Fortune Cookie – Karen Winters Daily Painting

“Fortune Cookie” – 5 x 7 – acrylic

This painting was done in response to a creative challenge to “draw or paint something wrapped in plastic.” Since we had Chinese food the other night, I still had this fortune cookie sitting around, so I decided to paint that. The problem is, I can’t read the fortune inside without opening the plastic and I think I might like to paint it again. So, it will sit on my desk enigmatically with the life-changing fortune and lucky lottery numbers safely sealed inside. I have a feeling that if and when I do finally tear it open it will say something like “this fortune is past its sell-by date and has expired.”

I was thinking a little bit about how I’d approach the painting of transparent plastic and I finally settled in with the realization that it’s no different than painting anything else … it all comes down to color, value, shape and edge. Simple concepts when you get right to it.

Keeping to my art resolutions, tonight I started a figure drawing class with a new teacher and what was the first thing he said about modeling the head? “You have to pay attention to value, shape and edge …(we were working in charcoal so color wasn’t a factor.) So there you go – three teachers out of three and they all concur … value, color, shape, edge – that’s how you render any object – no matter what the medium. So the next time you want to paint a lake or a cloud or a parsnip – you know the answer.


  1. Detlef
    January 9, 2008

    Great work on the sheen and transparency.

  2. Shirley
    January 9, 2008

    Great job. You make it look sooooo easy.

  3. Cathy (Kate) Johnson
    January 9, 2008

    Lovely! And I admire your self control, I HAVE to open the darn fortune cookie!

    The class sounds great…

  4. sandy
    January 9, 2008

    Wow, simply fabulous, you make it look so easy! I can’t wait to see another version too!

  5. Lynn
    January 9, 2008

    This is wonderful! Thank you for your advice on how to do this. As I look at everyone’s renderings, I keep in mind what you say about color, form, and reflections. It’s really helping me see in a whole different way. And it also helps to see the subject done as well as you did it.

  6. wendy
    January 9, 2008

    Painting plastic, now that isn’t easy, but you succeeded.
    About figure drawing, I disagree with your teacher. He/she is looking at the surface. I think the most important thing to look at is the stance of the body, where the weight is, the bones underneath, not the skin. Okay?

  7. Linda
    January 9, 2008

    Fantastic! I’m inspired to try parnips in plastic… ;-D

  8. Lyn
    January 9, 2008

    Great job on a difficult topic, I’m looking forward to seeing what others do with this.

  9. Nancy
    January 9, 2008

    Great job of capturing the cookie in cellophane. Very challenging but worth the effort.

  10. juj
    January 10, 2008

    Lovely Karen – I’m in awe of how you managed to capture the substance of the cookie while keeping the delicacy of the wrapper. I think you must be a genious…

  11. Bec
    January 10, 2008

    NIce! I agree with the others…. YOU DO make it look easy!

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