Saturday, October 31, 2009

Alien blooms

Athletes talk about their "personal bests" - well, this is a personal best for me in painting glass. It has always scared the bejeebers out of me and I avoided it like the plague. Something happened while watching Carol Marine paint glass that dissipated my fear and it suddenly made sense to me. I think this is the first glass painting that I have truly liked.
You know how people see different things in paintings? My husband's first reaction was "cool little alien" (the top two flowers are the antennae and apparently there are two bug eyes in the bottom bloom).
6" x 6" / oil on panel / Won in draw

Friday, October 30, 2009

Spicy duo

My little peppers in a bowl. I've had my fun with them - now it's time to eat 'em (I know - sounds macabre!)
6" x 6" / oil on panel

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Peppers and mug

The 2 little peppers in front of a mug. I like painting these guys. Sorry that the title isn't more creative : ) Always open to suggestions!
6" x 6" / oil on panel 

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

2 little hotties - SOLD

Here are 2 extremely hot peppers we grew in our garden this summer. They are the same ones that I painted a couple of weeks ago, but now in oils. They've got a great shape, colour and a LOT of heat.
6" x 6" / acrylic on panel 

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


I went to the studio to paint my first oil post-workshop and forgot my solvent. So I had my hand at acrylics. I've got to say, after working only one week in oils, I am a fan! I love the way they feel. I may make a permanent conversion. So here is a little honeycrisp for you to enjoy.
6" x 6" / acrylic on panel 

Monday, October 26, 2009

Jacksonville - Day 4

This is the last piece I painted at the workshop. It was a high-key painting of grapes in a white bowl. Unfortunately, I kept losing the shape of my bowl thus it ended up looking a bit wonky. I also blended more than I wanted to. I've got the info in my head - it's just the problem of getting it to all come out consistently! Argh! : ) But it will come. Careful observation! I also realized that I need to be fully alert and energetic when beginning to paint. This may seem obvious, but really, if you get lazy, it goes south pretty quickly!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Jacksonville - Day 3

Another great day of painting with Carol Marine. The top piece, strawberries falling out of the mug, was my favourite painting from the workshop. This painting was created by doing one brush stroke, followed by another colour from the palette, and then the next brush stroke. You were never to brush more than once without putting new paint on your brush. The idea was to make deliberate strokes, thinking about value and colour with each laying down of the paint. It really did help you focus by thinking very carefully about comparisons of value and colour.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Jacksonville - Day 2

Day 2. This was the day I felt like pulling my hair out! We did 10 value studies of the same set-up (seven shown here). Mine was a lemon slice. I believe they were ten minutes long. A very good lesson in learning to see and compare value shifts. My first and tenth slice are shown on this panel. Which lemon slice do you think is the most successful? We also did further value studies with predominant, mid and "smidge" value compositions. Here are 2 of the 3. Another great day.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Jacksonville - Day 1

Finally... a Florida posting! First (indulge me) I am posting a picture of the spanish moss hanging from the trees. Really very cool. Something I'd read about but had never seen. And it looks great as Halloween approaches : )
Secondly, this Carol Marine workshop has been wonderful and I have learned a LOT! Over the next number of months I will be revamping things, as I've learned a lot about how I want to move forward. Anyway, we've done a number of value studies in monochrome and colour. They may not look like much but have been great learning tools. Here are some pieces done on Day 1.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Notes from Florida

I've missed a couple days of posting due to travelling. I am thrilled to report that I am currently in sunny Florida taking a painting workshop from Carol Marine. Today was Day 1 and although I felt a little rusty, I learned so much! I took photos of the 3 studies done today but when I got back to my laptop to post them, realized I'd left the cord to connect the camera back at the gallery (at least that's where I HOPE I left it!). I painted 2 studies of lemons and a value study of a pear. All going well, I will post tomorrow evening.

Friday, October 16, 2009

4 strong cedars

Another work in progress. This is a piece I didn't get completed when I was out painting. So now I have it back in the studio and am re-working it. I imagine it will develop quite a bit and take on a few different personalities. It does look a little scary right now, but there are many changes ahead. Of course, I will keep you posted!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Hot pepper kiss

Hmmm...what was I thinking about today? lol A warm kiss on a gray, cold, windy day : ) My mother-in-law kindly picked the remains of our garden for us, as we are expecting a second frost tonight. She pulled some monster carrots, a beet or two, a couple of parsnips and loads of these hot peppers.
6" x 6" / acrylic on canvas 

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Clark property

Today was a catch-up day. I worked further on the painting from yesterday and have finished it. I also took a plein air canvas from the "junk" pile and began re-working it. That one will take some time before it's done. Anyway - just looking at this piece from yesterday reminds me how much warmer it was! Yesterday did have a bit of a chill, but the sun was strong. Today - not so much!
acrylic on canvas / 30" x 30" / n/a

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Unfinished: Clark Property

Today I was painting plein air and surrounded in beauty. It had warmed up a bit from the chilly 7˚C in the morning but was windy. My easel and canvas kept blowing over >: ( The light conditions were changing like mad as the clouds kept covering the sun. But it was a good day. Here is the piece so far. Unfortunately I wasn't able to complete it - the foreground still needs to be developed. Right now as you can see it is just a dark mass. But I think it's headed in the right direction!
acrylic on canvas / 30" x 30" / not yet for sale

Monday, October 12, 2009

3 amigos

Today I tried the gourds again using my shadow box. Of course, it made a difference. I prefer this painting leaps and bounds over the one from Saturday although the gourd in the foreground was a struggle. It's a tear drop shape and was difficult to get the form properly shadowed and highlighted. It's also multi-coloured with a lot of bumps and dirt rubbed into the skin. I was trying to not get distracted with the local colour and concentrate on the form but it was a challenge!
6" x 6" / acrylic on canvas

Sunday, October 11, 2009


Thanksgiving Sunday! It's bright and sunny and fresh. I hope everyone is able to enjoy their day. Today I am posting a diptych I painted last spring of a birch. It was at the same property where I had painted the Old Growth Cedar (October 4th post). Last week I didn't know if I'd see this painting again as it was misplaced after a show - but it has been found and a friend is holding it for me for pick-up on Tuesday. Great news! Because it's not on hand, I can't give you the dimensions for certain, but as I recall, each canvas is 10" x 30". Have a great day!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Little buddies

It is Thanksgiving weekend here in Canada. A time to celebrate our harvest. It's a perfect fall day - a nice 13˚C (55.5˚F). Crisp & sunny. Pumpkins, grapes, corn and pies are at all the markets. Wonderful! Today I picked up 3 tiny gourds to paint. Unfortunately I was working without my awesome shadow box (see September 28th post). Perhaps Monday I'll paint the third gourd into the mix and see the difference working under proper lighting gives!
6" x 6" / acrylic on canvas

Friday, October 9, 2009

Bold Bartlett

Today, a pear. It was a weak looking piece of fruit that I found in someone's fridge. The skin was beginning to pucker. Perhaps this is why I painted it with such boldness - I was bringing it back to its glory days : )
6" x 6" / acrylic on canvas

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Hogwarts - done!

Finished! Last night my young client thought the sides looked a little rough and said "No offence, but I don't think that part is finished. There should be trees there". I told him that was just the style. He genuinely seemed okay with that, and then told me he thought it was "AWESOME!".
On another note, it has been 4 months since I began this blog. I want to thank everyone for all of their comments, encouragement and enthusiasm. They certainly have given me energy and excitement to fuel me forward. I wondered when I began if I would soon find this commitment a chore, but I have to say I am just loving it!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Hogwarts - the 2nd last post

Hogwarts will be done after one more session! So I did what I mentioned in the last post, plus changed the path a bit. When I was deciding what to do about the moon, a friend suggested cutting out a paper circle and taping it on to see where/if I'd like to place it (thanks Sandy!) So here are the 2 places I liked it best. What do you think? By the way, it was a bright orange piece of paper and when I paint my moon, it will be the gold colour used in the castle, mixed with white (so as to also tie the colour of the statues in to the piece).

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Tree with clouds

Today I took a break from Hogwarts. I went out and painted plein air and returned to the location where I had painted Twisted apple and worked on it some more. I was still feeling frustrated and at the end of the afternoon asked fellow painter, Laurie Wonfor Nolan (whose work I ADORE!) for help. She gave me a few suggestions and I intend to try them this week. Will post again when it is finally completed, if I haven't shredded it in despair ; ) Then, after struggling for a couple of hours, I took out one of my 6" x 6" canvasses and did this sketch in the blink of an eye (okay - not literally). Funny how that works.
6" x 6" / acrylic on canvas 

Monday, October 5, 2009


Okay - so this is todays progress. I have to darken the concrete pillars at the base of the castle, paint some trees in the foreground, add a small tower and chimney and possibly put in some clouds and a moon. Not sure if I should put the clouds in...think it might wreck it. I also want to darken the jade green on the side of the cliffs. But the end is in sight!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Old Growth Cedar

For those readers new to my blog, Sunday's I take the day off and post a painting previously done. Today I am posting a triptych of an old-growth cedar. I was in love with this tree! It was in a cedar grove on a private property in Dundas. The texture and rhythm of the bark was fantastic. Ideally, it is meant to hang vertically, to form one awesome, majestic tree. It needs a home with a tall wall. Tomorrow, back to Hogwarts : )
3 canvasses, framed, 24" x 30" each. When assembled vertically, the piece measures 24" x 7'6"

Saturday, October 3, 2009


Woke up with a sore neck. Kudos to all those mural painters out there.
To be continued...

Friday, October 2, 2009


Daily painting of another kind. Today I finally began the mural one of my children has been patiently waiting for since June. Hogwarts Castle. I had been procrastinating because...well, quite frankly it looked rather intimidating! But I buckled down and started the process today. I bought small pots of paint from Benjamin Moore which are working quite well. I drew the castle on the wall with a chalk pastel as it's the only thing I had handy. I drew it all freehand. No projections, no rulers - I just dove right in. He's not a tough critic : ) Anyway, this will be my job the next few days until it's completed and I have a happy customer. Because there just aren't enough hours in the day, I will be posting the progress of the work on this painting as my daily paintings. Wish me luck!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

At the pier

Today I had the pleasure of painting with a fellow artist friend Katalin, in Port Dalhousie. We walked down the pier, parked ourselves and began to paint. I had dressed warmly but let me tell ya - the wind coming off the water was pretty frigid. Our fingers were getting stiff, but it was fun. The water and the concrete was a challenge - I kept thinking "What would Edward do?" lol
6" x 6" / acrylic on canvas