Stepping into the canvas

A few days ago I saw the fantastic animated movie about Van Gogh, Loving Vincent. There's probably no paintings better suited for this effect than his as they already express so much movement but seeing them in actual motion felt like stepping right into the canvas. All that glorious yellow inspired me to get out my gouache and paint a fresh bouquet of sunflowers.

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You might notice my sunflowers are moving ever so slightly. But I used a quick frame animation as a substitute since I don't have the crazy patience it must have taken to make several versions of one painting!

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Another interesting aspect of the movie is to view the paintings in context of the artist's life. Did you know that his most famous series, the Sunflowers, was painted with a purpose as mundane as decorating Gauguin's room in the yellow house of Arles. And why not... cause sunflowers look good on yellow walls!

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Moving on to another room with my latest exploration on canvas –an abstract painting which I had started in November and picked up again to finish last month. 

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I wasn't quite sure about sharing this one since it's so different than my usual work but it was a fun experience to paint primarily by instinct, and one I might try again. It started with the general idea of a labyrinth, which is what inspired the weaving pattern of brush strokes, but mainly I let the canvas guide the work.

Notice how the paint reflects the light differently depending on the angle, and how sort of like with clouds things emerges from the abstract pattern. What pops out at me in the canvas are two figures embracing one another. Maybe they're even dancing...

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And speaking of people emerging from patterns, here's a pattern made of people just added to my shop

I'll have more people to show next month, with a new class from Lilla Rogers for drawing faces.