I was fascinated by the contrast of the broken chair and the pose of the woman on her front porch. I kept the colors warm but neutral to focus on the subjects and keep the eye centered. The wooden planks of the flooring lead to the figure and chair and the background wood wall keeps the eye centered. By using the oils in a thin application, I can create a light atmosphere with almost a watercolor effect for the flooring and background. I kept my pallet limited in color until I got to the figure. I used a bit stronger and varied pallet on her so she would stand out and command attention to the eye but not so much as to be overbearing.
This painting is part of the Reconstruction series dealing with the sharecroppers of the south after the civil war. During the Reconstruction after the Civil War, many Blacks were making a living by sharecropping. It was the only time that women, especially Black women, were allowed to have property to work even though the shacks they lived in were rented as well as the livestock used to till the fields. It was a no win situation where many Blacks wound up owing more than the crops could yield and it became another form of slavery. The figure seems to represent the futility of the situation but her strength and resiliency is evident.
Original Oil on canvas wrap
Size: 24″ x 30″