Summer Success

It’s been an exciting time for me as an artist, as I’ve had the opportunity to sell several paintings, both completed, and commissioned; and some of my work was recently selected to be showcased with other artists, based on two separate contests by the same virtual gallery, Fusion Art.

Commissioned Work | Dr. Rao and his wife | Mixed Media Collage, Acrylic on Wood | August 2020

My friend, and co-worker, Dr. Rao, commissioned me to create a painting of him and his wife. It was meant to be an anniversary gift, but COVID-19 quarantine delayed things. Regardless, I was able to get my studio set up in a smaller space, so I could continue my work, and complete the piece.

Using canvas paper, acrylics, fabric, metal, glitter and other materials, I created this mixed-media collage piece in a series of layers. The finish is done with resin, which gives it a nice touch. I used a wood frame box as my canvas, which provided a sturdy, and workable surface.

I use a variety of painting techniques, such as paint pouring, and sometimes I will even use modeling paste to build-up areas.

One of my favorite things about this technique that I created and use, is the discovery of how using different items and the layering can create such depth and character to a painting.

For this particular painting, I also chose to create the figures and faces in a series of layers. Usually, the full figure is the layer. The idea is to give the painting more dimension and depth.

Whether it’s to describe something or someone familiar, or to create something that’s more fantasy, this method really brings out the life in my paintings. It’s also quite therapeutic too.

Even before I seal the painting with resin, the layers are quite colorful and pleasing to the eye. Plus, every time I look at these paintings, I see things I missed. It’s just gives me such pleasure to create this way. If you like this style of painting, and would like to have a custom portrait made for yourself, feel free to contact me at, or complete the contact form at the bottom of the home page, we can discuss the opportunity.

Tree of Life | Mixed Media Collage, Acrylic on Wood | July 2020

This Summer I have also sold two completed paintings, once again, to my dearest friend, and biggest art fan, Karren. She has been such a great support to me and my work, and one of the reasons why I have taken my art more seriously.

Sun Face the Moon | Mixed Media Collage, Acrylic on Wood | July 2020

One of the two paintings I created, that Karren purchased, is my Tree of Life. This is a mixed-media collage, acrylic on wood, layered painting. The second painting is Sun Faced The Moon. Both paintings are similar in style and methodology. The techniques are mostly of paint pour on various canvas papers, glitter, and metallic paint, with a resin finish. This painting goes perfectly with the second painting I created, and a mosaic styled collage painting, that she purchased last year.

contests. Two of the contests that I was most eager and excited to participate in was the 6th Annual Figures & Faces Art Exhibition – September 2020. two of my paintings were selected for inclusion in the online juried art exhibition through September. To be featured with so many talented, and professional artists is such an honor for me.

The two paintings that were selected were from my 2019 Glitter Gals Series. Zara, which is my Indian Bride, and Yasmine, one of my figurative nudes, were the two selected, and were the two of five that I actually entered with.

Zara | Glitter Gals | Mixed Media Collage, Acrylic on Canvas | 2019
Yasmine | Glitter Gals | Mixed Media Collage on Canvas | 2019

If you are interested in viewing more paintings from this selection, please visit my Glitter Gals gallery page of my website. These paintings are also available for purchase in my gift shop.

The other contest through Fusion Art is the 3rd Annual Women Artists. This is also a juried online exhibition, which I will know more about on September 15th. I just know that one or more of my paintings have been selected. I’ll share more once I know more.

For now, just grateful I’m here and able to share my work and inspiration with you. Please be sure to sign-up for blog and site notifications, and check back often. Till next time!

Debbie 🙂

The Painted Ladies Collection: The 5 Hidden Elements

What makes the Painted Ladies collection so alluring?

The bold bright colors, the sensuous female forms, the exaggerated features, and the fluid flow of strokes on paper.

That’s what makes these 20 original and unique art pieces so alluring!

Painted Ladies Collection Trio: Passion, Embrace, and Shadow, by Deborah Marsh
The Painted Ladies started out as a study of forms. My plan was to create about five to six over-sized canvas paintings – which I did. Little did I know that the 20 full-colored sketches I created would be perceived as great works of art, far more appealing than the over-sized paintings.

What makes these sketches such great works of art? We can break it down to 5 hidden elements. These elements include:

  1. Medium and Materials
  2. Style and Subject Focus
  3. Color Selection and Combination
  4. Inner Feelings and Desires
  5. Fluid Strokes and Techniques
  6. Medium and Materials
  1. Medium and Materials

I chose standard 9 X 12 Vellum art paper, medium weight, from my favorite paper brand Strathmore. Instead of using graphite pencil or charcoal to draw the subjects, I chose to use a standard ballpoint ink pen. For the color enhancement of the pieces, I chose water color markers with varying tips and hues. Prismacolor is always my first choice for both markers and for colored pencils.

Water color markers are fluid and transparent, which is why I used them to layer color. The ink pen was used like a pencil as I sketched out the subjects, paying no mind to clean edges or rounded corners.

  1. Style and Subject Focus

My style is a mix of Patrick Nagel, Art Deco, and Pablo Picasso’s Cubism and Blue periods; however, none were a deliberate or direct influence over my style!

I’ve always admired the female form for high fashion and celebrity influence, so it’s no surprise that my focus would be the same.

  1. Color Selection and Combination

The use of color in an artist’s work tells a lot about what the mood should be. An artist intentionally chooses colors in order to create either a negative or positive emotion for the viewer to feel.

As an artist, I tend to want to create a feeling of excitement, beauty, passion, mystery, and liberation, yet sophistication and assurance. To create this type of mood, there needs to be a palette of contrasting, but complimentary, colors of varying tones.

Colors should compliment one another, forming warmth or coolness, light or shade, depending on the mood the artist wants to portray. Contrasting colors offer excitement and mystery. Much like the infamous Victorian and Edwardian styled homes in San Francisco, best known as the Painted Ladies, my Painted Ladies are a mixture of cool and warm contrasting colors.

Many of the famous houses in San Francisco are painted red or blue, but with yellow, orange, and brown trim. Some are even painted with greens, reds, and purple for a more modernistic style.

The color selection and combination that I used for my Painted Ladies is similar. In some ways, several of the pieces within the 20-sketch collection are reminiscent of Latin and European colors and culture.

Most of my sketches within the series are of women, with thick purple colored hair; yellow or light-tan skin tones; red, orange, or yellow clothing; with backgrounds of contrasting red, blue, yellow, green, and purple shapes. These colors together create the sophisticated, yet exciting, passionate, beautiful and alluring images I call my Painted Ladies.

  1. Inner Feelings and Desires

The work of an artist is usually a reflection of their inner soul, their inner most desires, or of things they truly admire. My paintings have always been influenced by those things which I love, feel, and or desire. The Painted Ladies are no exception.

Selecting the subjects for my sketches was based on several criteria. A single female was the subject for each painting. Each subject had to have an intriguing pose or action. They needed strong reflections of light and shade, as if under a spotlight. Lastly, each subject provided an opportunity to highlight various shapes through color.

As a woman, I have an inner desire to be viewed upon as beautiful, sensual, alluring. The Painted Ladies collection displays this passion and influence over its visual captures.

The bold contrasting colors and shapes draw you in to the mood of the paintings, and act as a form of stimuli which is pleasing and somewhat exciting. The poses of my subjects appear to be somewhat staged, like models in a photograph.

My inner childhood dream was to someday be well known for my creative endeavors, whether those be in art, performance, cooking, or something else – wherever my talent would take me. More reason for my art to imitate my most inner aspirations!

Painted Ladies Collection: Island, by Deborah Marsh
  1. Fluid Strokes and Techniques

The truth of the matter is, I have no real rhyme or reason for the strokes I used to create these beautiful, full-colored sketches.

What I did was outline the areas of my subjects where I wanted light or shade to hit. These areas were then painted in as solid colors, making them appear more linear instead of blended. This gave the pieces personality, uniqueness, and standout.

In some ways this style is reminiscent of the Art Deco style from years past. The paintings are sleek, symmetrical, geometric, and somewhat simple in design yet very pleasing to the eye. Just like Art Deco, my Painted Ladies symbolize elegance, sophistication, and glamour.

When you look closely at my work you can see where I possibly made a change to the perspective of my subject and painted over it or where I worked the area into another sketched piece within the painting.

These works are basically a study of paint strokes, linear strokes, cross hatches, and layers of colors. Simple and fluid. Natural and accidental. Yet it all perfectly gels together to create these beautiful, originally designed pieces I call the Painted Ladies.

In Closing…

The Painted Ladies is a study of color, shape, and emotion. Emotions and desires that I, as a young woman at that time, felt and experienced. I used paper and marker to share my passion through these expressions of my art. The Painted Ladies Collection will forever be for me, one of my most personal and successful works ever produced to date.

If you’re interested in owning part of the Painted Ladies Collection, please visit the Store.

To learn more about my Painted Ladies Collection, check out future posts from Debbie’s Living Canvas. You also learn more about me, by visiting my About page.

#Elements-of-Style #Painted-Ladies #Painting #Techniques

The Painted Ladies Collection: Artful Comparisons

At the time I completed the Painted Ladies collection, specifically the over-sized painted canvases, my work often reminded people of Patrick Nagel’s. If you are not familiar with Patrick Nagel’s work, he is probably most well-known for Duran Duran’s Rio Album cover.

Painted Ladies Collection: Over-sized Canvas Painting of Beauty. Art by Deborah Marsh

Patrick Nagel was an American artist who created popular illustrations on board, paper, and canvas. His work emphasized the female form in a distinctive style descended from Art Deco. He is best known for his illustrations for Playboy and, of course, the album cover for Duran Duran.

What specifically is similar in our styles?

We both emphasize the female form in somewhat of a distinctive style. Although Nagel’s style is much more reminiscent of Art Deco than mine, we both like to use paper and canvas. We also produce more illustrative and less traditionally structured subjects. We both love bold colors; however, I tend to mix a lot more color variations than Nagel’s work portrays.

The other difference too is in the perspective of the subjects.

Nagel tends to have more proportionate forms, whereas mine tend to be more exaggerated. For instance, the faces I draw tend to be bigger, longer, and more pronounced. Nagel’s proportions are more realistic despite the lack of shading or defined features. This holds true for the full form of my subjects versus Nagel’s.

Sometimes, I feel my shapes are descended from Pablo Picasso’s Cubism period mixed with his Blue period.

All in all, my style is unique and one-of-a-kind. It is a makeup of all the direct and indirect influences in my life.

If you are interested in having a piece from the Painted Ladies Collection, please visit the Store .

To learn more about my Painted Ladies Collection, check out future posts from Debbie’s Living Canvas. You also learn more about me, by visiting my About page.

Painting #Style #Painted-Ladies