Look what I found browsing through my Madrid-stuff. That guy Ernst Billgren has a lot of interesting ideas about art, psychology and philosophy. Perfect to mix some heavier reading with this one. The whole book is built on "facts" and Qs and As, just like in the picture. Very entertaining :)
Vad är konst och 100 andra jätteviktiga frågor - Ernst Billgren (2008)
Today has been a day full of events. I woke up around 6 o'clock in Stockholm but returned to my town later the same day and I also picked up the keys to my future place = no time for being creative. With that being said, as I've been spending the day in the capital city I thought about sharing a little about the painting below since the inspiration came from a photo taken during a stroll in the Haga Park one and a half years ago. The original photo was of me, but as I love the innocence of a child I replaced myself with a little girl.
The friend who took the photo is someone I hold very dearly and we've also lived together for a long time. One thing I love about our friendship is how we challenge each other in the way we think; about materialism, life, how not to follow the crowd and also about self value (to name some topics). This is something I drifted with her the last time I saw her:
It takes a lot of courage to do your own thing and to make your artwork available for the world to see. In the beginning fear gets in your way; worries about what others might think, about not being good or talented enough. When it comes to sharing a passion like painting I've come to the conclusion that it is not about being the best (because there is always going to be many others with better technique, more experience, with diplomas from the best schools etc), it is about finding your way of expressing yourself! Let your individuality speak, pour your heart into what you do, be yourself and let your work reflect what you stand for - that should be more than enough for everyone of us.
I've blown a flower and made a wish and now I am able to share the outcome with you :)
Postales desde el Limbo is a yearly charity project in Zaragoza. Artist, photographers, illustrators etc (well established as well as upcoming) contribute with up to four postcards each. The postcards are sold during an exhibition and the money goes to Fundación Centro de Solidaridad Zaragoza – Proyecto Hombre, which mission is investigation, awareness and prevention of risks associated with different types of addiction. To read more: http://www.fundacioncsz.org/
This year the exposition took place the 8-11 of November and they collected 17100 €!
It was Lourdes (my Spanish mentor) who encouraged me to participate and this is the second consecutive year I’ve contributed to this project.
Last year's contribution!
This year these babies got to travel to Zaragoza.
You can see my postcards at the same height as the mouth of the woman in the picture below. No postcard is exactly the same as the other. They are painted in acrylic, photographed and edited in the computer and then sent to print.
I loved this picture from the very first time I saw it. It is so sweet, full of thoughtfulness and affection. The mother of the family is an angel so no wonder her children turned out they way they did :)
I am really fond of drawing squares like when you first started to draw in school. One might say it is "cheating" not to draw on free hand, while others go the opposite direction and use a projector. Are there any other good ways of drawing?
Anyways, my opinion is that it is the end result that matters the most. Drawing everything on free hand would take longer time and also, in my case, it would be less accurate compared to the original photo.
Here I have started on the first layer of oil (the clothes of the older brother).
This is the last version of the painting. I would have continued on it for sure if it hadn't been sold.
In the end, this painting ended up in the home of a woman living in Zaragoza (if I remember it correctly). She had run errands in Madrid and passed by the studio and seen the painting in the display window. From there everything went very fast. I varnished and photographed the painting even though it wasn't finished. I didn't even sign it, I just put my name on the back. I would have handled the whole situation a lot differently doing it all over again. No rushing (I would also have allowed another person the possibility to buy it first).
With that being said, I hope the woman who bought it is pleased with it! Also I must say it is an honor and a very special feeling when someone you don't know like what you do and want your art in their own home. :)
Every picture has a story, so does this one. Before reading this text, you have to promise to be extra nice to someone today, it might mean more than you think :)
In reality it was a beautiful summer day but I didn’t have the time to pay attention as I had a million things to do before the plane left. During the last weeks I had to finish work, write a paper, take an exam, pack my belongings and clean away the last traces of what was left of my life on Hermosilla Street in Madrid. I hadn’t slept almost anything for days and I was more than exhausted. A quick shower before I hailed a cab and headed for the airport. After checking in my bag I paid a short visit to the terminal restroom to put on a little makeup. I could almost smell and taste how I would find my plane seat, close my eyes and finally get some rest. Mounting that plane for Ibiza, the white island, meant so much to me. Closing one of the most important chapters of my life and get some vacation before stepping into a new one.
But…there is always a but isn’t it? A little creature sitting beside me didn’t think about flying the way I did. The scream of fear of that child could break glass or even diamonds and out of disappointment and fatigue I couldn’t hold my tears back either. As exhausted as I was the teardrops were not rolling gently down my cheeks, instead weeks of tension was released like a flood on that plane. At first the crew thought I was scared of flying just like that little child. As I tried to explain the situation to them, they moved me to the first section of the plane. Like a cliché a psychologist to my right helped me focus on my breathing.
To my right there was a pilot flying standby. He took me under his wings and started to talk to me, he tried to make me think of something else and to calm me down. He made me laugh a little (then I cried again), he pointed out the small islands through the airplane window, he showed me pictures and he told me about his life. I had the newly painted mascara mixed with salty tears all over my face. All the while I was thinking - how could anyone care to talk to me or let alone be friends with me under these circumstances? The plane landed and he even helped me with the bags (which by the way broke too). Some days later he checked in on me, asking how I was. Still in limbo, I could barely manage to answer even though my heart was full of gratefulness. This painting is a way for me to share the story and to show my gratitude.
There truly are some good-hearted unselfish people out there. I was lucky to meet one of them. He has a painting on his fridge made by a little girl he flew once, and I knew I wanted to make my own version.
Thank you Mr. Pilot for taking care of me that day on that plane!
I thought it might be interesting to share parts of the (my) work process with you! It looks a little different depending on what I paint, but I am a fan of doing many thin layers on top of each other.
Before I start painting, I draw the image onto the canvas. I've done the mistake (many times) to draw too hard, then it might be difficult to cover the lines with color.
Starting on the second layer, in oil. I love how smooth the oil can be.
The whole canvas is covered in a second layer.
Yes, it was a girl from the beginning, put you have quite a freedom as a painter right. I just cut the ponytail ;)
I named the painting after a quote of an amazing friend in Madrid: Dreams can take you anywhere. This painting has a new home now, and I hope he is sleeping well on his new wall :)
Contact me on: