Circle Painting

You guys, it’s still 100 degrees in LA, and I have a cold. It’s very…confusing. And also really unpleasant. I hope I’m nearing the end of it (really really really hope), but at least in the meantime I have color therapy. I have been working on this painting, circle by circle, for a few weeks, and I am so happy to have it ready to hang! The idea came to me after we saw a lot of beautiful Kandinsky paintings at LACMA–I suddenly became obsessed with shapes.

I wanted to try to use my circle cutter on canvas, but with a pencil instead of a blade. (They’re not at all expensive, and you can get one here.) I started tracing overlapping circles in all different sizes, and I loved them so much I just kept going, all the way to the edges of the canvas.

I wasn’t sure how smoothly it was going to go with paint, though. There are an awful lot of fine lines.

I was really happy to find, though, that with a very small brush and a steady hand, it can be done! By the way, I just used simple acrylic paint from the craft store here–nothing fancy.

It was really fun to play with the colors and watch this painting take shape. It made me think a lot about my Dad, who does these incredibly precise and beautiful paintings of buildings–lots of lines, lots of color.

I learned a few things along the way, for sure. It makes it a lot easier to go over the outline of the circle first, so those edges are taken care of, and then you can just fill in the color. A minimal amount of paint is optimal here, so you don’t get blobs along the lines. Also, I found that every color really needed mixing with white, even if only a tiny bit, to give it some opacity.

I am really kind of bummed that it’s finished, since I enjoyed working on it so much–that’s the sure sign of a good project! I might just make another one.

I think I will hang this one next to my pinwheel painting, to further add to the color explosion in the living room. You can never have too much color, or at least I can’t!

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