Tuesday, July 24, 2012

TD Art Gallery Paint In - A Grand Success!

This past Saturday was the TD Art Gallery Paint In, the biggest and most fun art show of the year. We couldn't have had a more perfect day weather wise. It was beautiful and sunny but not too hot. If you're from the area, you'll know that we've been experiencing a lot of rain, so it was a great relief to see the sunshine. 

Approximately 35,000 art enthusiasts roamed Moss St., a distance of about 10 blocks, being entertained by artists demonstrating their work, by painting on a community canvas, a mural, print making, trying out claywork, all sorts of wonderful opportunities for the public to experience art.

This is my set up. I also had a demo station on the left, along with a community canvas that could be painted on or if you were a little unsure of brushwork you could use oil pastels.

The Community  Canvas was lots of fun. The youngest person to paint was 2 years old, and the eldest was 90. There were lots of hearts, some rainbows, sunshine, flowers, trees, and lots of gestural strokes.

Here's two sisters sharing the bottom of the canvas. In fact the bottom of the canvas was really well worked. All in all it was a great day. I met many art enthusiasts who were interested in my process, and really wanted to understand how a blank canvas evolves into a complete painting. I was also really enjoyed my friends dropping by to say hi. Thanks everyone!!


Monday, July 16, 2012

TD Art Gallery Paint In - Victoria, Canada

 On a Clear Day  Acrylic on Canvas  24 x 48

Summer is finally here and so is the 25th Annual TD Art Gallery Paint In! This Saturday, July 21st, from 11am - 4:30 pm, 150 artists will be displaying and demonstrating their art forms and interacting with the expected 35,000 attendees. The Paint In stretches the entire length of Moss St, from Dallas Rd. to Fort St. I will be located at the corner of Moss and Clover Streets. It's always such a fun day and I really enjoy talking with all of you!

Silk and Persimmons  Oil on Linen  11 x 14

You Can Paint Too!
Please drop by and say hi and add some brushstrokes to the public painting that I will have at my station. If you've never put paint to canvas, here's your chance! Adding a brushstroke gives you the opportunity to enter to win one of two small still life paintings! How fun is that?

As well, I have been juried into the Art Gallery's Summer Small Works Show and Sale. Watch for my two pieces available for sale in this important fund raiser for the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.

See you at the Paint In!


Monday, July 2, 2012

Still Life with Starfruit

This is a step by step of a commission that I just completed for a client who is collecting a series of these long narrow still life canvases. I had never thought of painting starfruit because it wasn't a fruit I was at all familiar with, however, it has beautiful form and created an interesting shadow along the edge of the bowl. My client requested this particular cloth, which is an Egyptian Prayer Rug, and the plate is Turkish. It made a nice exotic combination.

Because the plate had white in it, the cloth was creamy white, and the starfruit was basically white with touches of yellow and green, I had to evolve into how to create a vibrant colourful painting, as my client and I both love colour. So I started with something I know well - grapes.

I started adding colour and pumped up the vibrancy of the star fruit by bringing out the yellow and green.

I decided at this point that the contrast of the shadow shapes in the cloth were far too strong, (I was working from a few photographs as well as some of it from life) so as I changed the colour of the cloth, I also softened the shadow effect.

This photo was taken inside on my easel and the colours appear very cool. I slept on it and decided to soften the contrast slightly and warm up the lights a bit.

Here is the final painting which I shot outdoors in the shade. The colours came out much warmer here. I felt it was a very busy painting with the patterns in the cloth and plate, so for compositional purposes I softened the colours in the fabric above the plate. 

I find commissions very challenging because they are someone else's inspiration rather than your own. In the end, this painting became one of mine, but I had some moments of struggling. I really like the person I was painting this for, and concentrated on created a thing of beauty for this special client. 

When you paint commissions how do become inspired by the content if it's not necessarily something you would choose to paint?