Portrait of Contentment

While there are often bumps along the road as we travel through life, there are also moments of perfect contentment, if we just pause a moment or two and let everything be still. When things get too busy and distracting, escaping to my studio is a one way I can tune things out and actually feel peace flood over me. Does this mean everything is perfect? Of course not, that is in fact rarely the case, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have perfect moments of contentment in the midst of ‘life’.
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‘Portrait of Contentment’

9″ x 12″ acrylic on museum quality wood panel

When I started painting this portrait things were kind of hectic, we were getting ready to leave for a week and still getting Christmas put away etc. I worked on it for a few brief time periods and left it unfinished until we came back from vacation. I went up to my studio to unwind and reflect and put on some Eagles tunes (a tribute to Glenn Frey who passed away during our trip) and was thinking to myself I’m so glad that we went to see the Eagles when we had the chance. How many times do we put things off until later and later never comes? It made me thankful and content, a real ‘Peaceful Easy Feeling’ moment. Sure there are things I wished I’d done but there are a lot of things that I did do and I’m content that I reached and stretched outside my comfort zone to get where I am today.

 

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Detailed view of ‘Portrait of Contentment

I love how working with portraits allows you to see what you are feeling in your work. I hope you find time to create art today and feel the contentment that it brings.

This portrait is now listed on my SHOP page.

Registration is OPEN for Life Book 2016!!!

Registration is OPEN for Life Book 2016!!!

Life Book 2016  is NOW OPEN for Registration!!!

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Life Book 2016 is a year long course with all of these wonderful teachers to inspire you!!!

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First let me tell you a bit more about Life Book in case you haven’t heard about it yet!
Life Book, a celebration and honouring of YOU” is a year-long mixed media art class organized by Tamara Laporte from Willowing Arts.

You can find out a lot more about this wildly popular course (it has been joined by over 8700 people in the past!) by clicking HERE

I haven’t fully developed my class idea yet, but I’m excited to be sharing my take on mixed media portraits with you, much like you can see in these journal pages:

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Winners Announced!!!

Congratulations to Denise Spillane, Ajae McCain and Patricia Upshaw on winning a DVD! Please email me your shipping info at pamcarriker@gmail.com and I’ll get them in the mail to you!!!

I appreciate all of the comments left and hope that you’ll consider getting my DVD’s. I also wanted to let you know that they also each have an optional PDF download that you can purchase. This is great to have by you at your art table after you’ve watched the DVD so you can follow along while you create!

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DVD’s are Now Available!!!

I’m thrilled to announce that my new North Light DVD’s are available!!! So much fun to finally see them ‘out there’. It’s been several months since I was shooting them in cold Cincinnati last February. The whole experience has been a joyful ride and I hope you’ll take a moment to check out the sneak peeks for the videos on the North Light shop (just click the video images below)

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And there’s also a value pack available with the stencils I used in the Color Wheel Journal!!

Pillows

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Well a couple of weeks back I made some pillows on Zazzle using my artwork. They came yesterday and I have to say I’m extremely happy with them!!

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So you know how it goes, you post it on Facebook because that’s where all the fun is happening lol.

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Several people messaged me and asked on my post if they were going to be available to purchase and to be honest I’d not even thought about doing that,

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I just wanted some new pillows for home and thought it would be fun to have some arty ones,

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but I listened and went ahead and opened up a shop and listed my pillows there. I hope you’ll check my  SHOP out:-)

Color Shaper Journal Painting

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I was messing around in my journal a couple of days ago and wanting to play a little differently I grabbed my Colour Shaper tools to paint this portrait without using brushes. Several people have asked about both the Colour Shapers and the method so I did another quick journal page in my Extra Large Moleskine Sketchbook (11.5 x 16.75″) and took some step out pictures to show the process.

Most important I think to using the Colour Shapers in this way is not to get bogged down by details, stay loose and go with the marks that they make!

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The Colour Shapers are some of my favorite art tools and I keep them handy by my work table on my Raskog cart from IKEA.

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Here are the sizes I like, and note that they come in both firm and soft tips and it’s good to have both as they will work differently with the paint.

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I’m using my Fluid Matt Sheer Acrylics in Mustard Seed, Barely Black and White Washed. You can see that these are very fluid and also carry a high pigment load. You can try any acrylic paint and you will get various results depending on the viscosity of the paint.

I love this color palette as the Mustard Seed and Barely Black mixed together make a really warm gray color.

FullSizeRender_3My model is my Asaro’s Head. This is such a wonderful tool for seeing how light hits on the different planes of the face. Here I just sketched the actual head, but you can use it to also sketch a more realistic face and get some great references to where shading and highlights should go.

FullSizeRender_2Using the larger 1″ and 2″  Colour Shapers, I start to block in the dark areas. Note all of the cool marks the tools leave in the paint-I don’t try to avoid them, this adds to the overall look.

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As I work I wipe off the tool onto the background to start that off. By adding small amounts of White Washed to the gray mix I get various tones of color that I add the planes of the head. Switch to smaller tools as needed.

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You can also wipe a bit of each of the tones you mix on the page somewhere to help document them. I do this a lot in my journal work.

(and yes, that’s a glass of wine in the background-keeps you loose while you paint😉

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Remember to stop! I am not at all going for some finely detailed painting, I want it raw, so remembering to stop is important. In all this took less than hour from sketch to finished painting. Now I’m going to let it dry and then add some journaling to the page. This is a fun journal exercise to help you loosen up and play with shading and tonal values.