Dragons Over Her Shoulders

Dragons Over Her Shoulders – Oil Painting 12×16 by Winifred Whitfield

I thought this lovely lady and my dragon bench would look splendid together. I featured a photo this bench in my recent “home gallery” post but I’ve never painted it before. I would often look at this bench and would think “not today” even if had been captured in a reference image. It was actually less stressful to paint than I imagined. Her portrait, on the other hand, posed the usual portrait painting challenge. In every painting there is something to be learned and I enjoy each new experience. Hope you enjoy. Winifred

Girl in Vintage Chair

Girl in Vintage Chair 12×16 Oil Painting by Winifred Whitfield

She wore black jeans and a black tee shirt when I photographed her. I allowed her to pose herself and I’m glad I did. The aspect of the pose I find most endearing is her arms. I never would have positioned them as such but they’re perfect – the elongated arms flowing into the interestingly interlaced tapered fingers. I also didn’t envision this painting style – for sure. There is a class I wanted to take. It will be taught by Valerie Collymore, quite an amazing impressionist painter. Her class is entitled “Renoir Like” – but sadly for me – it’s full. I decided I would paint my own “Renoir Like” portrait but my imagination took over the process and this painting took on a life of it’s own, determining color, texture and abstractions as it evolved. I’m glad things happened as they did. After all, I will always be better at painting “Winifred Like”. Hope you enjoy. Winifred

Venice at Night – The Gathering

Venice at Night – Gathering, Oil Painting 12×16 by Winifred Whitfield

Often, if not all the time you’ll see groups of people gathered in the many narrow paths and streets of Venice, Italy. At night, this is an even more striking as they are lit by golden window light. Add rain and you add shimmer to the darkened silhouettes. Umbrellas don’t play a dominant role in this painting but they are present. Hope you enjoy. Winifred

Woman with Umbrella Oil Painting

Umbrella and Blue Sky Oil Painting 8×10 by Winifred

It was a blue sky day with intense sun and she shielded herself from it as she left my home gallery. I took a few casual photos which I might use – especially since she held an umbrella and we do enjoy paintings with umbrellas don’t we.

Peaches in Sunlight 8×8 Oil Painting by Winifred Whitfield

I have fresh peaches at home – though I didn’t make an effort to give this painting the specific texture and color of peaches. I just wanted to play. I think you think they’re apples. The color is a bit more peachy in the actual painting – but still not exactly. Making interesting brush marks was my focus and I accomplished that. This was a fun painting. It’s Friday. Have a wonderful weekend. Winifred

Candlelight in Venice Cafe

Candlelight in Venice Cafe, 12×12 Oil Painting by Winifred Whitfield

From time to time, over the past 4 years, I’ve viewed the reference photo I took and used for this painting. Often I felt it far too complex for me to paint – or at least, I didn’t want to work that hard. I did love the shapes of the chair backs and of course, the candlelight and the shadowy figures in the dark. Finally I decided I was ready and actually enjoyed the painting process very much. As always there is a change in painting content from that which existed in the photo but that’s to be expected. Hope you enjoy. Winifred

The Weight of the World

The Weight of the World – Figurative Oil Painting 11×14 by Winifred Whitfield

I painted this portrait during the time of the Tokyo Olympic Games. It portrays an emotion of the almost unbearable, whether it be sheer exhaustion, pain, sadness, defeat or even in the case of Simone Biles, “the twistees”. I’m sure this was an emotion that many of the athletes experienced at one time or another, as we all have in our lives.

As far as Simone Biles is concerned, I’m very proud of her decision to limit her performances in order to take care of mental and physical self. I hope we are all able to grow to to do the same.

I took many photos of this young lady with the intention of adding to my photo reference collection. I have many beautiful portraits of her. They are NORMAL beautiful portraits. Somehow, for reasons I cannot remember, I saw her hands go up to her face. It was not a pose I had created – not sure how it happened but I ask her immediately to repeat the action. I saw something special in it and more importantly I FELT something. Though I otherwise have some stunning photos of her, I immediately knew this was the pose I wanted to paint. It was so full of emotion. Hope you enjoy. Winifred

Related Images:

Raising the Red Umbrella

Raising the Red Umbrella – Oil Painting 9.5×17 by Winifred Whitfield

I textured my panel before I began this painting. I made a modest attempt to bear in mind the shape of the figurative elements so the texturing wouldn’t look completely crazy!

There was no umbrella showing in my reference photo though I knew she held one and so with a few expressive red lines, an umbrella was created. When people have seen this painting, they thought it referenced a far away exotic country. The fact is, I took the reference photo of a friend returning from a celebration. She was walking right in front of me, in the middle of the concrete street, with cars on the edge of the road and houses in front of her, right here in Poulsbo, Washington.

I’m enjoying living in a gallery. Many friends and neighbors have visited. It’s quite enjoyable when they do. Call first. 360.779.1375. If you don’t know about the gallery, please see my previous post. I hope to see you in the near future. Have a great day.

Girl with Starfish

Girl with Starfish 16×20 Oil Painting by Winifred Whitfield

I took the reference photo for this painting probably 17 or 18 years ago. It’s a photo, not even a digital file which I happened upon recently. This painting may get additional attention in the future – which is frequently the case, but for now, I’m just try to figure out how to get through the extreme and unusual heat expected over the next few days. Monday is projected to reach 106 – historic by far! The great majority of people in the Northwest don’t have air conditioning – including me. We would typically not use if for more than 1 or 2 days during the summer if the temperature reached the high 80’s or low 90’s for a couple of days. But as we’ve seen radical weather changes all over the country, it could happen here, again. Although no air conditioners are available right now – sold out, I think I’ll place an order believing that as early as it is in summer, I should plan for a duplicate performance. This is what’s on my mind today.

Fortunately, my studio is probably 20 degrees cooler than it is outside – so I’ll keep painting for sure. With care, keeping blinds and doors closed and fans going, I can maintain a reasonable comfort level and “power through” the heat. Sunday 99, Monday 106 degrees,Tuesday 90. Wednesday 81 or something like that, so I’ll manage. I’m a person who prefers 70 degrees so this heat will be challenging. Hope you’re comfortable wherever you are.