Updated: Apr 26
April 23rd 2021 I stumbled across this stunning photograph of a leopard while scrolling away in the endless world of instagram. Little did I know then how much impact this discovery would have on my work ahead!
I checked out the page of this talented photographer behind the photo I'd seen and was instantly impressed with his gallery, documenting all these beautiful creatures.
I randomly asked him if I could use the leopard photo as a reference for a painting. To my joy he said yes, and this was going to be the beginning of a great connection, friendship and a project.
Alberto did me the honor of naming this painting, "Feline Beauty".
This piece is currently with Context Artgallery in Venice Italy, where it is represented in the gallery and artfairs.
We connected and supported each others work in the time to come. One day I got a custom order of a colorful lion. Again I turned to my friend Alberto asking for a reference.
After painting "Leo", I felt a bit guilty for using Alberto´s photos for my trade without giving him other than recognition in my social media posts. So I asked if he could put together a package price for a selection of 10 photographs of my choice, and he did. This is when I decided to make this series, that I yet have to complete and name.
As the lion was a custom order, it is the only exception of being named by the photographer himself. So this is "Leo", because it is the name of the little boy this painting was ordered to. After completing 6 paintings in the series, it was on hold for quite some time due to many factors. I had other projects and exhibitions, got involved with Female Artists Oslo where we had our studio and gallery space in Via Vika for four months filled with activities and so on. Also, I was stuck on two of the paintings. When I moved back into my garage-studio in march 2022, I was ready to pick it up again. I decided to do another lion because the one I did was a custom order and also I have some upcoming showings that I want to bring the series to.
Alberto Labrador from Madrid in Spain, loves photographing, especially wildlife, nature and landscape.
Visit his page Alberto Labrador Photography and follow his updates in his instagram feed @Albertronik_photography ! As I´ve gotten to know Alberto through our conversations, he is not only a very talented man, he also has the kindest heart! I truly wish him all the happiness and recognition for his work that he deserves.
The next painting was the first I made with the intention of creating a project.
I've seen many paintings of male peacocks with their tail in an upward colorful fan, ready for their mating parade dressed to impress. But I wanted to take a different angle and give this beautiful bird a different perspective. Alberto didn't have a photo of the position I was thinking of at hand, but I was allowed to use a few of his photos of a peacock that enabled me to create this painting along with some artistic freedom ;) So here is "Tropical Beauty". It is just something about the glance!
I am very excited about this one, and honestly my personal favorite of all the paintings I've painted to date. Malabo, the gorilla!
I am so happy about how it turned out, the expression in his eyes and the colorful torso, making a contrast of majestic power and a soft playful touch.
See the process of making "Malabo" in my instagram reel.
This is the 5th piece in the series, acrylic on 80x80cm canvas with metallic pigments. After painting the zebras I filled a colourful electric heart around it.
I try to emphasise on the eyes - to capture an essence of their warm soul.
Pink Reflection is the 6th piece in the series, and is painted with acrylic brushstrokes, acrylic pour paint and metallic pigments on deep edge canvas 80x80cm. This piece has been exhibited at Via Showcase in Vika Oslo.
I love the colors on the Komodo, and tried to recreate them with a colourful pour paint with different green and blue tones, sprinkled with my signature metallic pigments.
Currently on my easel is this piece with two beautiful leopard babies.
I am in love with the contrast of the black background, the light fur and golden elements. This piece is still in process and I will add more details, gold and Prussian blue.
The last two pieces that I have not started yet are two giraffes and two rhinos.
I don't know why, but I find it very peaceful and calming to paint animals, and it gives me great joy of finding my own artistic expression through these projects! I am not aiming for perfection in terms of looking exactly the same as the photo as you probably can see from these pairs. This project is more about finding my own artistic way, but with a deeper origin that actually means something to me than random references. The common characteristics of these paintings are the combination of dark backdrops, paintbrush and colorful pourpaint technique with metallic pigments. This is a style that I use in many of my paintings, both pure abstracts and in combination with motifs.
Thank you for reading the story behind my project, and stay tuned for the other drops of this series that I yet have to name.