Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Merry Christmas

With all the preparations for Christmas I haven't had any time to paint since my last post. I'll get back to it after the holidays. In the meantime, I want to wish everyone the very merriest of holidays and a healthy, creative and prosperous New Year.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Lianne step 8

I finally got back to work on this portrait of my daughter-in-law from months ago. I worked on glazes of colour over the skin and hair.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Donna finished

I worked on the long weekend so I only got a chance to finish this today. I'll frame it tomorrow and then get it to the client on Thursday.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Step 10 - details

I added another wash over all the skin tones. I removed the masking fluid from the pearls and have started adding colour to them. The end is in sight now. Once I have finished the pearls I'll look over the painting as a whole and make all the final adjustments.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Step 9

I added the first overall wash on her skin tones to make them more lifelike. I will still have to adjust values and have more work to do on the mouth. Probably at least one more overall wash will be needed as well.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Donna step 8

Today I worked again on the skin tones molding the features with darker areas. Slow going when you have to let it dry completely after every half hour of work or so. Once the darks are right I can adjust the values of the rest of the face. The last part will be to remove the masking fluid from the necklace and earing and finish them, but still a while to go before that step.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

step 7

After working nightshift all weekend and also just getting over a head cold, I finally got some more done on this today. I worked all over the skin molding the features some more. I also added a wash to the sweater to make it closer to the pink in the reference photo. Now I have to wait for everything to dry before going on. The skin tones take longer than anything else because you have to work all over and keep everything evenly moist to avoid streaks and hard edges. For those of you who knew her, I'll be adding the bangs soon so it will look more like her.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Donna step 6

Today I worked more on the eyes and then started working in the darker area of skin tones to start sculpting the features more. A long way to go but I can only do a little on the skin at a time and then have to let it dry between.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Finished teaching two workshops

This weekend I was busy teaching two one-day workshops. Lots of work preparing for them so so other projects were temporarily on hold. Here are a few of the results above. No one finished completely. From now on I will only hold two day workshops so we aren't as rushed.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Donna step 5

I added a bluish wash over the background to even it out. I don't know if this is the final colour until I see the portrait part more complete. I brought the blue over part of the hair that is in shadow to start it receeding into the shadow.
I added another layer of pink over her top. I'll have to start picking out highlights in the next step.
I worked mostly on her eyes and started finding the shapes of contours in her skin.

Step 4

I worked on blending the background line that was obvious above the head, added another wash over the ruffle around her neck, and started adding the first washes on her eyes and darker areas of her skin tones. I will now concentrate on her eyes to get them right before I go farther on the rest of the painting. If the eyes aren't right the painting has to be started over so it is best to do them early.

She has bangs but I have to paint the skin underneath before I add them after.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Donna step 3

The next step was to add another wash to the background darkening it even more. After drying I see that there is too much of a distinct line above her head so that will need fixing in the next steps. I added a wash over her whole sweater but it is far from finished as a final colour. I started laying in a dark wash over her hair and a first wash of skin tone. The photo didn't take an accurate picture of the skin or hair. As the skin tones get darker it will be easier to show an accurate photo.

Donna step 2

I started out by adding a second wash of blue/grey over the background. It still will have more washes added. I also started adding a wash to the ruffle on her sweater. I realized that the pearl necklace needed to be masked before I started the skin tone washes so that is what I did next.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Donna - step 1

Finally I can get back to painting after a very hectic summer. This is the first step of a commission that needs to be done in a few weeks. I left it way too long (yet again). I will have to do a lot of work on it in a short time.

I have drawn out the features and put in the first wash in the background. The background is going to be a neutral grey but with blue uneven tones in it. It looks darker here than it is because I wanted to be able to see the line drawing in the photo.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

It's not a painting ...

I finally finished re-upholstering an antique rocking chair for my son and daughter-in-law. They are expecting a baby in Oct and this one is perfect for nursing with the low arms. It was quite a job! I removed rusty springs, straw and sisal stuffing, rotting webbing and layers of material. I have completely re-built it and re-covered it. The frame has a wonderful shaped back that is very comfortable.

It isn't a painting but lots of work and artistic in it's own way. :)

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Art Sale

I spent the day at a local venue where artists and other vendors took over an arena to promote their work. Lots of traffic and lots of great people. Here is a photo of my set up. More family arriving for a visit tomorrow as well as some great friends. One of these days I'll have time to get back to painting more regularly.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Sylvester finished

I finally finished the experimental painting of my cat on watercolour paper glued to a wooden backing. I "varnished" it with acrylic medium before trying to get the final photo and it made it very difficult to get a photo without reflections. His face was partly in shadow but the white fur was reflecting colours from the surface he was sitting on. I love the colours that resulted in his face.

I learned a lot doing this (one was not to apply the acrylic medium with a roller... lots of tiny bubbles). I also had trouble with the whiskers. No more trying to do them with masking fluid. :(

I will be doing many more of this kind but first I have a portrait to finish and then a commission to start. There is never enough hours in the day!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

step 3

This one is taking awhile just because of my busy schedule. The whites are going to be full of reflected colours.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Sylvester step2

After months of not working on this one, I am finally going to finish it soon. For those interested, this is the experiment of gluing watercolour paper onto a hardboard cradleboard backing before painting. It will be finished with "varnish" and treated like an acrylic on canvas for sale. I'll see if treating watercolour this way will increase sales (compete with acrylic and oil sales to the public). My good paintings for shows will still be done traditionally.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Finishing paintings

I finally had a chance to finish off two paintings. The lemon painting from the watercolour symposium and a blue Heron painting from the watercolour meet last weekend. I am working on one of my cat and will get a photo of that step tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Back again from out of town

Once more back to town after almost a week away. I have one painting done at a workshop over last weekend but not quite finished. As soon as it's done I'll post it. I'm hoping for more time to paint now that travelling is finished for the summer.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Back to Town

Just got back from teaching a two day watercolour workshop in Englehart. Met some lovely ladies and had a great time. Photos to follow when I get a chance. Working the next two days.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Week long symposium

Again, my apologies for the long pause between blog entries. I just got back from a week long watercolour symposium in Ottawa held by the CSPWC. It was 5 days of workshops from some of the best watercolour artists in Canada. Monday was a class on composition/design with Jean Pederson (I forgot to take photos). Tuesday was painting plein air (my first time) with Bill Rogers in the ornamental gardens at the experimental farm. Here is Bill during his demo.

Wednesday was a class on still life with Gerry Thompson. Here is a photo of her demo followed by my unfinished painting that I started on in Jean's class Monday and continued in Gerry's class.

Thursday and Friday I learned to paint figures from life (very quickly) and with Bill Rogers. Here is his demo in progress followed by one of mine. I still need a lot to practise to get the light ,clean look Bill gets.

On the Saturday I roamed the Byward market taking reference photos while many other artists painted in the First Annual Paint Out.

On Friday I leave to teach a two day workshop in Englehart. Next week I go down to the 7th annual Watercolour Meet with members of Wetcanvas in Georgina. Talk about a busy month! Throw in the fact that I am also working my regular job in between and you can see I have had no time for my own painting. I plan on changing all that in July when a watercolour artist from Australia will be staying with me for three weeks and we plan on doing lots of painting together. Stay tuned for almost daily entries during that time. :)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

portrait exercise in pastels

This is the portrait I practised on in the second day of the workshop. It isn't a finished piece but I'll leave it where it is. The next time I try a pastel I'll take more time on it. Everyone in the workshop seemed to enjoy themselves and we all learned a lot. I'll do more in pastels in the future I think.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Dog in Pastels

It has been a long time since my last entry. Income taxes, trips and life in general has kept me from painting. Today I attended the first day of a two day workshop to learn the basics of pastels. Here is my work from today. More tomorrow.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Quick Waterscape

I had to take a brief diversion from the portrait to paint this waterscape for a show I am entering. The theme is water and the deadline is next week so I had to drop everything to do it in time. I don't enjoy doing landscapes but I took this photo a year or two ago on the shore of Lake Simco and I loved the light in it as well as the shape of the tree. At least it's finished and I can get back to the portrait tomorrow.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Lianne step 7

Yesterday I worked all over the painting adding darker values. Her hair right now looks blonde but will be going darker.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Lianne step 6

I continued adding darker values to the skin tones today and did a little more of the darker washes on her hair. This part is slow because after each wash on her skin I have to wait for it to dry completely.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Step 5

I painted another couple of hours today on and off (I was working at the little store where I have a space where my work is set up - lots of interuptions). I added more darker washes to the shadowed areas of her skin and another warm wash on the sweater. I still haven't decided on the final colour it will be. Lots more glazes of dark values needed for her skin.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Step 4

I worked on this a little while again today. I did a touch more on the eyes and now have to get the rest of the skin tones up to the level of the eyes before I can do more. I applied a wash of colour over all the skin and I started working out the contours of the lips. I also added a warm wash over the sweater.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Lianne step 3

I did a couple of hours on this today. I worked a little more on the eyes and started the first washes on the hair and neck.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Weekend workshop

I haven't been painting on the portrait lately because I was preparing for and giving a workshop on painting eyes and faces. Here are some pics from the workshop held this last weekend. I will be able to get to my own painting now.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Lianne step 2

If you have been following this blog for awhile you might recognize the start of this portrait. I finally have a chance to get back to it. All that I had done previously was the first washes on the background and her shirt. I continued now with a darker wash on the background and the start of her eyes.

For those of you wondering what has happened since my last post, the portrait of Shania has been accepted into the Portrait Society of Canada's show "The Art of Canadian Music". It will run from Mar 8-Apr 1 at the John B. Aird Gallery in Toronto with the opening Mar 10th 6-8pm. I won't be there but if you are in the area I hope you drop in to see it. It looks much better in real life and the other artists in the show are some of Canada's best.

I have also been busy the last couple of weeks preparing for a workshop I am giving next week and that has taken a lot of time.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Shania step 12

I think this one is finished. I've signed it but I'll look at it again over the next couple of days to decide if there is anything else I want to change. Then I need to get a good photo.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Shania - step 11

I'm almost finished. I have finally gotten most of the values correct so now I just have some finishing details to add. I'll do that tomorrow. The photo shows her hair a little darker than it is in the real painting.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Step 10

Two days at work interrupted work on the painting but I will be putting lots more time into it these next two days. This morning I did another couple of hours on the hair. It's tedious work but not as exacting as facial features. Once all the values are correct and fine hairs are added I will soften the whole effect on the hair so it is not so sharply defined.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Shania step 9

The face and skin tones are pretty well finished. I'll check them at the very end for corrections. I worked some more on the hair finding where a lot of the curls lie. I have to make decisions about if a curl goes over or under every time it intersects another lock of hair. The first washes of colour have gone on the strands that lie on top of her neck but I'll be adding to them again. I am just starting the blocking of the colours right now.

I am more confident of making the deadline now that it is mostly just the hair left to finish.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Shania step 8

I've done another hour but because I painted more glazes of colour all over her skin tones and most of her hair, I have to let this dry before I do more. I now have to go back and even out the skin tones and lots more work on her hair. You can see that the masking is still on the curls that are overlapping her skin. That will be taken off next and I'll start to add colour to those.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Shania step 7

I worked a lot on the hair and also adding the darker values on the skin tones. These will be covered with more washes of skin tones overtop in the final stages but these darker values are needed to be added first to mould the features. I think I'm about half done at this stage. Still a lot of slogging through the larger washes before I get to the fun part (in my opinion). I love doing the last 10% where you add all the dark details and final touches that bring it to life. Once the watercolour painting is all finished I will get a good photo of it before I start varnishing over top. The varnish makes reflections and it's harder to get a good photo.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Step 6

This morning I added more washes of colour and worked on the values in the shirt. I also added darker values on the skin on the arms and neck. Still have to go darker. To keep the darker shirt colour from affecting the hair on top, I added masking fluid to those curls. It is confusing the camera and I had a hard time getting a photo. It still isn't great. I wish we had some sunshine instead of these grey days lately.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Shania step 5

I managed to do a few more hours on this today. I must be getting older as I find I can only work 2 or 3 hours at a time on a large painting like this before I get too sore to do more. I think the next few paintings will be small enough to work flat on a desk again. :-)

I worked all over the painting darkening values and moulding the features. I am purposefully not adding more skin tones until I get the shading finished and then I'll put on the final colouring on the skin. I added another layer of colour on the shirt. I think I am going to leave this part fairly loose. I still need to correct the values however. The other thing I worked on was the hair. It will take many glazes of colour to build that up.
The photo doesn't show the subtle variations in skin tone that are there in real life. Still a lot more to do and the deadline approaches.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Shania step 4

I worked another couple of hours on this and have now added a first wash of skin tones. Lots more subtle layers to add but I will have to be careful not to make her skin look heavy or dark.