Still Life Painting With An Old Gumball Machine

still life painting

“Sugar and Vice – Detail” Craig Shillam

An older Carousel gumball machine was a great model for this particular still life painting. It didn’t move, wither, complain, smell, or take a break. It didn’t even ask for money, although I couldn’t help but notice the coin slot every time I laid eyes on this yellow beauty.

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Still Life Painting with Fresh Peppers

still life painting

“Still Life with Peppers” Craig Shillam, 11″ x 14″, oil/canvas

One of the best parts about “still life painting with fresh peppers” was actually going to a local market and examining all the possibilities in the produce department. When it came down to setting up the actual still life, the peppers were really cooperative models in the process. This painting had a particular purpose, and that purpose was to be part of an auction for the local art association…

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Still Life Painting Featuring a Vintage Gumball Machine

Still Life Painting with Vintage Gumball Machine, Craig Shillam

“Gumball Machine” Craig Shillam, 14″ x 11″, oil

Still Life Painting with a Vintage Gumball Machine

Having just painted a still life painting of a gumball machine and having a lot fun doing it, I thought I would write a post about it. Imagine that… I recently had the opportunity to  participate in a fundraising auction for the local museum in the town where I live. It was a great night, and very successful for the most part, I think. For this small still life painting, I was able to borrow the vintage gumball machine from the lady who cuts my hair. She has had the machine for a very long time. Every time she cuts my hair cut I look at that thing and want to do something with it. I actually want it for my house to tell you the truth. So I finally asked her if I could borrow it so I could do a painting of it. She said yes. The original plan was to (and probably still will) paint this still life painting much larger than the 11″ x 14″ shown here.  But this auction was coming up and I felt like it would be a good subject matter for the event. The painting was started in my home studio, and then finished as part of a quick draw/quick finish before the auction. Some artists do the whole thing right there, some, like me, finish what they have started at the event. I prefer to finish at the event because there is always people mingling around, or I see somebody I know, and I want to visit. To me, this time as a good time to meet and greet more than paint like a madman because the painting need to be done before the auction starts. That’s just me, others feel differently. The still life painting I did at the last auction I paricipated in turned out pretty well I thought, and I did a lot more painting on it at the event than on the “gumball machine”. Fortunately this painting was bought, as my other auction entry did not sell this time. I didn’t think it was the right crowd for a painting like that, but oh well. One thing I have noticed is that my still life paintings sell a little better than my landscape paintings at auctions. Still thinking about that, not enough study samples to verify!

Still Life Painting with a Gumball Machine

As for the painting itself, I took a somewhat looser approach, because I wanted to put some “feeling” into the man-made machine. This still life painting did not take very long, and I view it as a warm up for a larger piece down the road. I felt the two key parts of the painting were to ge the red body of the machine right and the glass right. I guess it was kind of important to make the gumballs look round and clean also… nobody wants to look at dirty, unappetizing gumballs.

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Still Life Painting Featuring my Grade School Lunch Box

still life paintingFor this still life painting  my old lunch box from grade school was called in for duty, thermos and all. It’s been sitting around all these years waiting for something to do besides hold old baseball cards. I had actually been thinking about this painting for a long time. While there is a  lot of baseball items in this painting, it’s not really about baseball…

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Remember Your Focal Point when Painting

The term focal point has been popping up all around me lately as I continue on the journey to become a better painter an artist. It’s almost like somebody is trying to tell me something. I know that sometimes I do cram a lot into one of my pieces. Looking back, I think it would be fair to say that this artist could have taken more advantage of using a single focal point at times. I will be doing much better in that department from now on…

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Still Life Painting with Teal Pitcher and Fruit

still life painting

Never in a million years did I think I would take a liking to still life painting. It certainly was not on the things I must do before I kick the bucket list. But I gotta say, I’m really enjoying it. Even though this still life painting is on my website, I had forgotten all about it. It all started with this small, cool looking teal blue pitcher…

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Another Still Life Painting – Autumn Theme with Carnival Squash

still life painting

Whether your still life painting, landscape painting, taking photos or just living your life, the visual inspiration of fall is a full-blown carnival for the senses. There is so much natural beauty in fall  it’s easy to find a treasure of subject matter. What’s not so easy is to know what to leave out of a composition. In this particular still life painting, a Carnival Squash was used as the main object…

 

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As an Artist, You Must Never, Ever, Be This

As an artist you can and must do many things. First, you create  your art, whatever it may be. Then you have to show your work, market it, talk about it, plan events, enter shows, photograph it, and take care of your website. After all that, you need to make a few bucks from your efforts so you can do it all over again. But as an artist and creative person, there is one thing you must never do or be…

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Still Life Painting with Grapes and Cantaloupe

 

still life painting

Still Life with Grapes and Cantaloupe, Craig Shillam, 12″ x 16″, Oil on Canvas,

In getting ready for an upcoming  art auction, I chose to do a still life painting with grapes and cantaloupe. For five years in a row I have been fortunate enough to have participated in an art auction that is a fund-raiser for my local art council, and this painting will be my “Quick Finish/”Demonstration” project.

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Still Life Painting – Fall Theme with Pumpkins

still life painting

“Autumn Centerpiece” Craig Shillam, oil, 14″ x 24″

 

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