Life in general Oil Painting Still Life

Rainier Cherries (Oil painting)

Cherries Oil Painting - Finished

Oil painting on RayMar panel, 8×6″
Click here to see larger

I’ve been dieting the past couple weeks, trying to take off the 10 pounds I put on over the past year and a half of blogging instead of jogging. It’s been made considerably easier by the wonderful fresh summer fruit I’ve been eating. I think the cherry season might be waning now, which makes me sad since these Rainier Cherries are more delicious than any of the junk food they replaced. I’ve lost the first five pounds and hope to be done with the diet before the succulent peaches, plums and nectarines are gone.

Oil painting is so much fun. I’m really enjoying working alla prima (with fresh paint, finishing a painting while all the paint is still wet, rather than letting it dry and painting in layers). I’m practicing this technique so that I can eventually try painting plein air with oils (but it will be a while before I’m ready for that.

Here are the steps in making this painting (if you want to see them bigger you can click on the images and and then click All Sizes:

The sketch with vine charcoal:
Cherries Oil Painting-Step 1

Blocking in the shapes and colors:
Cherries Oil Painting-Step 2

Almost done…should I have stopped here?

Cherries Oil Painting-Step 3

I had a hard time with the background, which is a white plate. It had some reflection from the cherries, highlights from the lamp pointing at it and a bit of shadow around the rim. I’m not sure if I should have stopped sooner or worked on this painting longer but since it’s about learning and practicing and moving on to try something else, I think I’m done. Any suggestions or advice very much welcomed!

15 replies on “Rainier Cherries (Oil painting)”

LUSCIOUS, simply, droolingly LUSCIOUS!!! Congrats on the 5 pounds!!! I too have stacked on the weight for the same reason … sigh …!


You make this look so easy! It makes me want to try oils, but alas, I’ve been too … something. These are great, and I love the deep reds and the ligher, orange together.


Jana, the cherries look great! I think you stopped exactly at the right point.
…But how did you manage to scan the painting in when the oil colors were still wet? Or did you take a photo?
Kind regards from Claudia


Thanks everyone! Claudia, you’re right, scanning would be a mess. I took a photo. My overhead full spectrum flourescents seem to work pretty good for photographing without too much reflection but I still have to adjust the photos in Photoshop to get the exposure/color the same as the painting.


The cherry’s look wonderful. Under the flicker photos… on the right side of my screen they look like a photo. Look at that stem- awesome.
I like the step by step also. I, too, am in the cherry eating mood. I could eat them all day long if I had them around that long.


Hi Jana.
Great job with the cherries (and the diet).
I think you made the right decision adding the last bit of paint. The color really pops!


Lovely cherries.

Hmm. I love your final AND your almost-final.

Do more. I think you have a knack with fruit.


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