Sunday, January 8, 2017

The painting that went nowhere

The new year brings new hopes and resolutions. I remembered I have this blog and start to really think how this blog can sustain itself with my snail-like speed of posting three or four times a year.

I mean, do people still read blogs? Seems like everybody is on Facebook or Instagram now. But Facebook is not conducive to longer posts. So here's a long post about a painting of mine.

 

The title for the painting is "She Will Rule." 18 x 24. Yes, you guessed it. I did it last year to support Hillary. 

The idea came to me when I was taking a nap. Not really asleep, just lying there. I saw a vision of the painting rose in my mind and I had to bring it to life. 

Then I was like a possessed woman. I had to have everything ready. I searched for all the props. Found the crown and the scepter on eBay, and they came from China. I ordered two scepters, one silver, one gold. I liked the gold one better. Plus, I stepped on the silver one when it was on the floor in my messy studio (not a very organized person) and broke it. 

 

I found the chair (the "throne") in a second hand furniture store. It took me a long while but I finally saw this one. It was expensive, but when I'm possessed I don't care how much I spend.

I designed and made the costume myself. It's really all pinned and tied together by ribbons, although I did hand-sew the skirt.

 

I had to buy the fabric twice because the first time I miscalculated and it was too short.

I asked my friend Joanne to model for me. She is such a sweet girl and wouldn't let me pay her. I treated her to Chinese food. She worked and studied in China for three or four years. 

But she didn't want to be a queen. I wanted her to give me an almost mean look with authority, she just giggled. But she did a good job and I got some nice photos. 

I did two quick sketches from life, and then started on the big painting with the photo references. At the time I was still trying to get back into figure painting. I can't say I'm very satisfied with the result. 

In the end, I can only say this painting did not turn out the way I wanted it to, just like this election. 

(Now my paintings like this one seem to require much longer time to finish, from the idea to completion. But if it has to be this way, then so be it.  And a figure painting is a collaboration between the artist and the model.)

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