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Art of the Day: Friday December 07, 2012

Christmas Blossom

- by Claudia Goodell

This week's theme: The Month of December

It's December. It's the month of holidays and gathering together. It brings us the Winter Solstice and the longest night of the year. December brings celebrations, light and laughter in the dark, cold winter. Perhaps this is why we choose to bring life into the places we dwell. It's an impulse that we have followed for over a thousand years. The flowers and evergreens remind us that even in the austere of winter there is life. Their beauty assures us that the days will lengthen and abundance will return.

Art: Christmas Blossom by Artist Claudia Goodell

About a week or so before Christmas my parents stopped by unannounced, which is a big deal since they never do this. I had been at their house previously and said I loved their Christmas cactus, so my Dad told my Mom they needed to go buy one for me and drop it off. It is such a beautiful plant, and when they brought it there were so many blooms, nearly 2 on every little point!

I quickly took many photos from different angles, and with varying light. Later I spent time examing them all and cropping until I decided on this composition. Next I put the photo in Adobe Photoshop and experimented with some different filters. I wanted to create a slight abstraction of the image.

This filtered photo became a great reference from which to paint the different shapes and values, allowing me to capture the essence of the flower and blooms. For the green leaves I used a palette knife so that I could show the texture and color striations in them. I used thinned paint for the top layers of the blossom to capture the transparency of the leaves.

This was a really fun piece for me because I owned the project from inception to execution. Creating it really pushed me to stretch my abilities.

Detail Images

Detail Image for art Christmas Blossom

Center detail

Detail Image for art Christmas Blossom

Left detail


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