Tuesday, 27 November 2012

We'll Be Back

As I mentioned many times we live in such a paradise of a place and our life is filled with natures beauty all around but sometimes I must admit I do forget this and complain about some silly little aspect such as noisy "Corellas". When we moved into our river front home nearly four years ago we had quite a few feral pine like trees along the edge of the river and a gigantic one outside our side bedroom window. The council when wishing to upgrade the bike track along the rivers edge removed a little while back all the ugly specimens on their verge but our huge tree remained. This we do not mind as it gives us some shade on the hot mornings and the tree is in very good condition but it certainly produces enticing cones for the Corellas to feast on. When the cones are green and juicy in come dozens and dozens of these lovely white birds but boy do they know how to make a racket and why do they have to have their breakfast so early!
I used a background that I had painted more than a week ago and put aside not knowing then what I would use it for. I was once again lucky to have some areas where the white of the paper remained. The idea for painting the Corellas popped out of my head and happily landed on the paper!

Noisy Feasting
Unframed size 28.5cm x 38cm

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Negative Painting

No not negative as in being negative but painting negative means bringing out a subject by painting what is around it instead of painting the subject itself.

Beyond the Clearing
Painting size 10"x 8"

I have practised this with two pieces. The first I have entered as my monthly challenge piece for Virtual Paintout which the location for November is New Brunswick in Canada. I did a fair bit of wandering around and found some parts not dissimilar to my part of the world here. There was a lot of tree lined highways and roads and I settled on using trees to improve my negative painting skills. It is not as easy as it looks and you really have to get your mind in focus to get a reasonable result.
This is not a painting as such but a study piece and I feel I learnt lots today.

The second piece is a large size 15"x 22.5" and was a good exericse in negative painting. I used a painting I started last week where I splashed around colour and applied some clingfilm and then never got back to it. Today I looked at the result and was going to toss it in the bin  as I was not entirely happy with it but then I thought well you need the practise try something. I had these three funny purple blue sections where I applied the clingfilm and I thought why not turtles! I have deliberately used limited colours and relied on negatively painting around the shapes and created the fish the same way. I think it is a bit funky and a fun piece

Turtle Blues
Painting size 15" x 22.5"
I would also like to thank all my followers who take the time to look at my art and read my blog articles and to those who leave feedback comments they are so welcomed.

I have this week done little other painting but have spent quite some hours setting up a website and you can find the link to it on the pages tab at the top of this page or here

Monday, 19 November 2012

Good Distractions

A busy past week fitting in painting whilst doing preparations for big family weekend for my husbands birthday. Our new grandchildren (and the mums and dads) came for their very first sleepover. Much fun was had by all, the babies behaved beautifully and Sunday finished off with the "Summer Magic"exhibition opening at ART@GOOLWA and my family were able to have a sneak peek just before the crowds arrived.
Summer Magic Exhibition

Just Chatting
Unframed size 28.5cm x 38cm

Reefscape 1
Unframed size 28.5cm x 38cm
These are two paintings I did manage to complete last week.
The first with the Galahs was an experiment where I painted a background using clingfilm for texture by dropping in colour behind it and then leaving it to dry.The next day working with what had appeared from this process you choose a subject that would work. I had three clear white paper spaces left luckily in good positions where the heads could go so I was able to paint my birds. I wanted to try and be loose in my approach but as time went on I did get a bit fussy but overall I am happy with the feel of this one. I prepared another background in different colours and am in the process of using this for a floral piece. I like this approach because it makes you think outside the square and work with what you have and get creative which is really what this fabulous pastime's all about!

The butterfly fish enabled me to have fun and be very colourful and what better subjects for colour can you find than the fish and flora that we have in our wonderful Australian reefs.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

The Percentage Game

I use “percentage” to measure all means of my day. 
When I wake with a clear head I say hooray this will be a 100% day today When I wake with one of my dreaded headaches and that nausea that accompanies it  I sigh and say yuk 70% today. I still paint even when I am in a 70% zone and whilst being creative I do not even think about my aching head.
It occurred to me today that I have now included my painting in my percentage assessments and it goes like this:
Inspiration to paint 100%
Choose a subject 100%
Goal to enjoy process 100%
Goal of expected satisfaction 80%

You may wonder why I do not aim for total satisfaction – simply to even end up with 80% would make me over the moon, I would have huge satisfaction with this rating as I know I would have learnt lots and be able to see where I could have done something differently and will keep that in mind next time.  I will never aim for 100% as I am not painting a photo realistic piece of art but aim to capture the essence of my subject with my colour choice in an expressive way bringing it to life as I make my marks on the paper. If I succeed in this then I am satisfied… for now!

When I set up to start this painting I aimed for my 80%. After about 30mins I was still heading for the 80%, 1 hour later maybe 75% and by the time I finished if I am honest I would say 70%. This doesn't mean I am not happy in fact I am pleased as a while back my percentage of satisfaction would have been 50%!

30cm x56cm
before matting & framing

Hollyhocks composed from 1 stem of real life - 
Ian and I lunched on Friday at a gorgeous French cafe in Willunga
 "La Terre"  Cafe & Jardinage -not only superb food but also a wonderful show of hollyhocks and cheeky me asked as I was ordering our meal whether I could take a stem home to paint. Oui!

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Black or White

Pick Me
56cm x 77cm

I painted Iris a couple of months back when I first started painting bigger sizes and this is "Pick Me".

Photo from Mariannes Garden

Just recently my sister's sister in law (wow that is a mouthful) Marianne shared some lovely Iris photos taken in her garden. Though I have not seen her garden in Melbourne for some years I have it on good authority that it is beautiful and full of stunning plants as she is a very keen gardener. 
Her photo of a very dark Iris so impressed me I asked her what they were called and when she told me "Witches Sabbath" I thought what a fabulous title for a painting and set about creating  a painting of these dark but colourful blooms.

Witches Sabbath
56cm x 37cm
before matting and framing
Now to the reason for my black or white title to my post - I am trying to decide whether to take a leap from my normal matting and framing which my signature style is always simple white frame and soft white double matt and dare to frame this in black as the dark title beckons to be shrouded in black. I'd love to hear your thoughts.
Black or White?

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Blades Of Wind

Sounds like a great title for a painting but this time it is the name of a new literary collection of short works by Sand Writers a group here in the Fleurieu.
They sought artwork to accompany their stories and poems and I am thrilled to have been asked to allow two of my paintings to be published in the book to illustrate two of the writing pieces. They have included "Jostling for a Spot" and Wild about Poppies. The book launch is on at the end of the month and I can't wait to see the finished work.