Daub du Jour

My name is Marianne Plumridge. I am an artist of mythic fantasy works and fine art images. More of which can be seen at my website, 'MariannePlumridge.com', and also my main Blog, 'Muse du Jour'. These sites are in the links section of this page. This site began life as a painting a day blog in 2007. However that project has now passed, but I still find myself painting in that way. So this site will now be the showcase my new paintings as inspired by those previous efforts.

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Location: New England, United States

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Day 55

The Great Migration
(14x18", Oil) Price: $980.00

Okay, so I've been away for awhile. I got busy with business stuff, bad allergies, and painting THIS...

I've had this painting in mind since I saw the vacuum chamber nebula effects from the movie, THE FOUNTAIN last year. However, I only wanted to paint small uncomplicated pieces that weren't too demanding, so the more dedicated paintings fell by the wayside. Stress will do that to anyone's creativity. Things are improving, though.

The Great Migration took nearly ten days to complete, since I worked in extremely thin glazes and had to wait for each one to dry before doing the next. This is how I've always achieved luminosity in my paintings - whether I've been painting water or space, or just trying to achieve depth.

Stage 1 - Basic Tint. After gessoing and sanding back the canvas board, I began to tint the board with Burnt Sienna and French Ultramarine. I used the Sienna in the light spots where the nebula and other light bits are situated. The combined Ultramarine and Sienna created the luminous black of space. Let dry...

Stage 2 - Underpainting. This sets up for the whole composition and tone for the nebula and surrounding space. Still painting thinly, I use Permanent Rose, Alizirin Crimson, French Ultramarine, Titanium White, and a little Cadmium Lemon to lay in the nebula and nebula off shoot. This covers any patchy coverage from the initial tint layer: you need to layer 'transparent oil paint' to get the semi opaqueness of space or other scenes needing depth. Except for the white, the colours above are all varying transparent paints. Let dry...

Stage 3 - Layering. Continue to develop the last details, brights and darks of the nebula. Spatter some yellowy-white for stars. Blur those gently with a blending brush. Paint in some stars, and spatter some more. Nebula basically now finished. Let dry...

Stage 4 - Whale Stream. Using Cobalt Blue and a little Titanium White, glaze in the blue whale stream, and blur with a blending brush. Takes about half an hour, but takes 24 hours to dry.

Stages 5 & 6 - Painting Whales. I took my time choosing references and painting each whale into the stream. They needed to be transparent or semi-transparent, to work the way I wanted them to. Painted in a dolphin too!

Painting in glazes is time consuming and sometimes finicky. One problem is that the paint dries flat and patchy, so before beginning painting on each new layer, you have to use a soft brush to lightly wipe oil into the surface to make the whole image uniform and bring out the real colour. However, too much oil will drip through the new paint if you're not careful, and ruin the effect when it dries: so be vigilant and use the oil sparingly.

Well, the now finished painting is still a bit sticky from the oiling in process used in the last few layers, so it will now take a week or so to dry properly.

Meantime, I should get back to the usual painting practices until the next big inspiration hits...



Anonymous the said...


I am impressed by the balance of basically 2 colors used in this painting.
The blue, aside from just the color conveys water flowing, very important here.

I feel very green while looking/studying/appreciateing this work of art.


May 17, 2007 at 10:28 AM  
Blogger Marianne said...

Hi Ira,

Thanks for the nice comments. :-) I do like painting cosmic whales. Sorry if it makes you sea-sick.


May 17, 2007 at 11:38 AM  
Blogger Tom Kidd said...

Nicely done Marianne. Even thought these are strong colors it doesn't hit you over the head. The painting remains peaceful and calming.

May 19, 2007 at 11:52 PM  
Blogger Marianne said...

Thanks, Tom.

This idea has been bugging me for a long time, so I finally got my act together to paint it. I like simple. I have a hard time painting busy or complicated content. Yeah, I like the peaceful feeling I had when I was painting it.


May 20, 2007 at 11:29 AM  

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