Thursday, February 28, 2008

Paint What You Love!

"Donut With Sprinkles II"
Oil on canvas, 6" x 6", $100
Copyright 2008 Sheila Cantrell

I've heard it said that you should paint what you love - I guess that's why I keep painting donuts! My model actually had more sprinkles than this, but at some point enough was enough.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Winter Sycamore

"Winter Sycamore"
Oil on canvas, 7" x 5", $50
Copyright 2008 Sheila Cantrell

There's a recreation complex close to my home that has a walking/jogging track all the way around it. About midway around it is a grove of sycamore trees. On the pretty winter days when I jog there (I only jog on pretty days in winter!), I'm always struck by the beauty of the white limbs against the clear blue sky.

Sunday, February 24, 2008


14" x 16 1/2", colored pencil
Copyright 2008, Sheila Cantrell

Here's the colored pencil drawing that I've posted "in progress" pictures of a couple of times. It's now completed and only waiting for a name. Usually I have a name - often before I ever put pencil to paper. This one has me stumped though - I'm pretty ambivalent about all of the obvious names for it (Mangoes in a Box, Boxed Mangoes, Mangoes and Box, etc.). I've thought about calling it "Side by Side" or even "Head to Toe" since the mangoes are turned in opposite directions. Any suggestions out there?

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Apples in Oil

"Apples III"
Oil on canvas, 6" x 8", $100
Copyright 2008 Sheila Cantrell

It's kind of strange - I very rarely have apples in my colored pencil still lifes, having a decided preference for pears. And yet, I seem to keep painting them in oils. When I first started painting in oils, I had trouble with red - it seemed like the shade I wanted was always elluding me when I mixed the paints. So, I kept doing still lifes with red objects to force myself to get it figured out. I'm pleased with these apples because they came out "spot on".

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Another Donut

"Sweet Heart"
Oil on canvas, 5" x 7", $60
Copyright 2008 Sheila Cantrell

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Ready for Spring

"Sunlit Tulips"
Oil on canvas, 6" x 6"
Copyright 2008 Sheila Cantrell

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Details, Details...

"Last Glass"
Oil on canvas, 7" x 5", $150
Copyright 2008 Sheila Cantrell

I recently purchased several Winsor & Newton Sceptre Gold II brushes in itty-bitty sizes. I decided to put them and myself to the test and see just how much detail I could get into a 5" x 7" painting. Above is the result - I did it all in one day (yesterday), but it took a major part of the day to accomplish. I'm please with it as well as my new brushes.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Work in Progress, Continued...

I've been back working on this colored pencil drawing of two mangoes nestled in tissue paper in a cardboard box. As you can see, I've finished up the second mango and have started in on the tissue paper. I'll save the bottom edge of the box and the black background below it for last - mainly so I don't have to worry about smudging the black into the tissue paper areas along the bottom.

I've included a close-up photo of the top right-hand corner so you can see the wax bloom that has started in the black area. "Wax bloom" occurs when a lot of pigment is burnished into an area. After a few days to a week or two, some of the wax will migrate to the top, giving dark areas a cloudy look. I'm not worrying about it now. Once I'm finished with the drawing, I'll carefully polish the black areas with a soft clean cloth which will remove the top coating of wax. Then I'll spray the entire drawing with a fixative. The fixative spray will keep the wax bloom from reoccurring.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


Oil on canvas, 5" x 7"
Copyright 2008 Sheila Cantrell

Monday, February 4, 2008

One and a Half

"One and a Half Apples"
Oil on canvas, 5" x 7"
Copyright 2008 Sheila Cantrell

Friday, February 1, 2008

Red Heart

"Red Heart"
oil on canvas, 6" x 6"
Copyright 2008 Sheila Cantrell

And yet another donut - I'm still having fun painting these - I just don't know how many more my waistline can take.