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Category Archives: vivid colour.

Agios Antonios HandpaintedACEO Print Copyright Luigina Ware 2012

Fishing Boat at Syros Handpainted ACEO PrintCopyright Luigina Ware 2012

Lalakia Garden Handpainted ACEO PrintCopyright Luigina Ware 2012

Wave: Handpainted ACEO PrintCopyright Luigina Ware 2012

I spent last weekend on an experiment, albeit one that I thought would succeed. Here are the results. These are my very first efforts at ACEOs* (see below for an explanation of what an ACEO is). ACEOs can be made in any media but they must be right size – these are quite tiny – only 2.5 by 3.5 inches. I had a particular aim with these ones which was to see what I could do with an image by painting onto a canvas print. I chose these four as they each offered a particular challenge – some like Agios Antonios and Lalakia Garden were originally paintings and Fishing Boat and Wave were both digital art. I originally got into making these digital pictures when exploring photographs I had taken in Photoshop with a view to painting them. They then became digital artworks in their own right. Now I am painting over those prints so I suppose you could say these images have come full circle. 


I have tried to photograph them so that the very nice zingy sharpness and vivid colour come out well and also so that you can see the scale – there’s a 1 euro coin in some of the pictures. They are still sitting on my chair in the kitchen in the afternoon sun and I just went to have a look to see how accurate the colour reproduction is. Hard to tell what you are seeing – always be aware when viewing art online that different monitors and computer equipment display colour somewhat differently. But I really don’t think anyone buying these would be disappointed in the contrast between these photos and the actual objects. I am really pleased with them and they were great to work on. I’ll photograph some of the print ones later, they also look pretty far out.

The little canvases are mounted on good quality mat board, the edges are all blacked and they are gloss varnished.

I’ve made up my mind to put them to auction on Ebay and see if I can catch the eye of some collectors. Might work, might not…let’s see what happens!!!
Click on the images to visit the relevant pages on my websites where you can buy the full size prints and read something about the original artworks.

 *ACEO is an abbreviation for Art Cards & Editions, sometimes also known as ATCs – Artist Trading Cards – other people might just call them Miniatures. The rule with them is that they are made on card and must measure 2.5 x 3.5 inches – no more no less. They are loved by artists for the scope they give to experiment without the commitment of a major piece and because there is a certain amount of craft in them. It also means you can offer customers a genuinely affordable artwork.

My desire to make pictures, even the digital ones, began firmly with a love of paint. My heart absolutely sang when I found this great blog post at one of my favourite Facebook ‘Likes’, Retronaut (highly recommended, one of the best little blue and white buttons I ever pushed). Feast your eyes on photographs of actual palettes of Seurat, Van Gogh, Renoir and Delacroix with images like these:

Seurat’s palette reveals clues to his technique as well as
use of colour
I have something in common with Gustave Moreau
at least, my palettes are as messy as this.

Colourlovers, another fascinating site for those who are intrigued by how great painters actually went about things uses colour analysis tools to explore the palettes of specific paintings. I really like the idea of being able to draw out a basic colourscheme from a painting that affects me visually. I think one of the greatest ways to learn anything is to look at things you admire and try and work out how they began. I went looking therefore for some tools to analyze palettes. I found several but  far and away the best one was this: http://www.cssdrive.com/imagepalette/index.php.
I chose my image Northern Lights because it has quite a broad spectrum of colours and fed it into the app and this was the result:

That site actually allows you to save the colour scheme as a CSS style sheet which means you can base the theme of a website or page on the colourscheme of an artwork or photograph you like. This app gives much much more colour information than the others I tried too. Give it a whirl, it’s loads of fun and the possibilities for artists and designers who want to get under the skin of what makes a particular image pop are endless.

Handpainted print of Lemons & Garlic

    To tell the truth, like a lot of artists the very idea of selling my work makes me want to go to bed for a month. It’s downright scary. ‘I have spread my dreams under your feet…’ just about sums it up. It’s also massively time-consuming getting it altogether so one can give people enough assurance that they feel able to order a piece from someone they have never met.

I didn’t realise how much it all meant to me, the months I have spent putting my online shop together until I got an email from a happy customer in Texas on the other side of the world the other day and I burst into tears!! I did something a little bit extra for her, I hand-painted one of her prints – something struck me as I was putting the pieces together. She wrote this to me:




Thank you so much!!!  I cannot believe you did that!  The painting is beautiful and I feel so honored.  I cannot wait to get them framed and hung in my house.  You are a very sweet person for doing that….I cannot imagine anyone else doing the same.  Thank you again!   I am so excited!”


Isn’t that lovely? I’m so happy to be really selling through all this. We are all a bit terrified here in Greece with one thing and another, it’s a bit alarming to be trying to kickstart a new business in this economic climate. But on the other hand I just feel that somehow this venture has a glow about it, maybe I just want it that much.

So finally after much deliberation I am now offering hand-painted prints on the websites, not of all the images, some are not suitable for the technique. It’s sort of a halfway house between a giclee artist print and a fully original painting and a very affordable way of hanging a real painting on your wall. The print is made on very good quality premium silk canvas (it’s lovely). But there is no doubt that the canvas tends to absorb some of the colour. Some of the images, especially my more classic paintings like Kyperoussa, Island and Agios Antonios, come out fine but I do think that people looking at my site and purchasing one are probably a bit taken with the vivid colour. I can get it on the top of the range Ilford Galerie gloss paper but the canvas is a bit subdued. However – wow! What a solution painting over turns out to be. I had been a sceptic having seen some pretty awful travesties – cheap canvas, plonked on cheap paint…no no NO! But over a weekend painting into my Lemons & Garlic I became converted and the end product was fantastic. It was a nice job to do too.

Above is a picture of the finished handpainted print before it was packed away for sending – I photographed it hanging on a kitchen cupboard and it has come out slightly wonky but it was actually rectangular!!

If you would like one too you can order from here. I’ll soon be offering handpainted ACEOs of this piece as well.