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  • Emma Gillo

Lockdown Art 1

Updated: Jul 28, 2021

During the very first lockdown, alongside the commissions that I received, I was working on some pieces for myself. I became a little bit obsessed with Maqacue monkeys and their soulful expressions. I painted a few in oils but wasn't quite happy with them, so switched to watercolour. I decided to use a technique I had first used when painting a series of crows, which involves a detailed face but loose and slightly abstract approach to painting the body. Using lots of water and encouraging the paint colours to blend together.

I started with outlining my composition then carefully painted in the face, focussing on those soulful eyes.

Having got the faces right I approached the rest of the painting with a much more carefree attitude, shifting my focus to brush marks and colour blends. I wanted to create the suggestion of the body and the fur, rather than an exact replica.

These little monkeys, holding on to each other, will always represent that first lockdown to me, when we all wanted to hold those dear to us close. I have called this painting 'Hold Tight'.

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