Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Razzle Dazzle, Trees in a Landscape

Razzle Dazzle 
36" x 36" -  acrylic on canvas - $900.
Continuing with theme and variation, some more 'trees in a landscape'! 
This painting evolved as follows...

.......and finally, it received an Honourable Mention in the Community Juried Exhibition at the Longboat Key Centre for the Arts (Florida) on view from March 4-30. 

Monday, 6 March 2017


36" x 48" - acrylic on canvas
I know I have said (written) this before - that one of my favourite subjects to paint is 'trees in a landscape'. Yes, the basic landscape composition. I have usually been inspired by a particular image based on a photo taken at a particular place, and then, initially, try to interpret the scene in a fairly representative (though expressive) manner. 

While painting, however, alternative interpretations or ways to reduce and further abstract the composition suggest themselves and that leads to variations on the theme. Tree'scape was inspired by the photograph (photoshopped below) I took at my cottage last October. 
The first painting on which it was based is this one, started last December. It went through several drafts, and then I stopped, as it didn't feel like 'me'. But, I began to see other possibilities, and had a large canvas........

This was stage 1......

and then stage 2......
and finally the finished work with lots of texture created through using a palette knife. 
I am really happy with the final painting, and love the palette and textural quality of the trees. If some areas look a little 'fuzzy' in the larger photo, it's because those areas of the painting are not as defined.
And of course it has led to another painting which I will post next day!

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Drew, the English Springer Spaniel

12" x 12" - acrylic on canvas - sold
This is a Drew, the second of two English Springer Spaniels owned by friends. As I had painted Emmy Lou several years ago, it was necessary to have a companion portrait of this little fellow, and here he is in all his colourful glory. 

Friday, 17 February 2017

'Almost There' - the new name for a 'Landscape'

Almost There (Landscape) 
24" X 30"  - acrylic on canvas - $450
I am so happy to post this painting and show how it evolved from a small watercolour study to the final rectangular version you see above. 

It is based on a very simple scene photographed from my car window (in which I was the passenger of course) several years ago. I liked the vertical dead trees, dark backdrop of woods, long grasses in the foreground and bright spots of colour in the photo and always felt I could do something with it. 
The first rendition was a watercolour study, presented in a square format, and very abstracted, focusing on the far background band of trees and splashy, colourful foreground, connected with some vertical lines suggesting the clump of trees in the photo. 
I really liked this study and used it as the basis for a larger (36"x36") acrylic canvas painting - you can see how similar they were. However, though I loved the abstraction and looseness of the acrylic work, I remained unsure as to next steps. I really wanted to just leave it as it was, but so much of the canvas was not painted and I felt that if I continued to just fill in un-painted areas I would probably lose what I liked. So, after many months I regret to say that I whited it out the painting. Oh well. 
Recently I decided to have another kick at painting this composition and abstracting it using colour and line, but this time changed the format to a horizontal rectangle, something inherently more suggestive of a landscape. This is stage one.
Then using black paint and a brush I made lots of calligraphic marks. Fun.
Then, added more paint and colour and finally finished the painting.
A great painting experience and i think, a successful result.

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Dreaming in Colour Landscape

Dreaming in Colour
22" x 30" - watercolour on Arches paper - $300
Since the end of the 'challenge' I have been working steadily, trying to finish three larger paintings. I had forgotten how much time they take after the daily small works, but am delighted to post this one, completed today, yeah!  It is based on a photo that I have used for inspiration several times in the past, because as I work, I find that I keep thinking of different ways I could approach the subject, hence the return and riff. 

 For a change I worked in transparent watercolour on a beautiful piece of Arches deckle-edge paper. The colours you see are quite true - it's very colourful and the whites are the white of the paper. I have another piece of Arches and have another planned watercolour, but that's for later in the spring. 

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

30 in 30: Collage of 30 Paintings

Congrats to all 1233 artists across North America who participated in this challenge. I think I became better at fussing less - there was never enough time. I will try to keep posting small works, but for now will turn back to some of my larger half-finished canvases that are asking for attention.  Many thanks for those who looked and those who commented - Cheers!

Monday, 30 January 2017

30 in 30: Day 30 - Scottish Landscape

Scottish Landscape
9" x 11" - acrylic on paper - SOLD
When I visited Scotland last June, one of the things that struck me were the rich and varied blues, purples and greens I saw in the landscape. This painting is based on several photos I took, but is more a memory of those colour sensations. And finally, this is painting #30 of the 30 paintings in 30 day challenge. Done. Phew!