My New Feather Painting – “Fancy Dancer”

If you have noticed my absence recently, I can assure you that it is for a good (artistic) cause. I have been painting for what seems like the past 4 weeks straight. I have worked on commission pieces, as well as completed a new feather painting of mine. My new painting is one of my larger paintings wherein I mount numerous feathers together to create a “canvas” of sorts where then I can paint a larger scene or the full body of a person (As opposed to only their bust).  The painting was done with Master’s Touch Acrylic Paint, and is painting on a fan of turkey tail feathers. The actual painted area is about 6″ tall, while the piece as a whole is about 16″ tall. To put it into perspective, her head is about the size of a quarter. I’ve invested approximately 27 hours into this piece, and that is still not counting the matting, mounting, framing, and adornments.


“Fancy Dancer” hand-painted feathers by Brandy Davis. Acrylic on turkey tails.


This painting is also different for me since I normally do not work in color. I tend to prefer painting in black and white because of the overall effect it gives a finished painting – those paintings tend to portray emotions better while exuding a slightly vintage feel, with a modern twist.  Anyhow, having said that, I sometimes forget what an impact vibrant colors can make on a painting.



I have already received great feedback on this painting which makes me smile from ear to ear. More-so because it makes me feel like all of the frustration I went through with this painting was worth it – Let me just say that I was ready to throw this painting away about 3/4 of the way through: feathers splitting left and right, things not coming out just the way I imagined it, and don’t even get me started on the headache that mounting, matting, and framing was for this painting! And to top it off, the reference photo I was using in for this painting was taken in TERRIBLE lighting, which forced me to use the good’ ol’ imagination (and a bit of logic) to get lighting and colors right, which made the technical aspect exponentially more difficult. Even then, I am still not 100% happy with this painting; If I had more time I would change a lot of things about it. But I had to call it a day on this painting to make a deadline for entry into the Idaho State Fair Fine Art Contest/Exhibit.


Although the judging is in two days, the great/encouraging responses I have already received from people have already made me feel like I have won. Sometimes I forget that my paintings aren’t about “me” and what I think about them – I have to remind myself that if I can make even one person smile or feel inspired by looking at one of my paintings, then my painting is a success – ribbon or no ribbon.


Happy Painting everyone!

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