Hand-Painted Wooden Box

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A couple of weeks ago, I finally got to go shopping in a place I could get some art supplies.  I was going through some stuff in my room a few weeks prior and had found a few small wooden boxes that I think I had gotten several years ago with the intention of painting them to use as gifts.  I found that I didn’t really have much acrylic craft paints left, so I decided to put off doing something with them until I could go shopping (the nearest town we can get crafting supplies is an hour away).

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For the first box, I decided to take a design I had seen in a wallpaper and free-hand it onto the box.  I first painted a base coat of the bottom color and then painted over it with a navy blue.  Although I am very happy with the end result, it was definitely a bit of a challenge- I probably should have chosen an easier pattern!  The whole box (I painted the top and all four sides) took me at least 5 hours to paint.

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The box is a perfect size for storing some small notebooks I have and I love the pop of color it adds to my bedroom!  And it was really nice to get back to creating and painting.

Art Update: Painting I

I have posted some pictures of some of the art work I’ve done over the past school year, but I thought that now that I am done for the year, I could now do a series of posts of all of the artwork I did this year. I’d do just one big post, but that would be a ton of photos, so I’ll break it up by class, starting with Painting I.

I liked Painting I quite a bit, but didn’t like that painting didn’t come as easily to me as drawing and printmaking had.  I’m pretty happy with most of my finished paintings, so in the end I enjoyed it, but it was a bit of a struggle to stay motivated throughout the class.

Our first assignment was to choose a Manet flower painting and copy it, changing or adding one thing.  I chose to change the background color, which was much more difficult than I had originally thought it would be.

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Our next assignment was to take three objects, create an interesting arrangement, take a photograph, and then use that photograph as the basis of our painting.  I chose to use my violin, my sketchbook, and a spool of thread, to symbolize the things that are often forgotten when I am productive in other areas of my life.  Those things that I no longer “have time for”.  It is titled “The Casualties of Productiveness”.

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Our third assignment was to choose a historic nude painting, crop it to our liking, then reproduce it, adding a tattoo of our choice.  I chose Bouguereau’s Biblis and added a feather tattoo, primarily because it seemed to fit the space I wanted to place the tattoo in the best.  I think this was my best painting all year.

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For our final assignment, we could paint anything we wished, but were encouraged to push the limits in terms of originality/content.  After much thought, I decided to do a political piece about eminent domain and the reservoirs in my area (which provide clean drinking water to millions of people living in New York City but have negatively affected my area and town on a very large scale).  I had written a 10-page research paper on the reservoirs and eminent domain my freshman year of college and it is something I care a lot about.  The image is of an abandoned house underwater, symbolizing the homes’, and thus the lives of the people who lived there, destruction.  There is a tattered American flag, which symbolizes the freedom taken away from the thousands of people forced to move and give up their livelihoods for “the greater good”, despite other options (if you’d like to learn more about New York City’s reservoirs, I encourage you to read Liquid Assets by Diane Galusha).

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And that’s it!  Next up: Sculpture I.

1st Half of Term I and Painting I

I can’t believe I’m already through the first half of the semester!! It feels as if I just got here!  So far, the semester has gone pretty well.  I’ve enjoyed the majority of my classes and have learned a lot.  I’m a lot busier than last year, but in some ways that is a really good thing.  Tuesdays and Thursdays are especially hard because I don’t get done with classes (and don’t really have much of a break all day) until 5, and then have at least one club meeting, so I’m often not back in my room until 7 or 8 at night.  This has made running a bit hard as well. I’ve managed to keep up with my homework fine despite that, so it really isn’t too much of an issue, but it makes me really tired.  For some reason, I seem to have more trouble on Thursdays, but I’m not really sure why.

My painting class is going well.  We just finished our second assignment.  The first was a replication of one of Manet’s flower paintings and the second was a three-object still-life.

2013-10-11 11.19.24This is the first one.  We had to change or add one thing.  I decided to change the background.  The original background was completely black.  I didn’t realize changing the background was such a drastic change, but it actually made it very difficult since in the original background, it’s hard to see the shading.  I also had some trouble with the vase for the same reason.  Overall, I’m really happy with the finished product.  This is my first painting ever.  It is an oil painting, which I’ve heard is more difficult than acrylic painting, but I’ve never done either, so I don’t really personally know the difference.

2013-10-11 11.20.02This is my second painting.  It is called “The Casualties of Productiveness”.  I am really pleased with how this one turned out as well.  It includes a spool of thread, a violin, and a sketchbook.  The violin took me a lot of time, but I’m really happy with how it turned out.

I was hoping to share my sculptures as well, but neither of them are finished and they are going to be gifts, so I’ll probably wait until after Christmas to post pictures of them.

Overall, the first half of the semester has gone really well.  I liked my college last year, but I love it this year.  I really enjoy being a sophomore rather than a freshman.  I like that I know a lot of people and know my way around campus and such.  I do miss the workload I had last year, though.  I think this is going to be a really great year!