In Day at the Beach, our favorite potato-y friends had a half-baked idea to visit a nude beach. Now, all eyes are upon them!
My big challenge: Getting the arms to position correctly. The toys’ plastic arms don’t actually bend, so I had to improvise on the canvas so this spudtastic duo could remain modest! (After all, they don’t want to attract any mashers!)
Day at the Beach wouldn’t be a day at the beach without shoreline, sand, and palm trees. A chalkboard background gives me the perfect way to develop a complex scene while keeping focus on the scene in the foreground.
To get that authentic chalky feel, I drew on the painted surface with white oil pastels, then erased, much like you would do with a real chalkboard. The sticky note sign with blue painter’s tape was painted in the trompe l'oeil style, an artistic visual illusion where a painted subject looks real. (I’ve had people at art shows lean around to the side of a canvas to see if there is actually paper and tape affixed to the canvas.)
This image is what happens when adults play with Mr. Potato Head toys.
I explained to one of my granddaughters how when I was a child, the toy did not come with a plastic potato; instead, we would stick the toy’s eyes, hat, and other “bits” into actual vegetables. She was intrigued, so we got out some potatoes and stuck the parts into the real thing. We made a huge mess, but had a wonderful time together. As we played, I looked at the peels and thought: “These are like the potato’s clothes!” and Day at the Beach was born.
Day at the Beach was one of those images that made me laugh out loud while I was painting it. I hope you enjoy it just as much.
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