Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Oh Winter!

My dear bloggers, I have been neglecting you! I'm sorry.

The Wintry weather here in Adelaide is getting to me.  It does get quite cold here.  I used to find it cosy, now I just get depressed.  My art studio is outside undercover, so I have to tough it out in this weather!

I also started two 50 x 60 cm paintings which went nowhere but the trash can.  I was able to save one because it was just a sketch but the other canvas, after numerous reworkings, had to go bye bye.

I find that it is virtually impossible for me these days with the way I am painting to change composition, if things are just - not quite right.  The initial sketch needs to be perfect from the start.  The reason for this is the marks the paint leaves on the canvas can usually not be undone, except with gross intervention (think hose and scourer).  I really hate doing that although sometimes it is necessary.  It is only when you are working in a loose abstract style that those imperfections don't seem to matter.

I also find myself contemplating oil paint quite a bit.  I played with oils a number of years ago but never really took to them.  They were messy to clean up and took a long time to dry.  If I were to start painting with oil, this would mean I would have to invest money into new art supplies and I haven't got the cash.  Maybe one day...

On a little high today because finally something went right and I am creating a work with a woman who has blue skin - something I have wanted to do for a long time but didn't want it to look too close to the traditional Hindu paintings of blue skinned Gods and Goddesses.  I will create a blog post about her soon as she is near finished.

I recently attended an ETSY market called the Queen of Harts at the Harts Mill District/Flour Shed in Port Adelaide.  This was a great day!  It was great to meet so many locals especially those who had previously bought my art though the shop Add Character, on Semaphore Road.

Now for an update on SALA (South Australian Living Artists Festival) happening in August.  I am very sorry to those who expressed excitement at the thought of me illustrating various tales from Women Who Run With the Wolves.  I am deeply in love with the book and so admire the author and would love to have embarked on this journey.  Unfortunately, time has gotten away from me.  This project will have to go on the back burner for another time, or else morph itself into something else I create in the future.

I have now created with the addition of the blue skinned princess, seven originals.  Two more will make 9 and that looks like a good solid basis for an exhibition to me.  So many hours have gone into creating these works.  I hope you love them.

Details for my SALA exhibition (see the event on my Facebook page):
Jane Carlisle and Sarah Donnell bring you "Woven", an array of artworks exploring fairy tales, folktales, women and magic.

Venue - Sweet Amber Brew Café
67A Semaphore Rd, Semaphore SA 5019

Opening night - 18th August 2017 6pm - 9pm
Exhibition runs - 18th August - 18th September 2017

Mark your calendar!

x Sarah

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Exciting New ETSY Store Now Open!

That's right folks, I have opened another fun ETSY shop. Why you ask? Well things were getting a bit sagnant around here (I opened my first shop in 2012) and I have been having trouble marrying my two styles...realistic (but stylised) and free, loose and Abstract.

I never fully abandoned abstract and feel very drawn to it at the moment. My two styles are so different, I decided the best thing to do would be to separate them out and not punish myself for trying new things (yes I have these wierd thoughts lol).

The result is sarahdonnellabstract and I am going to keep it stocked with quirky works including my deconstructed dolly series (use the section tab to navigate to original doll artworks).

Below are some images of what you will find in store. I hope you will love this range as much as I do...


Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Art Pendants Have Arrived!

The Rainbow Spirit

Alice in Wonderland

Winter Girl

These striking statement art pendants mean that you can wear your favorite Sarah Donnell artwork close to your heart!

Printed on exceptional quality Epson Premium Semigloss Photo Paper using an Epson R1900 Stylus Photo printer with UltraChrome Hi-Gloss 2 resin coated pigment inks, these tiny artworks are just as stunning as an actual art print!

They are embedded in stunning 30 x 40 mm ornate pendant settings and hang from dainty ball chains.

At only $35 AU each, I hope you love them as much as I do!

x Sarah

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Wild Soul - painting process

Wild Soul didn't really begin as a painting with any strong idea behind it.  I was wanting to paint a type of Autumn Goddess, but did a bit of research on this and didn't really find any traditional Goddess figure that was appropriate.

I actually started this artwork wanting to depict a Scandinavian snowy woodland. However somehow I went back to my original idea of creating an Autumn artwork after seeing images of birch trees with yellow and orange leaves.

This is the first artwork I have covered up the hair of the figure and the first where I have painted fur.

The animals in this artwork have a very feminine energy (owl, vixen).

I was listening to Monsters and Men thoughout this entire painting process, particularly 'Empire'. So this artwork is inspired in part by this Icelandic band!

Despite the fact that this painting started as a kind of random artwork, I think she has finished strongly, with suggestions of Shamanism and the Wild Woman archetype present.

I especially love her emerald green Shamanic crystal necklace and hope to include more of these in future artworks. I am a crystal obsessed person and I can't believe I haven't thought of this before...

Initial sketch with snow details (would have been cute) 

Face painting. I have started to do a bit of shading around the eyes lately. 


Figure painted in. 

Before I changed the Season! 

Inspired by birch trees in Autumn. 

Love her little pendant. 

Wild Soul xx

I am planning to start work on paintings for my exhibition in August. I don't plan on releasing these until the exhibition date, however I will try to interweave these with works to sell immediately as we go along.

I hope you love Wild Soul.
You can purchase her very soon in my ETSY.COM store. Contact me if you are interested.

X Sarah

Monday, March 20, 2017

Autumn Walk - painting process

Although I am not a mother, I feel very motherly toward my little niece. Her name is Violet and this painting is all about her!

I originally wanted to call the artwork 'Little One' but then came across this idea of a walk in the park and with Autumn coming up this seemed more appropriate.

It initially started as a Summer artwork... 

Then, being Autumn I decided to add more clothes and scarves... 

This is the first artwork where I have added hoop earrings! 


So happy with the finished piece.
I went for an Autumn colour palette. 
There you have it! A great gift for the women in your lives (mother and daughter, auntie and niece, big sister and little sister etc). Original and prints available in the shop now!

x Sarah

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Brand New A5 Mini Prints Have Arrived!

I have been dying to offer this size of prints for so long and now they have finally arrived!

These are basically a mini version of my high quality A4 prints, using the same EPSON archival matte paper and resin pigment inks in order to give you the highest quality print I can offer!

A little bigger than a card, these are such a cute mini size you could hang them in a cluster or give them as a sweet little art gift!

I am so excited to offer these to you!

You can buy A5 mini prints in my shop.

x Sarah

Art Materials I Use Regularly

I thought I would just do a brief post on some art materials I use regularly in the hopes of demystifying my art process and maybe help out other artists out there...

Gesso - an absolute must. Beautiful thick and with a divine texture, I can't go past Matisse brand.

I walked into an art shop recently after having come back to painting faces again and completely frustrated that so many skin tone bases are far too pink. The manager of Riot Art and Craft where I shop recommended that I use Unbleached Titanium instead (which is a nice creamy colour) and then add other tints to it. Problem solved.

Other colours I use regularly as basics include Raw Umber and Carbon Black. 

I am completely obsessed with Holbein Acrylic Guache.
I love colours like Opera, Pale Mint, Pale Lilac and Pink. Honestly I can't get enough and would buy the whole set except I have to order them from the USA from Dick Blick and the exchange rate and shipping costs a fortune. Oh well. 

I use these lovely creamy distress markers by Tim Holtz for shading in some skin areas of my painting. They work a treat.

Sky colours. I use a range of brands in order to get pretty sky colours. 

Grass greens. I am obsessed with beautiful lime greens and I love a good field of grass in my paintings. Again, I use a range of brands. 

I recently bought a bunch of these Global brand paints from Riot Art and Craft. Apparently they are lightfast which is fantastic. Great prices too especially when there is a special promotion on. 

So there you have it folks. Some of the basics I work with. I look forward to sharing more new materials as I come across them.  You can buy some of these materials at www.riotstores.com.au or www.dickblick.com

x Sarah