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Posts Tagged ‘Artwork’

For the entire month of June I will be exhibiting some of my brightest watercolor paintings in a  Solo show at the iYo Cafe in Davis Square, Somerville, Ma! Though the subject of the work varies, the collection was assembled primarily for its warm-weather feel. I would describe the bunch as a simple, whimsical celebration of the summer months and the beautiful world around us.

Painting by Shauna Leva

The work is on display towards the back of the cafe on a brick and mortar wall across from a seating area known as “the drawing room” for the large chalk board on one of its walls. On June 12th from 6-8pm there will be a reception for the show, where patrons of the cafe or any fans of my work can come hang out with me. The cafe serves coffee and typical cafe snacks, but the highlight of the menu in my opinion is the frozen yogurt. All of the work on display is for sale, and while you can purchase in person at the reception, anyone is welcome to see the work at anytime during the month of June, and may send purchase inquiries to my email. Address and hours posted below….I hope to see you at the reception!

Painting by Shauna Leva

iYO Cafe

234 Elm Street
Somerville, MA 02144
(Davis Square T Stop)
(617) 764-5295

Monday — Friday:
8:00AM – 11:00PM

Saturday:
8:00AM – 11:30PM

Sunday:
8:00 AM – 10:00PM

 

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Last week with the snow storm of the decade looming, bundled up in front of my computer, I decided to pick up my Wacom tablet and paint a picture digitally. I am not a very experienced digital painter. I’ve only completed a small handful of pieces on the computer before, and none of them have made it into my portfolio. Sure, I use photoshop all the time to color correct, crop, and touch up photos and paintings all the time, but it is very rarely that I do the bulk of the painting on the computer screen.

I had the urge to go back to the computer screen primarily because of time. It takes me a very very long time to create a full scale, fully rendered painting by hand, and sometimes I lose interest in what I am painting or I have another great idea to work on before my first idea is fully realized. Especially for beauty shots like this, the idea and the passion to draw it only sticks around until the next pretty face comes along and I imagine something new; so there was a sense of urgency to get this face and this stunning collar down on paper before it was replaced by another figure in my mind.

The piece was inspired by a costume I saw at Templecon 2013. I used photo reference to sketch out the face and collar by hand, and then I also inked that preliminary sketch before scanning it into the computer. Once uploaded to photoshop, I started rendering by laying down basic blocky colors. Using photoshop is one of the only times that I render with an opaque medium, making it extra challenging to maintain my style. I blended the colors together using primarily the eye dropper and a soft, low opacity brush. I choose to render over some of my inking to turn the figure more in important or especially modeled places like the nose and lips. I left the collar and hair more linear and stylized because that is how I would have dealt with them were this painting done by hand. However by hand, I would have added the lines last, wherein photoshop, I started with all lines and selectively removed or covered them.

I textured the piece with pattern fills and spotty brushes. Adding texture in highly modeled digital pieces is very important in order to avoid a plastic looking finish. The skin has pores and fabrics have a coarseness to them that is easily neglected in digital pieces. Over all I like how this painting came out, and I think that I will be experimenting with digital painting more in the future.

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Woo! Life is busy right now. I recently started a new job as Head of Advertising and Promotion at the University of Hartford Art School MFA in Illustration Program, and I just got back from New York Comic Con! Now, I will be on the road again this Thursday to hang my next show.

This Saturday (Oct 20th) is the Opening reception for a Student and Alumni Study Abroad Show in the Silpe Gallery at the University Campus. This past Spring, two separate groups of students traveled abroad with the Hartford Art School. Now, artwork inspired by our journey will be on display for the public to view. The Opening will begin at 5pm and end at 7pm, and will feature paintings, photography, prints, fiber-works and ceramics, informed by these two exotic locations. Many of the work will be for sale and light refreshments will be served.

The show runs from October 19th through November 1st. Gallery hours are M-F: 9-4pm, and S-S: 12-4pm

I myself will have three finished watercolor paintings in the show: a series about the relationship between Sicilians and their beautiful land. I will also have on display several field watercolors, done one site in various parts of Sicily, as well as my sketch book from the trip available to look through. Again, these original works will be available for sale.

Bring your friends!

Hartford Art School
200 Bloomfield Ave
West Hartford, CT 06117

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In less than two weeks, over 140 local artists of Lowell, MA will open their doors to the public for the 12th annual Lowell Open Studios Event. With over fifteen studio locations throughout the heart of Lowell, this two day event is a great opportunity for the community to buy original and reproduced artworks straight from the artists who created them. Artists all over the city are hard at work as we speak, building inventory for the event; with so much artwork to choose from, you are sure to find something to fit both your style and your budget.

My studio, #527, located at 122 Western Avenue will be open both days from 11-5pm. I will be selling original watercolors & prints, as well as one-of-a-kind leather armor, jewelry, & accessories. I have a number of great halloween items in stock, as well as several pieces designed specifically for the renaissance fair season! Complete your cosplay, steampunk, or renaissance costume with a themed necklace or decorated arm bracer. My studio is located at circle #1 on the map below. You can click on the map to zoom in.

To view more of my work, please visit http://shaunart.net, and to learn more about the Lowell Open Studios event (what artists will be there, and where to go to see live demonstrations), please visit lowellopenstudios.org.

Hope to see you there!

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The commissioned work gallery has been updated with the latest portrait of a house completed for a local real-estate agency. Done in watercolors and black ink, this “fluffy” watercolor portrait is light and simple, and makes for a wonderful gift by which a seller can remember their former home.

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Here is the first assignment from my oil painting class. Our task was to define an alter-ego for ourselves, and to paint our likeness on this fantasy identity.

I decided that my alter-ego would be an exotic snake charmer, hiding from the dessert sun in her lavish arabian, or maybe Egyptian palace. My alter-ego would be a very mysterious and even dangerous person, hence she keeps the company of snakes. There are nineteen snakes in this painting. My birth year is represented by the snake in the Chinese zodiac, and I’ve always really liked to draw reptiles..so why not be a snake charmer? I don’t like the hot sun, or the sand but my alter-ego embraces a slightly sandy lifestyle than me. But even the pretend me would spend her time in the shade.

Taking reference for this photo was really fun. I already owned most of the costume, and I wrapped a towel around my shoulder for the python. This piece was very meticulous to paint, but I enjoyed myself. I think that the way I envisioned the painting rendered lent itself well to oils. I learned a lot from this piece, and even though oils may not be my medium of choice going forward, I am happy to have learned how to use them and to learn what sets them apart visual and technically from water based mediums.

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This is what we call a stock image. It’s a vague, metaphorical piece that could be applied to a number of projects. Painted with oil, this cheerful piggy bank is perfect for an add for savings accounts, or an article on financial growth. It could also be a an image to stand for the economic advantages of recycling and going green. It can adopt the meaning of the text it is paired with, and add a little visual fun to a boring subject. Horray!

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Here is another figure drawing done in burnt sienna colored pencil, with white and cream for the highlights. I also worked in some henna colored pencil where the light comes out of shadow to give the figure some life. It looked pretty lifeless with just burnt sienna.

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I really like how this Illustration came out. I knew that I wanted to paint sushi, but if I was going to spend fifty hours on a painting, it needed to be something really interesting and befitting of my unique sense of humor. So I just went for it. I was thumb-nailing, and stuff started to get kind of weird. And I liked it. So I decided on an illustration of a table in a sushi restaurant, with one human, and three big, ugly fish-heads.

Taking reference for this illustration was a lot of fun. It was an excuse to go out for sushi at the very least. I got an idea of what authentic sushi looked like and how it was presented, as well as the atmosphere of a japanese restaurant. Then I had my Male Asian friend sit at a table and make weirded-out faces at a female Asian friend, who I told to pretend to be a fish person. Really, I jus told her to throw her head back and gargle violently. I got the face that I needed. Then I went to my local H-Mart for some dead fish! I bought two frozen fishies and took pictures of them in my backyard bathed in sunlight!

To paint this picture, I used permanent acrylic inks to build up an extensive underpainting. Most of the background and all of the base colors were done in ink. Then I used colored pencil over the inks to bring out the little details. The colored pencils were great for the fishes scales because I could use their texture to my advantage. Everywhere else I had to try and minimize the colored pencil texture by keeping a really sharp point.

This method of painting is a lot faster than using acrylic inks alone. Because the colored pencil goes so well on top of the inks, they can be used for most of the shading. It’s like taking the benefits of painting and the benefits of drawing, and combining them into one.

You can view this picture anytime at shaunart.net

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Black and white pencil illustration of a scene from Jack and the Beanstalk. When Jack traded away his family’s last possession, a cow, for magic beans from a stranger, his mother, in anger, threw them out the window. The next day, Jack found that the beans had sprouted into a giant beanstalk, reaching up into the sky.

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