Posts Tagged: painting pets

Painting with Clare – THE REVEAL

May I have a drum roll, please?! The moment you’ve all been waiting for is here! You have been waiting for it, haven’t you? Without further ado, I give you Rupert Smiling, my debut artistic effort, effort being the operative word….

Rupert Smiling

Rupert Smiling

Truthfully, this photo doesn’t do the painting justice. It looks much better in person, especially his eyebrows and whiskers. You can even stand close to it and you don’t have to squint. I’m not even saying that tongue in cheek. It’s the truth. Those of you who know me in real life can attest to the fact that I’m not a pat myself on the back kinda girl. So, when I say that I haven’t been this proud of almost anything since I popped a kid out 20 years ago, well, that’s saying something!

Rupert Smiling, as I’ve chosen to call my masterpiece just in case the MFA wants to hang it in their next installation, is a project very much in the spirit of Begin in the Middle. I got a wild hair up my butt and started painting – just jumped right in! That’s what this is all about, jumping into something new, figuring it out as I go along, AND TOTALLY KICKING ASS AT IT!!! Ok. “Kicking ass” might be a little dramatic and maybe an overstatement, but the painting doesn’t suck.

Seriously, though, the final product is much better than I ever hoped it would be. More importantly, I enjoyed doing it. Hiring an artist or going to one of those art places that lets you get all boozed up while you paint would have been cheaper, no doubt. However, now I have enough supplies to paint many, many, many more portraits of Rupert. Unfortunately, my palette of mostly brown limits my choice of subjects, so Rupert it is!

Do you want to paint a portrait of your pet or anything else? Here’s what I learned:

  1. If you’ve never painted before, don’t overestimate your ability to mix colors. Spend a little extra and buy the colors you need. There will be much less cussing and frustration that way.
  2. Acrylics are hard to work with because they dry really quickly, but they’re easy to clean up.
  3. Buy decent brushes. Don’t blow the bank, but don’t buy the super cheapies, either. Otherwise, you’ll be picking brush hairs out of your painting with your good tweezers and a magnifying glass.
  4. Take pictures as your painting progresses. I didn’t realize how much better I was getting at shading until I looked at the gallery below. I’m not saying I’m GOOD at it or anything, only that I did get better as I went along. I wouldn’t have seen that improvement without the pictures.
  5. Don’t over-think what you’re doing. Have fun! That’s the whole point. Be proud of the finished product no matter how it turns out! It’s your work. OWN IT!

If you DO end up painting a masterpiece of your own, email me a photo (clare@begininthemiddle.com). I’ll put it up on the website for your fellow Beginners to admire! Finally, here are the photos I took of the painting as it progressed. Enjoy!

Rupert - the winning photo

Rupert – the winning photo

 

Hard to see, but this is the part where I got the image on the tracing paper.

Hard to see, but this is the part where I got the image on the tracing paper.

Transferring image to canvas

Transferring image to canvas

 

Supplies = The Cost of a Commissioned Portrait

Supplies = The Cost of a Commissioned Portrait

 

Starting with the darks. I saw this on YouTube.

Starting with the darks. I saw this on YouTube.

 

Thought I'd ruined it here. Layering colors like I knew what I was doing...

Thought I’d ruined it here. Layering colors like I knew what I was doing…

 

Shading and overconfidence...

Shading and overconfidence…

 

 

Rupert Smiling

Rupert Smiling

 

Weekend Recap and Tailgate Art

To ease into Monday, I thought I’d start out with a recap on a pretty uneventful weekend. Ed went to a family reunion on Saturday leaving me ALONE and free to clean the house to my freakishly high standards for the first time in months. Sounds like loads of fun, I know, but there’s almost nothing I love better than a clean house! Sad, but true. I have become my mother. I love the earth and the environment and all that stuff, but I also love the smell of a house that’s just been scoured with Comet, Windex (the original Windex, none of that new stuff), good, old-fashioned Vinegar, and Swiffer floor cleaner. (Love my Wet Jet!)  No “green” products at my house. Sorry. Those smells, to me, equal a clean house!

Sneak Peek - Be kind. It's not finished... and may never be!

Sneak Peek – Be kind. It’s not finished… and may never be!

After cleaning, I made ANOTHER trip to Michael’s for more painting supplies. It turns out mixing colors is more difficult than I anticipated. I ended up buying more paint, better brushes, and a Stay-Wet paint palette. I bought a little better quality than the supplies I started with, but I didn’t go overboard by buying the most expensive stuff available. However, it’s official. Commissioning Pablo Picasso, providing, of course he wasn’t dead, would have been less expensive than painting Rupert’s portrait myself. Live and learn. The painting is coming along, but as I mentioned on FB, painting may not be the best hobby for me. I get a little obsessive about certain things and, apparently, painting is one of them. Who knew!? I could jack around with this portrait til the cows come home… and then I’d probably decide to add some cows to the painting… Anyway, here’s a peek at where I am now. I’m going to mess around with the shading and the ears a little more, even though Ed says I should leave it like this. I’ve got so much money invested in paint and supplies, I feel obligated to keep painting. People are going to think a 5 year old lives in our house when they see all the rudimentary animal art hung proudly on our walls.

Tailgate Art

Tailgate Art

Sunday is usually a cooking day at Casa Golemon. On our way to Kroger for supplies, we saw this truck. Ed and I have long been fans of tailgate art. Luckily, we get to see lots of it in our neighborhood. I plan to do a longer post on the glory and wonder of tailgate art in the future, but I just couldn’t resist sharing this with you. As for the cooking… Ed made another batch of hot dog sauce and, with MUCH LESS cinnamon this time, it turned out really well! I baked sourdough bread. The recipe, handed down from my grandmother, says it turns out 3 loaves. I have never had much luck dividing my dough evenly enough for 3 even sized loaves and yesterday was no exception. Still, bread is bread no matter what it looks like.  There’s always next week to try again! There’s a longer post on sourdough starter and bread in the works. Stay tuned. It will be epic.

For the record, I do not get paid for mentioning specific products or businesses. If I like something, chances are I’ll write about it. I write about everything these days. All the opinions expressed in any post are my actual thoughts. Take them or leave them. I add links for your convenience, just in case you’re interested in checking whatever it is I’m discussing out for yourself. If the day ever does come when I’m lucky enough to sell out and plug products for actual money, you’ll know it!

Have a great week. Check back often and, as always, if you like what you’re reading, please share!