"The Reading Gnome" WIP Pre-lim Sketch
Oil on linen panel
Here is the beginning sketch of "The Reading Gnome." I know it looks really dirty in this picture...in real life it is not. This picture is much darker than the actual sketch..I darkened it in photoshop so it would show up better here. The sketch itself is 50% lighter at least. I try to get enough of a visual with the sketch, but not so much graphite pencil that the graphite will interfere with the paint. In fact, I will probably erase some of it as I dive in with paint and brushes.
About the subject: I can't help it. Gnomes make me laugh. I like the Roaming Gnome commercials. I have a friend who has two, rather large, garden gnomes. Recently I watched a great French movie called Amelie which had a gnome in the plot. (It's a great movie by the way. It came out maybe four or five years ago. I ordered it from Netflix. I liked it so much that I think I may buy it so I can watch it over again a few times.) So one day I came across this photograph of a reading gnome. It's someone else's photograph and I don't know whose it is. Otherwise I would give credit to the photographer for this gnome painting I am about to do. There are lots of gnomes out there with different themes, gardening gnomes, policeman gnomes, sunbathing gnomes, beach themed gnomes, and the like. This one is an older, possibly antique gnome figure. I just love the idea of a reading gnome...maybe because I love reading and do so much of it. Frankly, I just thought he was really cute.
As I think about this painting, I've been thinking of my grandchildren. (duh...I think about them often anyway.) They are happily being home-schooled by a brilliant mother and father. So a "reading gnome." when I think of it, seems like a mascot for their school room...a study buddy, so to speak. Any child's room or over their desk would be a good place to place this fellow. I just hope he turns out the way I want him. We'll see..