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As I work at my easel this month, I’m trying some new techniques with silver and gold leaf before painting over top with oils.  This piece is called ‘Daughter of Eve’ and is a self portrait I’m working on.  There’s a subtle message underlying it, about how we all have so much in common as women, from the beginning of time until now, across all cultures.

Step 1, Daughter of Eve, Jessica Libor 2012

I started out the painting by sketching it out on the canvas mounted on board.  Next, I went over the entire canvas with a sepia tone (mixed with turpenoid)  to get rid of the white.  After that layer dried, I applied silver leaf over specific places in the painting that  I wanted to shine, such as the sky between the branches, and the necklace on the figure.

Next I began painting the figure and sky, going over the colors in blocks and laying in the correct tones.

Step 2, Daughter of Eve (unfinished), oil on canvas with silver leaf, Jessica Libor 2012

From there, I really concentrated on the skin tones, thinking of the classical way of painting flesh, and painting what I saw, not what  I thought looked right.  A lot of times our eyes deceive us, and we have to trust our minds instead.

I’ve been working on this piece and a few others nonstop for the past week, trying to wrap up a portfolio for a scholarship from New York Academy of Art.  There have been some late nights (or rather, mornings!) painting in the studio this week!  Next post, I’ll share another painting I’ve been working on.  Until then!

Step 3, "Daughter of Eve" unfinished, oil and silver leaf on canvas board, Jessica Libor 2012