Aphrodite by Brenda Burke, 2009.
I wanted to give a magical quality to the birth of Aphrodite as she rises from the foam of the gold-leafed waves.
I shaded my canvas with ultramarine, cobalt and cerulean blues and built up the decorative waves and foam with impasto and delicately enhanced and gilded them with golds and platinum. I painted the goddess herself very freshly, with no alterations to keep the feeling of spontaneity – to do this I had to do lots of preliminary studies so I knew exactly what I was going to do on the canvas.
Then came the most delicate part; her gauze scarf and the golden jewelry. As the Goddess of Beauty and Love she is wearing some of the most exquisite designs that the ancient Greeks and Italians ever created. Her necklace with tiny hanging seed-like pendants is matched by bracelets and earrings. The earrings are especially intricate from their shell-like bejeweled centers hang a golden boat shaped pendant with tiny chains dangling from tiny flowers ending in seed pendants, to follow the necklace.
Finally, I gave her diaphanous scarf golden classical decorations and let it float up into the sunshine.