To begin a new painting I always start by selecting the colors. Then, I think about tools and methods and get started. It’s always fun. Once in a while I like that first layer so much, I consider stopping right there.


©2016 Sally Erickson, Bend, OR

Encountering the Finish at the Beginning

With my last series of paintings, Forest Dance, I had a difficult time adding anything else to the first layer. There was blending of colors, texture from my palette knife and a pleasing design created from the strokes. What else did it need? I waited and waited for ideas to come to me about improving what I had.

Finally, after a few days, I decided to add some details with a bold white accent. I went on from there to add different accents and details to each of those four paintings. (See them here.) Let’s see how this new painting is going after that initial beginning.


Red, Orange and Yellow Need Shine?

Since the colors were bright and blended nicely with some texture showing, too, I decided that some shiny pearlescent paints might be just the thing to add some details. I tried bronze, golds, and some coppers. When I finished, all I had was shine, but not much improvement in the painting. Oops. (I didn’t take a shot of this edition. Guess I already knew it wasn’t going to stay that way long.)

What about some more orange? I would use it to tone down the shiny. And I did. Here you can see how that came out.

©2016 Sally Erickson, Bend, OR

Back to the Red Painting

What a fun week, almost starting over with lots of red, then trying different things almost daily. I didn’t document them all, but I did catch a few different steps. Here you’ll see the purple I added to the pearlescent rose. After that was some coral around that purple-pink area to tie it to the red-orange areas. And finally I mixed up some medium pearlescent orange and applied it with a palette knife over the red curvy strokes on the right.

©2016 Sally Erickson, Bend, OR

Adding purple to pearlescent rose.

©2016 Sally Erickson, Bend, OR

Adding coral to connect the purple-rose to the red and orange.

And, it’s a wrap!!

And, it finally told me it was complete. The red painting embellished with purple, pink, coral, and pearlescent orange makes a bigger splash now than that first layer I loved at the beginning.

I had lots of fun after I recovered from the second layer. My collection of pearlescent paints looked like a good idea, but I discovered it was just too much. And, I saw that as soon as I completed the last color – on top of all the other layers, that those underneath metallics made this painting fantastic.

Here it is. It’s now on my Art Gallery store. I named it “Red on Holiday.” Click on the painting photo to see more final images in the store.

©2016 Sally Erickson, Bend, OR Red, orange, yellow painting on art board.


Please feel free to give me your opinion of what I did and how it came out in the comments at the bottom of this page. Thanks for reading.