purple obsession…completed!

…as promised here are the final stages of the tulip painting, described in my previous post.

Below you can see how I added purple to the lower foreground to tie it in with the flowers themselves, knowing I would be painting over most of it, but allowing enough to show through to create depth and interest.

© Mari French 2011

© Mari French 2011

I then brightened the foreground up again loosely with pale green (actually lemon yellow and white), wiping it back in places to allow the lower layer colours to show through. I was after an impression of these wonderful tulips bursting through spring foliage in the May garden, in sunshine.

I next added dioxazine purple and quinacrodrine carmine to the flowers to bring out their colours. I’m grateful to Elaine Phipps, a fellow artist and friend, whose recent description of tulip petals as being like ‘plumage’, is such a brilliantly apt description of them.

© Mari French 2011

© Mari French 2011

Once thoroughly dry, I covered each bloom with pieces of easily removable self-adhesive brown tape so I could refresh the upper background with a layer of brighter paint – you can see this in the detail image below.  Tearing the tape into small pieces makes it easier to pull and push them into the natural shape of the flowers.

© Mari French 2011

© Mari French 2011

© Mari French 2011

© Mari French 2011

When I was happy with that area I removed the tape – a moment I love as the colours now sing out against the brighter background.

As you can see in the two lower detail photos (which I really wish were actually large final works- how happy would I then be!), I then worked into each bloom with watercolour pastel in shades of light purple and carmine, to bring a liveliness and light to the flowers, giving them more definition.

You can also see where I earlier splashed fine drops of dilute purple paint to enliven part of the work, and again to tie in the rich purple with the background.

© Mari French 2010

© Mari French 2010

The last two images show the finished piece and the work in position at the Norfolk Open Studios group show at South Acre Church near King’s Lynn, a lively and varied exhibition which I spent all day on friday, along with 11 other artists, hanging (more of which in my next post).

© Mari French 2011

© Mari French 2011

South Acre show, Norfolk Open Studios © Mari French 2011

South Acre show, Norfolk Open Studios © Mari French 2011

8 thoughts on “purple obsession…completed!

    • Thanks Elaine – the preview last friday at the Halesworth Gallery was really enjoyable – despite the long drive there and back. The other artists are friendly and have a really high standard of work in the show, I’d be happy to show again with several of them again. Quite a lot of people turned up and a few were pretty interested in my work – so it was very worthwhile for me. Yes good idea joining up with a group – its essential to get that support network I think. I’m in a group in west norfolk and while they’re mainly friendly and helpful most of them are fairly traditional representational artists – it would be good to find one nearby that produced more contemporary stuff, especially to have shows with. Hope it works out well for you

  1. Oh you must be so pleased with this Mari!
    The addition of the brighter colour absolutely transforms it – I loved it before but now it just sings. Do go for BIG and I think you’d interpret the insides of flowers so well – there’s so much going on – texture, colour and fantastic – almost architectural shapes. Ooohhh I’m excited – can you tell lol.

    I’ve been feeling bogged down (and bogged off) with my landscapes – but I’ve found a twist that has made me want to get going with them again. And then I’m going back to seascapes – oh yes.

    • oooh elaine! I do love your enthusiasm! this painting seems to have sparked off quite a bit of interest (hope someone buys it then). really glad you’ve got some new angle on your work to get you going again, its awful (and frustrating) when you go through those phases – I did myself this spring. I’ve promised myself that once I get these four (I must be mad) exhibitions out of the way by the end of june, I’m going to do more flower work. I’m also interested in print-making, havent done any before apart from linocuts (remember them, at salford? I still have them), but can’t do linocutting any more due to r.s.i. in right arm, so I’ve booked myself onto a Collagraph print-making weekend, which I’m really looking forward to. Been interested in collagraphs for a while now, and can imagine interpreting this local farmscape and saltmarshes through that medium. watch this space…

  2. I found the development posts very entertaining, I really enjoyed watching the finished painting unfold! I absolutely LOVE the results…..especially the sweet deep purple of the tulips against the very tangy background!

    • thanks sam! I have to admit though, I’m very fond of the individual details of the blooms. Maybe I’ll work towards BIG images of individual flowers once I get my next few shows over and done with!

  3. Mari,
    Congrats on completing the tulips, I love it. I’ve really enjoyed reading about how this painting has developed, from inspiration to technique. If you were still on Skye I’d be badgering you for a lesson but I’ll settle for the blog, keep it going!

    • Thanks Michelle, pleased you liked the post, and it’s great to hear from you.
      I’ve checked out your own blog by the way and have added it to my blogroll as I think it’s really interesting and entertaining!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s