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  • Writer's pictureLinda H. Post

Stripes and Dots and Blue Skies Forever

In my last post, I wrote about the architecture of a painting - and specifically the very complicated Victorian gazebo that anchors the right-hand side. Of course, "architecture" can mean many things, and doesn't have to be literal. It can refer to compositional structure and balance, or to the organization of shapes and patterns.

So where am I now?

I am immersed in the midpoint of this painting. After working on the figures, especially the skin, it was clear that the sky color was ready to change. You can't bounce flesh tones against the wrong color background. It's now a lighter, slightly hazy blue infused with cobalt and manganese blue, turquoise, transparent white and a little pthalo green.

This is where I was last month. I haven't touched the birds, but they look much more complete against the new sky. I put a glaze on the back left cabana to make it recede. All of the figures have some degree of underpainting now.

All along, the young girl wearing the raven mask cried out for a different costume. First she was outfitted in loose white pants. Too pedestrian. Then I tried a long, ruffled skirt in periwinkle blue. Not enough contrast and shape, and didn't quite suit the character.

This afternoon I sketched in this short dotted skirt and tights in deep blue and white. What a difference!

Patterns have always intrigued me. This project sets stripes against dots against repetitive curlicues and feathers.

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