Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Penguin canvas paintings

My husband worked 150 miles away from home for 3 years, commuting each Monday to Friday. He lived in a student flat which was totally cold and void of any colour or character. When it came to his birthday, I wanted to give him a gift that he could look at each day to make him laugh.

I quizzed him on his favourite things - hobby, colour, word, band, food, place, memory and animal. Little did he know what he was answering for, so he gave some truthful and some random answers.

This A1 canvas was his present. It is an acrylic painting of all those things mixed in one. The staring role went to his favourite animal - the penguin. Except that its not his favourite...

When trying to work out how to paint a penguin, I spotted a painting online of a stylised blue penguin which I loved. (This was some years ago now before I thought about applying for a design course. I can no longer find it online to reference it sorry.) I based my character on this interpretation.

It was around this central character that I created an image of a film (filmmaking being his favourite hobby) showing all his favourite scenes.

The final result was silly and he loved it. It took pride of place in his room reminding him of his favourite things back at home for him to travel back to each week.

12 months on, I got a request for a second instalment of the series.....

I loved the penguin characters that much, that a year later, I decided to do a second painting, with them still taking the starring role.

This time I opted to show the key memories of the year just gone of things we had done together to remind him of the fun we have.

We were both broke and so travel back and forth to Newcastle had to be done via MegaBus. This was most unenjoyable and it was taking its toll on us both. However, again, the time spent together at the weekends made it worthwhile.

I wanted the cheekiness of the first painting to carry over to this one, and so painted in the exact same style.

12 months on, and the request was raised again.

My husband was out of blank wall space and the thought of him coming home with all these large paintings was daunting! Plus he mentioned that it was a shame they couldn't go to work with him.

So for the final painting for the 3 years, I completed a small 4x3 inch portrait that could sit on his desk at work. To this day, that is where it remains.

The penguin made its final appearance looking majestical and proud.


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