The Wetcanvas Acrylics forum had their usual monthly painting task, the Different Strokes Challenge. This month it was a still life which we had to set up ourselves and for which we had a choice of options.
Still Life Arrangement
We were to choose 4 objects for our painting that matched one of the following sets:
a) blue, transparent, metal, alive
b) dead, hairy, yellow/orange/red, shiny
c) sharp, round, purple/violet/indigo/lilac, light (not heavy)
d) damaged, fluffy, cubic, stone/wood
e) old/used, with liquid, elongated/long, reflective
f) wet, rough, smelly, made of cloth
g) fruity, naughty, noisy, backwards
h) sticky, technological, hot, something with paper
Quite a choice we had, I ruled out those things that might have required an element of setting up or were just awkward to find (noisy, sticky, smelly, hot) and there was no way I was going to be doing something alive or dead!
In the end I went for c) Sharp, round, purple and lightweight.
Sharp: my craft knife, I’ve had it for years and have never changed the blade so it’s more ‘sharpish’ than ‘sharp’.
Round: a pot of Windsor & Newton modelling paste.
Purple: an annoying WH Smith coloured pencil, it breaks as soon as it sees a sharpener which is why it is so short and why I had just sharpened it with the knife. Yes, those are purple pencil marks on the blade.
Light: a conifer cone.
The arrangement of objects was as you see in the featured image on the top of this page, on a rather rumpled white bedsheet. It was the best I could get with the chosen objects but I’m not completely happy with the balance. I think it could do with a couple of marbles or something to the lower right.
We had until today, the 21st to complete the painting. As usual you think you’ve got ages and then suddenly there’s only 1 day left and you’re nowhere near finished.
Still Life Painting
I have a pad of Strathmore oil painting paper which I’ve been wanting to try with acrylics, it’s okay but I still prefer cold press watercolour paper.
The painting went smoothly, I expected to have the most problems with the cone. With an object like that it’s best not to stress about the overall shape and just put in the colours (light or dark) wherever you see them. I’m very happy with how it reads.
I quite like the rough and ready feel of this painting. I won’t call it the final painting as I want to tighten and neaten up a few things, the writing on the pot for instance. I also want to put in those few marbles I mentioned earlier.