Look Closer #6: The Kiss

I had so many challenges in the past year, I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to keep working on paintings bigger than 8×10″, but I still wanted to work on the Look Closer: Disability and Sensuality series, which I wanted to be on 20×24″ canvas.

I also wanted to borrow compositions from famous paintings but use people with disabilities in them. I decided to try to work on a piece inspired by Gustav Klimt’s famous The Kiss.

The Kiss by Gustav Klimt, 1908

Of course, I could never match Klimt’s work but it’s such a well known piece, that I thought I could use the composition as a statement on the passion all people feel, no matter their physical state. Klimt used gold leafing, but I stuck to gold and yellow paint.

I worked on layering, color blending, and small repetitive brush strokes so I would not get overwhelmed by the size of the canvas (which is really not that large) or my own insecurities about painting. It took over a month and my painting went through many changes, but after about 2 months I’ve finished it.

I chose to keep the figures and wheelchair simple, and let the emotion of all the bright colors carry the painting.

Look Closer: The Kiss by Joy Murray

I kept the wheelchair structure very minimalistic, but obvious I hope. I wanted it to blend in with the figures
The Kiss by Joy Murray, detail

What do you think?

Here are the other pieces in the Look Closer series.

Look Closer: Her Secret Colors by Joy Murray
Look Closer: The Color of Air by Joy Murray
Look Closer: She Unlocked her Door by Joy Murray
Look Closer: Ever After by Joy Murray
Look Closer: Desire Seemed to Expand by Joy Murray

~~~

Thanks for reading my blog. Feel free to share it, if you’d like.

This blog is brought to you by the generosity of people who support me on Patreon , buy my art, and who support me in so many different ways. 

If you’d like to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal

Cards and prints on some of my art is available on Redbubble.  

You can subscribe to this blog by email in the link below this post.

If you find a typo, let me know, and I’ll send you a postcard.

Look Closer #6: The Kiss
Look Closer #6: The Kiss
Look Closer #6: The Kiss
Look Closer #6: The Kiss
Look Closer #6: The Kiss

Look Closer #4

(In my last blog post, I talked about getting caught in the rain and my power wheelchair breaking down. I wanted to let readers know that the repairs are in process. I’ve also managed to get the proper paperwork done for a new cushion for the chair. It should all be taken care of by November, but I hold out hope that they’ll at least get the chair running before then, even if it’s November before the new cushion arrives.)

This blog post is to announce the completion of the 4th painting in my Look Closer: Disability and Sensuality series. With these paintings I hope to show that a person can be in transition, in great pain, and have major body transformations but still find themselves filled with elation and sensuality.  How we express sensuality changes, but it doesn’t cease.

This one stretched my skills and challenged me in new ways. I didn’t have any idea what I was going to call it, which is unusual for me. I usually have a whole story or working title from the beginning.

This one is based on a former neighbor of mine, a young woman who had a below the knee amputation after a car wreck several years before I met her. She was a lovely and vibrant person and I enjoyed seeing the ease with which she made her way in the world.

I started with sketches, trying to capture the liveliness with in a still figure.

I’m not used to representing architecture — stairs, doors. It’s not important to me that I paint things realistically, but I wanted a basic sense of perspective in this, so I started with a grid. (I painted over a failed painting.)

But once it was all gridded and measured out, I immediately went outside the lines.

It was interesting and often frustrating working on her facial expression, what to shade, how far to stray from reality. I also changed the design of the prosthetic leg several times. There are a lot of really dynamic prostheses now. I wanted hers to both stand out and to blend in.

I also wanted to capture the light and energy of sunset — light on one side of the porch, shadow on the other. And to somehow show the energy of yearning.

Almost there

And then, after consulting several people on it, I finished it up and titled it.

She Unlocked Her Door, by Joy Murray, 20×24″ Acrylic paint and ink on stretched canvas

Although it took a long time to finish this, I enjoyed this painting and am growing to appreciate my own style more and more. I hope the wonkiness adds to the energy I’m trying to convey.

I’d hoped to have this series finished by the end of the year, but I don’t see that happening now. I think it will be next summer before they are all done, but it’s not something I want rush.

These are the first three paintings:

Ever After by Joy Murray
The Color of Air by Joy Murray
Desire Seemed to Expand by Joy Murray

What do you think?

~~~

Thanks for reading my blog. Feel free to share it, if you’d like.

This blog is brought to you by the generosity of people who support me on Patreon , buy my art, and who support me in so many different ways. 

If you’d like to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal

Cards and prints on some of my art is available on Redbubble.  

You can subscribe to this blog by email in the link below this post.

If you find a typo, let me know, and I’ll send you a postcard.