Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Apilco Series: Progression in Painting

I have completed two new paintings in my Apilco Series, and I thought I would invite you into my studio for a closer look at my painting process.

Hand-mixed oil paint colors on my palette

I begin each piece with a plan, but then let the painting develop intuitively. Once colors have been mixed, and composition determined, the journey begins!  It's not always an easy experience, but rather a dance between application and obliteration of paint, and cooperation between myself and my materials. (I found this nearly impossible to photograph, so please forgive a few poor photos!)

Painting "Apilco No.3"
oil on canvas panel

ApilcoNo.3Demo-1 copy

ApilcoNo.3Demo-2 copy

ApilcoNo.3Demo-3 copy

ApilcoNo.3Demo-4 copy

ApilcoNo.3Demo-5 copy

ApilcoNo.3Demo-6 copy

ApilcoNo.3Demo-7 copy

ApilcoNo.3Demo-8 copy

There's always a big change between the last two steps of my paintings.  Here, after the seventh layer, I allowed the painting to dry almost completely.  The last layer involved applying thick paint over the entire surface.  I was particularly interested in allowing my brushstrokes to become abstract movements across the image, while retaining the sunny, cheery mood of the warm colors.

Painting "Apilco No.4"
oil on canvas panel

ApilcoNo.4Demo-1 copy

ApilcoNo.4Demo-2 copy

ApilcoNo.4Demo-3 copy

ApilcoNo.4Demo-4 copy

ApilcoNo.4Demo-5 copy

ApilcoNo.4Demo-6 copy

ApilcoNo.4Demo-7 copy

Again, big changes happen between the last two stages of the painting.  For this piece, I focused on finishing the image with thick, brilliantly colored paint.  I also had a few complex shapes and perspectives to work out (especially that citrus juicer at eye level!)

I am enjoying the process of creating this series, and have quite a few more planned.  Every piece is an opportunity for me to explore new colors and techniques, while keeping the same subject matter.  I've only completed my fourth piece in this series and I can already feel how my skills have grown.  

I will keep you posted on more paintings coming out of the studio (and a few big inspirations I am experiencing right now!)


  1. Wonderful!Although I don't know much about painting, I always love to see work in progress ( and progress in work ) ... and , I have to say, what beautiful results! I particularly like the technique you used on Apilco no.3. Can't wait to see what's coming next :)

  2. Fabulous Erin!! Love to see the work in progress, all the different layers I didn't realize went into painting...I wish I could paint:-)

  3. i know nothing about painting other than "ooo, i like that!" or "i don't get it". but i love looking at paintings. i never knew how much went into the process. as i am going step-by-step through your blog i am thinking at each picture "that is great! she should stop there" and then the next is better. and the end! WOW---love the colors that really pop. thank you so much for opening my eyes more to how it all comes to be.

  4. Thank you so much for your wonderful comments! I am so glad you all enjoyed seeing the process!

  5. I agree watching the process is very cool! I love to see all the layers and changes.

  6. Reading this post has been a lovely adventure! Thank you so much for taking the time to share the steps involved in creating these paintings and showing how the image changes over time. I am absolutely fascinated. Mesmerized. And Impressed!


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