Mirror Image Women

I made this image as a demonstration for one of my students in the mixed media class I taught in Winter, 2020. I wanted to show an incorporation of stenciling on layers of paint and my explanation in words was not making sense to her.

I cut out a woman figure. Then I painted a piece of watercolor paper (9″ x 12″) in sections of  random color.  Next, I set the stencil on the paper and painted around her; then I flipped her over and painted the other side of the paper in different colors.

The figures protect the original colors so that when the stencil is removed, there it is.

The whole thing took maybe five minutes to do. The student saw the process and I was pleasantly surprised by the results. Sometimes good things happen very fast, and the key is, don’t mess with them just because you think it should have been harder. Sometimes…it is easy!


Mirror Image Women 1-2020 8.5 x 10.5003

12 thoughts on “Mirror Image Women

    1. Claudia McGill Post author

      Thank you. I tend to think I need to work on something for a long time for it to be good, or finished, or whatever I’m aiming for, but…it is my nature to work very quickly and at this point after doing artwork for a long time, I am efficient and know my materials – both of these things leading to finishing something pretty quickly. And then I second-guess, add to it, and …bad things happen. I have learned to be more trusting of myself and if I feel I need to be working more on something, start a new piece or project instead, then come back later on. I usually find there was no more work on the first thing needed, but the time interval seems to bleed off the compulsion to add more – I can be satisfied. I love the stenciling process and I could do it all day (Hmmm…there is an idea).

    1. Claudia McGill Post author

      Thank you. I always enjoy the results I get with stenciling, I can’t always predict how things will end up, but if you start with colors you like, you will never go wrong. That is what I think.

  1. Laura (PA Pict)

    Wow! I absolutely love the contrasts in this piece and the way that interacts with the mirroring of using the same figure twice. It makes me think of a person with their shadow self.

    1. Claudia McGill Post author

      Thank you. It really was a quick demo kind of piece that really fell into place. I was surprised, myself, usually these things are just – fodder for collage. But I have kept this one.

  2. memadtwo

    That’s a wonderful dance!
    I am also suspicious of less being more. When I was young I could do a collage with 4 or 5 pieces of paper. Now I just keep piling them on. Although I’ve done a few pared down versions lately. Painting with brush and ink forces simplicity, and I should get back to it. I’m always tinkering. (K)

    1. Claudia McGill Post author

      You’re welcome. I seem to want to fuss around with things that need to stay simple. I’m trying to remember this…again…and again!

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