Thursday, 26 November 2015

What was I thinking.

I volunteered to do a demo in the hallway at the Art Gallery of Burlington during the Christmas Show and Sale.  The idea being to let the public see an artist at work. 

I have only done a handful of portraits in oils and since I am no longer allowed to use my walnut oil based M Graham paints in the gallery I purchased four tubes of Winsor and Newton oil paint (Anders Zorn palette).  Unfortunately I mistakenly picked up a tube of very cool transparent yellow instead of a nice warm cad yellow.  I always do portraits from a sitting model but since there wasn't room I decided to do a portrait of a friend from a very bad black and white photo so that I wouldn't be tempted to become a slave to the two dimensional photograph.  After all I know what this friend should look like.  I kind of forgot that this experiment would be done while answering questions and chatting with dozens of people walking by me in the hallway.

The portrait is terrible but it was a fun experiment.  I chopped off the back of his head and I made his ear much bigger than it really is but with those issues fixed and a warmer yellow this wouldn't be all that bad.

On a brighter note I am happy with the next two portraits.  I have been offered the chance to do a solo show in St James Church in April and Debbie thinks that I should hang my sketches.  I certainly have enough of them so I think that I may do that.  Etienne and Joanette were as usual great models so these were just plain fun to do.

I do need to work on my photographic skills too.  These are about 20" by 16" and look much better in real life.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

What a day!

The normal highs for this time of year are 8 C if we are lucky.  Today it was 23 C and sunny.  I painted for two hours in a tee shirt and then came home and fell asleep in a lawn chair in our yard.  To top it off I have a painting that I actually kind of like.

This is looking downstream from one of the bridges in Lowville Park.  Most of the leaves are on the ground but there were some oak trees making a perfect backdrop for an old maple with no leaves.  The oaks reflected off the water in the still part of the creek turned the water a very rich brown.  There was just enough of a breeze to create movement in the dry leaves. 

I love my job but on days like this I feel especially blessed.