Sunday, 30 March 2014

Still Working

Pleased with my last painting -Wine and Song I thought I might start a new series (in addition to adding to my Pure Aussie Wool series) with a Wine theme. My friend who has had a successful vineyard gave me some reference material and bits and pieces I might be able to use for collage. Amongst these bits and bobs was a great reference photo from a few years back with her husband riding on a trusty old tractor in bright light. I thought I would have a try at a quick study - a sort of practice shot with the view of incorporating it into a bigger painting.I started with a few oil pastel highlights on the vines and as the painting hit that middle stage I sensed it was going well so decided to carry on and complete it as a proper painting. Palette of colours - French Ultramarine Blue, Indigo,Green Gold, Winsor Yellow, Perm Rose,a little Burnt Sienna ink.
The title might be a bit cheeky as it can refer either to the trusty,rusty, tractor or to its rider!

Still Working
Mixed media (mostly watercolour) on a 1/4 sheet (28.5cm x 38cm) 300gsm paper.

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Always Something New

Wine and Song
Mixed Media 40cm x 60cm
300gsm Arches CP Watercolour Paper
Varnished on Cradled Panel
Not sure if I could ever become bored with my art as everyday I seem to attempt something totally new. I have just finished this watercolour and collage painting and used another tip from Karlyn Holman in regard to using real leaf stencils. These were selected from my glory vine a few days ago and put into the freezer. Apparently this process is necessary for them to lie flat. They are painted on the back and left to dry overnight on the painting. After removing them and working with the collage glued in place watercolour is added to create something unique. I decided to go with the grape feeling using negative and positive shapes for fruit and more leaves. I am keen to play with mixed media so have picked some more leaves to freeze as they are fast dying back and this will mean I can have a supply anytime I need whilst the vine is dormant.
I have decided to mount this painting on a cradled wooden panel so once it has been varnished it can be hung as is with no additional framing required. I sprayed firstly with a fixative and then a couple of clear gloss varnish and once this was dry I have used golden soft gel medium to adhere it to the panel. It is drying now for 24 hours and then I will add the final coats of varnish.
One would think this would work out much cheaper than having a watercolour framed with glass but in fact the cost is about the same. The panels are not cheap and then there are all the medium, sprays and varnish costs too. The reason I am doing this is to be able to exhibit some paintings to appeal to those who do not like the weight or glare of watercolours behind glass. I must admit I also like this no glass and frame look for those of my paintings that have collage as I think they have a more contemporary feel.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Magnolia Makeover

I have once again turned to Karlyn Holman techniques to study as I really enjoy her methods of just going for it, have some fun in the process and push a piece to create something unique. Rather than start a whole new work I went through my huge pile of paintings and chose a Magnolia painting from last year. At the time I was happy with it but now I could see the opportunity of pushing it further and did not care if it went over the edge. I am really pleased with adding to the background shapes, texture and colour but did nothing to the flowers themselves and now I think the blooms really sing.
Magnolia Makeover
57cm x 38cm
425gsm Saunders Cold Press Paper

Monday, 17 March 2014

Well Spotted

This Cheetah watercolour was near completion the day before I left on holiday and waiting on my easel when I opened my studio door on my return. I eagerly added the finishing touches. Thank you to my friend Susan who shared this image. I was drawn to the challenge of depicting the texture of the land and also the well camouflaged animal. He had obviously just been feeding as there was a lot of evidence around his mouth which I did not want to include but just chose a soft blush of pink really just to balance with the colour of his tongue. It is a square format 38cm x 38cm and called "Well Spotted"

Friday, 14 March 2014

Back from Tassie

I am now back in the sanctuary of my beautiful studio after a very busy two weeks traveling and painting around Tasmania. The weather was simply glorious the entire time and even on the last painting day at Cradle Mountain in the Tasmanian Wilderness the weather held so we could paint but boy was it cold up there. I came back with about 11 paintings completed and some done under windy and hot conditions so not masterpieces but better than expected. It was difficult at times finding a level spot for my rusty old fishing stool and having to balance my painting on my lap with all my supplies spread out on the ground.

I came back in time to deliver paintings to Juxtapose Studios who contacted me back in December to join their agency. They have a good on line presence as well as a gallery in the east end of the city (Adelaide).
They chose 10 of my paintings to include in the gallery for a month starting this Sunday. I will attend on Sunday afternoon and look forward to chatting with clients. I am already back into painting using my Tassie experience incorporated in a new work.