Chelsea is an original painting by Luisa Manea.
Today was Easter Friday; I walked the Red Arrow in 30 minutes, which was not my best time. I swam for an hour and watched a movie called Tar.
The rest of the day was filled with painting.
Chelsea is a miniature artwork,
only 20cm x 25cm x 1cm, ideal for posting, a gift or hanging in a small section on a wall at home.
I always wanted to paint a small piece of work.
One of my favourite things is going to the vintage art/collectable shop in one of the arcades on the Brisbane mall, opposite David Jones.
Can't remember the name of the shop?
They have the best collection of antique artworks, china, glassware and jewellery. The last time I visited, there was an incredible painting for 3k ( a miniature) and an even better item, a shimmering brooch that dazzles when the wearer moves 5k. Antiques are a better investment than designer bags, though they have lost a bit of favour in recent years. The owners, two men, are exceptionally delightful and knowledgeable to talk to.
The Melbourne art gallery is another good place to see these beautiful miniature paintings. They are so tiny, way smaller than this piece. They are usually the size of your palm or smaller, embedded in gold leaf ornate frames, and were often painted in the late 1800s.
These little paintings remind me of the movie Bram Stoker's Dracula 1992 when her lover Jonathon (Keanu Reeves) pulls out the miniature portrait of Mina Murray, played by Winona Ryder. Count Dracula finds the picture and believes Mina is the reincarnation of his late wife, Elisabeta.
This movie also has some fantastic costumes; it's pretty old now, but you can watch it repeatedly. We used to have a VHS videotape of the film.
The fantastic thing about these artists from the 1800s is how much they achieved without all we have at our disposal today. Projectors, art books, teachers, Youtube, libraries and pre-made art supplies...
The artist of this period and earlier were masters at observing all living and non-living things.
It must have been a time when people looked at one another; getting close to these old master paintings in a state gallery, you can see the eyes' waterline, and the detail is often more evident than in a modern-day photo.
Today we are too distracted, and only a few artists paint from a live sitter who is happy to pose for hours until a painting is finished. It's so much easier to take photos of a sitter instead.
Miniature paintings are a great way to start an art collection for your home.
I am pleased to update my blog readers after less than 24 hours. Chelsea has been sold to a collector in FNQ.