Monday, February 23, 2015

Painting in Layers

Layers! I love painting in layers. There is something so meaningful and mysterious about them.
My favorite Monkey
acrylics on 9 x 12 inch canvas
Much like us as humans, isn't it? We see who we are right now, but really if we were to peel back the complex layers of our lives, we could see everything that helped us be the person we are today. I'm sure I've written about this before, but I keep being reminded of it at this time in my life. All the layers are so necessary, even the ones we would like to wish away. I'm learning to embrace them and I'm certain that my painting process is helping me with that.
This painting started out simple with a few colors, some thin washes and some paintbrush doodling over top. I did not like the painting at this point - I didn't like the colors or the shapes very much, but i knew that they would contribute something to the whole painting. And I knew the final piece would look nothing like the beginning.
I kept doodling, this time with red and teal and still wasn't thrilled, but it was starting to show some depth, which I always like. As soon as there is depth, my subconscious gets engaged and starts looking at the shapes to figure out into what they might evolve.
Then I did something I never do (and this is almost too sappy for me to show you here), but I was thinking that this was going to be a gift for Daniel and so I wrote some words...
... and quickly covered them up.  :) Another layer that would not be visible, but still add to the painting!
Finally, I added a few drips. Those I always love - they are somewhat controlled but also quite unpredictable. Sort of like everything in life - you make a plan and then you watch as it unfolds. Hardly ever as you had planned, but often so much better than you imagined.
And finally My Favorite Monkey for my favorite monkey. :) Daniel loves monkeys and I when I "saw" it in the layers, I thought it would be a perfect gift!
Ramses approves! Which is very important!

Are you having a good day? Did you have a good weekend? My friends up north - are you thawing out? I hope everybody's week is off to a creative and fun start!!

Lots of love!

P.S. If you haven't done so yet, click on the link for my new website in my sidebar. And - if you feel so inspired - sign up for my newsletter. The first one will come out in March...just as soon as I figure out how to create them. :) 


  1. Liebe Silke,

    das ist unbeschreiblich schön.
    Die Farben sind leuchtend.

    Sonnige Grüße

  2. It's fun to see what lies beneath your painting, just like it's fun to learn what lies within a person. I bet Daniel loved his gift! So personal, so meaningful, and so "you." ♥

    No thawing in Maine for quite some time. We are actually entering a frigid period, but we'll be getting less snow, which is the break we need.

  3. Brilliant colors and design- a feast for the senses!

  4. Wow I loved seeing your process...I am amazed you saw the monkey...I saw an elk and a rabbit in the third cool how we all see different pictures in the paint!! I LOVE your monkey and agree the layers are truly what give us substance and depth...wonderful work my dear!

    Hugs Giggles

  5. Es ist toll zu sehen wie dein Bild entstanden ist.
    Es macht eine wirkliche Metamorphose durch.
    Der Affe ist großartig, sein Mund und seine Augen machen ihn so lebendig. Ein tolles Bild!