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  • Writer's pictureKaaren Poole

Eclipse and Hare

I may be one of the few people in the US who remained unaware of today’s eclipse until just a day or two ago. Oddly, I’d been working on another piece with a night sky. What does this image bring to mind?

In my previous night sky piece—the one with the foxes—the moon was relatively small. So, I thought it would be a nice change of pace to have the moon really large. But a full moon, it seemed, would just be too much!

I don’t know that I’ve even really seen the moon like this, but it seemed to bubble up from somewhere that I’d seen a crescent moon with the rest of the orb dimly lit. Maybe it was at dusk or dawn. Anyway, I proceeded along those lines.

But as I look at it today, it makes me think “eclipse!” Yes, I know today’s eclipse will be a solar one, not a lunar one. But, still…

My initial purpose in creating this piece was to try painting a graded sky differently from how I painted the sky behind the foxes. In that piece, I used transparent colors for the sky  but it was quite challenging to get the color smooth. In fact, I wasn’t able to. The result was passable, though, especially with all the other stuff going on in that sky. Also, I painted sky over the entire surface, then went back and carefully paint over the fox and moon shapes with gesso to provide a base for painting the animals.

In this painting, I used opaque paints and painted around the hare and the moon. The opaque paints were easier to work with - it was easier to get a good even color and gradation, and also possible to paint around the hare and the moon without messing up the sky in the process. The benefit of painting around the hare and moon is that I didn’t have to transfer the outlines over the dark sky.

Transferring a line drawing over a dark surface requires a light color transfer medium. For the foxes, I tried several things before finally settling on white pastel pencil over the back of the tracing. But not everyone has a white pastel pencil, nor are they easy to acquire. Since I’m preparing to record an instruction video, that’s important. (NOTE: Saral makes a white transfer paper, but that’s not a supply more people have either. Plus, it’s rather waxy, which can be difficult to paint over.)

So, after finishing the sky and the moon, and then the hare herself, I just felt it needed something more. That ‘something more’ turned out to be the three crows flying across the moon and the dried grasses behind our hare.

I like to create pieces that don’t need frames, and this is such a piece. It’s painted on an 8” x 8” cradled wood board.

Still, I do usually like some form of visual frame, and for this one, I added a narrow, uneven band of glass bead gel all around the edge. Once it was dry, I dipped my fingertip in metallic silver paint then lightly brushed it over the glass bead medium. The paint only stuck to the tops of the glass beads, so gives the effect of tiny, uneven, silver dots. This is an effect I very much like and it’s a perfectly good reason, all on its own, to invest in this acrylic medium. It’s available from Golden and Liquitex, and I imagine it’s available in many other brands as well.

P.S. Notice the little trick with painting her whiskers. Where they're again a light background, like the moon, they're dark. On the other hand, where they're over a dark background, they're light.


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Judy Buskirk
Judy Buskirk
12 באפר׳

Emerging from you is a mystical river of creativity. The paintings thoughtfully ask what happened before this snapshot and what will happen after. Stories ... Your imaginative work calls forth stories.

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