Life Cycle, 2008

91.44cm X 137.16cm, Oil on Masonite board

In this painting, my inspiration came from a technique that I employ to give texture to my work. Since I wanted to play with texture, I started looking around for a subject where I could use this technique and came upon an image of beautiful zebras. As I kept thinking about what to do next, all the other ideas automatically fell into place. This painting is all about the hunters and the hunted. The final destination is to feed stomachs, that is why a vulture is also in the picture!

To obtain a textured effect, I used the specialised Camlin Texture White resin. After drawing the images on Masonite board, I selected the areas where I wanted to have texture and applied a thick layer. With a palette knife I scratched lines and grooves of different depth, width, and direction into the layer of half dried textured white.

The whole background of the painting was completely white when I finished. The textures threw shadows, putting the design into three dimensional relief. When this was done I mixed different colours of oil paint and applied it wherever needed. The colours were applied all in just single flat tones with no shading. Then I took a soft clean cloth and rubbed specific areas where the texture had been painted. Since the paint was not dry the colour in the protruding areas came off on the cloth. The coloured paint remained in the deeper grooves, giving lovely shading effects.

In this painting the hunters are painted using the texturised effect, giving them a strong solid feeling of presence. The hunted animals and the vulture were left with very flat paint, giving them less of a presence.

All the colours are very realistic and there is a strong feeling of restless movement in every corner of this work!

She’s a Leopard Too: Tapestry

My mother, who is a tapestry weaver, really liked this painting. She made a beautiful tapestry based on it that is just the same size as the original. It is included here.