Posted on Jan 1, 2018 in Animals, Blog

The painting of the arctic fox for my annual holiday card came together with a little work. The dress color kept changing. I began with a bright red fabric but found it overpowering and so dialed it back to a warm yellow-orange with hints of reds and a red accent sash. As with many of my paintings, I would I had to keep pushing more and more white to make it feel properly illuminated. I also pushed the contrast in the foreground chair. It helped to add a little space. The atmospheric perspective in the room is pretty negligible but just that little bit helped. The texture proved to be a bit of a challenge in the face. The mouth was particularly tricky, getting that right with the heavy texture fighting me. Still, all in all, I feel like I captured the feeling I wanted. As with the other holiday cards, I wrote a little hint fiction. This one went over the 50-word count I was trying to keep to. I expect the count is more in keeping with the spirit of brevity and surgical word and information choice so going a bit over felt okay.

Warm Meat Pies and Apples
Charity always delighted in the first snow of the season. Delicate crystals drifted from the heavens, frosting windows and collecting in soft mounds. The world’s fresh linens draped over the contents of the summer den. The sight conjured visions of her days as a cub, frolicking in the crisp air with her sisters. Soon they would arrive with warm meat pies and apples, driving away the silence and filling her home with lively conversation and cheer.

I don’t have any expectations of including Charity in my book but that might change once I get deeper into the writing. I am enjoying the back and forth play between the small bits of character building in the writing. I love how they emerge from the imagery and, afterward, help influence the interpretation of the imagery right back. These characters start to take on a life in my mind, playing out tiny vignettes. Hopefully, I will find the opportunity to do them all justice and write flash fiction for each of the paintings. With each new painting, their world grows more complex.

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