Saturday, July 09, 2011


5 x 7 acrylic

Available for purchase through my Etsy store

I'm calling this painting complete.  The shooter marble is the larger one, used to propel other, smaller marbles in various adaptations of the game. 

Adding the details to a painting gives me the same feeling as curling up with a favourite book or sampling a food I love.  There's a level of satisfaction in adding the final glazes and tiny details to a painting and seeing it move to a different level of dimension.  The act of creating something that looks 2D from a flat, white piece of canvas  provides me with amazement and interest all the way through.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Something shiny - half way

Marbles seem to have a universal attraction for artists and non-artists.  The hard, semi transparent, reflective surface give so many possibilities.

For some reason I have marbles in my head (yes I know...) and I need to paint them to get it out of my system.  Of course finding marbles is not as simple as anticipated, not the ordinary cat's eye marbles anyway.  Everything these days seems to be extraordinary swirls of colour in opaque glass with exotic patterns or designs.  I just want plain old marbles that I remember from childhood.

Stage I - blocking in values

But all is not lost.  I found this creative commons image to practice on and am quite enjoying the process so far.  The painting is at about the half way point, so more work on it tomorrow.  Its a small piece again.  Smaller studies let me work out the issues that I come up against and the marble is no different.  This is in acrylic, I think a larger work, once I find marbles will be in oils.

Thursday, July 07, 2011


I can't resist a beach and come home with pockets bulging with finds each and every time.  This time was no different.

A broken whelk shell, bleached by the sun, the wormholiest (if that is a word) piece of wood I've ever seen was added to the collection, along with half a jaw bone of an unidentified animal, the femur of a seagull, rocks, mussel shells and anything else that took my fancy.  I like to think the piece of wormy wood that the sea placed at my feet was from some ship from hundreds of years ago.  Its certainly not recent, and I haven't seen worms in wood for many many years.  Whatever its origin, it becomes mine and I can weave stories in my head about 16th century pirate ships now sitting on the bottom of the Atlantic.

Either way, the pieces make good references for drawing.  This is graphite, in a 9 x 12 sketchbook while the news was on tonight.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Salmonier River finished

 Salmonier River
5" x 7" acrylic

Detail has always appealed to me.  I can spend hours creating tiny strokes with a pencil or brush to make minute progress. So completing this little painting of a curve in a tributary of the Salmonier River held endless interest for me.

The process of creating something from broad strokes of colour down to individual forms is a challenge and very enjoyable.  I'm looking at the next challenge for  a new piece that will test my patience and ability.  I came across the art of Sadie Valeri.  Her still life pieces with exquisitely painted glass and paper fascinate me and also inspire me to try my hand at a similar composition.  It may take awhile for me to find the right composition and props (having a friend in the antiques business helps). 

I would like to film the process.  Of course I anticipate the painting will take time to produce so a speeded up version of the process would be required. A little experimentation is required before I jump into this, so stay tuned.

Monday, July 04, 2011

More coyote

I am over run with ideas for new paintings and drawings.  Its an odd sensation, making me want to furiously put it all down on paper before the ideas disappear or the urge leaves, as we know it can do.  But I have other things to do first, such as finalizing pieces for our upcoming exhibition and completing a few pieces in progress before I dive into the ideas.

I will put down some thumbnail sketches however so I'll have something concrete to go back to later and the ideas aren't lost in day to day life.

Here is an update on the drawing of the coyote that I started in pastel.  Its coming on slowly and I'm in no rush.  Without the snout built up  the face looks too broad,but that should rectify itself as the shading becomes apparent.  I always love how pieces start to move forward out of the paper. 

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Salmonier river

The tall grasses that grown on the edges of rivers are a rich source of inspiration in terms of shapes and colours.  Some rivers are flanked by reeds which I'll be working on in another painting for the future.  The texture and colour found in these grasses was a little daunting initially but as I'm getting into it and seeing the form develop, it becomes rhythmic to create the lines and arches that they form.

The water, too, has depth with submerged rocks and grasses that add interest.  I love how the movement of the water makes the grasses float in that direction, almost like hair blowing in the wind.  I'll continue to develop this small piece as a prelude to larger piece.  I like how the water leads me into the painting, wanting to see what is around that corner.

This is 5 x 7 on stretched canvas in acrylic.