Childhood Flashback

Happy New Year friends! I hope you all welcomed the new year in style last night.

January 1st is a day when many of us set resolutions for the year ahead, and reflect back on the years past. I haven’t actually made any resolutions, but I did take a stroll down memory lane the other day.

Looking back into my childhood, there are 3 things that instantly jump out: (1) Arts and Crafts, (2) Full House, and (3) Super Mario World, in that order. In primary school, I pretty much lived in the Arts and Crafts corner. My favorite “toys” growing up were my coloring books and sets of colored pencils and markers. I never wanted to share these prized possessions. And I mean never!

That's me in the Arts and Crafts corner doing my thing in Grade 1
That’s me in the Arts and Crafts corner doing my thing in Grade 1

The only exception was with my fellow arts and crafts lover/next-door-neighbour/best friend, Evelina. We grew up together and pretty much spent all day every day doing some kind of arts and crafts. To this day, she is probably the only one who truly understands how much I enjoyed enjoy art.

My 5th Birthday Party. Those crowns that we're all wearing...we made those at the party lol
My 5th Birthday Party. Those crowns that we’re all wearing…we made those at the party at the arts and crafts table. Shocking.

I was always (secretly) jealous of her because I thought that she was much better at it than me so a few weeks ago when she told me that all she wants from me for Christmas is a painting, I was actually so humbled. In my eyes, it was like Picasso asking me to paint him something. I asked her for to list of her 5 favorite paintings of mine so that I knew more or less what she liked.

I first did a quick sketch on a 10×30″ canvas, and then used a palette knife to paint a background.

Can you guess what it's going to be?
Can you guess what it’s going to be?

Then I painted in the couple and the umbrella, added street lamps, and reflections on the ground as well as some shading onto the background. Low and behold, here is the finished product!

10x30" - Acrylic on Canvas
10×30″ – Acrylic on Canvas

And here’s a side view. As usual, I extended the painting along the edges so it doesn’t need a frame.

side

One of Evelina’s gifts to me literally made me laugh out loud. She got me a “glitter-by-number” arts and crafts set. Our childhood revolved around things like these, and she said that when she saw this at HomeSense, she immediately thought of me and had to get it. Not a word of a lie, I cracked it open as soon as I got home and probably enjoyed myself too much!

And yes, there is now glitter EVERYWHERE. And I mean everywhere!
And yes, there is now glitter EVERYWHERE. And I mean everywhere!

I know I said I didn’t make any resolutions for 2013, but after writing this, I’ve decided to make one: I’d like to embrace doing things I enjoy. Such as this. No shame. haha

Did you make a new years resolution? If so what?

What are some of your favorite childhood memories?

Don’t Want to Ruin My Shoes

Yup, another “Rain Painting”. Brace yourselves…

I like doing these because they allow me to just go to town with a palette knife. Don’t have to worry about staying in the lines, or being too exact, and after a long day at school, it is my favorite way to unwind. This one is similar to Rain, Rain, Go Away and Best Buds  but it is spanned across three 12×16″ canvases, making it three times as great!

As usual, I started off with a quick background.

Background using a palette knife on three 12×16″ canvases

Once that was dry, I drew some guidelines of the buildings in the background with some white chalk. Then proceeded to colour them in.

Finally, I added street lamps, a picture of a man holding a woman in his arms, who is holding an umbrella over them, and I added some highlights to the background. And voila!

To give you an idea of the size, I took a picture with my bed as a reference. It’s a double bed (or maybe a Queen…I’m not quite sure).

Close up of the left panel
Close up of the middle panel

Close up of the right panel. Do you recognize the buildings on the hill? Hint* in Ottawa, on a hill…
 
Zoomed in on the couple in the rain
View from the bottom. All the edges are painted so no frame is necessary.

So what inspired this painting, you ask? Well I bought a new dress this past weekend (okay, actually I bought 2…) and I have nowhere to wear it. It is pretty and red, just like the girl’s in the painting. Maybe if I wear it, a knight in shining armor will whisk me off my feet! In the rain, of course.

I’ve got three other paintings on the go right now (and only one of them has anything to do with rain) so hopefully I can finish those soon and share them with you here. School is getting a little busy right now since it is almost exam time, so I may be MIA for awhile.

I’m also working on 2 commissioned pieces, but won’t be able to share those with you until after the holidays, since the people who asked me to paint them would like to give them as a Christmas gift. I wouldn’t want to spoil the surprise since it might be for YOU!

Happy Wednesday folks 🙂 Anyone started Christmas shopping yet?

Rain, Rain, Go Away!

It’s been raining on and off all week so I can’t help but have rain on my mind. It certainly doesn’t help that when I’m at my easel, I’m facing a giant window. So here is yet another rain inspired painting. Hopefully the rain goes away soon and I can start painting different things but for now, here you have it!

12×16″ – Acrylic on Canvas with a Palette Knife
You light up my life. Or my painting. Regardless, I added some street lights.
You can stand under my umbrella…
….ella, ella…
…eh, eh, eh…

[No, this was not inspired by Rihanna at all. Although, not a bad song, eh?]

Speaking of rain, I certainly shouldn’t be complaining about the miniscule amount of rain we’ve been getting here everyday considering so many people were affected by Hurricane Sandy this week. My thoughts and prayers go out to each and every one of you who was affected.

Do you like seeing the progress of a painting, or would you rather I just post the finished product? The last few paintings I did were quite simple so the progress is quite obvious, but often times, the starting point and finished product look almost nothing alike. I’ve got a couple like that that I’m currently working on. Check back (*hopefully) next week for those!

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