Monday, November 10, 2014

Using my flower photos for inspiration

I have been working lately on floral abstract paintings and I often work from photos.
I use the photos to pull color and line but then work hard at not painting realistic flowers, just the reminder of what a flower is like.

"Tea with mabel" 36 x 36 oil on can vas by Kerry steele

"Lilies and lipstick" 12 x 12 oil on canvas by Kerry Steele

Pinterest can be a great source but I wanted certain flowers photographed in various but specific ways. 

These are the result of an afternoon with my Nikon 5200 and just one 85W CFL Full spectrum bulb.

My goal was to capture the gentle, curving folds of the petals, as well as, the edges and how they look from different angles. 

I am always inspired by the subtle color changes in leaves and petals. The shadows they create fascinate me too.

The ruffle-like carnation and waxy lemon leaf are interesting juxtapositions of texture. As I photograph the individual blooms I keep a mental note of colors I might use.

Some flowers, like this spider mum, don't appeal to my sensibilities in terms of color but do have me thinking about shapes. I use Adobe Lightroom to play with the colors.

Feeling sufficiently inspired by single blooms I moved on to other compositions of color, texture and shape. I like asymmetrical and angled compositions. They lead to paintings like "Delphinium", that recently sold.

I am really pleased with this batch of inspiration.


Christina Baker said...

Oh my goodness these are just beautiful Kerry! I can totally see what they inspire your work. I think you are great behind the camera as well.

The Pink Pagoda said...

I always love your floral abstracts. These are gorgeous! I love the photos as well. Don't you love Lightroom??!

Alison Fauls said...

Love “Tea with Mabel” and hearing about how you find inspiration. Such a great post!

Karena Albert said...

Very inspiring and it shows in your paintings Kerry!

The Arts by Karena

Kristen @ Pursuing Vintage said...

The photos and the paintings are both beautiful! Thanks for sharing your inspiration.

Elizabeth Day said...
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Elizabeth Day said...
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Kim said...

I love seeing/hearing about your inspirations. And the result is always fabulous!

Elizabeth @ The Little Black Door said...

I'm pleased too. More than pleased. These are beautiful Kerry!!

Susan Skelley said...

You ARE really good with camera! Beautiful photos AND paintings!