Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Joan Applebaum Art Goes Green - Ceili

It's day 4 of my blog "Going Green" in honor of St. Patrick's Day which is coming up soon! Today's painting is called "Ceili!" and comes from the world of Irish Dance…and also from my imagination!

A Ceili (pronounced kay-lee) is a gathering or party, featuring traditional Irish music and dance. 
Inspiration for this painting came from my daughter Katie who danced with the Johnston Irish Dancers  for several years. 

In creating this piece I used several photo references and did quite a few sketches until I came up with a composition that reflected the excitement of the Ceili.

Two dancers, slightly left of center, leap toward opposite sides of the painting creating a diagonal tension and moving our eye toward the supporting elements, the musicians. One dancer's foot points directly to the fiddle player, drawing her into the area we call our focal point, or main area of interest.

The two dancers and fiddle player create a triangle shape, which becomes our focal point. The viewer can see part of a bodhran and the hand holding the tipper. Part of an accordion is visible, but very abstracted near the left corner. And last but not least, in the top left corner we have what seems to be a band; they are very abstracted and painted in subdued color...I call them the "Muddy Neutrals".

Color also played a big role in painting this piece. Bright bold colors and active brushwork create a sense of drama as colors seem to leap off the canvas along with the dancers. You can almost hear the music!


If this is your first visit to my blog make sure you take a look at the posts from the last 3 days.  I will be featuring Irish themed paintings March 1 - 17.

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