The Christmas Ornament Painting Process

Here are the steps that I took for my painting The Christmas Ornament for the Non-Christmas Show at Fountain Street Church.

The Christmas Ornament

The Christmas Ornament is watercolor and gouache on cold press watercolor paper. 7.25″ x 5.25″. The show ran from November 28, 2012 through January 4, 2013.

The “rules” of the show were simple; we had to use an animal allegory that somehow related to Christmas and a few neon colors here and there would be nice as well.

With that information I did a few thumbnail drawings (normally I do many many more thumbnails) and when I picked the composition and idea that I liked the most, I did a larger pencil preliminary of the image. I took many reference photos of a scene I set up using a christmas ornament, christmas lights, a “mini-christmas tree” aka a clipping from a pine tree, attached to a pop bottle top using a paperclip (the mice would have put this together), and some of my mother’s collectible mice figurines. After that, I looked for some reference pictures of mice. I projected my drawing onto the paper; drew a faint outline with pencil and taped the paper to a piece of wood with painters tape. I applied some thin washes of watercolor and the paper began to bow. I then sought out a different method of keeping it flat.

The watercolor paper I used wasn’t very thick and it buckled quickly so I decided to use the ‘popsicle method‘ found on HandPrint to stretch my paper. I don’t have any popsicle sticks so I used a wooden paint stir stick. I cut it on the band saw into smaller pieces. If you want to know more about this method of stretching paper (which I recommend you learn how to do) go here.

This painting was originally going to be just a watercolor painting but I decided that it needed the brightness you can achieve using gouache. Boy, am I glad I decided to add gouache to the painting!  It immediately started to ‘pop’ after I added gouache. I even tried mixing watercolor paint with white gouache (which is not that uncommon).

Thumbnail Sketches

These are the thumbnail sketches for the painting. The idea I decided to use was two mice, a father or mother mouse, with their child mouse, enjoying each others company and looking at the christmas ornament (hence the name of the painting). We are peeking in at them through a hole in the wall. They made a christmas tree using part of a branch and a pop bottle cap and a paperclip. They dragged some of the christmas lights from in the room into their home.

Pencil Preliminary

The pencil preliminary measures 5.5″x4″.

Mice Reference

Mice reference photos.

Process 1

The Christmas Ornament early in the early painting stages. Here you can see the paint stir sticks I used to stretch the paper.

Process 2

The Christmas Ornament later in the painting stages. Note how flat the colors are at this stage. I believe I had not added gouache to the painting yet. The gouache really darkened the darks and lightened the lights.

If you are interested in purchasing this painting, please contact me. I’d love to do business with you.

3 thoughts on “The Christmas Ornament Painting Process

  1. Hi admin do you need unlimited content for your website ? What if you could copy content
    from other websites, make it pass copyscape test and publish
    on your site – i know the right tool for you, just
    search in google:
    kisamtai’s article tool

  2. Because of skilled, extremely knowledgeable craftsmen, their top quality work, our firm is recognized and possesses lots of regular customers. Our team decide on an private approach to each consumer and also expertly execute any kind of purchase in many instructions, featuring home remodelling, repair work of workplaces, residences, manors, homes and for a long time we give companies as well as a guarantee on the quality of the job done.
    Our professionals will constantly find out about the current updates to deliver the client with new designs as well as products. Given all this, the end result is actually a qualitative outcome: the repair service of houses, the fixing of offices, houses, rental properties, cottages.

    General Contractor Manhattan
    Some of the principal tasks of our provider is actually the specific building and construction of cottages, lodge and communities, the repair and renovation of condos and offices, the development and also implementation of exclusive interiors.

    The building and construction of homes and cottages offered through our company is actually performed specifically utilizing laboratory-tested and eco-friendly products. Making use of new bodies to develop items allows you to quickly and successfully create residences of any kind of design and also level of its complication.

    Some of the primary activities of the firm is actually the repair work of offices and non-residential facilities. Modern equipment, a workers of experienced as well as extremely qualified professionals, strong and tried and tested throughout the years cooperation with subcontractors, versatile rates policy allows our team to properly reply to the desires of our consumers, delivering them different repair possibilities. Straight exposure to makers and suppliers of property products permit our team to give them to the Client at really desirable costs.
    We offer modern construction of homes as well as houses, accomplished qualitatively and also on schedule. Any type of design in which you want to develop the future structure, our designers will have the ability to personify, following your wishes. The simplicity as well as quality of the shaped efficiency are going to be actually shared by a timeless type that carries out not call for a lot advertising and marketing because of its popularity. Rusty, columns, fretwork always just emphasize the appeal of a home incomplete within this design.

    The development of properties as well as cottages designed through our firm is carried out exclusively using laboratory-tested and also green components. The use of brand-new systems to produce items permits you to promptly and also effectively build homes of any type of design as well as level of its difficulty.
    Renovation of a property, any kind of structure or property starts with a survey of establishments, estimations as well as a reconstruction task. A extremely important aspect in the restoration project is actually not merely the task of a completed restored structure or property. A lot more significant is actually the process …

    When making a project for rebuilding works, it is actually needed to take into consideration the appearance of the structure in order that your original suggestions carry out certainly not breach the consistent architectural appeal of the building. Just before the begin of repair work, you need to have to receive a unique order for the job. Do you want to rebuild a exclusive residence, structure or property or even renovate a home structure? Our company will aid you along with the shipment of the best components!
    Our profile page is actually the repair and also repair of storage facility and commercial properties, fridges, office as well as office buildings, an rise in manufacturing room via the institution of extra overlap in skyscrapers, through the installment of big floors or even installment of floor shafts and also the installment of upreared metal properties on them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *