At this point roughly 10 hours have gone into the painting, preparing the substrate, transferring and refining the under-drawing, laying in the under-painting, and refining the figures’ details. The next and final stages of the painting involve further refinement, enhancement of existing hues, and lots of stepping away from the painting and staring at it to look for anything I feel is not cohesive with the finished work.
At this stage, in addition to refining and completing the horse and crow, I also focus on adding more interest to the background. The pattern on the horse’s rump is called a “blanket”, a little implied symbolism as the horse forms something of a protective cover over the crow in this work.
The goal of this painting is not “hyper-realism”, but instead, applying enough detail to the subjects to define them and give them dimension while leaving some organic, unpolished strokes.
The finished painting. As a final step, an amber glaze is applied to the work to enhance its warmth, and it’s complete.
“Horse Over Crow is a sizable oil painting (36″ x 50″) rendered in rust and amber monochrome hues. In Native American lore, Horse and Crow often share an affinity. In this work, a Blanket Appaloosa jumps over a crow forming a protective arch, while the crow calmly watches from below. A patchwork of organic textures create a sumptuous backdrop to this pair, as hints of human touch fade in an out of visibility in the form of broken filigree patterns.”