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This artwork was created for the walls of Alexandria Spa and Wellness Center, located in the heart of Historic Old Town Alexandria, Virginia. The spa specializes in a holistic approach to wellness that provides a total rejuvenation for the mind and body. Their certified therapists provide calming rejuvenation and pain relief with a variety of services including massage, acupuncture, hot stone therapy, energy healing, reiki and more. They guide their guests to a healthier lifestyle and empower them to take back their health and become a recharged version of themselves.
I worked directly with the spa owner, Leslie Luckritz, who asked me to create a work of art that would provide comfort + relaxation, and create a calming, empowering and restorative environment. Part of the spa’s mission is to offer their guests an escape from daily stress and encourage wellness and relaxation, and so the function of this artwork was to help provide this type of comforting and nourishing atmosphere. Leslie requested that the artwork reflect the brand colors of pink, purple, yellow and orange. It was important to her that I include soothing elements of nature into the piece, especially sand and shells. She also provided an image of their sun lotus logo to be incorporated into the design.
Leslie reached out to me via social media messaging after she saw my artwork showcased online. She already had an idea of what type of work she wanted and so we proceeded with a design consultation to discuss her visions and ideas for the piece including color, design, materials, and meanings for the work, as well as looked at some inspiration examples.
After our discussion, I began by sketching some initial designs of lotus flowers and suns to develop those visual aspects of the logo into the artwork as she requested. The powerful and uplifting qualities of the sun paired with the transformative and renewing properties of the lotus flower brings elements of inspiration and empowerment into the design. I then worked on a repeating sunbeam pattern to provide a sense of flow, serenity and radiating peace in the artwork. From these sketches the artwork design will be created.
I developed a sunbeam lotus design for this artwork to incorporate parts of the spa’s logo as Leslie requested. This blossoming design will provide a source of inspiration to guests of the spa, and create an atmosphere of tranquility + peace. The spiral symbolizes life-force energy and visually creates the center of the sun, which encourages guests to anchor to the peace + power within themselves.
The lotus petals symbolize rebirth and self transformation. This mystical flower grows in the mud and rises into the sunlight each day, which reminds us of our own ability to rise above the muck and darkness in life to create, transform and rebirth ourselves as we desire. The radiating sunbeams pattern brings a sense of flow and serenity, creating a calm + relaxing environment within the spa. The warm color palette soothes and uplifts, while representing the brand colors of the spa.
This design will bring tranquility to guests, and inspire them to relax and let go in order to fully blossom into the brightest and healthiest expressions of themselves.
In addition to the final draft design, I also developed two alternative designs to offer multiple selections to choose from. I sketched these designs with ink pen on paper and then painted them with watercolor paints to create a rough draft design for each selection. Each version incorporates aspects of the logo and brand colors, and creates a blossoming motion of peace and tranquility. The first option was selected for its shape and the flowing and radiating motion off of the canvas and into the space around it.
Once the final design was determined, I began working on the canvas. I first sketched the basic design onto the surface of the canvas. This provides me with a rough outline to follow as I add layer upon layer of paint and natural materials to the surface.
Next, I added layers of color to create the background of the piece, using eco-conscious water soluble oil paints. Color selection is an important aspect of the artwork because it can deeply affect the way we feel, and evoke specific moods, emotions and memories.
In this piece, the logo colors of pink, orange, yellow and purple were used at the request of my client to create brand cohesion. These warm hues bring the uplifting + energizing feelings of the sun and radiate passion, inner strength and peace. I alternated layers of color with layers of metallic paint to create a luminous sheen in the final artwork. This results in a dynamic finish that transforms with the viewing angle and with the changing of the light. This luminescent effect will invigorate the spa space as well as the spirits of those who view it.
After the paint was completely dry, I began adding natural materials to the surface. First I properly cleaned the materials and then adhered them to the surface with a heavy duty non-toxic water based glue.
Shells, sand and pebbles collected from various locations were used. Each location in nature holds a different energy, and those energies are transferred into the artwork through the inclusion of these organic materials. Sand and pebbles collected from Morocco’s Sahara Desert bring mindfulness and stillness into the piece, while shells and sand from Hawaii and Thailand bring the soothing serenity of the ocean.
The final artwork for Alexandria Spa and Wellness Center provides guests comfort + relaxation, and creates a calming, positive and restorative environment. The custom design perfectly compliments the nourishing + healing services the spa offers and supports their mission to bring guests total rejuvenation for the mind and body.
The design layout symbolizes inner peace, wellness + empowerment. The colors radiate a warm and nourishing feeling while reflecting the spa brand colors as requested. The inclusion of sand, pebbles and shells bring the calm and tranquil feelings of nature’s deserts and oceans indoors into the spa. This nature-infused artwork connects guests to the peace + power of the natural world and creates an atmosphere of inspired beauty.
For thousands of years people have lived, worked and played in harmony with the natural world. There was an organic connection in all that we did. But our lifestyles have changed in modern times and we have moved away from nature. In the hustle and bustle of daily living, many have lost their relationship with the natural world. It is not surprising that our stress has increased and health has decreased as a result.
The folks at Alexandria Spa and Wellness Center understand the importance of bringing nature back into the lives of their guests in order for them to experience true wholeness, health, harmony + well being. Their nature-infused custom artwork helps to create a serene + nourishing atmosphere so guests can escape daily stress, take back their health and become a recharged version of themselves.