Thursday, October 15, 2009

Commission, part 2

So, as I mentioned in the previous post, I was commissioned to create a piece similar to the piece pictured above, but in a much larger size.

The original bird pieces were 20" x 16" and the painting in the center was 12" x 12" and they wanted the final piece to be a triptych, each 45" x 17".

I had some 45" x 17" birch panels created by a local woodworker, and then made my plan of attack.
The original bird piece on the left is also on a wood panel. I had brushed on some clear encaustic medium, and then collaged the birds in (cut out of black paper). I painted the red birds on top using oil paint.

The bird piece on the right is similar, but the red birds are drawn on the board with colored pencil, clear medium was added, and then I collaged in the birds cut out of black paper.

The piece in the center was created while I was in grad school, but luckily I still have it, so I could look at it. I had stretched raw canvas over a board and then wrote using oil pastel and I did a solvent transfer of the telephone pole directly to the canvas and covered it with clear encaustic medium. I think I then carved lines using a needle tool and filled them in with oil paint. Then I covered it with a layer of orange-ish medium. That may not be right, but that's my best guess. It was five years ago, after all!

I was a little hesitant to do a transfer of the telephone pole, since the other elements were more hard-edged. So I decided to paint it directly onto the panel using gouache.

Since I hardly ever throw anything away, I still had most of the original imagery that I had used in the original pieces. So I enlarged some copies and used carbon paper to transfer it to the panel. Then I painted it in with black gouache and did the lines using a Sharpie.

I did similar things for the other 2 panels with the birds. On one I painted the birds with black gouache and cut out red paper, and the other I painted with red gouache and cut out black paper. I ended up removing some of the cut out birds so each set of birds and trees didn't look exactly the same.
So in the photo above, on the left panel, the birds are painted in black gouache and the red is cut paper, and on the right panel, the red is gouache and the black is cut paper. So that's what it looked like before I added any wax.

I found this ginormous hake brush at Jerry's Artarama in Austin. It's helpful to scale up your brushes when you scale up your work. And although these pieces are tall, they're not really terribly much bigger than my other work, so it wasn't too hard to get a nice, even surface on these.

I brushed on a few layers of encaustic medium and fused with a heat gun. Then I added the cut paper and collaged it in using some more medium. Here's an image of the pieces with all the wax added.

I really like the way it looks here, but I knew that it wasn't exactly what the client had asked for. After conferring with my friend, we agreed that I should make the middle panel look more like the original (more orange-y), so I scored lines into the wax using a needle tool, and added some reddish-orange oil paint, rubbing it into the scored lines and also leaving a little bit of paint on the surface.

So here's the final piece:

I'm really happy with the way it turned out!

Update:
Here's a shot of the piece installed in the spa at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa!:

6 comments:

bridgette said...

Looks fantastic! Looks like you overcame the challenge of painting on a much larger scale perfectly. I really want to start painting larger with encaustics and it was helpful to read this. thanks!

Melanie said...

These are gorgeous! I literally stumbled upon your blog ... and am THRILLED I did so! Wonderful WONDERFUL work! I think the telephone pole is my favorite piece in the group .... I think! LOL!

edbot5000 said...

Wow! They look great! Congrats on finishing them and on getting the sweet commission job! :)

CMC said...

Beautiful, Deanna...and that is some ginormous hake brush for sure.

susan said...

this is one beautiful piece of art. interesting to read about the how of doing it, also.

doronjo said...

Thank you so much for your informations and beautiful works. I'm just a start out artist, and your posts really encourage me to try harder.