I didn’t know this canvas would become a feathers acrylic painting. Feathers have a way of surprising us. There’s something so rewarding about finding a feather in nature. It’s like a secret treasure, that only you discovered. The bird that no longer needed it, perhaps, feels lighter. Some say angels are near when a feather is found in our path. Many native people see feathers as a connection to their Creator. However your soul responds to feathers, may you find many among your paths.
The Beginnings of the Feathers Acrylic Painting
This painting was four years in the making. I had just finished my first ecourse with Flora Bowley and was painting wild and crazy backgrounds on multiple canvases. This particular canvas was the largest one I owned, measuring 4 ft wide by 3 ft tall. Big!
It sat in my studio as a loud and messy (but fun) canvas. I had no idea what I was going to do with it.
Blocking Out with Color
This past summer, I decided to finish it before one of my shows. I started by drawing squares and rectangles around some of my favorite areas, then painted the rest black. The patterns were too chaotic for me and I wanted to calm them down. I needed to carve out the little blocks of joy and give focus to my favorite areas.
Adding Design Elements
As I stood back and stared at the painting, it reminded me of a video game screen (can you tell I have two boys) and I knew instantly I wanted lime green lines all over it, like a grid maybe. I settled on triangles and painted a few of them in solid. The transparency of this layer pulled me in, like a layer maze I had to work my way through.
The painting was now bold and geometric, but not totally complete in my mind. Like a carpenter makes tools he can use, I have a strong need to create a purpose for each painting. The deeper meaning of this painting hadn’t yet revealed itself. I sat with it for a couple of days and just glanced over at it while I worked on other things.
One of the projects I was working on was sketching feathers, as a mindless drawing practice. The practice of drawing from nature always calms my mind. Every feather is uniquely crafted, slightly different than the next. The artist can choose to add flourish to the feather, make it similar to the last, or completely unique with its own details. I found the process of sketching feathers very relaxing and meditative. As a result, I suddenly connected the two and decided a feathers acrylic painting was going to be the subject for the large painting.
I outlined feather shapes, then painted around them in white. A painting this large has to make a bold statement. Like a woman in a red dress, it will catch your eye from across the room. The stark contrast had my attention. Now it was time for my signature playfulness.
Drips & Mini Triangles
Although the white provided much calming relief from the detailed feathers, it felt a little naked to me. I dripped grey from one side, then lime green from the other. I wanted to slightly close in the feathers to create a calm and cozy area for them. Lastly, I added tiny black triangles randomly.
Peaceful. Calming. Playful. Joyful.
This piece currently sits above our fireplace mantel, which makes me very happy, but it’s ready for a new home. These feathers are ready to bring Grounding to someone else’s home. Peace.
Purchase info is here.
If you have 1.5 minutes, you can catch this short video 😉