Sunday, July 31, 2016

Plein Air

We spent Friday and Saturday painting with a group of invited artists on Cypress Mountain in West Vancouver. The event is called "Painting on the Mountain".

The weather was glorious and we really enjoyed the experience. I did four paintings- my three favourites are here .The top two are 11 x 14 and the bottom one is 8 x 10.  Plein Air seems to be the latest craze around here lately- more and more events are springing up. I want to do more of it- I think it's the best skill sharpening tool around.  Not to mention the fun of painting with others in a beautiful setting.

The paintings from the weekend will be on display through the Harmony Arts festival this week- in a tent near the Ferry Building Gallery.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Quarry Rock Hike

Woodland Falls
16 x 16" acrylic

Yesterday I hiked to Quarry Rock in Deep Cove with a group of friends. There was a lot of uphill climbing involved, but we came out to one of the most spectacular vistas that I have ever seen in the city. The photo for this little painting was taken on the hike.

I'm trying some new approaches to brushwork lately. Have taken several of my old brushes and mutilated them with an exacto knife. They make very cool marks for texture and foliage. I like the looser look.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Hold your Horses

  "Coming Home"
24 x 30" acrylic

I'm back to acrylics for this painting. I considered painting oils over the acrylics to finish it but it didn't seem necessary. There were lots of layers and  I love the fast drying of the acrylics for those kinds of techniques. I found painting the horses challenging- partly because the drawing has to be so accurate  and also because the horses were mostly in shadow, which made for very subtle value changes.

Monday, June 6, 2016


Its amazing what shows up when you photograph your painting. I thought this one was done when I did the top photo. A few things jumped right out when I looked at the photo- the shadows from the middle group of trees were way too symmetrical, and the shadows in the right foreground were too black. Ten minutes spent and the painting looks quite a bit better.

"The Path Beckons"  24 x 30" oil

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Long Beach sky


Here's one of my recent paintings that came from my trip to Tofino a few weeks ago. I worked really hard on the sky and then painted the sand part very quickly.  The sun came out for a window of about 3 minutes and then all the light was gone. Timing is everything when it comes to good reference photos.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Painting by Committee

I finished this painting abut a week ago. The reference photo I used had a flat white sky with no light, so I painted that part out of my imagination. This is challenging for me- I mostly lean on my powers of observation, rather than make stuff up. Changing the sky colours changed every other colour decision in the painting so there was a lot of back and forth-ing before I got something that looked ok. During the process I showed the panting to my husband, sister, and two groups of workshop students. Everyone had something to say and a lot of it was very helpful. I ended up taking a lot of colour out of the rocks, so that the sky could be the star of the show.
"Tofino Sunset"  24 x 36" oil

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Day's End

This is my most recent oil painting. I am still enjoying oils so much and learning with each piece. This painting will be on it's way to the Adele Campbell gallery in Whistler soon.  "Day's End 24 x 36" oil.