Mandala – finished.

I’ve spent this morning finishing yesterday’s mandala.

I’m fairly pleased with the result. I love the sense of volume I have in the design. I almost feel like I put my fingers inside some of those ‘folds’ around the chains of seeds! And being able to create this intensity of volume or dimension in my artwork is what makes me smile. It’s not often I say I love my work, that’s for sure.

I’m not so happy about the background texture/colour. However, it’ll do for now, as I can always go back and change it.

I added a third colour – cool blues – to this design. The last ring of ‘seed pods’ would’ve been brown, and I thought there was enough brown in the design already. Also, I wanted the furled, stylised leaves in the other ring to be green, so blue was the colour I settled on.

I had a bit of a ‘ta-da!’ moment as I was adding colour to the furled leaves. I recognised that I was starting to use a pattern as a way of adding the highlights and shadows, a shape that could be used in all of these particular forms.

My final task, before calling this mandala done (for now at least) was to add shadow around the whole mandala. I don’t think I’ve been all that successful with it. Again, it’ll do for now until I work out a better way of doing this.

In hindsight, the choice of that coppery brown may not have been the best one I’ve made. However, this mandala really has been a fab learning experience for me – not just of the software I’m using, but of how I work artistically. I’m finally beginning to think a bit more about what I’m doing. I’m still working very intuitively, but I’m recognising the unconscious thoughts that steer me as I work.

I think this is developing as a result of me talking about my artistic process as I create YouTube videos. That’s an interesting and positive side-effect of making the videos – they force me to express in words what is fairly abstract and unconscious as I work. I guess I don’t have many opportunities to talk about my art and process with others, and YouTube, and this blog too, is helping me to discover more about my own inner workings.

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