Friday, September 06, 2013

Construction site

I've been working on a few images as drawing technique examples for my upcoming workshops. Anyone who's followed my blog for any length of time knows I'm a strong pusher of drawing as the background substance to all forms of art. Each piece provides information on constructing a drawing using various techniques.  In this case, aligning landmarks to obtain drawing accuracy.  Of course during the workshop it will be talked about in much more detail and demonstrated then practiced, but these idea pages are the starting points for technique detail.

Often drawing is skipped over as boring, but is the "boring" part because the technique of how to do something unknown and frustration sets in?  Or is it wanting to jump ahead to the "good" part of laying down colour?  I know we live in an instant gratification society where we want  xyz without having to invest time, money or effort.  At times it frustrates me deeply.  Yet, the key to success is in technique, and of course, lots of practice.  Without it its like being given a car but no key.  You can play with the knobs and gears and lights, but you can't go anywhere.   With these workshops, I hope to share the techniques that were drilled into me years ago with anyone who wishes to learn them.  Bring a pencil and your patience.

Between technique applications I have to finish flipping my old studio into the teaching space.  Several years ago I bought a second hand professional drafting table for a steal and to be honest, haven't used it to its potential.  Its huge and tends to become the repository for large paintings and sheets of paper instead of the space it could be for creating.  So for it will head to the barn for storage until I decide what to do with it.

As for these snippets of drawing information, they may be compiled into an ebook in the future or some online classes. This one is not the final piece.  The drawing was on a piece of scrap paper (yes, I am not a purist for sketching materials) done at lunch.  Some cleaning up will be done before it reaches the world at large!  Lucky Duck?  Oh yes, he does exist and that is his name.  I'll tell you the story of how he got his name at the workshop if you don't already know it. And he really loves a treat of some bread in case you'd like to visit with him and B.D.

Monday, September 02, 2013

Manuels River

Manuels River
11 x 14"  oil on panel
Available  from my website

I love walking the trail along Manuels River when I'm in the area.  Its a long fast moving river that works its way over a rocky trail of large and small boulders left by glaciers millions of years ago.  The rocks in the Manuels River are estimated at 500 to 600 million years old. The rock formations are quite interesting and the river is very shallow in places with deeper pools and a prolific area in places for fossil discovery.

A new interpretation centre opened just this summer which gives a broader history of the area and the geological features of Manuels River.

Inspired by the river and its ancient rocks, this painting was completed this weekend.  Its 11 x 14 in oil on a gessoed masonite panel.  I use a small pile fabric roller to apply gesso to the panels and quite like the slight tooth it provides to the surface.  The panels are also significantly less expensive than canvasses or canvas panels.  It takes a little prep time, but I usually gesso a number of panels at the same time with a couple of coats and let them dry overnight.