"onward, dorothy."

faerie tale feet painting inspired by l. frank baum's the wonderful wizard of oz.

based on l. frank baum’s the wonderful wizard of oz, “onward, dorothy” is an exciting command to just keep going on life’s great big adventure.

i pictured the background as both a checkerboard of obstacles she must overcome, as well as an allusion to that infamous yellow brick road.

the sepia frame is another reference to both the classic movie’s opening scenes which were NOT in full technicolor, and again, that yellow brick road, the path she has to follow and conquer on her way to oz.

in baum’s novel, the slippers were of course silver.  but mgm, wanting to show off their new technicolor technology, gave us the illustrious ruby slippers.  so i fudged a bit on the original source material, but come on– who doesn’t want a pair of ruby slippers that sparkle that well?!

have a look at the process below and then i'll explain the background story icons from the tale!

 planning out the icon arrangements for the checkerboard pattern.

planning out the icon arrangements for the checkerboard pattern.

 yes, i do my layouts with tape & paper & transfer paper. none of this computer nonsense.  ;)  

yes, i do my layouts with tape & paper & transfer paper. none of this computer nonsense.  ;)  

 drawings are transferred to illustration board for consistency. 

drawings are transferred to illustration board for consistency. 

 and one-by-one, we start painting the background colours!

and one-by-one, we start painting the background colours!

 more greens for days…

more greens for days…

 ah… the ruby slippers. how convenient that red is the complementary colour of green to make them pop even more!

ah… the ruby slippers. how convenient that red is the complementary colour of green to make them pop even more!

 pop pop pop…. adding contrast and painterly sequins.

pop pop pop…. adding contrast and painterly sequins.

 white gouache highlights + ooooh, i want those shoes!

white gouache highlights + ooooh, i want those shoes!

background story icons include:

  • dorothy’s basket
  • toto her trusted sidekick companion on both sides of the rainbow
  • the wicked witch of the west’s broom
  • a crow for the scarecrow
  • an oil can for the tin man
  • the cowardly lion’s silhouette
  • emerald glasses (in the book, not everything in the emerald city was actually the color emerald, the visitors were given a pair of green-shade sunglasses to wear!)

the original painting has SOLD, but you can purchase the faerie tale feet print here on my etsy shop:  http://etsy.me/1CX3NF5

the onward, dorothy greeting card here:  http://etsy.me/1KqpkFP

check out another oz piece i painted here:  "& we're off!"

& fun fact, the piece of art that made me want to be an artist/illustrator was dorothy & the gang entering the emerald city, a watercolor piece by charles santore.  breathtaking. check it out in this book:  https://www.amazon.com/Wizard-Oz-100th-Anniversary/dp/0375811370