Thursday, January 19, 2012

Valentine Witches revisited

About 10 years ago, maybe nine, I did the painting above on 16 x 20 stretched canvas -- the photo above is not high res but you can tell what it looked like though the colors are muted because of the lighting. I really love that "winter sky" palette -- the pinkish cold tint as the sun sets, and all of the pastel ice cream shades that I associate with it. As much as I love dark and gothic colors, I also like these shades. And for some reason I really, really love "Candyland" images of heart and stripes all among the snow. So, whatever your thoughts are about Valentine's Day, that whole set of images really appeals to me.

And most of all it's an excuse to paint fancy dresses! My witch paintings are always little fantasies of dresses I want to wear. And yes I do wind up making a lot of dresses like that. Stripes and hearts -- and bustles, and bodices, oh my! I haven't made any like that in awhile since my size has been fluctuating the past couple of years but I will always have a strong longing to wear bustles, petticoats and bell sleeves.

For instance, this Simplicity Pattern for Alice in Wonderland and the Queen of Hearts really embodies what I want out of a dress! I have this pattern, so we'll see what happens.

Since I wanted to recapture this image now that I can get a high-res scan of it, I did a 9 x 12 version of the same approximate image. Now you can see how bold and bright the colors should be, though I had to cluster the main parts of the image in the middle. I also wanted to be able to make prints of the image so I wanted something easier to make into an 8 x 10.

This painting is available on Etsy right now.

The snowy season won't be around long though (and admittedly I am writing from a place where it was 73 degrees and I was out in short sleeves today) so my tube of white paint will get a break soon. Even though I was in no danger of seeing "the white stuff" this winter I can enjoy its aesthetic a lot more when I don't have to shovel it. But bare trees and blankets of white on the forest floor will always be beautiful!


  1. Love these! I didn't know you sewed also. These dresses are gorgeous (what girl wouldn't want to wear them?); it's so cool that you can bring them to life!

  2. Thank you! I haven't been able to sew as much recently because I don't have a sewing machine locally but it used to take up quite a lot of my time. :) I have a huge stash of fabric for when I get back into it!

  3. I just saw this post over on craftgawker and had to let you know that your lovely painting is alive and well (and quite cherished) here in Baltimore! I bought this beauty from you ages ago on eBay and was totally taken aback to see it whilst flipping through crafty goodness this evening. I'd be happy to send you a few high resolution photos in the morning if you like! I'm so glad to have found you after all this time and I can't wait to check out your Etsy shop! Best Wishes ~ Jen

  4. Jen, thank you so much for posting! What an amazing coincidence! I have always wondered how my paintings' owners enjoyed them, years later! :) I am glad the ladies have a good home with you! I'd love to see a couple pics of it, I can include them in my gallery - back in the day, the images I saved were pretty small. You can email me at artbysarada at yahoo com if you like! Speaking of Baltimore, my most recent painting was inspired by the tradition at Poe's grave there in your beautiful city. :)