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Kayaking Eyeballs in Flora Bowley’s Class

The kayaking eyeballs are a work in progress I started in Flora Bowley’s class.  Flora has such a great teaching style. She nurtured and guided me as this canvas developed.   If I am blessed enough to have a chance at another live class with her I am jumping on that opportunity!! Here’s how it progressed…















Best part of this type of painting is that if you don’t like part of  it, keep painting.  It will change.  I am not a big fan of this much orange.  When I added the blues to it I began to like the orange.  I was amazed by how one element could impact the feeling of such a busy painting.





























At this point, the busy-ness, the activity, the myriad of marks just made me happy.  But it didn’t feel finished yet.








After much contemplation I decided I wanted to draw eyes all over it.  I have been enjoying eyes and how I see the world.   As I drew I began to wonder if I had drawn fish.  See the gills in the black lines?








Yup.  Fish without tails is all I saw.








But once I added the white all I could see they were the eyes I was trying to draw. Ah, relief!








I was getting into this whole intuitive painting thing.  I wanted more color- I really like a lot of color.

Dripping the color down the painting did not turn out as I envisioned.  As I stepped back & took a deep breath the kayaks popped out at me.  The blue was the ocean.  Once it has been seen it can’t be unseen…








Now it’s kayaking eyeballs.  This still isn’t finished and I am a bit nervous about what else will show up in this painting…If you have a moment please stop by the great artists at Paint Party Friday and Creative Every Day!

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  • alice August 2, 2012, 11:13 am

    haha! this is awesome! i really love how you put on color, then more color, and layer and fill. i don’t know if i could master this or not. i really like how the fish popped out all of a sudden. and i appreciate you showing the progression of your painting with the different photos. very helpful to me.

  • Nordljus August 2, 2012, 11:31 am

    Oh I love your kayaking eyeballs! The colours are gorgeous! I’m taking Flora’s online class, but I’m still only at layer two or three. It’s so nice to see how your painting progressed! I’ll have to get back to mine and see what it will turn into.

  • Marji August 2, 2012, 12:08 pm

    Carolyn, wow I couldn’t believe my eyes when I came to your site today. I just signed up for Flora’s on-line class starting in September.. Holy cow, sincronicity at its best. I love this big canvas and the colors are amazing. I wouldn’t worry too much about what else shows up in your painting… its all good. Thanks for coming by 🙂

  • Terrie -Creative Explorer August 2, 2012, 12:21 pm

    I’ve seen evidence of her classes all over the place and always am so intrigued. I’m giving it a shot at home just using what I’ve gathered reading from you and others about her process. It’s interesting that so far my WIP has gone through many stages of ugly – I think what’s missing is her unique perspective and guidance about how to let go of the ugly and find the beauty. Like you I love the use of explosions of color and I really like how your final (?) harnesses some of that mark making, allowing us to really appreciate the depth of it. What a great technique! Thanks for sharing all those interim steps…..

  • Christine August 2, 2012, 12:53 pm

    This is just beautiful! I do see the eyeballs!

  • Gwyn Monroe August 2, 2012, 1:13 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing your painting and the process that led to it. I have Flora’s book “Intuitive Painting” and one of my dreams is to take a live class. I am recovering from Lyme disease, and once I get well enough, I would love to fulfill my dream. You’ve inspired me today to continue on my healing journey, so thanks! 🙂 Gwyn

  • Corrine August 2, 2012, 1:15 pm

    Amazing energy transformation, fun to see all the layers as you worked. xox

  • Cynthia August 2, 2012, 1:27 pm

    Kayaking eyeballs! I LOVE IT!! Thanks for sharing the process. It’s always fun, entertaining and definitely inspirational when you post those photos.

  • Marja August 2, 2012, 2:40 pm

    Hi Carolyn, this is beautiful and thanks for this lesson. You let see how it is build up, marvelous. You nee courage to paint over all to make these eyes, with a splendid result.
    Really wonderful.
    Lovely greet

  • Marjie Kemper August 2, 2012, 2:55 pm

    Yowza! What a gorgeous build-up of color… I adore all your layers and the kayak eyes are pretty cool, too!

  • Valerie-Jael August 2, 2012, 3:24 pm

    This is really coooooooooooooooooooooool! Valerie

  • Angenita August 2, 2012, 4:03 pm

    I love love love those progress photos.
    I get frustrated sometimes because it takes so much time to make a painting. It helps to see how many steps others take to come to the result.
    All different colours make me smile and, oh well, I really like it, there is so much to see.

    Thanks for your comment on my blog. Painting nails and canvases do have a simularity. The fun thing about painting nails is that you are forced to use your non dominant hand. Still a challenge 🙂

  • Rita McGregor August 2, 2012, 4:33 pm

    Wow! I think I have to learn to just keep going until I like it. Cool! 🙂

  • Paula - Buenos Aires August 2, 2012, 7:12 pm

    My kids Kindergarten uniform was orange and blue so I´m quite partial to that combination. 😀 Great to be able to see the process!

  • Lorinda @ Everyday Endeavours August 2, 2012, 11:09 pm

    I so love watching this piece progress Carolyn! Thank you for sharing with us all. I’ve been waiting and waiting for Flora’s book to arrive in the mail. You’re just adding to the torture! It’s a truly wonderful piece. xx

  • Rinda August 3, 2012, 1:30 am

    Thanks for the step-by-step! It’s really cool to see how you get the pattern in the center of the eyeballs.

  • BJ August 3, 2012, 2:10 am

    Thanks for your comment on my WORDPLAY die. A majority of the letters cut just fine and they are great to work with. Loving your painting, wish I was as adventurous with paint or even wanted to try. I shy away from it most times. Love how your paintings build up and the way you stop to photograph them along the way too. I think your title is very apt too.

  • Jan S August 3, 2012, 8:27 am

    Wow…what an amazing process…It’s fantastic to see all the different layers developing…and I can see Kayaks !! Jan x

  • Carol August 3, 2012, 8:36 am

    Wow! is right ~ Love the painting and the process ~ You are ‘blooming where you are’ ~ Colorist defintely! ~~ thanks, namaste, (A Creative Harbor) on Blogger

  • gloria August 3, 2012, 10:25 am

    Excellent. Really enjoyed the process and all those layers. Nicely done. Thanks. Happy PPF!

  • pointypix August 3, 2012, 11:05 am

    wow, I love how this progressed – it changed so radically from start to finish and the swimming eyeballs are inspired!!

  • giggles August 3, 2012, 11:17 am

    Thanks for showing your wonderful process!! Can’t wait to see it completed!! I loved many of those steps… there was so much depth in the paper! You can still use those for digital pieces now!! Good job!!

    Hugs Giggles

  • Mary C. Nasser August 3, 2012, 11:20 am

    Always love seeing the progression of your amazing paintings!!
    This painting…and its title…are fantastic!! 🙂
    Happy PPF!!
    Mixed-Media Map Art

  • Annette G August 3, 2012, 1:15 pm

    wow this is such fun and most exciting to look at. Having read so much today about Flora Bowley have just ordered a book of hers from Amazon and can hardly wait to get my hands on it………….Happy PPF, Annette x

  • Ayala Art August 3, 2012, 4:01 pm

    so crazy and awesome, I love it!!

  • Tracey Fletcher King August 3, 2012, 8:50 pm

    you make intuitive painting look pretty easy… and its not… this is a great result and I look forward to seeing where the new ideas take your work… always interesting visiting here…xx

  • nora Clemens-Gallo August 3, 2012, 9:04 pm

    WOW!!! I can’t believe all the amazing paintings (your process) you have created to create your final piece. It’s truly gorgeous and you make it look so easy to do that kind of work. WOW!!

    Excellent job!

    p.s looking forward to see the finish piece!

  • Cris, Artist in Oregon August 3, 2012, 9:33 pm

    Your Art work looks interesting but my monitor is acting up and I cant see the colors well. Will come back when it wants to behave. Thanks for your comment on my blog. HPPF.

  • lynn cohen August 4, 2012, 12:10 am

    What a fun trip this was! You did a good job of getting rid of the color you weren’t that thrilled about…leaving just enough to make your Kayack fish eyes glow! It reminds me very much of something I saw on a cover of either CPS or Quilting Arts, I can’t remember which. Probably CPS!!! 😉

  • Alicia August 4, 2012, 3:37 am

    what an incredible piece!! from where you start to where you end – unbelievable. to think it just all flowed & was unplanned! I rarely come put with something so coherent when I start intuitively painting 😀

  • AJ August 4, 2012, 3:51 am

    Thanks Carolyn, this is great and so wonderful to see the process and the color combinations.
    Big love
    AJ 🙂

  • VonnyK August 4, 2012, 5:55 am

    Wow, I love all the colours and the journey you traveled to get to the end. Love those eyeballs.

  • Ginny August 4, 2012, 6:23 am

    Carolyn, this piece is great. As I usually do with your posts, I went back several times to enjoy it. I love seeing how your painting begins and where it ends. You are not only a talented painter but an inspiring teacher.

  • Faye August 4, 2012, 1:58 pm

    Carolyn, what fun that must have been to paint that colorful piece! I like it better with the white and with the blue ocean as you have wound up with. I like a little orange, though so I’m glad a little got left in.

  • Karen Smithey August 4, 2012, 2:12 pm

    I always love seeing how a piece progresses–and your words are wonderful–Once it is seen, it can’t be unseen–

  • Anne August 4, 2012, 7:39 pm

    What creativity! I don’t know that I would have ever thought of this in a million years!! Nice job.

  • Marcie August 5, 2012, 7:14 pm

    These are so cool…such fun!

  • denthe August 6, 2012, 7:01 am

    Oh my, from eyes to fish to eyeballs to kayaks to kayaking eyeballs! That’s quite a trip you’re taking. Isn’t this paintingstyle fun!? I did Flora’s online class and she’s a wonderful teacher. You did a great job on this painting!

  • Natasha August 6, 2012, 8:41 pm

    Will be cool to see where you go with this. Flora’s class was fantastic wasn’t it. I love the progress photos! 🙂

  • Maria McGuire August 7, 2012, 10:35 pm

    Just amazing my friend–AMAZING!

  • Kristin August 8, 2012, 8:24 am

    Beautiful job!!

  • JKW August 9, 2012, 2:50 pm

    What an imagination, I love the whole concept. Blessings, Janet PPF

  • Piarom August 10, 2012, 5:38 pm

    I love seeing the progress in this colorful piece! Looks like you have much fun :))