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February - March 2021:

"Reginetta del Mare"    8 ft x 4 ft oil and acrylic on canvas 

The extremely large - both in size and scope - painting commission has been an incredibly complex project. It was basically done from scratch with certain items/symbols of the family included within the composition. It took 6 months (and with sketches, practicing different painting techiniques, etc. - I basically did 2 giant paintings) and became part of my life! As the facets of the painting started to come together, I had a 'background' concept that I applied to the project to make the painting cohesive for the family. So, I wrote the story that was mostly in my head while painting it - and was a gift to the clients so everyone could wrap their heads around what I did and painted certain things in certain places.  I had to have a professional photographer to come take shots because it was so big and complicated. The greens and pinks glow under black light, so it is difficult for a regular camera to capture the colors correctly in regular light, since they are so bright to begin with.

The mama dragon, Reginetta del Mare, has scales that each have 5 layers of paint (in different areas), and added glitter. With teeny brushes and Q-Tips. There are over 300 scales (I lost count after that...) in a dinosaur/lizard-type hide. Each scale has specific glitter (and color) in specific areas in order to make it shimmer when light hits it at different times. The treasure, the baby as well as several pieces in the painting, have holographic glitter on top of the other paint. The greens and pinks are luminescent and will glow - therefore - it was important for the dragon to glow, for the most part.

I started with a sea dragon, added dragon trees - which are actually located on islands within the Adriatic and Ionian Seas between Italy and Greece - truly. I looked it up. If it's a tropical place - tropical wings, etc. should be included. I went with that and the story in my head unfolded.

Here are the required items to be included in the painting that represent the family:

  • Leo and Eva are the (very sweet) children. These items represent them:

    • A symbol of a lion (for Leo), and a flute or pipes (Piper is the middle name of Eva)

    • A baby dragon who likes to write pen-pal letters to Leo and Eva

  • Holly: The mother, who is a veterinarian (shield with 'triad' of a 'stethoscope')

  • Mike: The father, who is an engineer (helmet and compass)

  • Tacos: The children love a book, "Dragons Love Tacos" - so that was included as well

  • Some sort of mask

  • Treasure and all of that

It was a giant jigsaw puzzle to piece this together, but it was finally finished in March and installed one month later by professional art installers (it was HIGH up on a wall).

This is the story that explains the painting: "The Tale of Reginetta del Mare and the Sea Crystal"

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