Sunday, 30 June 2013

Friendship Blooms

Friendship Blooms
On Friday night I invited a few of my arty friends over to have a drink with me to show my new studio and to celebrate its completion. It was a wonderful couple of hours and I did have maybe a glass too many but it was a special night. One lovely friend Susan, arrived with a bottle of bubbly and more exciting a beautiful flower from one of her Camellia bushes. This 11" x 15" painting of Camellias I started the following morning. I created it from that single bloom using a new paper I have just purchased. It is Saunders Waterford CP 425gsm in bright white. I started with only the expectation of trying out the new paper and trying to capture the essence of the single bloom. I am pleased with how the colours remained clean and bright and carried on creating more blooms as if on the bush. I am wondering about the freshness of this painting and I think maybe it is the the clean bright white of the paper that has produced this. It could also be that I did not rush as I had to leave it late morning to go to town for a birthday lunch and therefore did not come back to it for nearly 24 hours.So is it my fiddling and hurry to finish pieces that makes them less fresh or is it the new paper, its heavier weight, its brilliant white that has helped???. I will have to get stuck into something else now to try and work this out. Would be pleased to hear your thoughts and experience with bright white paper.

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Capturing Tulips

Pick me a Dozen

Last year I painted pink tulips two or three times and was barely satisfied with my result. I realise now that when the image painted in my head is great and the one on the paper does not match up to it, it is just a matter of technique or lack of it and given time and more practise the two images will move closer together. Tulips are out now and I have a lovely pink bunch sitting on the table in my studio. I am quite pleased with this 15" x 11" painting as at last it more or less measures up to my expectation.

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Studio Finished

I'm back in business. My new studio is finally completed. Today my husband and I took four hours to hang about 30 paintings around the walls.  I thought painting watercolours was exhausting mentally but I much prefer that than the physical exhaustion of painting walls and floors. The walls took three coats of paint on the weekend, then the floor and I am still feeling my aching muscles.It has taken a while to complete this project but I am so thrilled with my new art home.

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Paints Packed Away

I have just had time to complete these two paintings and now have packed away all my brushes and paints as my new studio gets its last bit of the rebuild starting tomorrow. I hope to be back painting again by the end of the week fingers crossed. I will post some photos of the studio too as soon as it is complete. I am very excited as I will be able to hang up a lot of my work which always inspires me when I am painting. Bonus to all of this is that my son who is doing this part of my studio work will be staying for a few days and will bring my daughter in law and my lovely grand daughter who turned one on Saturday with him so I will get some quality time with them. Hooray!
Blackberry Jam
Painting size 15" x 11"
I typed up this recipe for blackberry jam and printed it on Bockingford inkjet watercolour paper, glued it in place and smudged the writing a bit to help it look settled in and then painted the berries and branch over the top.
Thistles and Thorns
Painting size 15" x 22

Building on my experimenting last week I created this half sheet painting. I visualised as I painted the creek bed full of these thistles I had seen recently and really enjoyed this piece as basically these are weeds yet they were exciting to create with all the bits and pieces that hang off them, perfect for using texture applications.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Three Lives

These Three Thistles
Painting size 15" x 11"
These Three Thistles started its life three times. I first started with some washes of colour leaving white spaces to capture the clumps of jonquils that have sprouted in my garden. Having a failed attempt at a jonquil painting last week I could see this new one heading the same way. Funny how some subjects just don't behave and will not appear on the paper as they do in my mind. I put the wash aside not wishing to work on it just to put it in the bin but yesterday I put it back on my work table for its second life to use it as practise for a new technique. Forgetting the jonquils and with no interest other than trying something new I went ahead and added more paint and then added a few bits of torn medical gauze - a technique I had seen demonstrated by Karlyn Holman. When dry and the stringy gauze removed my application had produced just a few subtle marks and once again I put the piece aside. My third attempt to create something came this morning when I intended on painting a larger piece of Thistles in their spent stage which I had photographed in a creek bed in their dozens when we were away a couple of weekends ago. I had my fresh new half sheet paper ready to go when I looked at my twice used smaller piece and thought perhaps I would use it to get the feel of the spent Thistles first. I am so pleased I did because its third life provided a great start with its textured background so I could just concentrate on adding the flower heads and stems and none of my previous work has been wasted as I have created a finished piece that has captured the subject to my liking.
Standing Room Only

This is a photo my husband Ian took this morning showing dozens of Cormorants on our Jetty. The weather is so windy, cold and very rainy. Hundreds of these birds are flying up and down the river and when the weather gets a bit much they plant themselves on solid ground. Unlike a lot of my art friends who are enjoying their warmer weather we are definitely in winter.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Time for Experimenting

At present I have no deadlines and my next exhibition will be my "open studio" as part of SALA (South Australian Living Artists) which runs the whole of August. I am not under any pressure for this as I have plenty of framed paintings to hang on the walls and time to come up with a few new ones. I am taking this free time to experiment and play and have just tried out adding sumi rice paper for texture and then found it took several layers of watercolour as the paper and perhaps the glue did resist the pigment a bit. I then added some fluid acrylic which obviously stayed on a lot easier but did make the painting a bit heavy looking. Next time I will try watering them down some.  I thought I would post it anyway to show you what I have been playing with and welcome any feedback especially if you have success with adding collage. I have also added another "edibles" this time blackberries to my collection.

Town Colours
Painting size 11" x 15"

Last of the Berries
Painting size 11" x 15"