Acrylic - Blue Butterfly

April 20, 2012
It's been a while that i have prepared the pages of my sketchbook to participate in the Sketchbook Project 2012 - Limited Edition but haven't  had the chance to really work on it. Now that the clock is ticking for the postmark, I have to finish it with all i have in mind as soon as possible :s

I had the idea of this sketchbook being an inspirational one on. So I am going to paint a theme for the quotes that i find interesting. For pages 1 & 2 I have prepared a video and will be uploading it in a few days :)

Pages 3-4 are going to be about Beauty, Strength and Resistance:

" We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, But rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty."..... by Maya Angelou

I got inspired by a very beautiful photo that I saw on Flickr captured by Anthony Pope; The mixture of colors and the composition was exactly what came to my mind when I read the above quote. Take a look at his wonderful picture:


I changed the butterfly to "Eastern Tailed Blue Butterfly" which is my favorite and was more obvious on the already blue background.

Here is a list of all the colors that used for this painting.

sketchbook- Page 3-4 - Paint colors used

Yes, tea was a must have winking

Step 1: As usual it started with a pencil sketch. Then with a pallette knife I applied modeling paste all over the flowers and the butterfly.

sketchbook - Page 3-4 - Step 1

I wanted it to have some embossed or raised effect. Modeling paste needs a little bit practice to get the hang of it but when dry it is same as canvas and absorbs the paint very well. Here is a close up:
sketchbook - Page 3-4 - Step 1 - closeup

You can see the sketch lines. for the middle of the flowers, while the paste was wet I drew lines with the tip of a skewer. 

Step 2 :  When the paste was dry. I painted all the backgound with a torquoise color (Cobalt Teal)
sketchbook - Page 3-4 - Step 2
The circles are the effect of Alcohol drops. Unfortunately at the end they are not that obvious, but I gotta let my thoughts flow tongue
 Step 3 : With "Primary Blue" & "Primary Cyan" I painted over the background. I used finger tips, brush and beauty sponges to apply the paint randomly. Then removed some of the blue with a wet spong to reveal some of the torquoise color of the first layer.

"Primary Yellow" was applied all over the flowers. when the first layer of yellow was dry, petals were painted partially with an orange mix of primary yellow and primary red. I also applied the orange to the centres of the flowers but in a curvy shape to give it a more 3D effect.

sketchbook - Page 3-4 - Step 3
For the stems, Primary blue and yellow was mixed to have a green shade. but also some "Golden Green" was used randomly to give each stem a different shade of green and make some parts darker.
Step 4: to finish the flowers, I added some darker shade of orange in curve shape to the bottom of the centres of the flowers and a few dots of Carbon Black.

sketchbook - Page 3-4 - Step 4

Step 5: Then with a spong i dabbed Portrait Tone, Raw sienna, Titanium and Burnt Umber around the flowers and on the page number 4. Fingers are great help to move the paint around.

When it was the time to paint the butterfly, first layer was a pale blue (very wet wash) of Teal. then I started from the tip of the wings with Carbon and gradually added the primary blue. the tip of the wings had to be white, this was painted after the second layer was dry. Tow red dots and two white dots in the middle...and we are done with the painting.
sketchbook - Page 3-4 - Step 5

Used a paper butterfly and with shimmer ash color and teal randomly stamped on page 4 and wrote the quote at last.
sketchbook - Page 3-4 - Step 6
Did you know that eastern tailed blue butterflies like to eat asters, clover plants and wild strawberries?
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