Sunday, January 27, 2013

off the drawing board


Eustace's Gift was finally finished by late yesterday - at least this version was. As usual right after I finish something I look and see a few things I wish I'd done differently while other aspects are pretty close to just right. There's a story behind this painting but it's one I'm not ready to tell right now. If you'd like to see the progression I've posted some transition pictures below.


This was the very first sketch of the scene as I imagined it on a drawing pad last summer.


A few weeks ago I revised the original, added the other main character, and inked outlines and areas that would be in shadow. The next picture in the group I posted last week so won't do so now.


The first color washes continued to define the background while still allowing for either full or partial color of the toys and decorations.


Detailing added in the background and initial character colors done. Obviously, there's still lots of room to intensify the colors and shadows so that's what I did over the course of the next few days. I didn't do any more in between scans because the changes after this one are all pretty obvious even as the difference is notable.

Anyway, it's done and now I'm going to start working on another (and very different) story while this one and the others in the eventual series go back to the portfolio.

I hope it's not too cold and nasty wherever you are. Eustace wishes he could bring everyone the perfect gift.

28 comments:

  1. Oh, gorgeous, Susan! I love the colours, especially the quilt. I eagerly await the story whenever you will share it. Happy days with your next piece.

    The artist in me is curious - what size is this painting?

    Hope it's warmer there after that recent cold front. It's warmed up here after some frosty, foggy weeks. Rain has returned and signs of spring are emerging with white tips of snowdrops peeking above dark soil.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm happy you like it so much. I had a good time painting the quilt as you surely noticed. Unfortunately, the scanner has made the background yellow in the wall look much more intense than it is in reality but my photograph wasn't nearly clear enough to make it worth posting instead.

      The painting is about 9x11 inches so shrinking it down to blog screen size also made the colours more exaggerated.

      The very cold weather here finally seems to be lifting. Tomorrow it's supposed to be all the way up to 18C. I'm sending good wishes your way for even more spring flowers.

      Delete
  2. Oh, I very much love how it turned out! It's a charmer. One of my favorite details? The little octopus that dangles above the little boy's bed. :-)

    I'm afraid I have been very lax and non-participating in the blog world (and in the internet world,overall). Your blog, though, is always an exception.

    Much love, dear Susan!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm delighted to see you've been by to visit again, Gina. Most every day I pop over to see if you've posted something new but since I know you're well and enjoying a new skill I haven't worried.

      I'm happy you like the new picture. The little octopus (baby Cthulu) was an element of the painting I knew from the start had to be there. Is that little boy sleeping or just pretending?

      Much love to you too.

      Delete
  3. Well, I'd say you've brought all of us the perfect gift, Susan - another of your wonderful, story-riddled paintings! I hope you'll put these together in a book and publish them. I love good stories, especially those illustrated so beautifully as you have done here. What a talent!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nice to see you again, Martha. Thanks so much for the wonderful compliment. I don't know about publishing but it's good to know you like what I do. I'm smiling.

      Delete
  4. Another wonderful painting, Susan. A room with a view, with interesting characters, and lovely colours. What more could a picture ask?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you like it all so much, Rob. I enjoy making pictures that tell their own stories. Thanks always for taking some time from hibernation to visit.

      Delete
  5. The process was enlightening - I love the pic.
    the Ol'Buzzard

    ReplyDelete
  6. I enjoyed watching the progression of the artwork. His room looks a bit like my son's when he was little....minus a green dragging flying in with a gift, of course. ;-)

    It's obvious you enjoy your work, it's beautiful and looks to be from the heart.

    --Nunly

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Documenting them is helpful for me now that I can do so. My son had a room that looked very much like this one too. The dragon there was a Chinese kite :-)

      I do enjoy my work, which is just as well since I'm compelled to draw and paint. I'm happy to know you like them.

      Delete
  7. I wish my room was this cool. Nine thumbs up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A cool room makes a great hideout from the slab.

      Delete
  8. Very nice.And a great gift.The places one can go with a toy space ship are limited only y the imagination

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Jams. I pictured it peopled by frightened former bankers.

      Delete
  9. It is interesting to see the progression as you worked on this piece. I love the whimsy in your art. I look forward to the story behind this work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm never going to post the progression of every painting but I'm glad you like seeing the way this one went. I like your term whimsy as cute is anathema to me :-)

      Delete
  10. Oh wow! You've done it again! This room is the happy place we all want to go to when the world overwhelms. I want to tuck this boy in, kis his forehead (does he look a bit fevered?) stroke the hair of his devoted (?) sister and assure her that he'll recover.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's so sweet of you. Sometimes it does overwhelm and so you've understood a bit of this story. :-)

      Delete
    2. Though your artistic style is very different from his, the way your pictures tell a story makes me think of Norman Rockwell (whom I greatly admire)... And there's another quality your art shares with his... The only descriptor I can think of is 'honesty' - a sense that things are exactly what they appear to be. .

      ....warming here. I hope your cold spell has passed.

      Delete
    3. Such nice compliments make me feel most humble. Rockwell's popularity was very well deserved chiefly because people recognized the essential honesty of his vision. I'm not nearly so good.

      We had a brief warm spell that lots of rain and wind made enjoying it difficult. Now it's cold again but more normally so.

      Delete
  11. Have I ever told you that I want to live in those worlds you draw? Because I do. I really, really do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too. Maybe that's why I draw them.

      Delete
  12. I'm going to wholeheartedly agree with Lisa. Your illustrations look like a place that is otherwhere and otherwhen and gentler (usually) than the here and now. And the colors are delicious.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you like it, Steve. I only wish I could paint more but my best work happens slowly.

      Delete