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Friday, August 18, 2017

Painting California State Senator Henry Stern

I am honored recently to have painted California State Senator Henry Stern for my Face of Malibu portrait project now in its' fifth year. Senator Stern was my 59th sitter painted for this series kindly featured in The Malibu Times each month with articles (by writer Homaira Shifa) about their life and what they thought about being painted.

I did the portrait sketch of this very busy senator in a single two hour sitting and am very grateful he made the time for me.

Senator Stern is the first millennial elected to the California State Senate and we covered a lot of ground conversationally during the sitting. I wish you could have been a fly on the painting wall.

Please read more about this inspiring environmental lawyer, now a Senator, with a very bright political future ahead of him.  I feel the Gold State, us Californians,  are in very good hands.

click here_to read Senator Stern's  life story by the wonderful Homaira Shifa.

The Face Of Malibu will have a solo show at Malibu City Hall this Fall in conjunction with The Malibu Cultural Arts' Committee. I paint my 60th sitter next week! Stay tuned.

California State Senator Henry Stern
Single life sitting
For The Face of Malibu by Johanna Spink
A Special Time...Thank You Senator Stern


Portrait In Progress







Sunday, July 23, 2017

American Art Collector Magazine



Thank you to American Art Collector Magazine and writer John O'Hern for including my artwork in this article geared to art collectors called "The Essence of Being. On new stands this August.



Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Taking Risks Is Risky?

Just finished up this new large format palette knife to add to my building  collection of now twelve started at the  beginning of this year, all painted from life in two sittings-  and all 36 x36". Some friends of mine have sat for me along with some professional models, but even more excitingly, people I have just met in my hometown walking on the street so to speak.

I love painting people from life who are completely new to the experience and I  think it makes me paint better.

The large format super bright coloration via palette knife has been quite an extraordinary exploration within my portrait world - and like nothing I have done before. At times I have felt I really must stop and go back to what is safe. But exploring makes you learn, grow, and nurture, yes,  independence from art formulas that artists can get stuck in when they start selling their art to collectors. They get known for a certain 'look' and that is what they have to keep producing so their collector base doesn't get confused and head for the hills.

Taking risks is risky.

But something keeps driving me forward to continue perhaps thanks to great feedback from some very kind folks in the most surprising places.

Here is my latest finished today in time for July 4th Independence Day in America.

"Independence"
By Johanna Spinks
36 x 36"
Available through Saachi Online
click here
In Situ
Who says you can't hang paintings on patios?

The second of two life sittings via palette knife. Thank you as always to the beautiful Lynette.



Monday, May 29, 2017

Got The Blues?

Shades of complimentary orange and blues...I met Chris as he was leaving a wine bar wearing this really great hat. I knew he had a really great face to paint so I approached him to sit for me. I wasn't disappointed. A few weeks later he came into my studio for two sittings, and this is what we created -probably my favorite large portrait so far this year. 36x36" via my palette knife.

Thank you Chris.
"Steel"
By Johanna Spinks
36x36"
Oil on canvas, via palette knife
For purchase at Saachi Online
gohere

In situ...what a beautiful wall.

Painted in two life sittings. Thank you Chris!  What a great young man.
In progress...end of first sitting

Friday, May 26, 2017

I Love My "Job"!

Beautiful sitters, inside and out, give me such joy to paint.

Thank you to lovely Paula. I enjoyed working with you on this commission so much,  painting beautiful you and  the beautiful Malibu light. Did I mention beautiful enough?

Recent Commission
By Johanna Spinks

Did I mention I love my job? The portrait presentation. 

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Neon Lit Palette Knife Journey?

My journey this year painting large portraits  via a palette knife continues. Here is my most recently completed one with the lovely Amina done in two sittings of about three hours.

I am surprised - and challenged - by what is coming off the canvas. It is so different from anything that has come before in my creative journey  but I also know I must continue to see what develops. I also know I have been leading up to these neon large format palette knives for a while.  

I started painting portraits with a knife about four years ago in my non-commissioned work. I started exploring the neon color, lots of drips, about two years ago in my back grounds. 

My goal is to make these large one look really abstract closeup. Just dabs of unconnected paint. But view from a distance, they read as a whole. 

Hope you enjoy!
"The Coral Earring"
36x36"
By Johanna Spinks
Oil on canvas via palette knife
Available for purchase at Saachi Online
Go here

Two life sittings. Here is the then end of the first one. I'm happy if I have got the eyes done as to me they are the most important part of the painting. 
In situ, pretty as a picture
Close-up, trying to leave as much of that original toned pink as I can, laying cool colors over the top. Mostly. 
Coral earring.




Monday, May 8, 2017

Painting a Public Demo Life Sketch - Step By Step

Honored to be invited by Les Boudoirs Boutique, a luxury lingerie store in California, to do a Mother's Day strawberries and champagne event, doing a painting demo of the lovely Amina in a gorgeous corset.

Some good friends in the audience took some step-by-step pictures which I thought I would share to show my demo process. So here they are!

Thank you to Les Boudoirs Boutique, my lovely model Amina, and all who attended.

http://lesboudoirs.com


"Les Boudoirs to Degas"
SOLD
18x24"
By Johanna Spinks
It always feels good at the end.
The Pose: Who can go wrong painting the beautiful Amina in a lovely Les Boudoirs corset?

The start. Quick charcoal lines to loosen up on a toned board just like Degas and Lautrec used. 

Gestural drawing to capture the movement of the figure. Trying to say a loose as string.

Off to paint we go, blocking in light and dark side of forms. Thinking solid forms!

Working up the elements, knowing  I have things pretty much in place now, and the corset will be icing on the cake. Much easier to paint for me than the body and face. I know at this point the demo is going to be fine.

Blocking in features of face, keeping them loose and pushed back. One can't paint a fully developed  portrait and a figure in just three hours. Something has to give. In this case, the face is kept loose and sketchy through to the end. 





Close-up: Oh, what fun. I added some new drawing lines in to complete the sketchy feel.