Portrait of a Redheaded Flapper – sold

portrait painting of beautiful redhead woman flapper girl

Oil on canvas, 10″x8″

This is a portrait of a lovely redhead flapper girl. She manages the rare feat of being sweet and sultry at the same time. From her finger waved hair and Cupid’s Bow lips to her pretty ruffled blouse, she looks elegantly vintage and ready for high tea. As I painted her she seemed so charming and fresh that I used a spring green background to complement her peachy tones.

I’ve enjoyed painting these portraits of flappers inspired by old black and white photos of silent film stars, The source material is usually somewhat vague and lacking in detail which is normally not ideal for portrait painting but that helps me to be more creative in my interpretation. The images give me a starting point to convey distinct moods and emotions and the feeling of the era.

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Portrait Study of a Young Woman – sold

vanessacam (2)

Oil on canvas, 12″x9″

In this study I wanted to work on a classic portrait while exploring cool skin tones and looser brushwork. I also wanted to change things up a bit from my more stylized portraits based on black and white photos of ladies from long ago. I found some lovely violets and blues in this portrait of a beautiful dark haired girl with almost translucent skin. The result is a contemporary realist portrait with a lively surface quality and casual elegance.

When I look at my work in retrospect I realize that I favor painting faces and figures but I don’t always have the most consistent style. This is considered a bad thing in the art world but I draw upon different inspirations and get bored painting the same way over and over. It would be nice to have a distinct and recognizable look. I’m hopeful a strong visual identity will emerge in time even if I don’t exactly know how that happens.

Persephone – sold

persephone (2)

Oil on canvas, 12″x9″

I was thinking of Persephone, the goddess of spring when I painted this. Winter is only just beginning here, the trees are bare but I’m already dreaming of fresh unfurling leaves and tender budding flowers. There’s something both old-fashioned and modern about this portrait, hints of flower-crowned festival girls, June brides and Pre-Raphaelite beauties.

Blue Moon – sold

 

bluemoon

Oil on canvas, 10″x8″

This painting was inspired by loss and memories, grief and ultimately joy. It’s a portrait of fragility and strength. In studying faces I have found that there is an odd power in openness and vulnerability. It can connect us to the essence of our humanity.

 

Flapper in a Cloche Hat – sold

browncloche

Oil on hardboard panel, 8″x6″

There is a certain intensity to this girl. She’s a bit fierce. This may be a result of the slickness of the board surface that results in the paint strokes keeping a certain edge. This makes for a bold look that’s a bit different from my work on canvas. I’m not sure I have complete control of the paint on this surface yet but I like some of the accidental results.

Flappers tended to be dramatic. They were in rebellion against traditional rules of modesty for women, wore a lot of makeup and clothing that scandalized the polite society of their era…this is why I find them to be a fascinating subject for paintings.

Sargent Study: Olimpio Fusco – sold

 

Olimpio Fusco

Oil on Gallery Wrap Canvas, 10″x8″

I believe in learning from the best and John Singer Sargent is one of the great masters of portrait and figurative work. This is a study with a twist; the original portrait was a drawing but I used oil on canvas based on what I imagined a Sargent oil study of this model would look like. A fun exercise and it really made me think about Sargent’s flesh palette and brushwork.