Sunday, March 20, 2011

Princess & Mermaid mural for Gabriella

After I finished the owl mural at my house about a month ago, my neice Gabi and I have been looking for what to paint in her room . She is a girly girl but she also likes to express her individuality so I wanted to find something that really seemed 'her'.

I headed to my favorite idea shop- Etsy- and found a woman who painted all of these whimsical paintings of girls and mermaids and trees and water. They were great and just what I was going for, skill-level wise. I sent the link to my sister-in-law and Gabi picked out a favorite.

The picture she picked out was great, but not very wide and we had a big wall to cover. So I chose 2 more photos and we'll use elements from all 3 of these:

I'm using the fish & one mermaid from this photo for the left side of the wall.
I'm using one tree from this photo to put to the right of the princess and also I'm copying how the water laps around the grass.

And this is the princess photo. We're copying the girl but making her with brown hair and eyes like Gabi and no cougar. She had wanted a cow but I think that's outside my range right now.

So a few weeks ago on a weeknight, I head over there and using just plain blue paint and a circular sponge, I put up the blue background pretty quickly. The kids practice making waves and painting grass and we call it a night. These first few pics are from my cell phone so they're a little blurry
That next Saturday, I fill out the 3 hills first. Oh, and my genius sister-in-law came up with the idea of using chalk to sketch it out before I paint. Brilliant. That idea saved me so much re-painting time. With the hills, I was careful  so that they ended up looking like 3 hills instead of a wavy mound of grass.

Gabi and Jett help to paint in the ocean and I sketch out the rest of the waves and then go back and paint them in.

We sketched out the princess and where we want the tree to go but packed it up at this point. The hills and water took all moring so we saved the princess for next time.

Yesterday morning, I figured I'd get over the part that makes me the most nervous. The princess. I've never drawn a person and I didn't know if I could get the face and hands and feet right. I start with doing one coat of every color just to get her filled out.

At this point I have added some details to the dress and started the castle in the pocket. The crown, hair, and cape all need a little more depth added. Oh, and she needs a face.

I add in the flower and swirl detail to the dress and give the hair some texture by using some lighter brown paint and some gold around the curls to make it a little shimmery. I need to put another layer of color on the face and draw it in. I'm just stalling up to this point.
I finish up the crown, add a realistic skin tone to the face and hands, and after sketching it out with chalk at least 3 times, I get the basics of the face complete.

Ah, it's done! Well, not completely, but the fact that she has 2 eyes that don't look like they were drawn by Picasso, I'm happy. I have to add in cheek color, finish up the eyes, and the nose was a little smudgy but I don't care- the hard part is over. I still have to outline the hands and feet and then she'll be done. The next step will be the tree, which I'm really looking forward to. I think it'll look so cool with the heart leaves. Until then, this is where we are at:


Erin said...

Wow! You're plethora of talent in areas other than truck stop bathrooms is really starting to depress the crap out of me. I'm just amazed every time you post something new on here. You're totally like a skankier version of Martha Stewart.

Country Mouse said...

Really, really cute! You should do this for a living, it would be much more satisfying!! Love it!

mary yates said...

i know-she is quite amazing! can't wait to do echo's room when she get sout of the crib some day!

Anna said...

Holy cow Erin, that's the closest you've come to giving me a compliment- ever! Come over anytime and I'll make you into a skankier Martha Stewart too.

kristin said...

it ROCKS!!!!!! Anna is Amazing