I don't have that much new to share, since it has been a really slow week in the studio. I have been running around the city looking at apartments, and trying to cure a nasty flue at the same time… We are now living in a service apartment, which is like living in a hotel, only difference is that we have a small kitchen too… But as it looks now we will probably stay here in Shanghai for 2 years, so we need a 'real' apartment. And finding something that suits us within the budget is not easy. Shanghai is expensive!! But I will give you a full tour when we have found what we need, and have moved in. I am really looking forward to be able to paint in a room without wallpaper, so that I don't have to be so careful all the time. I feel really hampered (is hampered the right word? I feel like I have to be so careful as not to make a mess or get paint on the floor or on the walls or table or chair or….you get the meaning) here. I need a room where I can be messy, and where it doesn't matter if I get paint-splatters on the wall… =D
Anyway, I was suppose to talk about owls before I got sidetracked. As I don't have anything new to show you, I thought I would post photos of my two barn owls how they have progressed and changed.
First up is the flying Barn owl. I do not have a name for her yet.
First Layers down. The texture is build up by modeling paste, and then I added some thin glacings of acrylic colours.
I added some blues, and white splatters. I think that I in this stage was planning to paint a sea gull on this canvas. I started it almost a year ago, so I can't really tell...
Then I decided to paint a flying owl on it instead. Here is the first acrylic layer with just white and some paynes grey.
First layer of oil colour. It sat like this for quite a while in my studio, and I did not know what to do with it next. I had no inspiration of finishing it, as I wasn't happy with how it looked. It looked like a lost owl.
Then 2 weeks ago I go an idea of how to proceed with the owl. I added some ornament to the background, and started to change the colour-sceme to brown instead of blue.
First layer of brown that I let dry just a little before going back in and wiped some of it of to show the underlying texture, and started painting on the owl itself as well.
I added some more brown, went back in and touched up the ornament with some white, and I think that the background is finished like that. Now I just have to paint the last layer of the owl and give her some feathers and claws. Or him. For some reason I think of this owl as a 'her'.
Next is Barnie, the sleeping owl;
I had made this background that I liked really much. Then I had to decide what to paint on it. With some helpful suggestions from my Facebook friends, I decided on an owl.
First blocking in of the owl in acrylic color.
Then I changed to oil colors.
Next step was to start and put in the shadows and feathers. This picture was taken in the evening in the lamplight, so it became green.
After painting in more of the feathers, I thought that the owl started to 'disappear' into the background. But, as I had liked my treatment of the other owl so much, I decided to go all brown!
And here it is how it looks now. I have to see if I will tweak the background a little more, and then I need to go back to the owl and paint the final feathers and of course, the claws! I am very happy in what direction this is going, so I will go with the flow… ;)
I will be away for a week back to Rizhao, so my studio will have to wait for me some more. I actually saw the first spring blossoms today! Can you believe that? The winter has been so warm here in Shanghai this year, that the trees are starting to blossom already… I don't mind!! ;)