The ‘Opening Night’ bas relief is based on the two daughters of my good friend and talented painter and photographer, Shannon Mucha. Shannon took a photo of the girls in their home studio that I really loved. It served as my inspiration, but I also used another photo of hers of Hannah (seen on the left) in a very special performance. I wanted to portray the whole ballet journey from a young girl practicing her forms to the opening night of a big performance. We’ve followed my friends’ daughters on their ballet journey since they were both very young.
Every summer I learn a new sculpture art form with my teacher, Mike Kirby. This summer he suggested we tackle the ‘bas relief’. I was so excited as I have always been fascinated by them and constantly take pictures of them while traveling. The tricky part about bas reliefs is that they are a hybrid of 2-d drawing and 3-d sculpting. The have the feel of a real sculpture in the round, but require the optical illusion of depth and perspective like a 2-d drawing does. So there are lots of little tricks to accomplish this. The whole process was fascinating! Mike and I plan to do a double silhouette over the next month of a beloved elderly couple at my church, Harry and Patty Carpenter. That way I can get the principles of bas relief thoroughly fixed in my mind.
This bas relief is being entered at The Grounds 1488/Fall Festival and Art Show on Oct. 23-24th. You can see it in person on Saturday!