Oh, don’t you love when inspiration just bite you in the bum and next thing you know you’re off! That was me today. I’m pacing (racing, rather) trying to catch up in the 30 in 30 challenge. I refuse to drop out and being the overachiever, I actually want to do 30 paintings before this weekend ends.
This painting was inspired by today’s muse, the gorgeous Tracee Ellis Ross. Some of you may remember her from “Girlfriends”? Her character Joan was my icon. I would watch that show and get an idea of what a “real” lawyer’s life looked like (back when I was hell-bent on being an attorney). Friends, relationships, aging, all of it. I miss that show.
She has such a great energy about her and I snapped several of photos from her Instagram gallery for inspiration. Thanks for viewing!
Hey! Back with my two days of painting. I started this set earlier this week and finished it today. In continuing with my veiled figures series, I wanted to explore a more colorful, warm color palette this time. I painted the faces in burnt sienna instead of white, and played around with their veils to end up with a colorful array of garments that remind me of the traditional Sudanese tawb. As such, I decided to call it “The Wedding” or as they say in Sudan “Al ‘Agd”. The bride as it so happens is facing away. I like the mystery of some figures facing toward the viewer and others facing away. It also makes for a more interesting composition.
Once the basic shapes were in place, I played around with translucent colors overlapping the layers and playing around with the different tones I could get. The underpainting is quite textured thanks to a relief substance I applied in the initial stages of the painting. I’m really enjoying painting on this surface and find that the paints just glide on it, much smoother than the basic canvas.
It’s scary. It’s risky. But it’s absolutely necessary. It warms our bones and makes us smile those big goofy smiles in the middle of a crowded street in Manhattan. It will test our faith, and then build it back up again. You find reasons to make that person smile and not because it’s “Valentines Day” but because you’re happiest when they’re happy too.
There are no rules. No roadmaps for the players involved. But once you’re in it, I mean really in it, the only thing other person that seems to the matter in the world is the one that’s right in front of you. It’s hope. It’s everything. It’s the breath we breathe.
100x40cm on premium canvas
If you love this piece, do me a favor and share it with others. Maybe it will make another person smile, as it made me smile painting it.
This is the companion piece to my previous painting. This was also painted intuitively, no sketching, no references, just imagination. I really struggled to find the faces and people in this one, but slowly it came together. I wanted this one to be a little lighter in the background, and the white motif in the upper right corner gives an illusion of light and space. As the figures began to emerge in the piece, it formed somewhat of a crowd. There appears to be smaller figures on the floor, possibly children, or women resting. And then the three standing figures in the center are facing away.
As I finished this piece, I landed on the perfect title. It reminded me of a scene in a mosque because they appear to be in prayer. “Tahajjud” is the night prayer that is prayed by devout muslims, especially during the month of Ramadan. The ghost like quality of the women is offset by burst of colors to lift the energy.
Here are the pair. I think they really complement each other and could be hung side by side.