The layers on a canvas

Finished painting  'Elephant Love' Acrylic on canvas. For sale at my studio

Finished painting  'Elephant Love' Acrylic on canvas. For sale at my studio

This is how I started the elephant painting above. My intention was to create an elephant and that is what was shown to me. It all started with and under layer of colours.

On a stretched canvas gesso the canvas for a smooth finish and easier applying of paint. the paints I used were Matisse structure (a thick bodied paint) and flow paint which is more fluid, which brings out the colours underneath.

First layer of colours

First layer of colours

I mixed lots of colours and applied then on the canvas with a brush and my hands. I could see the elephant there in this layer. This always amazes me and excites me! I could see her eye and her back and trunk outlined in the colours. Can you see it?

Another layer planning out my design in white paint that 'appeared'!

Another layer planning out my design in white paint that 'appeared'!

So I painted the design on with a pointed brush and white paint. Now can you see the elephant coming through? I added some words of what the elephant symbol means to me, so that the painting has that energy for me.

 

Another layer

Another layer

I applied another layer I painted into the elephant's body. I didn't use traditional colours as I wanted it to be a semi abstract piece, and I love colour! 

Now this is where I should have stopped, but no (and it's my learning curve). I went further and I painted more in the background. Final and always the last thing to paint are the details. Making sure it has contrast. standing back and observing.

Has it got contrast? eg dark against light, shadows, and contrasting colours. Is it well balanced? Is there some rhythm?

You can see some of the under layers of colour which make it interesting

If you would like to learn how it paint like this book into a class or give me a call Kathryn 0412 198 045 

Finished result.

Finished result.