawn to things that suit you :)  good luck, it's going to be amazing
  • @MoeyMichele I agree if I’m going to change I think I just want all of it in the painting.... knowing how to size is my problem and I traced and freehanded my drawing so I am a little nervous about freehanding the whole thing.... I wanted this one super accurate because it’s people I know and care about.
  • edited December 2017
    @Forgiveness when I see it cropped like that to me the pole and lighting makes no sense without the door and the door says we are in a Japanese home sitting by the garden ? 
    I could be wrong but does that make sense?
  • edited December 2017
    Yes that makes sense, I also like the door area because this may help in stretching out and creating a nice flow through the painting with the darker areas, rather than having almost all the darks and weight only on the figure in the foreground on the left. This may help to better keep or create a better sense of balance throughout, only my opinion, and my photo crop only a guess and suggestion, really should not be cropped. Great work thinking and working out feelings on this already, good prep.! We'll find out much better from Kingston.
  • I have so much admiration for your courage for taking on this ambitious project @jswartzart. Just the flooring in the foreground would have me bamboozled (pun intended). I know this is going to be a great painting for you. I have some firsthand experience with this kind of house and the kimonos. Notice the black stones next to the walkway? They clean and polish them individually periodically. The patterns on the kimonos often have spiritual connotations or tell a story. It's going to be a great piece.
  • Thank you @BOB73 to be honest this paint does scare me a bit, really because I do not want to disappoint my friends with it. I am glad forgiveness stopped me before I went further, I really want to get this one right.
  • In love with this motive, can't wait to see where you take this! I always struggle to find interesting and captive motives, you have been really lucky with this one  =) Such an ambitious project, please keep us posted as you go along!
  • edited December 2017
    With Kingston’s help I was able to see with a few minor adjustments what can be done .... I am not going to cut things out of the photo.... I will slightly move girl #2 so that her sleeve doesn’t touch #1’s nose, and I will extend the left side a little more so #3 isn’t right on the edge

    the size of the painting may change, but I do agree a square shape is best... I have a projector coming tomorrow and that will help cut drawing time and keep it highly accurate (I don’t want to mess around with sketching this piece... it’s time consuming and prone to not getting the exact likeness.)

    I will also post pictures when I start prepping my birch so you can see that as well on this one. 

    I was to tired to start on all this last night....This will be a lengthy project.... so I have repurposed the above canvas for a peacock painting letting me  step away from this one when I need to reset my mind. 

    This is is the most planning I have ever put into a piece and thank you all for the support. I love this forum!!!!
  • Your planning will pay off, @jswartzart
  • I am so excited to see this painting come to life, I think you are making great decisions!  
  • edited December 2017
    Fantastic!, Glad you passed it by KIngston, so much more confidence already! We support going slow, and careful planning. Looking forward! Preparing your board may take a little time, next time I will include use of Rustoleum for speedy process to prepare my next boards with. All of this let's me know that I'm also making better decisions as I need to, what a change!

  • Okay so what your looking at here is the projector I got.. easy set up plug in to iPhone pictures on the wall, I taped tracing paper to the wall and drew my outline.... 24x24 (sorry not picture of it but will show it again later) 
    We cut a 4x8 sheet of birch (around $13 for the 8 24x24 each around 1/8 in thick) 
    I sanded the edges. Next 50/50 odorless thinner/galkyd applied to the rough side with chip brush. Strokes w/grain, against and each diagonal... I will let that dry then same to the front smooth side.
    (I will post next steps later)
  • Don't you need to seal the wood (size) before applyng thinner/galkyd?
  • Once I have done this to both sides... I am going to prime the back and sides with Kilz (oil primer) and use gamblin oil painting ground on the front 
  • Oh and I have decided not to cradle it , my husband will make frames for me.
  • I thought it was going to be 20x24?
  • edited December 2017
    @Julianna no I decided to change that  ;)
    I wanted to add a little to the left side to keep the girl off edge so I flipped the purse to add what was missing and will slightly extend that side .... I will post a picture when I get the drawing on the board.... probably make more sense then
  • edited December 2017
    Following you quite well as I follow quite similar for my own panels. I have to have patience to let the Gamblin oil gesso dry between coats as it takes a while, depending on dry/humid conditions, most often a whole week for each coat, that's just me.

  • if you wipe off the excess after about 10 minutes, you should not have to let dry for so long. I'm referring to the 50/50 oms/galkyd. 1/8" thick panels I do both sides and edges at same time--don't let one side dry before doing the back side. @Forgiveness and @jswartzart
  • @BOB73 it dried quickly I flipped it and the other side and all four sides are finished and dried. Tomorrow I will work in priming it.
  • Oh WOW !!! 
    Magical photo !!!! 

  • I have finished the back and sides, waiting for it to dry so I can start preparing the front
  • Kilz?!

    Should you not be using protection?? ;)
  • edited December 2017

    First coat of oil ground finished, I will apply second coat then it will be ready to start!
    (I applied it thinly with a cake icer then used the roller ;)

    fyi after appling second coat I realized you can make this ground as smooth as glass or roll it or do a texture type treatment with fabrics.

    and to store this ground must cut freezer grade plastic and put into jar touching the stuff then hammer lid back on.... otherwise it’s gonna dry out and be useless! I used ziplock bag.
  • This is a great picture, I can't wait to see the painting!
  • edited December 2017
    I also keep the ground in the refrigerator when not using it. And this product is good once I got to know how to work with it as yourself, it will be interesting to see how you like painting on it. My painting of "Hibiscus Flower" is my first using this product, although not complete just yet and I think I like it.
  • @Forgiveness I was thinking about putting it in the fridge but worried about my kids grabbing it... I doubt they could ever get the lid off but don’t want them confused none the less.... I think if I see a mini fridge somewhere I may purchase it for my studio and supplies.
  • Kids is one reason I haven't painted for so long. I think that's how I lost most of my good watercolor brushes too; they'd take them to "play" make-up. Your kids seeing you use a cake icer to apply paints doesn't send the right message either Mom but sometimes I think we worry more than we should, but we have to anyway, don't we?
  • It's worth it to have a mini refrigerator just for that, just acquired one 7 months now, it's great. Best to keep away from children, take it from 1st hand experience with myself as a child.
  • I know this has been a trend lately on this site but I want to let you all know that Mayer (The Artists Handbook of Materials and Techniques) warns against using industrial products for fine art projects.  I will find you a quote if I can but he specifically states that they are not intended to be as  permanent as artist quality material.  Things may have changed somewhat in 30 years so I take that with a grain of salt.  Nevertheless, it bears consideration.  Since aluminum panels have become so popular, I thought I would show what one of the manufacturers is doing with it.

    New York Central Brings Premium Gesso Priming To AlumaComp Panels!

    Professionally Gessoed on our Famous AlumaComp (Aluminum) Panels- A High Quality Professional Panel for Oils & Acrylics

    Featuring a professional quality, proprietary acid-free and archival acrylic gesso, New York Central Gesso Panels are meticulously crafted by our in-house artisans when the order is placed. Primed by hand, white is available in double or quadruple priming, and tinted colors Rose Earth and Neutral Grey are offered double primed. Ideal for oils, alkyds, and acrylics, the panels can easily handle heavier media build up not managed by stretched canvas or other panels that warp or torque.

  • I only stick with quality art materials all the way because of such warnings as MikeDerby mentioned above. Fantastic new boards from New York Central as I have seen and amazed! But sometimes such as in this instance some of us have come across some quality wood panels for free or next to it, to prepare for oil painting. It has been tedious to take this on, wouldn't always want to do this though.
  • So I used the Kilz for the back side only.... Kilz is something that will prevent humid conditions from swelling my painting and mold etc. Since it is on the back only I don’t see any problems with this effecting my paint..... I used gamblin products to prep the front.

    dibond.... actual dibond is expensive jerrys sells alumicomp and it’s got really mixed reviews..... I can get this birch pretty cheap and use it cradled or UNcradled 

    Wood panels, canvas, linen, in my honest opinion comes down to artist preference. The Mona Lisa is on a thin panel of poplar wood, David Kassan uses dibond, mark carter uses claussens linen......

    As with all other artist materials I am sure some point in the future I will give aluminum a go but right now I do not have a problem using a panel and believe how I have prepared it is with as much foresight as I can into preventing any problems with it. 
  • That's all you can do, @jswartzart. If it turns out a masterpiece let the museum worry about conservation.  :)
  • dibond.... actual dibond is expensive jerrys sells alumicomp and it’s got really mixed reviews..... 
    I'm using a Dibond knockoff, $88 for a 8' x 4' panel including shipping, which is $2.75 per square foot.  Love it.
  • SummerSummer -
    edited December 2017
    I have a lot of traditional substrates to use up, but I'm committed to aluminum after that.  You could say that I learned the hard way.  I just don't want to make the conservators job any more difficult than it already is.  I feel privileged that I'm living in an era when this material is so readily available to me.   Just saying--from my own personal experience.   :)  
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