Hula Girls

"Seated Pose" 9 x 12 Chalk Pastel



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Hula isn't just for Hawaiians...

I recently attended a wonderful recital in Temecula, California. The Polynesian dances were so inspiring, I took a bunch of photos from afar just to have a reminder of the poses and costumes.

"Dancer" 9 x 12 Chalk Pastel




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Each piece in this series has a different focus and features a different girl. In "Seated Pose," I wanted to focus on the position of the dancer's body. In the "Dancer," I hoped to capture a bit of movement, although this dancer happened to be standing still in the photo. "Hula Girl" was inspired by curviness of the dancer's body, and the graceful way she held herself in position.
"Hula Girl" 9 x 12 Chalk Pastel

Click here to view print choices:
http://www.redbubble.com/people/nikihilsabeck/art/7820758-hula-girl-pastel
I don't paint people as often as I'd like; being a sucker for costumes and music, I had a good excuse to get back into it. I know Degas was partial to the ballet, which I also love to watch. I've been working in a tropical vein for some time though, and these girls fit right in with my preference for bright color. These three were just from one dance number. I have photos from a few different ones, so there should be a few more hula paintings in the future. There is a bit of freedom in painting dancers, because the goal is to capture the spirit of the dancer rather than agonize over facial details. I'm also careful not to capture likenesses of people who don't know they're in my paintings, so I get to improvise on the faces.

Another thing I learned during the recital: when little kids hear some Tahitian drums, they go crazy and chase each other in circles. It was a good thing we were way back on the grass.

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