Mieko was created on a whim with absolutely no idea of what I was going to paint. I had a mixed media board I had painted bright colours on years ago, which I knew I was ready to paint over, so I gessoed over it. The orange paint seeped through the gesso and made an awful apricot colour which I never use, but I was keen to work with it. I grabbed some random ephemera - a lama template, black and white printed paper, some scrappy doors, spice pile, a succulent pot, a moon and some painting cutoffs from a previous painting.
I sketched a face and stuck down the black and white paper as her coat. It reminded me of the 60s coats with the 3/4 sleeves. (See last picture and you'll know what I mean).
I used impastos and watercolour crayons to paint her. I really wasn't happy with the apricot, it had to go. I kept the orange idea with her hair but she needed a background to make her pop.
I worked with the ephemera to see what works and stuck it all down.
then I used watercolour pastels to add squiggles over the whole background in 2 different colour.
Lastly, I painted the arms and used graphite, gold pen and poscas to add marks and tidy things up.
She follows on from my theme of pensive women.
They are strong, not looking to please, women. They are comfortable in their skin and not afraid to look inward for answers they already hold. They make time for themselves and do things which make them happy. She is a succulent wild woman!
My friend Rita came up with the name. She said she really connected with her, she thought it represented all that she is and her Japanese name is Mieko. So Mieko she became.
Click through the photos to see her evolution.
Mieko is on mixed media board and measures 40.5x30.5x0.3cm
Mieko - Succulent, Wild Woman
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