I wanted to share with you guys a series I just finished (literally, just completed the last one yesterday) from concept sketch to final painting. The concept designs I created are listed below followed by the final paintings. The series is called the "Totem Series" and I use a watercolor base with a little bit of copic marker, pencil pastel, gel pen and fine liner for added definition. The actual painting sizes are all 16" x 20" on fabriano cold press 300lb watercolor paper.
Now, let me inundate you with as many pictures I can first - then give you the analysis My Concept Sketches:
Wolf: Finished Paintings:
I always find the difficult part to be actually articulating what I'm trying to convey in my pieces. I'm good at pictures not words, so bare with me as I attempt to explain myself here.
For me, most of the time I don't know how a piece will turn out, much less three pieces that are supposed to be unified in some way. I've done a series before (which I will post later) that was pretty easy to identify and interpret based on the whimsical themes I used. Here it's a bit more serious and I find it pretty interesting to see all three together.
In a general sense, the series is a conversation on the internal struggle for balance within ones self on a spiritual and mental level.
In "Goat Totem", the depiction of the goat dominates the composition and the girl is an afterthought. She is flat, as if she is being absorbed; her ear the only part left visibly human. This represents someone who is influenced to hold onto an idea or concept at the cost of themselves. There is no sense of self, only this thing
, this "Totem".
In the "Crow Totem", The woman is presumably looking off into the distance with a black crow on her shoulder. At first glance, you would assume this is a take on the classic concepts of devil vs angel; you can clearly see the woman being influenced by the crow and crows mean bad things right?
Within the themes of this series, however, I use the crow as a symbol based on the context of spirit animals or guides; the woman is gaining a higher perspective. Her eyes are opening to possibilities. She's looking towards the future. This piece is meant to show a sense of transition.
Lastly, we come to the "Wolf Totem". The woman is wearing a wolf hood, one eye piercing the viewer in complete confidence. The wolf and woman are two halves of one whole; they both share an eye and a canine tooth. The wolf's galaxy eye is a representation of the "third eye" which provides perception beyond ordinary sight, such as intuition or "gut instinct". With this piece I wanted to convey a sense of strength, balance and acceptance of all the unique pieces of oneself [good and bad].
Whew, I hope that makes sense!
Thanks for taking the time to check out my stuff!