Another Still Life Painting, Another Gumball Machine


Sometimes you just can’t get enough, even when it comes to still life painting. Having recently completed still life painting of an old gumball machine, I decided to paint another. I admit to having a certain affection for these older machines. They are fun, interesting, and embody a certain amount of Americana. This new still life painting is to be a compliment to and part of a set with the previous yellow gumball machine painting…

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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 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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Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2012 Craig Shillam