As it’s coming up to Fathers Day on the 16th on June I thought I’d show you how I made this 3D acrylic painting that was commissioned as a Fathers day gift a few years ago, while I was in my shop in Castleford.
This Spitfire is the actual model, MK11A P8098/PRZ Enfield Spitfire, that his father used to make. He wanted it to be based on the image that he had in his book that had all the different Spitfire models in to use, which is why it looks the way it does. A flat diagram/illustration made into a painting rather than an actual 3D plane.
The customer chose to have it made on a 16x20inch canvas (approx 30x40cm) so I started by selecting a piece of cardboard that would suit being used on a canvas of that size. I was a bit concerned about it being a long thin shape getting lost in the large space of the canvas but after some tests I managed to make it work and began to draw out the design onto the cardboard.
I drew quite a lot of the details in, more than I really needed to at this stage but I wanted to make sure that it would all look ok at that size, not too squashed or out of proportion, before I got further along in the process.
Once I was happy with the outline design I could then start to think about how to make it 3D. I started by cutting out the main outline and then used some of the offcuts to make certain areas more 3D than others by layering it up. The main body has 2 layers then the closest front and back wings and cockpit got another layer to make them stand out further from the main body. So overall there are 3 layers of cardboard making this 3D acrylic painting.
Once the cardboard had been stuck together onto the blank canvas I then put the modroc (bandages with plaster of Paris in them) on top. I cut it to shape first when it was dry then dunked it into a water and PVA/craft glue solution to help it stick onto the cardboard. Once it was fully wet I then wrung the excess water out and placed it on top of the cardboard, smoothing it out so it covered it fully. (It wouldn’t look like metal if it had a fluffy texture like a dog or highland cow). Any little gaps around the sides I filled with small pieces of modroc.
After the modroc had been left to dry completely I gave it a sand down to give myself a smooth surface to paint on, quick wipe down to remove the dust and then the painting with acrylic paints could begin. Starting with a dark green for the base coat then starting to paint the markings in, gradually building up the details, adding the shadows and highlights then finally a light blue background as selected by the customer.
When the customer came in to collect the piece they were very happy with it, the smile on their face was so great to see and made me smile too, it’s such a lovely feeling seeing how much someone likes what I’ve made.
If seeing this has given you an idea for a 3D acrylic painting you’d like me to make you, either for yourself or to give as a gift for someone else then get in touch.
Take a look on my etsy shop at my selection of Fathers Day cards available to buy now.
Till next time.