Dancing African Lady

Never let it be said that sunsets do not make versatile paintings!
This painting was inspired by my love for the bright colours often found in African art. It made sense, to me, for the star of the show to be an African lady.

I began with a background of some of my favourite sunset type colours: red, orange, yellow, purple and blue. When using finger tips for painting, I find it best to apply paint directly to the canvas and just work it in, blending the colours together to cover the whole canvas.

Once the background dried, I used a mix of black and brown paint and dabbed this onto the canvas to create the form of a woman with a very small waist. I stopped at waist level as I’ll add a long, flowing skirt later.
Firstly though, a hat – or headdress – for the lady. I decided upon yellow and then added a line of orange, which I then blended with the yellow whilst the paint was still wet.
By this time, the figure had dried so I could make a start on clothing. I chose an orange bra and a yellow and orange long flowing skirt.

Now for some jewellery. I used gold paint for this and because the jewellery required some finer detail, I used a paint brush here. I also added detail to the headdress, a gold outline to the bra and gold waistband to the skirt.

You may notice that the bra is unequal in size, as I did eventually, so I just went over the lines and corrected this. There is no need to worry about mistakes, as they can always be corrected.
Lastly, I added the sun – yellow and orange – to complement the lady’s clothes.

Hope you’ll enjoy your canvas just as much as I have enjoyed painting mine!


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