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always a reflection

ALWAYS A REFLECTIN. Prints available in my etsy shop.
This girl is really quite remarkable. She went through such an incredible change. If you’ve been a reader of this blog, you’ll know I’ve been painting quite a lot of owls. And Paulette over at Summerland Cottage suggested to me that I paint an owl in a tree with one of my girls.So I had that in my head when I started this painting (and you can still see that owl in the “tree” which turned into a rainbow in the sky).
I began this piece using some of the techniques I’ve been inspired by in Misty Mawn’s Stretching Within e-course. 
I went through my vintage postcards and fell in love with some of the old postage marks and stamps, so I used those along with layers and layers of acrylics.
Once I had my background, I went ahead with my character and scene. I haven’t painted one of my girls in a while, so for reference, I used one of my business cards with an image of my piece 
sometimes i feel like having an image for reference frees up my creative side so i’m not so scared to paint something ugly. i feel a bit more like i know what i’m doing.
but even still, i focused on painting the owl.
and when it came time to paint the girl’s face, i felt so lost! i kept thinking, i completely forgot how to paint a human face! and i really didn’t want to take this photo at all. i just wanted to cover her up and try again, but i made myself snap this shot and post it so you could see (and so i could remind myself) that sometimes it takes a lot of layers and working on something again and again to get to that thing you’re happy with.

because this, took A LOT of layers. and really, it was all about finding that beehive hair! that’s where i found her personality. yet i still wasn’t happy with it. so i added a little more peachy paint to get softer features.

then i really resisted her butterfly wings! (even though i so love them now!).
i added a bit more depth to her ball skirt and was trying to figure out what to do with that tree. something about it was bugging me…
 so i got rid of the tree and the owl went with!
then came the rainbow! 
and when I look at this finished painting, i take a deep breath. it’s so a reflection of how I feel! and i am just in love with that pretty pastel rainbow (something i normally would never ever do!).
But that rainbow is just so transparent and breathtaking. And that girl is so trying to tell her story. And that little owl up there that is just hiding in the fog, just after the rain (i couldn’t get rid of him altogether)…
it all hits right at my heart.
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And so, this painting became… ALWAYS A REFLECTION.

23 Comments

  1. She is beautiful! And I so enjoy watching your painting process. :)

  2. lots of sparkling stuff there.
    *

  3. i can see why wings & a rainbow became her.
    gorrrrrrgeous!!! xox

  4. she is sweetness and love.

    i love watching how she progessed…..thank you for sharing
    all of this with us!

    oxoxox
    kolleen

  5. wonderful to see the process, i love her!!

  6. I love your painting. I feel very much like the girl in your painting today. It is my birthday, so I feel happy like I have wings, but my story is always a little bittersweet, like a stormcloud in the background. But the rainbow is a gift out of it all. Thanks for sharing this painting! So beautiful!

  7. I love seeing the process-I never think about taking photos until it's too late. The painting turned out beautifully.

  8. So fun to see your process.

  9. I enjoyed watching your progress! I sometimes get to that stage in the painting where I've worked and worked on something and then get rid of it only to find everything else just falls into place and then I wonder why I spent so long on the wrong part! A lovely painting.:)x

  10. How wonderful that you shared your process and that a perfect painting doesn't always just flow from the brush but evolves. Of course, you have a very good eye for a good painting!

  11. i love it and YOU for sharing ALL of it. so refreshing and REAL.

  12. What an evolution!! LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!! I think the branch was so harsh..the rainbow was softer and didn't seem to stick through her head? Anyway, love your process. Thanks so much for sharing. xoxo

  13. It's so much fun seeing a painting from start to finish.
    Thanks for sharing.

  14. This is beautiful Juliette! And I love seeing the process of your paintings!!! Keep them coming! :)

  15. Elle est très mignonne et prête à aller butiner sur de belles fleurs…
    Bisous

  16. What a great narrative taking us through the process! Thank you.
    She turned out great!

  17. I have been catching up on all your posts as my computer has been wonky lately. I do appreciate your generosity at sharing your step by step technique…you are always an inspiration to me.

  18. I really enjoyed watching the process of this painting. I love the end piece and her bee hive!!! It actually helped me with a piece I've been working on. I just haven't been happy with this particular painting and have painted over it 3 times now and feel like giving up. But after watching and reading your process I'm going to try again! Thank you for sharing :0)

  19. Juliette,

    This painting is just WoNdeRfuL !
    It makes my ❤ smile,

    thank you for sharing her,
    paulette

  20. I love that rainbow Juliette, it really makes that painting. Thanks too for sharing your process, its amazing the journey one takes when painting.

    Wishing you a lovely week :)

    xxMiriam

  21. I love watching your paintings from start to finish. I always forget to take pictures of mine in process.

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