Vincent Van Woah!

Hello, everybody

I apologize again for my absence, but we’ve been working like madmen over here!
I am SO excited to show you a company-wide project that has been coming together for well over a month now…


You’re probably familiar with this painting, Vincent Van Gogh’s A Wheatfield with Cypresses.   But, have you ever seen a collaborative reinterpretation of it done by 36 different people?
Well, that’s exactly what we did.


The plans were laid out diligently by one of our graphic designers, Erin, where those who were interested in participating could request a section of the painting to do (mine is circled up there).


From there, they would receive an 11″x14″ Joe’s Prime Cradled Painting Panel and a printout of their section as well as the painting as a whole.


Here’s Erin assigning the panels and printouts for everyone!


And here’s Lori, one of our marketing assistants, providing emotional support and flare.

The to-scale printouts of each of our sections were to help make sure our edges would line up with each other and we wouldn’t just have a mess of crooked designs.


The easiest and most effective way I found to make sure my panel lined up with its neighbors was to put a piece of Saral Wax-Free Transfer Paper in between the panel and my printout and just trace the major lines–especially the ones at the edges.


It’s kinda hard to see from this photo, but the lines came out crisp and accurate.

And now I was ready to start painting!


I grabbed an assortment of Joe’s Prime Really Good Lightfast Acrylic colors that I saw present in my panel because I knew I’d have to mix to get the colors I wanted.


With a combination of Bright Aqua Green, Light Blue Violet, and Titanium White.


I painted an even layer of that teal mixture and, while it was still wet, added a few more dollops of Titanium White for blending.


The addition of the white gave me this cool illusion of hard brush strokes, something Van Gogh is known for and I wanted to emulate.


The final touch was to mix up some purple clouds and the little corner of cypress tree I had.

I wanted to test some different doodle patterns because I had considered doodling over the basic outlines of my panel, in order to give it my own touch.


In order to test without ruining my panel, I taped a sheet of 11″x14″ Polyester Film over it and drew on that instead!


I started off by just lining the major chunks of my “brush strokes,” and I really liked this effect on its own!

But I still wanted to take it a step further, so I began to doodle in some of the corner sections.

vg16 copy

The little circles ending up being much, much, much too close together and nearly blacked out that entire section, but I thought the lines around the cypress tree looked okay!

I tried to do the circles again on a larger scale in a different shape, and I think it works a bit better the second time around.


I wasn’t totally convinced, but I was still experimenting, so I decided to keep going with it and some other designs.


Eventually, I had most of this corner covered and was able to gauge my feelings about it.
I decided that the doodle business was a bit too busy for this project and scrapped my sheet of polyester.

I did, however, love the effect of the simple lining!  So I took my black brush-tip Pitt Artist Pen and went back over those lines–for real this time!


Ta-da!  Now I just had to wait for everyone else’s to start rolling in so we could assemble them!


Here’s how it turned out!
I was so impressed with the way everything lined up really well!  Even though we all did our panels separate from each other, we still produced something really cohesive and natural.


Our panels are now hung up and displayed as an exhibition in the Blowing Rock Art and History Museum.
If you’re in the area, stop by and check it out!

13 Responses

  1. James Peacock
    November 5, 2015 at 12:30 pm | Reply

    Just beautiful — I really look forward to doing this from a blown up photograph.

    Really enjoyed this experiment of yours. Thanks, Jim

  2. James Peacock
    November 5, 2015 at 12:31 pm | Reply

    Just beautiful — I really look forward to doing this from a blown up photograph.

    Really enjoyed this experiment of yours. Thanks, Jim —your system wouldn’t allow me to post my comment saying that I had already said it – But, that’s NOT true. Guess – you just didn’t want to see my comment – Sad — James Peacock

  3. Bettyann
    November 9, 2015 at 6:49 pm | Reply

    Wow! I’m really impressed! It is gorgeous! Van Gogh would love what you did!!!

  4. Claire
    November 15, 2015 at 2:20 pm | Reply

    That is awesome! What a fantastic result!

  5. Elinor Sethman
    November 15, 2015 at 3:30 pm | Reply

    Beautiful. Reminds me of my kaleidoscope paintings.

  6. Darlene H Morris
    November 19, 2015 at 1:23 pm | Reply

    Wonderful collaborative project. I think that would work for one of my kids classes. The acetate test sheet is a good testing method and I use the Saral Transfer paper with my younger students already.

  7. carole childers
    carole childers
    November 19, 2015 at 11:51 pm | Reply

    I have done this kind of project often in my years of teaching art. I used many different art works and usually students had no idea what the completed image was destined to be. We did Guernica once with great results. I actually cut up the image to be reproduced into grid pieces. It is very important to label the pieces for accurate reassembly! It was fun and a surprise finish!

  8. Beth Smithler
    Beth Smithler
    November 21, 2015 at 11:07 am | Reply

    Love this!!!!!

  9. Grace
    December 6, 2015 at 3:42 pm | Reply

    Absolutely gorgeous! What a great idea. My son wants a Starry Night quilt – maybe this would be a way to go at it. Thank you

  10. Alexa
    December 9, 2015 at 2:21 pm | Reply

    Beautiful! What a wonderful and fun idea. I’d buy a print of it.

  11. Linda
    December 10, 2015 at 12:01 pm | Reply

    Holy smokes!! That is just beautiful!!

  12. Elle
    December 12, 2015 at 7:34 pm | Reply

    What a wonderful idea-I think I’ll take it to my watercolor class and approach the teacher with the idea. Thanks for giving us encouragement to try something different!

  13. Pamela Bowers
    December 14, 2015 at 4:02 pm | Reply

    Love the way it turned out. If everyone is encouraged to add doodling (I liked your doodling a lot) the end result might be very interesting. I may add this challenge if I offer it at retirement community where I teach watercolor. Thanks for sharing!

Leave a Reply