The Making of (and the Obsession behind) "Snowy Nightfall"
As some of you may be aware, I'm a HUGE Harry Potter fan. I grew up with the books and the movies. I read the books over and over. I listen to the audiobooks driving to work and to fall asleep. My first choice for movie night is a Harry Potter movie (or more recently... Fantastic Beasts!).
I'm lucky enough that Mr. SevanSeas became a fan in the recent past as well (although, that may have been a "learn to swim with the current or be swept away by it" decision on his part). We even celebrated our first wedding anniversary at Universal Studios, primarily so we could take a walk down Diagon Alley, explore Hogwarts, and ride the Hogwarts Express!
So when my mother-in-law surprised me with Harry Potter bed sheets for Christmas (the "Enchanted Night Sky" set from Pottery Barn), I knew I had no choice but to redecorate our entire bedroom.
Granted, I don't know if it counts as "redecorating" if our bedroom didn't have much style to begin with. We've been living without much needed nightstands, and our bedding did not have any coordination whatsoever. I'd been trying to convince myself for months to repaint our yellowing ceilings.
Now, when you hear someone say they are going to make their bedroom Harry Potter-themed, you probably picture cheesy movie posters of Daniel Radcliffe and a bed emblazoned with the Hogwarts crest. NOT SO!
I wanted my decor to be adult and tasteful, and subtly imbued with wizarding world flavor. For example, the sheets are white with little gold owls, moons, and stars. It doesn't scream Harry Potter to the untrained muggle eye, and that's the way I like it.
To me, it always seemed that wizards were stuck in the dark ages... using quills and candles and sending their kids to school in a remote castle...
But I didn't want our bedroom to look like an antique shop or a cheesy display at a renaissance fair.
Instead, I decided I wanted a mash up of medieval and modern - something that would have magical charm to the true Harry Potter fan, but that would look stylish and clean to the average visitor.
I won't bore you with the details of why we chose a champagne velvet blanket or precisely how I positioned my three (yes, THREE) sets of Harry Potter books. But I will draw your attention to the crown jewel and centerpiece of our new decor....
SNOWY NIGHTFALL, 2018
Oil on heavy duty, gallery wrapped canvas
36" x 48"
To the uninitiated, "Snowy Nightfall" is just a nice painting of an owl at night that nicely matches our chosen wall colors of BM Twilight and BM Chantilly Lace and gives an earthy natural feel to the decor.
To the Harry Potter fan, the 12 sq. ft. painting (my largest to date) is a tribute to HEDWIG! Although, I believe the owl, as I have drawn it, is probably male rather than female. Apparently female snowy owls have a lot of black markings whereas the males are mostly white. Oh well.
I hope you like the final painting and room design as much as I do! If you have any questions about why I chose the things I did, or the challenges I had painting "Hedwig", feel free to contact me or leave your thoughts below!
I just wanted to take a moment to thank everyone who came out to the Poquoson Seafood Festival. So many people showed us support, whether by assisting us with the booth, promoting us online, or being new or returning clients!
Neither All A Board or SevanSeas could be what they are without you. Thanks for making this year a success!
For it our clients, we’d love to see what you do with your art! Please send us photos via email or share them online. Seeing others enjoying the work we create is half the reason we do what we do!
You may have noticed after a bit of browsing that many of my pieces featuring coastal seascapes are threatened by dark clouds and storm fronts.
Everyone who has spent at least part of their life living on the east coast (myself included) has seen more than their fair share of these scenes. Heavy rains and strong winds accompany the tropical storms and hurricanes coastal dwellers see annually.
Witnessing these big storms and embracing them as part of life is what separates casual beach vacationing from true coastal living.
When you live on the east coast, you learn not only to weather the storms, but also to see the beauty in them. There's a certain sense of wonder when you watch vast, thundering storm clouds rolling in over dark, choppy waves on the horizon, and you know Mother Nature is about to show you her power.
Whenever I paint these seascapes, I want to capture that feeling of smallness and anticipation I feel when the sky darkens and the wind picks up and there is a distinct smell of salt and ozone in the air. That feeling is so nostalgic for me... and its a strong one.
These scenes, with swirling clouds and churning waves and blowing sand, are the coastal scenes that are truly, wildly beautiful. They make me feel like I'm home again.