Thursday, 22 November 2018

Coote's Fall

My desktop computer running Windows 7 had become excruciatingly slow so I decided to rebuild it with Windows 10.  I backed all my files up three different ways, reformatted my hard drive and did a fresh install of Windows 10.  I am loving it.  I have not had a "not responding" message since.

I did find some time to get out and paint.  This first painting was done two Mondays ago.  We hiked down through the Lilac Dell, at the RBG, and followed the path down to the water.  It was a cool rather dull day and most of the fall colour was gone but the area has a lot of oak trees with wonderful rusty red leaves.  I decided to paint on canvas for a change and quite enjoyed it.  This is looking toward Bull's Point and I think that I like it.

Last Monday we went back to the same location hoping that the colours would still be there.  It was the same sort of day.  About 4 C and cloudy so cool for working but not uncomfortably so.  I stood in the same place and faced the opposite direction down Coote's Paradise.  The yellowing leaves on the willow contrasted nicely with the rusty oaks and gray leafless trees.  The jury is still out on this one.

I will be doing demos in public at the Art Gallery of Burlington from 10:00 am until 1:00 pm tomorrow and Saturday.  It is as part of their annual Christmas show and sale so there should be a lot of people looking over my shoulder and chatting with me.

Wednesday, 7 November 2018

My Quest for the Rock

On October 20, 2018 a group of us set out on a canoe trip into Killarney Provincial Park.  My quest was to sit and paint on the rock that Franklin Carmichael sat on in 1935 and to climb up to the top of the cliff where A Y Jackson painted his sketch for Nellie Lake.  I had wonderful and talented artistic company in the form of Martin Kotyluk a Sudbury artist.  We arrived at Grace Lake just as the sun was setting so we ate supper and settled in for a very cold (-4) night.

Franklin Carmichael is seen sketching 
at Grace Lake in this 1935 photo.
(Joachim Gauthier photo)
Me sitting on Carmichael's rock on Grace Lake
Me sitting at Grace Lake 2018

It was a tough unmarked climb up to Carmichael's Rock but once up top it was obvious why he chose this spot.  The views were magnificent.  Being inspired isn't always a good thing for me.  I knew that I would likely never get back this way again and so I only had one shot at it.  We were rushed because we knew that after we climbed back down we would still have a rugged uphill 2K portage before supper.

My painting of Grace Lake 2018
This isn't a great painting however considering the conditions that it was painted in I am more than happy with it.  The cold damp temperatures kept the paint soft so it, as well as my others, got pretty beat up during the rest of the trip.

We had a layover day on Nellie Lake and the cliff that A Y Jackson painted from was right behind our campsite.  It was an even higher and tougher unmarked climb but again it was worth it.  We had fantastic views of Carmichael (Nellie) Lake, The Notch and also north out of the mountains towards Espanola.  I was tired and exhausted but forced myself to sit and do two paintings.  I am not excited about them but the experience of sitting painting where my idols once sat is exhilarating.

My painting of Carmichael (Nellie) LakeMy painting looking through The Notch, Killarney

The next day we portaged all our gear down the steep 1420m portage through The Notch . I stopped for a break at a waterfall about half way down and painted what is in my mind my best painting of the trip.  This was painted in about twenty minutes and I was, at the time, too tired to care if it worked or not.

My painting of a waterfalls in The Notch, Killarney

These last two painting were painted on Little Bear Lake.  The most exciting thing about these paintings is the fact that Morgan, my 13 year old granddaughter, and her friend Onalee asked if they could have a board each and some paint.  Sitting painting and chatting with them was the highlight of a trip of highlights.

Saturday, 3 November 2018

Beyond the Valley Studio Tour Follow Up

I thought that I had posted this three weeks ago but now remember that I went looking for images to use and never came back.  I am now using images of some of the paintings that sold during the weekend.

When I was invited by Angela and Fred of Dragonfly Designs to be a guest in their studio for the Beyond the Valley Studio Tour I jumped at the chance.  This tour has eight studios with 16 very accomplished artists and artisans so I was excited.  I have been involved with many shows so how hard could it be.

There were some tense moments but it all turned out to be relatively easy and sales were extremely good.  I had a couple of credit card glitches. A couple of people got a deal because I forgot to charge for the frames and I told a few people that I would get their email address from the receipt and add them to my newsletter.  Sadly the credit card processing company will not give me any information at all about purchasers (which is mostly good) including their names and email addresses (which is not so good).

I will be eternally grateful to Angela and Fred for inviting me but also to Shelley Prior of Shelley Prior Fine Art for lending me her racks.  Most of all I would like to thank all the wonderful people who came by to look at, chat about or buy my art.  You all helped make the weekend a spectacular success in my mind.

I was also having so much fun that I didn't think to take any photos of my setup so if anyone has any I would love copies.