Princess Lost, my painting process

Princess Lost - mixed media painting by jane coquillonThis is a painting that really had me stumped for a while there.
I actually put her aside for a couple of months in the end, because I just couldn’t see whether she was done yet.

And then I came across her last week and realized that yes, she was.
She was actually finished.

I started out well, with lots of different coloured acrylics, some sharpie mark making and drips of india ink.
Then some daubs of gesso to break up the darkness where it got kind of muddy.

Add some strips and scraps of patterned and gold paper and washi tape, plus some doodling.

Then I could see where a face should be and added my paper for the shape…

I pencilled in her features roughly, and then got so caught up in painting that I forgot to take progress shots!

Once I was happy with her face, I decided to cover up all the craziness of the background and broke out the gesso again.

After I’d scraped a thin-ish layer on with a palette knife it was much easier on the eye…

You can see bits of india ink and ink from my Krink pen that bled through the gesso to prevent it becoming too white.

I really love that, it’s a lovely subtle effect that happens with acrylics over the dry inks.

This is about where I began to feel stuck. I knew that I’d covered up most of the wild colours and patterns, but was it too much?

I’d scratched a scribbly circle above her head and added some yellow ink, but now I thought it was too yellow with the gold paper in her dress.

She sat for a week or so, then I added some drips of orange/red ink to the “sun” and put her aside again, feeling utterly frustrated.


And there she sat for at least three months, until I uncovered her in May and realised that yes, she was finished.

I think this is the longest I’ve ever been stuck on one painting.  What’s your record?

Happy Friday the 13th, jane  xx


{linking in with paint party friday this week}

16 thoughts on “Princess Lost, my painting process

  1. Great post and loved seeing your process along the way. It turned out so well after all your different ideas and materials. I like her little hat and her patterned dress.

  2. She is gorgeous, and nice to see the process. I’ve often wondered how anyone can paint at all on top of a color “mess”. I do understand the purpose of it, but for me it seems impossible. You did a great job with yours and the result IS beautiful.

  3. I pulled out a mixed media piece I had shown last March and thought, “I think this needs… something.” I’ve had published articles I’ve gone back and rewritten. I think its that way with me as an artist. I could probably continue working for a lifetime and then there are those moments, like yours – where you just say… its done! 🙂

    Love seeing how she came to life via your words here!

  4. What a great process. I have pieces I have abandoned for that very reason! Sometimes stepping away is the only way to relieve the anxiety of a piece! Then you see it through new eyes! Beautiful job I always love your art!

    Hugs Giggles

  5. I really enjoyed following your creative process. I think she turned out really terrific in the end. I don’t tend to get stuck I just sometimes overwork things and then realize I’ve ruined the whole thing! Happy PPF Emma x

  6. Hello Jane this is such a sweet piece, you did great and thanks for sharing your process! I have pieces that lie there for months waiting to be completed.

  7. Jane, I really appreciate your showing us the process you went through in this beautiful creation. Makes me realize that sometimes things need to be given space so that we can come back to it and appreciate it! xoLynn

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