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@smallvoiceco Challenge

Florence Lee a prolific creator and amazing artist is passionate about supporting other creatives and creativity in general. She decided to create an Instagram account called @smallvoiceco as a supportive and inclusive space for curious creators. She plans to instigate regular projects where everyone is welcome to participate. If you want to join in please follow her instagram account for more details.

Her first challenge was for everyone to create a piece of work from the same reference (see below )within a two week timescale to create a sense of community. Anyone could join in so she encouraged us to- get the family involved as well!

Photo by Very Petty Girl on Unsplash

I decided to crop the image and concentrate on the model's face. I was inspired by her hoop earrings and added a gold hoop to frame her, counterbalancing her arms and drawing the viewer's eye to her face.

I knew I wanted a black background so had to think about how I was going to define her hair. I found some gold acrylic paint that had been kicking about the studio, one of those off the cuff purchases that one just can’t resist but has no plans to use! I used it for the earrings and concluded it would be the perfect solution to highlight the hair. I used a combination of dabbing with a paintbrush and applying paint with a pallet knife to create the texture and the impression of curls.

I knew I was up against it for time so I painted the background and the hair in acrylic because it dries fast and I wanted to be able to continue working on the piece. I painted the rest in oil as it gives me the flexibility of being able to rework areas if required and because I personally prefer the way it feels when you paint with it.

As you would expect, the face was the most complex part of the drawing and took several hours to complete.

Once the face was complete I started on the neck and arms. To blend the values, I used a dabbing motion with my fingertip and an old makeup brush!

The top was completed fairly swiftly which was useful as the deadline was looming!

Here is the finished Piece.

I really enjoyed this challenge. It gave me the opportunity to experiment. I hadn’t realised how much I needed that! I found myself in that wonderful flow state where the outside world is forgotten and everything just kinda comes together naturally.

It really did speak to my creative soul! If you fancy joining Flo and her creative community, head over to instagram, follow @smallvoiceco and the other artists for inspiration and jump in!

Sending the best vibes your way

Much love

Sarah x

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