Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Black Butterfly Tail with Bulging Dragon Eyes

Finally frustrated with pointillism, I revisited watercolors. I searched my books for inspiration and came up with this Chinese Goldfish book put out by Tetra. The wonderful thing about this book is that there are photos straight from China of the way goldfish are kept and propagated there and the way they were kept in palaces in ancient times when myriad servants were around to make water changes in the beautiful porcelain, marble, wood, pottery and earthenware containers. Of course all of the variations of goldfish are shown. This book really spurred my imagination.

My eye for graphics was grabbed by this image on page 67:

The book describes this fish as:

Black butterfly tail with bulging dragon eyes

An exceedingly rare variety of goldfish, renowned for its butterfly-like caudal fins. It is as black as traditional Chinese ink and has large protruding eyes. This variety of fish likes shallow water, only 10 cm deep. An adult fish measures between 15 and 20 cm.

I just had to paint this fish. So, armed with my black watercolor paint I had at it. This was the result:

I used the dry brush technique. In general I feel that I captured the spirit of the fish, but I am not happy with the scales, which I rushed because I was impatient to finish the work. I think that graphically the painting is a success. The final work is 13.5" x 10". Click to enlarge.

I would love to hear your comments.


thonnibg said...

I love it!Esp the tail!

about a boy said...

that is absolutely beautiful! i want one! well done!

YvesPaul said...

Goldfish is one of the favorite subject in Asian paintings and usually they're painted in odd numbers (7 or 9) for good luck. Love it.

Sh@ney said...

It is lovely Sue...I love the detail you put into it. It is quite striking in black & white.

Anonymous said...

I am really taken by this. Would love to have it on my wall.


Cristiano Mancini said...

Stupendous ! Next year you'll exibit at the Asian Art Affair ! Very chic !

Doug said...

I love this one too. I love that it's almost an abstract design but still a discernible figure.Well done, Sue!

Sue said...

You guys are going to make me blush!