This is an exciting moment for me as I begin to apply colors. 

Most custom projects have a sepcial story, let me tel you this one.  As I was doing research into sea turtles to help me determine how I might paint this piece, the patrons of this project sent me some beautiful images of a  sea turtle.

When I first saw the images I thought they may have gone to Google images to give me some examples. To my surprise these highly professional images were taken by David and Colleen who are not only skilled underwater photographers but also experienced divers! These are the special moments I enjoy when working on these pieces. This turtle now becomes very personal.

I am now fully inspired, let's get that first basecoat on the turtle. The color is an aqua blue. I also tested a color for the lines delineating the plates, you can see 2 lines on the shell.

Next I added some soft yellow ochre around the edges of the shell and the fins. This color transitions to a soft beige on the underside and help to 'frame' the piece. 

In the next phase I add the line that represent the shell plates on the head, fins and back of the shell. As I go along I am also adding some details here and there. 

Time out for a 'wall test'  - let's see how it looks against the wall. 

FLASHBACK --- look at that original piece of driftwood!

I am working on many small details that are difficult to see, eyes, mouth, and nostrils. At this point I leave the peice for a while - give it a rest, then go back and re-visit to do a little more fine tuning. 

Here she is!