Yes, I’m featuring new artwork three Fridays in a row! Don’t worry, I haven’t set up a sweat shop in which I force second grade kiddies to toil with colored pencils for fifteen hours a day filling in the details of my work. I simply had a couple pieces that took a lonnnnng time and then tumbled into completion one after the other.

As my loyal readers know, most of my work tends toward the realistic side of things – flowers, critters, and that sort of stuff. But I’ve recently wanted to break away a bit and have some fun exploring different styles (such as my recent pea packet), different material (like old William of Orange on DuraLar film), or a different medium (let’s not talk about my watercolor skills, okay?).

One of my recent explorations took me into the world of abstract. Of course, I know nothing about creating abstract art so I decided to go a bit realistic with my abstraction by using photos from my visit last year to the Chihuly Glass Gardens in Seattle.

You’ve met one of these realistic abstract pieces already, but this week I finally finished another Chihuly-inspired work. And let me say I had loads of fun working on this one.

From Photo to Abstract-y Art Thing

Let’s start with the original photo. I was in love with those Beetlejuice-esque green and black pieces of glass….

dale chihuly, seattle, glass art

After plenty of cropping, I ended up with a reference photo focusing on a cluster of them…

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Then, it was time to get to work. Break out the bright greens and say “Beetlejuice” three times! This piece was done on smooth bristol using primarily Faber-Castell Polychromos pencils and a few Blick colored pencils as needed.


The trouble with this piece was that the photo, due to the cropping, was a bit blurry which meant I couldn’t quite tell what was going on in the background. So, rather than fret over it, I improvised and worked in some chunky swirls in reds and yellows. These looked a bit humdrum until I decided to throw in a few blue things as well.


In the photo, I hadn’t really noticed the balls, but they proved to be a nice challenge and I like how they ended up with an alien planet look to them.


After a few more swirls and some cleaning up, it was finally done!

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Want One?

This piece (which I may call “Wormhole” unless you have any better suggestions) and its prints will soon be on the virtual shelves of my Etsy shop as a Showcase Item for August. Of course, if you’re interested now don’t hesitate to contact me and I can get you set up with some new swirly artwork straight away.

What’s Next?

I have another abstract-y Chihuly-inspired piece in my art line up, but for the next couple weeks I’m going to be working on a piece that might delight Ernie from Sesame Street as it involves rubber duckies. And I’m starting a triptych (fancy word for three-panel art thingie) to capture some of the lovely flowers blooming in my garden right now.

Got any work plans (or fun plans) for the near future? I’d love to hear about them so be sure to leave a comment!! And now, a little music…

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Tammie Painter is the author of The Trials of Hercules and an artist who dedicates herself to the tedium of creating Images with colored pencil. Looking for a Father’s Day gift? Be sure to check out this month’s Showcase Items at her Etsy shop.



7 thoughts on “New Artwork Goes a Bit Swirly

  1. by the way, I went to one of those classic car cruise-ins the other day, and every time I saw one of those curvy chrome bumpers and glossy paint, I thought of your art.


    1. Cool!! That makes me almost famous, right? There are several cruise-ins in my area over the summer so hopefully I can get some new pics to work from (torment myself with) this year.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This has been a great start to the day… new artwork AND a Muppet video, and it’s not even 8.30 yet! Good luck with your new piece (I saw rubber ducky’s head on Instagram earlier) and congratulations on your latest completed one!


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