Still Life – Holi Festival of Colors

academy holi color 01 - Still Life - Holi Festival of Colors

Cool beats, cool people and an exuberant mood!

The best part? When everybody starts to throw the dry powdered paint in the air or to each other while the music plays on!

Everyone is dancing and having fun when the countdown begins, and everyone gets ready to toss the colored powder into the air and to each other – 3, 2, 1, 0 – Boom! The music becomes louder. Pink, orange, blue, green and yellow powder. Everyone is happy! What an amazing experience!

Of course, everyone has captured this moment taking a picture with the smartphone or the camera. But how cool would it be to put this memory on canvas and paint it as still life?

We did it! Take a look at how the artist and teacher of our Academy, Ricky Larsson, set up a still life with dyed Converse Chucks and an inlet ribbon and paints it with oil on canvas. Have fun watching the video and trying it out!


Our teacher Ricky Larsson divides the process of painting a still life into four steps.

Step 1: Set up the still life

The Converse Chucks and the ribbon are placed in a so-called shadow box. The Shadow Box has the advantage that you can decide the size of the representation according to your own wishes, using the “sight-size” method. Furthermore, with a Shadow Box, you can set up the light effects in such a way that they do not change until the end of the painting process. The set up is successful when the way you place the objects, light, and shadow, as well as the colors, harmonize together.

Step 2: First drops of paint

The color palette for the still life varies from the darkest to the brightest shades of the picture. So the colors are only roughly applied on the canvas and you always start with the shadow and work your way up to the brightest point. At first, you only use a few shades of the prepared palette.

Step 3: Refine and Correct

At this stage, corrections and refinements are made, by using the entire range of colors you have on your palette.

Step 4: Final details

Now concentrate on the last details. If no highlight has been set before (brightest point in the picture), you set it now. Ricky Larsson recommends to work in a dust-free room and, depending on how thick the paint stroke is, you should let your painting dry for a few months before applying the final varnish.

You have never heard about the Holi Color Festival?

On this day all the barriers by caste, gender, age, and social status seem repealed. It is celebrated playfully and everyone sprinkles each other with colored powder.

The meaning is very complex. However, the common thread is the celebration of the victory of good over evil of spring over winter, for the festival begins with the blossoming of nature. An important feature is the reconciliation aspect, on this day everyone should bury the hatchet and forget past disagreements and just love each other.

It´s is amazing that such a beautiful religious and exotic tradition has become famous worldwide!

academy holi color 02 - Still Life - Holi Festival of Colors

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