I’ve always been fascinated by dragons. Winged creatures of fantasy that can look almost like anything. But in my mind a dragon has both arms and wings. And the wings should be large enough to be believable. Not even fantasy beasts can fly with too small wings, no matter how cute. And I’m not that fond of the standard green dragons. My dragons tend to be red or brownish. Or iridescent white. Or black and purple.
I haven’t made that many projects with dragons, but as my projects go, only flower projects are more abundant. In 2008 I took an art class in my teaching studies. We got to explore a lot of different art medias from the focus of one theme. My theme was dragons and that’s when I really started paying attention to dragon anatomy and scales. I painted water color dragons, acrylic dragons. I did detailed studies of eyes or wings or feet.
But I think my proudest theme is my family dragons. My brother in law also loves dragons and I’ve given him some of my works as gifts over the years. All of them have the same kind of dragon, a red one with black spikes and frills and yellow stomach. But the first one is from 2003 or 2004, I can’t really recall which birthday it was. I used a printed image as a guide to look at while painting. The second one is from 2008, a study of just the dragon’s head and sketched from scratch. The third is from 2011, the pose is sketched from a mesh of several guides, but the painting was done without a guide. So you can really see how my skill progresses.
Then this year I decided to make a Valentine’s gift for my husband. Red was the choice here too, but unlike the previous paintings I chose to make it in polymer clay. It was amazing to see the difference a sculpture could make to a two dimensional painting. I strayed from my preferences and made the wings tiny however. I *did* make larger wings, but realized they’d take all the focus off the heart and the rose, so I opted for the easier to make and cuter smaller wings instead.