Monthly Archives: October 2015

Dali doily

I got to thinking that what I needed for my shrine was a doily. I have seen then on other shrines, cut outs with skulls and skeletons on them. So I thought I’d make one of my own.

salvador-dali.jpg!Portrait

Salvador Dali portrait that I found on Wikiart.

I started with Salvador Dali, because of course. And then I used a sharpie to turn him into a simplified, cut out-able skullitized silhouette. This required multiple passes through my brain to find something that made sense and wouldn’t be impossible to do with a pair of scissors or an x-acto knife.

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Multiple passes. I love tracing paper.

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Close enough to scan.

Then I took the final version, scanned it, cleaned it up in Photoshop, imported it to Illustrator, traced it and then selected all the parts that would be cut and made them black. Then I printed it out a few times and cut out the black parts. I used a hole puncher for all the little dots around the outside. When I set up my shrine I’m going to string the doilies all around it. Cool!

dali-doily

Here’s a version that you can download and print for yourself, if you like.


 

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A quick sketch of my muse

I thought, “Gee, I’d like to do a portrait.” There’s always myself, of course, but it feels completely self-absorbed to do self portraits, oddly enough.

So I had this picture of Salvador Dali that I found on Wikiart and thought, that’ll do. Hope you like the time-lapse. I do. They’re fun to watch. Sometimes I scrub them backwards and watch the image disappear from the page. Poof!

Dali was such a mad man, wasn’t he? And I’ll bet he had no problems with self-absorption. Look at that mustache! You could poke someone’s eye out with that thing! What a loon. But such a wonderful artist.

Do you suppose that lunacy is the price you have to pay for great paintings? It’s something to think about. I’m pretty sure I’d rather keep my marbles and just be a fair to middling painter, me.

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Getting ready for my party on Friday

Skeletonized Dali

Skeletonized Dali

I found a portrait of Salvador Dali on Wikipedia and skeletonized it so I’d have something for my shrine on Friday during the Day of the Dead Festival and Artist Reception at the Red Sable.

Since Salvador was the inspiration behind the original Skelly Dancers, I added the very first one I ever painted in the background and then I painted in skeleton features over his face in blue and added some hearts, because I love his mustache and his devil-may-care attitude. He was a fantastic painter, a real craftsman.

I’ve been to the Dali Museum over in St. Petersburg, Florida. I especially love the large paintings they have. Very wonderful.

So I made a shrine for him. I added candles and some bone sprinkles around the picture frame and I’ll have some pretty yellow sunflowers in a vase. You’ve got to have yellow and this is as close as I can get to marigolds. I wouldn’t mind being haunted by Dali’s ghost. I bet he’d have some good advice for me about painting skeletons and throwing parties.

I’m off today to get some boxes of wine. A red box and a white box. That should just about cover it. And I have to practice my own sugar skull makeup some time before Friday. Half face? Full face? Happy? Scary? What shall it be?

Plus, I wonder who will win the custom sugar skull portrait? Last I checked, there were quite a few names in the box… I’ll be pulling someone’s name out the pile on Friday. Might it be yours?

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Pelvis 3

Another in the series of human bones. It reminds me of a butterfly from this angle or maybe a ram’s skull or a bird in flight.

pastel drawing of a human pelvis

Pelvis 3, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia.

pastel drawing of a human pelvis

Pelvis 3, detail, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia.

pastel drawing of a human pelvis

Pelvis 3, detail, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia.

Someone asked me today why I paint skeletons and bones. My first thought was, they make me laugh. Well, these don’t exactly make me laugh, but they are a challenge.

Bones. You think you know them, but you don’t, really. They’re hidden from your sight, unless you’re a surgeon or you happen to see someone’s broken bones or you look at them on an x-ray. Even then, they’re not your bones.

Bones are what I hang my me on. Without them, I’d be a puddle of flesh on the floor. I don’t give my bones enough credit for holding me up, giving me shape, form. But they’re there, inside, doing a lot of hard work. And they’ll still be there, long after I’m gone. Bones last.

If you’d like to purchase this pastel, it’s available at auction on ebay through November 2, 2015. After that date, you can contact me via email about availability, payment and shipping.


 

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Pelvis 2

pastel drawing of a pelvis

Pelvis 2, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia.

pastel drawing of a pelvis

Pelvis 2, detail, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia.

pastel drawing of a pelvis

Pelvis 2, detail, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia.

Another drawing of my/a pelvis. I mean, it’s supposed to be my pelvis, but I’m using a model, so I feel weird calling it my pelvis. It’s a pelvis, a human one, and it represents me, how about that?

I also posted a time-lapse for it, if you’d like to watch it all come together.

This is available on ebay at auction until October 30. After that, if you’d like to purchase it, please email me and I’ll arrange payment and shipping.

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The Skelly Dance

pastel painting of skeletonized Matisse's The Dance

The Skelly Dance, 20×30″ pastel on sanded paper by Marie Marfia. $600.

detail of a pastel painting of skeletonized Matisse's The Dance

The Skelly Dance, 20×30″ pastel on sanded paper by Marie Marfia.

detail of a pastel painting of skeletonized Matisse's The Dance

The Skelly Dance, detail, 20×30″ pastel on sanded paper by Marie Marfia.

detail of a pastel painting of skeletonized Matisse's The Dance

The Skelly Dance, detail, 20×30″ pastel on sanded paper by Marie Marfia.

detail of a pastel painting of skeletonized Matisse's The Dance

The Skelly Dance, detail, 20×30″ pastel on sanded paper by Marie Marfia.

detail of a pastel painting of skeletonized Matisse's The Dance

The Skelly Dance, detail, 20×30″ pastel on sanded paper by Marie Marfia.

detail of a pastel painting of skeletonized Matisse's The Dance

The Skelly Dance, detail, 20×30″ pastel on sanded paper by Marie Marfia.

So here is my homage piece to Henri Matisse’s The Dance, except, of course, I substituted skeletons for all the dancers, because that’s what I do! Hope you like it. The original pastel painting is available for purchase ($600). Contact me by email and I’ll set up payment and delivery.

Stay tuned, as soon as I get a nice high res photo of it, I will be offering prints in my shop.

Are you on my newsletter list? It’s easy. Just click on the link to the right for Bone Appetit! and you will receive a free, printable “Hello Sailor” notecard, plus weekly updates about my art and my process, and also subscriber-only offers on originals and prints! Such a deal!

 

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Pelvis

pastel painting of a pelvis

Pelvis, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia. $70.

detail of a pastel painting of a pelvis

Pelvis, detail, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia

detail of a pastel painting of a pelvis

Pelvis, detail, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia

detail of a pastel painting of a pelvis

Pelvis, detail, 5×7″ pastel on paper by Marie Marfia

This is the first of a series of skeletal studies. I feel like exploring more about why I’m compelled to draw skeletons. So I thought I’d start with the pelvis, because it’s the center of the body. Here’s some of what I journaled about it:

“My pelvis is a cradle where my children’s heads rested, upside down in my belly, waiting to emerge, diving through that narrow opening, fearless, pushed from warm, muffled darkness into sharp, bright din. ”

If you’d like to purchase this pastel, it’s available at auction on ebay until October 29, 2015. After that date, you can email me to find out if it’s still available and to arrange payment and shipping.

Have you signed up for my newsletter? Just click the link on the right to receive a free, printable “Hello Sailor” skelly card and weekly insights into my art process, plus subscriber only deals on prints and paintings.

 

 

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Sugar skelly number 4, green and orange

orange-flower butterfly

I was out taking pictures of butterflies and bees in my wildflower garden yesterday and that was the inspiration for today’s Sugar Skelly. Her dress is the color of the leaves of the flowers and there’s a butterfly flittering around her head, perhaps hoping for a sip of nectar from her pretty bouquet.

Have you checked out my shop lately? Click on the link to the right to see what’s in store! Free shipping in the USA.

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Sugar Skelly Dancer #3

detail of finished skelly

Finished Sugar Skelly Dancer number 3, detail

Here’s a sugar skelly dancing in blue and yellow with marigolds on her head. I am enjoying this process so much. Sometimes pastels seem fussy. This is a nice change from the usual.

I like drawing with a felt tip very much and I like the cartoonier feel of these. I will probably continue to work with them, so expect more where this came from!

 

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Digitized sugary goodness

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This is the digital file, directly from my computer.

Here you can see the original line drawing and a test print.

Today’s sugar skull girl is digital.

I began with a line drawing from my sketchbook, scanned it, imported it to Adobe Illustrator, traced it, then filled her with frosting colors, added a pattern behind her and voila! Sugar skull deliciousness!

I’m going to frame her up and bring her to the Starving Artist gallery in St. Augustine, Florida in time for this weekend.

It’s fun to do art this way. It satisfies my craving for a smooth line drawing and it lets me adjust the sizes and colors with a mouse click. I can make her fit into any size frame that I have handy. Because I’m adding final touches, like the shading on her bones and glitter on her dress, each print will be a little bit different.

I love her bright colors and I love that she’s dancing. She makes me happy!

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Here I’ve changed her colors and printed her out in three different sizes.

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Isn’t she sweet?

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