Go With The Flow
The features of the figure are a direct correlation to the shapes that appeared within the abstract. I simply used chalk to outline those shapes before painting them so they wouldn’t get lost under the paint.
Her head (hair, face, ear, jawline, sunglasses, and lips), her neck, shoulders, right arm, the object in her hand and bikini top were all a result of what the abstract revealed.
Object in the figure's hand:
I left the abstract background mostly untouched. At first, I thought it resembled a bird sitting on her hand, but as I worked on the water it looked more like a miniature vintage coke bottle. Others have looked at it and seen something else entirely. Since I couldn’t actually make up my mind I decided to leave it abstract and open for interpretation.
The shape in the upper left corner
At first, I was going to leave it and try to turn it into a lighthouse. But as I was painting around it the bright white kept bothering me. Rather than blending with the scene it just stood out and not really in a good way. It just didn’t feel right, so I painted it grey to see if changing it to a neutral color helped. In the end, the only thing that felt like it belonged was reducing the height of it and putting more lava in that space
There was a grouping of circles in the lower left corner that made me think of flowers, with a green shape that could be a leaf. As I was deciding what kind of flowers to paint on the canvas a bouquet of flowers on a table caught my eye. The painted bouquet doesn’t match the real-life bouquet but they inspired the color I selected.
Once I figured out the major elements I kept the rest of the background sparse. Only adding minor touches to pull it together as a cohesive scene.