Saturday, December 17, 2011

Clementine I - complete

 Clementine I
8" x 8" 
oil on canvas panel


I don't think there are a lot of significant differences in this image and the previous update for the clementine painting, but there are some more layers and tweaking, til I'm now ready to say its done and let it leave my hands ready to pass into someone else's.

For the life of me I cannot get the intense glow of colour that is present in the clementine to reproduce on the screen.  Its as if the camera has a built in censor for glow.  But in real life, this fruit has presence and feels as if there is a light coming from within it.  All the water in the fruit acts as reflectors and when sun hits it, it does glow.

So now this is complete, its time to do some Christmas baking and a little decorating.  Snow is now forecast for tomorrow, so it just may set the scene.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Joining the dots

My week has been wildly busy.  Christmas is nearly on the doorstep and I'm well behind in preparation with not a decoration to be seen or the scent of a seasonal cake in the air.  This weekend I'll need to get moving and make some progress.  Busyness unfortunately often leaves painting and drawing in the background and I really don't like that and feel uneasy if I don't get something down on paper or canvas.  I have a few stolen moments in early morning or evening and still try to do some drawing of something each day.  

Here's a small pointillist ink piece done with half an eye to the news.  A little silver ornament was next to me.  A pen and paper not far away and this was the result.
I should do another pen and ink piece.  Its quite soothing, all those little dots and seeing them take shape on paper.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Clementine update

I've added a few more details to the clementine that I started a couple of weeks ago, trying to find the exact moment when the colour and value work together instead of competing against each other.   With the peel that moment is a struggle.  I thought the peel would be the easier part of this painting.  Guess I was wrong there, its kicking my butt!

So another few layers, another day or two of drying, then another few layers and hopefully I can declare it complete.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Its all in the presentation

I've been thinking about plans for the coming year and working out little things that may seem little, but have a lasting impact on the impression you give to those who purchase your art.  One of those things is packaging and how the final piece looks when the buyer opens their package.

This season, I am tucking small paintings into Christmas boxes that come with gift tags, all ready to present to the recipient.  That's one less thing the buyer needs to think about if the piece is meant as a gift. This little marble painting is still available in my Etsy shop and comes gift boxed, ready to tuck under the tree. If you're local, there's still lots of time to make someone happy with this original painting.

There are other options in packaging that guide the buyer in how to display the piece.  A small display easel included in the package lets the painting be displayed without a frame for instant enjoyment.

Boxes are supplied by many packing companies and you can find others in interesting places.  My find was a cash and carry and a stack of generic pizza boxes.  These are perfect for shipping, allowing enough room to protect a painting with packing and sturdy enough cardboard for shipping, but still thin enough to reduce shipping costs.  The boxes come in various sizes and I can add labels to the outer or inner box to personalize them.  They look professional and are economical to buy.

Clear or translucent plastic boxes are also available  that can house paintings or note cards.  I use natural kraft boxes with clear lids and kraft envelopes to hold 6 cards, then tie the box up with a piece of hemp string.

Presentation does make a difference.  It reflects on how you see your art.  Is it beautiful and should be presented as such or would you rather shove it into a crumpled paper sack and give the impression that you don't care about your work?  Each piece of art is a gift and as such should be wrapped as beautifully as possible so the recipient knows that a treat lies inside.

How do you wrap your art?

Monday, December 12, 2011

The Last Drop II

I don't seem to have long enough blocks of time to sit down and completely a painting, so I chip away at it in minutes and hours til its done.  This is why you see endless 'in progress' pieces on the blog. 

I have started this image a number of times.  I swear my grand daughter will be grown up by the time I finish something I will be happy with.   This painting was put aside and I wasn't happy with the skin tones, too blue and cool, even if she is quite pale and blonde with the skin tones that are more blue than pink.

I pulled it out in the wee hours of the morning when I could not sleep to see if I could revitalize it.  I seem to switch from tight realism to loose impressionism at will.  The original painting was tighter and I wanted something looser this time around.  I wanted to let some of the underpainting come through but also give the skin a feeling of life.  Its a little pallid right now but more colour will come.

It is 8 x 8 inches in oil.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The S-Bend

Cold weather hasn't shown up much so far this year and virtually no snow except for one storm a few weeks ago, so its a bonus for painters who want to get outside to photograph or paint.  It also makes wetlands and woods more accessible, so I'm stocking up on images and sketches before the snow flies.

There are lots of bogs and wetlands around my property and when the vegetation dies back a little in winter, the bones of the landscape reveal themselves.  This little....I'm not quite sure what to call it - stream perhaps? - winds its way through the hummocks of fading grasses on its journey to the distant sea.  It comes from ground water in the distant hills, through the forest and on through the bog, filtering and giving life as it goes.

The field in the distance is ploughed and flecked with dried grasses and the sea is a tiny sliver of light on the horizon.

This is acrylic on an 8 x 10 inch canvas panel.