Bok Tower finished

Bof_f_8390After a little delay, Bok tower is finished.  This was a brain cramping drawing for some reason.  It is considered neo-Gothic/art deco architecture and between the different stone for the facade and all of the carved details, my eyes wanted to cross repeatedly.  Still, doing a little bit at a time keeps the brain more sane.  I did like the combination of the the different types of foliage with the different kinds of stone.  I will look at it again when I have finished the second drawing, but I am letting it rest for now.

The inking almost done on Bok Tower

Bok Tower

Bok Tower

The hardest part is finished.  This has been a difficult one for many reasons. Firstly, the foliage is quite varied with the pines and hanging Spanish moss  intermixed with palm trees.  Then there are three different kinds of Florida stone used in this art deco, neo-gothic tower.  There is a flat faced coquina stone (which is done) inset between pink marble corners and set above a gray marble base.  There are so many details with the carved screens, friezes, and sundial that the whole thing is way more than you might think of at first glance.  Still, it is progressing well and all I have left are the marble blocks and the walkway.  If not for the Super Bowl and my annual turkey feast, it would probably be finished today.  LOL  Still, I have been glad to let it sit a bit more than usual because of the extra details involved.

Bok Tower drawing

Bok Tower

Bok Tower

The first commission is for a pen and ink of Bok Tower.  It is a tall, lovely structure that houses a carillon and is built with multi-colored stone columns.  I looked up the site to get a better idea of the structure and the surrounding landscaping and learned it’s an national historic landmark located in central Florida.  I had first guessed that it must be in the deep south when I saw the palm trees and lush landscaping in the background.  Bok Tower Gardens is 130 acres of contemplative gardens and bird sanctuary in central Florida.  It appears to be a popular site for outdoor weddings and receptions  In this view of the south base you can see a large sundial.  It must be a lovely place to visit, any time of the year.

Acrylic #3 – Wisteria



I laid down the base paint coat for the wisteria vine flowers acrylic yesterday.  The flowers are lovely variations of light purple surrounded by green leaves.  The detail work will make or break this painting, but I am happy with it so far.

I found something positive to do with that awful first effort. When I did acrylics all those years ago, I never learned I should put a varnish coat over the finished painting.  In doing some research about the acrylic process, I discovered that it is recommended to use several thin coats of a “varnish”  over the end product.  Well, I am using the barn painting to practice/experiment with matte and gloss finishes.  Then I can feel okay that it’s time for the circular file for that one.

Also, yesterday I received a commission for 2 8×10 pen and ink architecturals.  I will be putting this aside for the next couple of weeks to work on them.  I’ve done 2 commissions for her previously so it is nice to hear form her again.

I think it’s done

Red calf

Red calf

After two more sessions of fiddling around, I think I’m done.  I don’t know if you can see much difference, but I added depth to his coat and changed the background somewhat.  I am much happier with this painting overall than I was with the barn one.  I think I’ll let it sit for a few days, but unlike what often happens after I finish a piece, I actually have liked it better afterwards.

A floral experiment is up next.  I have a photo taken in Atlanta of some purple wisteria which will be fun to experiment with.  I do like working with this 8×10 size right now.  It’s not too big and not too little.  It’s small enough that the detail work is not paramount but not so big that it overwhelms me.

Well, this is better

More on the calf

More paint on the calf

Well, this is turning out better than my first effort with the acrylics.  I admit that first barn effort was discouraging.

I spent several hours yesterday adding color to the calf and I am much more pleased at this stage than I was with the first one.  I just started to add paint and didn’t think to deeply about it.  Sometimes, that is where I get myself into trouble.  LOL  I think I still have another session to go to refine his head and work on the background as I have some canvas still showing through.  He was standing next to the creek where the water has carved out a deep bed for itself, so that is really a dirt wall behind him.  I kind of like the color that I have there as it allows him to be the main focus, but we’ll see what happens.

This one actually might end up being good enough to list in my etsy store.

Preliminary color on the calf

cow_pc_8249I laid down the preliminary paint layer for the reddish brown calf a couple of days ago and am somewhat pleased.  I think he shows a little bit of personality even at this stage. The calves are usually very skittish in the pasture and all of the them looked at us quite intently as we took pictures.  I think you can see a little bit of his leery curiosity here.

I’m at that stage of being afraid of “ruining” the work done so far and have been dithering about how to proceed.  Of course, not having worked with acrylics for 25 years doesn’t help either.   The matte medium seems to be helping somewhat in laying down the paint.  I haven’t tried the newest brush, but I am sure it will come in handy.  I just need to take the plunge and do it.

I have also been working on the cast paper ornaments.  They are small, but the painting is slow going to get all five done.  I’ve been posting almost daily on my instagram account and using up a lot of my older photos.  I’d better get down to work and make a lot more.  It’s very cold outside today and continued into the whole week (wind chills below zero), so I should bury myself in the studio, next to my portable heater of course, and get some serious work done.

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