Last week I completed a small pointe shoe painting. The past year I have slowly been painting a series of ink paintings of my pointe shoes. It's a classic ballet subject matter and I find them surprisingly interesting. Even though the shoes are all similar I have a lot of fun with the ribbons and their different arrangements. I have been using india ink for the majority of the painting and then some white ink for highlights so the satin looks shiny. When I was a kid all I wanted was to dance on my toes like a real ballerina. Getting pointe shoes is a right of passage for most young dancers. It is the reward for all those hours standing at the barre doing plies and rises, fixing posture and squeezing those turnout muscles. I have kept every pair of pointe shoes except for a few that have become sculptural art.Each pair represents my hard work and dedication to the art and if you peek inside some of those shoes there is blood to prove it!
These particular shoes are Grishkos, which are hand made in Russia. Although there are now some machine made shoes on the market I have not been impressed by the style or durability of the shoes. I have also been greatly disappointed with the latest Bloch and Capezio shoes that seem to fall apart before they ever have a chance to break down.
Some of these paintings are still available in my Etsy shop, so stop on by if you are interested!