Daily Archives: August 22, 2017

‘Madame C: Journal Entry II

As you may have heard through my recent Instagram posts (@xi_wen_c) I created this original acrylic painting, Madame C, using a close friend as the model. I am not revealing her name/identity out of respect for her wishes, but I will speak a bit more over the process and story behind this creation.

I was approached by the real Madame C about creating a personalized commission in early July, about a month before moving into Brooklyn Pratt Institute. I asked her to send me a high-quality photograph of herself in a pose that she would like to be painted in, requested color scheme, and to select a background beach scene that she’d like to be portrayed in. The images below are from google images (no copyright infringement intended!):


       (She chose the last scene with the full moon and complex emotional waves, by the way!)

      What I enjoyed the most about creating this painting is the challenging composition with the body structure and epic waves.


My signature is a bit faded looking in the misty sky backdrop; I guess that’s what happens when you write with a black gel pen over thick layers of acrylic paint (>_<+)

My signature is this: my name in pingyin (Xi Wen Chen). Beneath my name is the date that I ‘officially’ completed the artwork: 19 Aug 2017. The day before move-in day.
I also really enjoyed painting the enigmatic moon; it’s amazing how each culture, no matter if they’re deeply religious or not, have their own spin on a moon legend. I based the name ‘Celestial’ off of strong female moon goddesses including Hecate and Artemis, to strengthen Madame C.


The sky was a lot of fun to experiment with: I went a bit crazy attempting to blend a ‘never before seen shade of purple.’ I used dark crimson red, cadmium red, phthalo blue, and cobalt Golden paints. I later used a thin Sapphire blue paint brush to embellish certain sections and add some more of a goddess ‘feel.’

madame C

Originally, I began with a light lavender color upon the loose fitting nightshirt, but as the layers piled on, the color intensity thickened as well. It ended up being a hybrid blend of cadmium red, phthalo blue, and metallic silver!

madame C
The g-string from the private reference photo was originally a plain ebony black, but I decided to ‘spice it up’ a bit with crimson red and phthalo blue blended together and layered.

madame Cmadame C  These two panel close-ups are of the epic waves that flow spiritually/dangerously during the approaching high tide. I chose to depict them as vivid and strong as possible; all in an effort to strengthen the likeness of goddesses Artemis, Hecate, and Chang’E into ‘Madame C.’

m c 2
I plan to also turn this original painting into a high quality open edition print collection for sale at a later (TBD) date.

Thank you, to my blog readers & Instagram followers, for embracing my art and patiently following my #WIP (work-in-progress) art posts. I hope to continue producing premium quality original art that inspires fellow creative minds and beckons out emotions.

~Xi Wen Chen