My Sweetheart Rose

Detail from My Sweetheart Rose a painting in progress by Karen LaFontaine

A New Painting Underway

This month I have enjoyed the good fortune to paint with fellow oil painters in a small carefully orchestrated workshop, while practicing social distancing and watching out for each other’s safety. The camaraderie was a very welcome change of pace from the many days spent sharing current creative endeavors with my fellow painters via Zoom this year.

All the great friendship and creative energy of this in person session gave rise to the beginnings of my new rose portrait, entitled My Sweetheart Rose. This new 16 by 20 inch canvas is now number three, in a series of paintings that will become a collection of rose canvases. My path forward has clarity of thought and vision today. My plan is to return to this subject repeatedly over the next twelve months to see the creative process play out in these enchanting flowers.

I carefully planned for My Sweetheart Rose to be a companion to this summer’s completed canvas entitled, Tea Rose Delight, the beginning of which, I have written about here in my journal. Like that canvas, I am painting My Sweetheart Rose using a limited palette that includes the colors: Ultramarine Blue, Permanent Alizarin Crimson, Cadmium Yellow Light, Titanium White and Titanium Zinc White.

Tea Rose Delight Flower Painting by Karen LaFontaine
Tea Rose Delight Oil Painting by Karen LaFontaine

The beginning of this new oil painting included toning the canvas with a medium pink color, derived from a mixture of Alizarin Crimson Permanent and Titanium White. Once my toned canvas was dry, I laid down my image with oil paint, deliberately skipping the step of drawing with charcoal or graphite, to ensure that the essence of this delicate portrait was captured from my first brushstroke.

Standing at my easel for a full day, and enjoying the kind encouragement and critiques of fellow painters helped me enjoy a strong beginning. My creative energy, on full tilt with this new canvas, has already inspired me to make my way around town! I have enjoyed a number of painting sessions with My Sweetheart Rose, each executed with fellow painters! This new canvas is unique in how quickly it became a community endeavor! Now, still in its underpainting stage, I am able to share a first picture of this new and exciting beginning.

If you love flowers and especially roses, plan to return to my artist’s journal to read more about my future endeavors in painting them!

I love sharing today’s new rose portrait, currently On The Easel with you! (Article Image, detail from underpainting stage of My Sweetheart Rose, 16” x 20” oil on canvas.)

My Sweetheart Rose by Karen LaFontaine
My Sweetheart Rose 16 x 20 inches oil on canvas

Life is Art! Be well, Karen LaFontaine

To contact Karen about this painting now available as museum quality giclée, email the artist at:

Share the story of My Sweetheart Rose and her companion Tea Rose Delight with your flower loving friends!

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