Saturday, February 25, 2012

A progression of faces

Just completed a commissioned Saint Francis, and am working on another--this time it's on a pretty large panel!  Details of those are at the end of this post..

Out of curiosity I looked for all the paintings I've ever done of this particular saint. Their faces are in chronological order as I painted them (at least the ones I could find).

1. The face to the left is a detail of St. Francis of Assisi. (Oil on panel, 9" x 12"). One of my first paintings of him--and he got a sort of  petulant expression.

2. This face is a detail of another Saint Francis of Assisi. (Oil on panel, 9" x 12", private collection.) I think this was done second--it was awhile ago.

3. St. Francis and the Birds (detail). Acrylic on panel, 5" x 7".
A rather jolly version.

4. St. Francis and the Worried Bird (detail). Acrylic on canvas, 4" x 12", private collection. Done shortly after viewing a 60's Poster show at the DAM. Some of that influence shows, I think.

5. St. Francis Preaching to the Birds (detail). Acrylic on panel, 6" x 18", private collection. This "larger" piece was the biggest painting I'd ever done up to that point. As an illustrator, I learned to keep paintings small, but now I'm expanding a bit.


6. St. Francis of Assisi (detail). Mixed media on wood tray, approx. 4" x 7", private collection. One of a set of three done using acrylic, ink, and collage.

7.  Saint Francis at Sunset (detail). Acrylic on oak wood, approx.  5" x 9", private collection. This painting was done on a piece of scrap flooring.

8. Young Saint Francis (detail). Acrylic on panel, 6" x 18", private collection. Another larger piece, picturing the saint just beginning the new life he's chosen. Francis is usually pictured in middle age in holy card images, but I wanted to do something a bit different.

Saint Francis Consoling the Blue Bird (detail). Acrylic on canvas,
4" x 12", private collection. A recent, very fun commission. 

Saint Francis and the Cranky Birds (detail). Acrylic on door panel, 11" x 43". This is in-progress, but close to being done. I've had a blast with this one. Roaming the alleys paid off with a very old door, the panels of which popped out and provided me with a few new surfaces. This version is a tall and thin St. Francis, kind of whimsical. I may post the entire painting when it's completed. This painting is helping me prepare for a recent 30" x 84" commission of a different saint.

Saint Francis has been a great subject for lots of versions. I hope he hasn't minded.

As always, thanks very much for reading!


  1. i think i like #4 best. no, maybe #8. or #5? so hard to decide. guess that means they are all fabulous!! congrats on the commission!!

    1. Thanks Ruth, I am very excited to begin the work. Btw,I don't think these all fabulous, but it is funny to see the changes over the long run :]

  2. Nice!
    I'm loving St. Francis at sunset best, but they're all chock full of Franciscan goodness :)

    1. Thank you Jo--I appreciate you checking it out!


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