Friday, 6 November 2015

Show Your Face on Friday - In the Style of...

Hello and welcome to Magpiehaven. I've been busily preparing for Christmas this week - not because I'm super well organized; but because I want to create gifts to sell in the gallery of a local garden centre run by a friend, and to give to my friends and family. I've cut lots of little MDF house shapes ready to transform into brooches or Christmas ornaments and I've been using scans I created to give them faces and characters. 
This week, over at Kim Dellow's wonderful 'Show Your Face' here, Kim is encouraging us to share those established artists who have inspired us and to provide a link to their work. Kim has been thinking about female artists, which has set me off on an exciting trail for next time, but this week I've been exploring the work of an artist I've always associated with Christmas! I've been looking at the work of Sandro Botticelli - The National Gallery has some beautiful images of his work, including this portrait of a young man here. Botticelli (1445-1510) was such a remarkable, early Renaissance painter. I love the faces he created,  strange and other worldly yet so vital and alive they seem to beckon us into the mythological or mystical realms they inhabit. I always felt with Botticelli that a story was unfolding and that he had stopped time for just a moment so that we might step in and walk around in a magical narrative, especially in paintings like The Mystic Nativity or The Birth of Venus. What I wanted this week was to immerse myself in his work and then create some faces that I could scan, reduce in size and then feature on my gifts. Obviously I don't possess the artistic genius of Botticelli, but I wanted to somehow capture that magical world in miniature, to create the sense that his work has of us stumbling for a moment across a magical story in the making.
I used Pan Pastels, 6B pencil and just a touch of Inktense to create these two characters. The face on the right is based on a young Italian man, but he is not a copy. I wanted to create the impression of him turning for a moment to see who has tapped his shoulder in the crowd. Whoever it was has vanished, dissolved into the blue Italian afternoon and he is slightly confused as he gazes back over his shoulder. Could it possibly be a ghost from the future, if such a being exists?
The second picture is based on Botticelli Madonnas. Here I used Pan Pastels again, but I used a tip from Christy Harris to fix the pigment by applying Gesso over the pastels.
And here is my Renaissance inspired brooch, trimmed with Lynne Perrella stamping, which could be a steeple or a hat! The floral paper from a Graphic 45 pad reminded me of Botticelli's Primavera. In the coming days I'm going to be working on more brooches, adding embellishments and playing around with different Renaissance inspired faces - I have not had time yet to create one using the young man's face. Thank you so much for stopping by today and taking a look at my work in progress, inspired by the incredible Sandro Botticelli and - of course - Kim Dellow's great idea to Show Your Face on Friday and share art inspiration! 

21 comments:

  1. my you really are very good at these faces Julie Ann xxx

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  2. Fabulous again Julie Ann. good luck with selling loads for Christmas!

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  3. Wow Julie Ann! These faces are extraordinarily good! You have captured the mystical elegance of Botticelli but the faces are your own creations! Graphic 45 is a perfect choice to show off the simplicity of the faces.....your face practice has certainly paid off.....can't wait to see more of your wonderful creations.....you certainly have found a vein of creativity! Xx

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  4. Haven't read it all, but your faces look fab xx

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  5. Julie Ann your faces get more skillfully drawn with each one and they are now so full of character and the eyes are so expressive.

    Hugs
    Lesley Xx

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  6. A very beautiful brooch and great faces, have a wonderful weekend, sweetie!

    Love and hugs
    Maarit

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  7. I am always in awe of your source of inspiration for your art, the story, the process and of course, the completed art.
    You certainly captured that essence within the young man's gaze, so beautiful as is the brooch.
    I still haven't dared to put pencil to paper (as yet!). Any crafting time at the moment is really focused on Christmas but one day I will take a deep breath and dive in, not that I am promising I will be sharing any results!
    Have a lovely weekend.
    Wishes
    Lynne

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  8. Wonderful! They look so natural!

    Lucy x

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  9. Gorgeous pieces. Your faces are fantastic. I use PanPastels a lot but had not heard of using Gesso over the top to seal. Have you used Gesso watered down Julie or neat Gesso painted over the top? Wonderful inspiration . Tracy x

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  10. Julie Ann- you absolutely Positively AMAZE me!! Your young man is so beautiful- he has the Botticelli look but absolutely is your own! You are so gifted and talented my dear friend! I know I have said this before, but needs to be said again! Amazing all three faces- as well as the story you are weaving! xoxo

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  12. This is gorgeous! I love the eyes of the ladies and man. They are calm, still strong personalities. And their eyes have a strong charisma.

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  13. You did a great job with your Botticelli faces, and that brooch is adorable!

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  14. Great faces,Love this.

    Hugs Jenny

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  15. I do love reading your posts Julie Ann as they are full of magic and mystique and this one is no exception. I love reading about how you get your inspiration and seeing how you interpret it. I love your faces today as always. Hugs lovely lady Debs xx

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  16. Wonderful work again, love your work. Sorry I am so late getting round this week, the days don't seem to have enough hours! Hugs, Valerie

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  17. Inspired and inspiring - your young man in particular has that other-worldly look in his eye that you mention - a beautiful post.
    Alison xx

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  18. Wow! Once again I amazed at your talent for creating these faces - Brilliant! Chrisx

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  19. Beautiful and inspiring work!
    Gill x

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