I was commissioned in December, 2010 to create two oil on canvas, original, fine art paintings for a private residence. They had recently returned from their 2nd honeymoon trip to Italy and wished to celebrate their love and memories with two oil paintings that would be adjacent to their wine celllar and seating area.
I was instructed that the art had to depict the region, the feeling, one of the villages they explored and the B&B they stayed. Each painting was to be installed and then made in such a way that any viewer would be unable to find the canvas edge - the art was to be unframed and visually seamless with the wall. In this way I was able to complete the art in my Studio and should the Client ever move...the art work can be easily removed and taken with them to their next home.
The first painting is 5x10.5' and depicts the region of Tuscany, Italy...wine country and mountains. The sky went in first - always work back to foreground and then the distant Alps. I blocked for foreground structures and hills to aid in my placement of future sections. The details of the snow and shadow were a new avenue for me to play with and I enjoyed using deep blue and lavender hues for shadow.
It isn't often that I have a photographic record of the art progress. This was an exceptionally large piece and the process was fun to capture. I'm glad I have this record of it all.
With the completion of the distant Alps and background valley I was able to complete the tower basic colors and winery layout. The details began to slowly fill in the middle ground.
The larger art work completed and drying the smaller one shouldn't take so long. It was 4x7' and depicted a village the couple explored and the B&B they stayed at on several trips. Both paintings were to be created as views out through a broken foundation stone wall. I use this visual device often because it allows me to 'visually break' whatever faux treatment or solid wall color already on the wall and merge it to the faux stone foundation which when broken, provides incredible opportunities for perspective lines in the trompe-l'oeil illusion.
Background first....Complete the art and add a soft fog glaze to visually distance the scene from the foreground art. This background view; by itself...was gorgeous with the soft play of light and dark on the hill and farmhouse.
The wooden top header, keystone and stacked fieldstone sides with trompe-l'oeil depth and shadow all added to the effect of producing depth into the art.
Once the canvases are pasted to the walls, I use fiberglass joint tape and several light skim coats of plaster over the canvas edges to conceal and flush them to the wall surface. Trompe-l'oeil stone art is masked off and hand painted flush to the existing stone art in the painting.
I really like using fieldstone where I can. The unique shape of each stone is painted to fit like a jigsaw puzzle into the next and the stone wall itself becomes an intricate work of painted art illusion. Extra weathering details are added and the canvas edge is completely hidden.
Working on canvas is a thrill for me. My Studio allows me to be extra creative and in a controlled environment. It also provides my customer the freedom not to have me be working underfoot for long periods of time. Lastly...customers have the chance to work with me from any location. Reference material and contracts can be emailed and paintings can be shipped to anywhere in the world and installed with minimal instruction.