realism, representational

From Abstraction to Realism, Repeat

My three cat paintings from this past week

Well, I’ve done it again; I’m back to representational art, specifically challenging myself in how “real” I can get in painting cats. These are in the order I painted them and it seems each one is a little more realistic than the previous one, which I am pleased. I normally lean more towards painting abstracts with no recognizable objects. But I have to admit I’m drawn to painting realistically as well.

Cat #1

I appreciate both abstraction and realism — both in painting and in viewing. When I’m feeling like I need to express myself and get my emotions out so-to-speak, I love letting loose and allowing my intuition and emotions to guide every brushstroke in abstract work.

Cat #2

There are other times, however, that I like to paint representationally so I can brush up on and grow in my technical skills. So, to do this, most recently I have been painting these cats. Not only do I love cats, but I am finding that painting their fur is highly meditative.

Cat #3

I’m not sure how many cat paintings will be in this collection, but I do plan on painting more. They are so satisfying to paint. But I know that this realistic painting won’t last forever, as eventually I will want to “let loose” and abstractify again.

Something I put into practice with cat #3 was using a small script liner brush to get that tighter and more realistic look. In case you are a beginner, usually you achieve a looser look with larger brushes and a tighter look with smaller brushes.

Thank you for supporting me in my painting journey, and I’ll now leave you with my favorite cat of all, this one painted by my nine-year-old daughter. 🙂

P.S. Don’t forget, my “Relax + Paint” 7-week abstract painting course begins Oct 30th. Secure your spot at www.relax-paint.com.

abstract art, Evolution, intuitive art, style

Energy Series

I initially titled this series “Fearless,” but since then I’ve decided to change the title to simply “Energy.” These pieces feel very energetic to me, and I realized while painting these pieces that I would love for all my pieces to have an energetic feel to them.

Top Left: Pink Crush
Top Right: Dark of Night
Bottom Left: Hot Summer
Bottom Right: Lucky Ladybugs

Each of these pieces is size 12″ x 12″ and is on gallery wrapped canvas. I’ve even revised my artist statement based on this series. I have never felt so attached to pieces as I do these. I truly feel like they captured a piece of my soul and flowed out of me so naturally. I feel as though I hit a breakthrough with these pieces and evolved my style through these. My revised artist statement:

I consider myself an emotional painter, and early in my painting journey, I can remember being nearly paralyzed with fear in painting abstracts. Despite this fear, I knew abstract work was my true calling. In the beginning, it seemed as though I was afraid to unleash my emotions. I was also concerned with getting everything just “right,” which made it hard to even begin.

I eventually learned to express my emotions and rely on my intuition to guide each brushstroke. My paintings continue to evolve with each painting session. In my work, I focus on trying to create energy and embracing fearlessness as I try to experience something new with each painting. My pieces are representative of my emotional state at the time the piece is created.

Painting has saved me time and time again, but just as important as art is to my mental health, I love creating a feeling of energy with my paintings.

I am going to add more to this series, probably quite many, because I “feel” these pieces. I originally intended to release all the series together, but I decided to go ahead and post the first four. They can be purchased on my website.

Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook (facebook.com/loririvera.art) and Instagram (instagram.com/loririvera.art), and thank you for following my blog. 🙂

collection

“Fearless” Collection

Small sections of the first four pieces in my “Fearless” Collection

Sneak peek of my new series. These are small sections of the first four paintings in my “Fearless” Collection. Each piece will be 12×12, so these are smaller abstracts, and would look nice grouped together. I’m expecting to have 10-20 pieces in the collection.

There have been times I can remember being nearly paralyzed with fear in painting abstracts. I became so concerned with getting everything just so, that I didn’t know how to begin. Sometimes life in general is like that for me too, especially when I get busy. Sometimes I get so bogged down with things to do, that I can’t even get started because I don’t know where to begin. If you’ve ever felt this way, this collection is for you.

My “Fearless” collection is all about trying new things and being totally fearless of messing up. It’s about taking risks, meditating, and reaping the mental health benefits of painting. It’s about breaking out of the mold and changing and morphing into something totally new.

In this collection I am working with both palette knives and paintbrushes. I am totally new to painting abstracts with palette knives and it has been a freeing feeling. I love the texture they create on the canvas and simply the fact that the paint is thicker. The colors have a more saturated and rich look to them.

My subscribers to my mailing list get to see all of my collections before anyone else and also get first dibs. You can sign up at loririveraart.com.

abstract art, collection

New Collection Available: Overload

NEW COLLECTION! I am pleased to share the paintings in my new collection titled, Overload, that I began during the quarantine and just finished last week! Each of these is 24″x24″ (2 feet x 2 feet) and has gallery wrapped edges (composition extended to the sides).

This series was a blast to create as I explored a rainbow inspired shape in all of them, which was the only intentional aspect of the series. Other than incorporating the shape across all the pieces, I painted intuitively without a predetermined plan and painted from my emotions.

They are sold unframed, but since the sides are painted and they are wired on the back, they are ready to hang.

Each piece’s title was chosen based on life during a pandemic, how I was feeling at the time of the painting, or on my activities during the quarantine.

I plan to start my next series in about a month or so, but while I’m waiting to begin, I will be planning it out — deciding on the characteristic(s) that will tie the pieces together — whether it’s color, shape, texture, composition, or another unifying aspect. At this point I am leaning toward texture because I’d like to work on incorporating more texture into my pieces.

I hope you like seeing my work in collections rather than individually as I am moving away from creating individual standalone pieces, and moving towards working in series most all of the time. Even though each piece will be a part of a collection, they will still be sold individually, if desired. DM if you are interested in a piece or you can purchase on my website at loririveraart.com. It will definitely be difficult parting with these as I love how they all look together.

From left to right, top to bottom:

  1. Mortality
  2. Jitterbug
  3. After Midnight
  4. Coffee Binge
  5. Supersonic
  6. Reading Between the Lines
  7. Distance Between
  8. Cleanse
  9. In Overdrive

Below are the photos of individual pieces and I also show you how they might look in a room.

The edges of the pieces are gallery wrapped, as shown below.

Gallery wrapped edges

I hope you’ve enjoyed my most recent collection. I am looking forward to creating many more, and growing as an artist with each new collection.

If you’d like to see my future collections a week or more before everyone else, sign up for my mailing list on my website at loririveraart.com. Subscribers on my mailing list receive perks, such as being included in a monthly drawing for a miniature painting giveaway, seeing my new work before the general public, and access to exclusive promotions.

And lastly, you can also follow me on Facebook and Instagram.

Uncategorized

Canvas or Hardboard Panels, and Size?

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Day two of painting faces. I think I may start a series of fun female portraits like the ones on this page and I just hope I can stick with it and keep the series going. I painted these two today and they were so much fun. I tend to jump around a lot with my painting and I’m hoping to change that with my fun portraits. I want to be known for a style/subject matter. I know that is not a priority for everyone, but for me it is.

Right now I’m trying to decide if I want to keep the facial features somewhat consistent or vary them. I’m leaning towards varying the shapes of the eyes, nose, and mouth because I’m afraid all of my paintings will look a little too similar if I keep things consistent. Even today, though I have a different eye color, eyebrows, etc., they look a lot alike because I used same eye and mouth shape.

But the biggest dilemma right now is trying to decide what substrate to use for these paintings. I like both canvas and hardboard panels, although between the two I like the hardboard panels a bit better. The advantage of using canvas is that you don’t have to frame the finished piece. You can just add a wire to the back and hang as is. But I don’t want to leave the sides unpainted, and for some reason when I paint with oil, I hate painting the edges. The hardboard panels must be either framed when completed, or sit on a tabletop easel. However, since 9x13s are a standard frame size, they can be easily popped into a standard frame with the glass removed.

I’m also trying to decide what size to paint. I’ve been painting on 9×13 panels and that seems to be a good size. Not too small, but not so large that the price is high. At this size, they are affordable for a wide audience.

I am still deciding, but at this point I am leaning towards the hardboard panels. I like the fact that they are sturdy and easy to store. I also like the way the oil paint glides on the panels. Canvas can get holes poked through it so easily, and dented too. Sometimes I also don’t like being able to see the tooth of the canvas. I probably need to buy a bunch of panels from Blick Art again.

I used to paint just on canvas. Little did I know that branching out to other substrates would be such a dilemma. So many choices!

My question to my readers is what size painting do you typically buy? Also, do you have difficult choices to make in your chosen career?

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