Thursday, May 31, 2012

It's that time again...

Time for a studio clean. I missed my assistant. This morning I looked at my studio and there were so many paintings leaning against walls, so many bags and old brushes and dried up paint tubes, I felt too cluttered to work. So I hauled everything out, cleaned the floors and then began hanging pictures on the walls. The photo just above is the wall I didn't get to. 
As you can see from the photos below, the table areas will be waiting for me in the morning.
I still have a lot to bring back in. I'm clearly going to have to be selective ; ) What about you? Do you manage to clean as you go? Or do supplies and stuff breed when you're not looking? Always a challenge but it feels so good to get stuff cleaned out and work hung!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Dark Triumph + ♥ SOLD

So I met these lovely people yesterday. I've driven by their home for years and always admired their rows of daffodils, then irises, then roses. I finally stopped in, introduced myself and asked if they minded if I painted in their garden. They were delightful and said no problem! They told me this particular iris is named "Dark Triumph". I don't usually paint with so much green. It felt Does that sound weird? Usually I paint in a sky or something but today I decided to indicate the flowers/lawn in the background. I ♥ irises. They are my earliest flower memory as a kid. Maybe it's becasue I had a major purple-thing going on ; )
16"x20" / acrylic on canvas
p.s. And speaking of ♥, I just want to send a huge heartfelt thank you to all those who read my blog and follow along. You're really the best!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Poppy patch - SOLD

I've wanted to paint poppies for a while now and set out Saturday on my quest. After stopping by three houses with a tangle of these lush red beauties to ask if I could paint them (and getting no response at the door) my plan was almost foiled. I decided to take the long way home and then spied another house with a bright bunch of poppies swaying in the breeze. Turns out I'd met the woman who lived there - she's a local artist. She happily let me park myself on her yard and paint away. Thanks Aggie : )
acrylic on canvas / 16"x20"

Friday, May 25, 2012

Plein Air!

Today was the first plein air workshop at The Good Earth. It was windy, smokin' hot and humid. Summer has arrived! I am sorry I didn't get close-ups of the paintings from today - they were gems! My only excuse is that my brain must have been turning mushy from over-heating : ) Anyway, it was a lovely group of painters and I had a terrific day painting/eating and talking art with them. As always, The Good Earth served us a delicious lunch that sustained us for the afternoon. Thanks for coming out!
There are four more dates: June 22, July 27, August 24 and September 14. Click here for further details.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

ARTLOVE: "Lilies and Apples" 1931, Arthur Lismer

Well, I've been running around all day doing errands (yada, yada, yada) and thinking about the plein air workshop tomorrow. I thought to get me in the groove I'd feast my eyes on some Group of Seven. Because who doesn't need a little Group of Seven? Today I'm featuring the painting "Lilies and Apples" painted in 1931 by Arthur Lismer. I am looking at a gorgeous reproduction of it right now in my book The Group of Seven and Tom Thomson by David P. Silcox. It's a little more vibrant than this repro from Wikigallery. I love the patterns, the thick paint and the hits of blue against the orange. It shouts "tangled garden" yet is cohesive and very pleasing. Unfortunately when I look back to the screen and see this shot, it just doesn't do it justice : ( Anyway, tomorrow we paint! And revel in the landscape. Can't wait!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Newest work!

Here is my latest abstract (followed by 2 details). It's done! It's the one I began last week while being seduced by the creek with it's beautiful sky reflections and wild phlox. I've found I really have to free my mind and let myself go for these. With this one in particular (because it began as a landscape) I had to constantly tamp down that desire to paint flowers and trees.  I wanted to convey the feeling of water, petals and reflections without actually painting them, you know?
And there are still two spots left for this Friday's plein air workshop. If you're interested, you can call The Good Earth Thursday and register. You can read more about it here. Ciao!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Announcing: Fine Art Parties!

I'm happy to announce a new iniative: Fine Art Parties! Something different for a night. Just grab some friends who'd like to give it a whirl. Cost is $40 per person. I bring an assortment of canvasses and all of your painting supplies. You supply whatever you'd like to snack on for the evening and something you'd like to paint. Everyone goes home with their own original painting! How cool is that? It's also great for those who would like to try their hand at painting but don't want to commit to a block of lessons. To talk further about it or book a party please send me an email at Parties work best between 5-8 people but I welcome other inquiries as well. 
Note: This info (+ more) can now be found on my website
"I liked that Kim encouraged us to have fun with it... and was also available when I wanted to ask more detailed questions..." ~M.
"I think Kim's gentle approach and instruction fosters a feeling of capability - I felt encouraged that I could do no wrong! I felt very comfortable, ...all the paints laid out made it easy and Kim being present as needed for questions was comforting." ~S.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Plein Air this Friday

There are a few spots open for the first plein air day of the season! You can paint in acrylics, watercolours, oils, pastels...draw...whatever your heart desires. The fun is happening this Friday at The Good Earth in Beamsville. All the info is here. It's going to be great weather. Come on out - no experience necessary!
And stay tuned tomorrow - I have something exciting to share ; )

Thursday, May 17, 2012

truly "eat, drink, paint"

Today was lovely. My very first art college friend from back-in-the-day recently moved back to Ontario and we reconnected. And she is just as much fun as she always was. We've shared so many laughs ; ) Anyway, today we met at my parents home and decided to do some plein air painting. There was a huge bonus to being at Mom and Dads. First: washrooms! : ) Second: morning coffee. Third: well...see above. This sure beat the granola bars and water I had packed.
I began a landscape but wasn't feeling it come together so I decided to go where my heart was leading and just paint over it all and let an abstract emerge. The phlox and the sky reflecting in the creek where what had drawn me to this spot. I decided to keep that in mind as I worked up my piece. There are many hours to go but this is what it looked like when I packed up for the day. Right now it's a bit of a mess but they all look like this at some point. It will come.
Speaking of plein air painting, there are still opening for my first class at The Good Earth next Friday, May 25th. Click here for details.
~ detail ~
The wild phlox. My inspiration.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Abstract - finished

Okay. Now I think I'm done. You know how you get that way? You might think you're done and then you change your mind? Well, I liked the piece as it was (shown below) but I really wanted it to tie in with my other abstracts. Now I feel they can hand side by each.
~ detail ~

Monday, May 14, 2012

3 old friends

“What is the definition of a good wine? It should start and end with a smile.”
~ William Sokolin

6"x6" / oil on archival panel  $100 (includes free shipping worldwide)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Weekend Update

"Ribbit" / April 7, 2011 / SOLD
So I just wanted to do a quick entry about my weekend. First off...thank you to everyone who came out to The Handmade Market. It was a bonus meeting some people who follow my blog. Thank you for introducing yourselves! I truly appreciated meeting you and thank you for your support.
Because I was at the market all weekend, I have no new paintings to post, but because I need a visual I am re-posting one of my frog paintings from last year. Also, it reminds me of childhood, which is also what this post is about (stay with me...I promise this will all come together)
The first thing I wanted to mention was one more thing about Maurice Sendak. I read another quote a few days ago that someone had posted on Facebook. And it actually made me laugh out loud so I wanted to share for those who haven't heard it:
"Once a little boy sent me a charming card with a little drawing on it. I loved it. I answer all my children’s letters — sometimes very hastily — but this one I lingered over. I sent him a card and I drew a picture of a Wild Thing on it. I wrote, 'Dear Jim: I loved your card.' Then I got a letter back from his mother and she said, 'Jim loved your card so much he ate it.' That to me was one of the highest compliments I’ve ever received. He didn’t care that it was an original Maurice Sendak drawing or anything. He saw it, he loved it, he ate it.”
That makes me appreciate Mr. Sendak even more ; )

The second thing I wanted to relay was a story from my weekend. I will try and condense it. Today three young girls (maybe 8 yrs. old?) came to my tent and were looking at my paintings. We exchanged hellos and they lingered for a few more minutes and then were gone. Some time later they came back and I saw them talking amongst themselves and looking very closely at my mini paintings. The one girl asked me about one of them and said she'd like to buy it. She carefully pulled all the money she had out of her change purse and began counting.  When she was done she was a few bucks shy and I told her that I was happy to sell it to her for that amount. I heard her friend whipser earnestly to her: But then you won't have money left for anything else!! She whispered back: That's okay. This is what I really wanted. 
 ** insert my heart melting here **
From there it became funny, as her two friends decided they'd like to purchase paintings too but had considerably less But it all worked out happily for everyone in the end.
What I loved about these three girls is that here they were, surrounded by so many things at the market, and they were moved by paintings! Wow. Young and already collectors ; ) I thought it was awesome 
Thanks everyone. Cheers!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Finished. Phew!

Okay - here's the finished painting. I absolutely struggled with this one. It's funny. I think abstracts are perceived to be easy... you know, the whole "my kid could do that!" thing. But I must say, it is a challenge to make your spaces interesting and to have depth and harmony and tension. Don't get me wrong: it is also a challenge to paint representationally with your own vision and courage. Perhaps it's that I'm exploring new mental muscles. In the beginning, the first couple of paintings just flowed out of me, but after that initial flush I've had to really crack down! Like, hard! But I love it ; )
This is a large painting - 36" square. Below are a few details.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

ARTLOVE: Maurice Sendak

As many have heard by now, crazily talented, beloved illustrator/writer Maurice Sendak has passed on. I discovered him back in the 80s when I was studying Illustration at Sheridan College. Wow. My major was book illustration and he was one of the gods. I fell in love with Where the WIld Things Are.
When I became a mother I discovered the television show Little Bear. Little Bear, Emily, Cat, Tutu, Uncle Rusty, Granny...these episodes were magic to me. I used to obsessively ram a VCR tape into the maching whenever I caught the beginning of an episode and pressed "record". I thought they were the best thing ever and wanted to make a tape to hang on to (for fellow fans, my two favourite episodes were Emily and Little Bear getting snowed in with her granny and the "winter solstice" episode where they hang cookies on the trees for the deer).
Sendak's illustrations were elegant, exquisite, lyrical and funny. I came across this quote of Mr. Sendak's today and thought it really quite lovely:
"I have nothing now but praise for my life. I'm not unhappy. I cry a lot because I miss people. They die and I can't stop them. They leave me and I love them more. ... What I dread is the isolation. ... There are so many beautiful things in the world which I will have to leave when I die, but I'm ready, I'm ready, I'm ready."
Rest in peace Mr. Sendak. You will be missed. Your work will delight us forever 

I've compiled images of the Sendak books I happily have in my collection: Where the Wild Things Are, Outside Over There, A Hole is to Dig, Dear Mili, Higglety Pigglety Pop! or There Must Be More To Life, Alligators All Around, Un Baiser Pour Petit-Ours, and the very cool pop-up book Mommy? Last year I also got the book Making Mischief. A Maurice Sendak Appreciation.

where it stands today...

So I'm working from the top down here. I'm starting to pull it together... For those interested in size, this is 30 inches square.

Monday, May 7, 2012

beginning stages of a new work

Currently it looks kind of basic, but these are early days. It will be built up with many more layers and tonal subtleties. That is if I do it right ; )

Mark it in your date books!

The Spring Handmade Market is THIS weekend at The Good Earth in Beamsville. Saturday and Sunday, 11-5 • This would be a great thing to do with your Mom - just sayin'! • Free admission • 42 artisans • Delicious food and wine. There are scrumptious lunches available for 5 bucks and the variety of artisans is truly inspiring! You can check the artists and the menu out here. Sharp-eyed viewers will notice one of my daily paintings on the promo card ; ) Thank you Handmade Market!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

holy transitions!

Wow - this piece had me tearing my hair out. It went down more paths then I thought possible. So much for my paintings just "flowing out of me". Ha! 
Below is where it went between yesterday's post and the finished piece above. It had become much too pale. And I knew I must flip and re-work when I saw a giant bird taking flight. Someone had mentioned it brought to mind a park - and I had felt that as well - so I kept that in the front of my mind and carried on. There are a couple of places I need to add a few more strokes of colour, but for the most part it is done.