Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Cookies - SOLD

A plate of cookies from my weekend's purchase. The chocolate cookies shaped like a pretzel were delectable: chocolate goodness with a hint of spice. Yum.
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Monday, November 29, 2010

Sweetness - SOLD

After such a nice weekend, there was only one thing I could paint today: treats from the Good Earth. I ducked out of the tent a few times to run over to the cooking school to purchase some of their cookies and handmade marshmallows! Yes, you read it correctly: who knew you could make these things? I thought they just came from a factory : )
These are soft, blush-coloured rosé marshmallow cubes (made by Amanda) and are a little bit of heaven ; ) They make awesome adult s'mores (with good dark chocolate of course) and I'm looking forward to floating them in some homemade cocoa this winter. The cookies (made by Mia) are linzer tarts, and after they posed for this painting sadly one went missing.
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sweater tree - SOLD

I just got home from the HandMade Christmas Market (video here) and it was a roaring success! Thanks so much to Jennifer and Mark Elliotson for running such a great show and to Nicolette at the Good Earth Food and Wine Co. for being such an outstanding and generous host. I also had the pleasure of meeting fellow blogger/wonderful artist Catherine Jeffrey who popped in to say hello. It was a wonderful weekend seeing lots of friends, sipping hot cider, wine and eating soup, roasted chestnuts and cookies. And if you're one of the new readers to the blog or customers that I met this weekend, thanks for stopping by!
Since I knew I was going to be at the market all weekend I did an extra painting on Friday so I would have something to post today. This is a sweater tree my husband and I stumbled across in Corning, New York when we were camping this fall. It was the coolest thing! Perfect for a tree-hugger at heart : ) If you're not familiar with sweater trees, they are real trees that some spirited knitters have taken a kinship to and knit sweaters for! You can do an online search and more samples will pop up. This was the first one I had ever seen in real life and it was outside a wool shop ; ) LOVED it.
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Friday, November 26, 2010

Snacks - SOLD

Because, well...they're just yum : )
6" x 6" / oil on panel / SOLD

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Cup of beauty - SOLD

On this one I tried to follow the rule that I was really concentrating on yesterday: one stroke of colour laid down properly the first time and not to brush over top and muck it all up ; ) I paid particular attention to the colours in the shadow. At first glance it looked monochrome but after viewing it through my pin hole opening in the bottom of my picture cropper I saw huge shifts of warms and cools. I thought with this piece I really needed life in my shadow or the painting would come dangerously close to "blah".
And in regards to what I've been saying the past few days about needing to fight fussiness, I guess it may not be fussiness as some people consider it, but what I mean is in terms of needlessly dragging my brush around painting back and forth over things, and putting in too many little bits instead of seeing the shapes as greater masses of value and colour. Happy Thanksgiving to those south of the border!
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Pot, wine and mango - SOLD

Okay! So I did what I talked about yesterday - worked on basically the same set-up but with the brush after doing the palette knife. And I really like it!
Last week when I picked up the knife and got some paintings that I really loved, I thought I had solved the problem of not getting too fussy. But then there were a couple that I did after that (that I did not post) that blew that all to heck! On the flip side, I have had great days with the brush and then days that I left my studio completely annoyed! So I guess it boils down to: it's a matter of concentration, focus, skill-building, and a little bit of magic ; )
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Mango, wine and pot

This is my beloved little pot (blue enamel, garage sale find). I paired it up with some wine and a matching mango : ). As I continue to explore the palette knife, I am finding challenges. I really see how it helps to be able to put the correct colour down the FIRST time so that you don't get too much thick paint mucking around. It would be an interesting study to do the same subject with a palette knife and then with a brush. And to see how one informs the other. I am always trying to simplify. Honestly - I find it easier said then done! Maybe tomorrow I will try this set-up with a brush and see if I can simplify further. Last time I tried painting the same subject twice, I got tighter on the second day which was kind of odd (and the opposite of what I was expecting). Take care!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Ripe bosc

This afternoon I set out to paint this pear, thinking it would be easy. Ha! That's when you get taught a lesson! lol I had it lit from both sides and after playing around with it for a while realized I needed to shut off one of the lamps for clearer molding of the form. Pears are so lovely to paint...
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Dish with olives - SOLD

Thanks for your comments about the palette knife paintings : ) So here is another painting with the same dish, from a different perspective, along with some olives from Casa Toscana. These olives are direct from the owners farm in Tuscany. They are wonderfully meaty and delicious!
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Bottles and dish

Loving the palette knife! It feels like I'm spreading frosting around : ) These are bottles of olive oil and balsamic vinegar from a new shop called Casa Toscana. All I can say is DOUBLE YUM. A party for your mouth ; )
p.s. a couple of artists wrote to say they were having trouble accessing the email for the International Women's Day post. I have reset the link again!
5" x 5" / oil on birch panel / NFS

Friday, November 19, 2010

Birds eye view

Today I picked up the palette knife again. Man, is it fun! And as a bonus, it really forces me to paint loosely. I'm sure you can get tight with a knife but the way I do it I can't..lol.
Downsides: I can see this getting expensive! Gosh, did I lay it on thick. Which leads me to Downside #2: I can't even guess the drying time!
5" x 5" / oil on birch panel / $75

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Blue Christmas

The little unremembered acts of kindness and love
are the best parts of a person's life. ~William Wordsworth
There is much pressure to be "up" throughout the holiday season. But some years circumstances dictate longing, sadness, melancholy or even grief. I say: Feel what you feel. And no apologies. If it's a blue Christmas, it's a blue Christmas. Go gently.

To all women artists out there...we (still!) need YOU!

Hello fellow women of the world ; ) Jill Yuzwa and I have been thrilled with the response so far to the call for entries for our show "International Women Celebrate!" marking the 100th Anniversary of International Women's Day. Artists from Canada, the United States, Asia and the Middle East have signed on. But we need 40 more to reach our goal of 100. The short of it is:
a) paint to the theme "International Women Celebrate!" on a 24" x 24" canvas
b) all works will be priced at $350. If you're painting sells, you receive $200, AyrSpace Gallery receives $100 and $50 will go to a Haitian fund for women and children
c) a commemorative booklet is being made of the show. Each work will be reproduced with a short statement about your piece. The graphic designer has given until the week of Mon. Dec. 27 - Mon. Jan. 3rd to send in a jpg of your artwork
If you would like to join us, all you have to do is send Jill an email saying you're going to participate. We all have a lot to say - let's take this occasion to say it!

For any questions or further information, please see:

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Holiday treasures - SOLD

So I did it again. I wanted to see what would happen if I painted the same scene a second time. Could I loosen up? Hmm. Usually I have a loose-ish style but it seems when I get a non-organic (and detailed) subject I tighten right up. I need to hit the books and do some more studying on how other artists handle this. Which do you prefer: todays or Mondays?
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75
p.s. I forgot to reply to Richard (from Monday's comments). Although I have many wonderful ornaments filled with sentiment and nostalgia, I purchased these Monday morning because I was looking for ornaments to paint and they were really quite beautiful and mine are still packed deep in the closet : )

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Birch - work in progress

Today I was painting outdoors and it was a wee bit colder then forecasted! There is still a little left to do here: I need to refine the tones of the tree and alter some of the background colours that are looking splotchy (in the wrong way). After that, a bit more colour in a few key areas and then I think I'm done. It started out as a pond scene but after an hour I had to abandon that idea altogether because I just couldn't keep my focus. I turned my easel 45˚ and dug in again.
18" x 24" / acrylic on board

Monday, November 15, 2010

Holiday jewels

It took a long time to think this one through as there was glitter, glass, pottery, metallic surfaces and reflections. I wanted to replicate the detail in the objects yet also handle them loosely. That's actually kind of tough! : ) There were lots of lessons here. Tomorrow I'm going to paint outdoors but I kept this arrangement set-up in my studio and may try it again Wednesday.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Nude from behind

I didn't paint today and instead was going to show a few sketches from my sketchbook project. Unfortunately I forgot it at the place I was working today, so here is a painting I posted last year. It remains one of my favourites. I was happy that I was able to keep it loose and hang on to the original gesture of my sketch.
Back in to the studio tomorrow!
36" x 36" / acrylic on canvas

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Rosy and pals - SOLD

A fine bottle of rosé palling around with 2 (empty) reds. These are bottles from The Good Earth. I love the colour of the foil around the neck - so unusual yet festive and...yes, I will say it - pretty! When the lights were shining on the bottles, the rosé gave off the most vivid reflection - really red and juicy.
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Red Christmas ball

These remind me of old-fashioned trees, back when the ornaments were glass.
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Opening at AyrSpace Christmas Market - Friday, November 12th!!

Friday night is the opening night for the AyrSpace Christmas Market! I will be there and would like to invite anyone who is free to come. I was there earlier this week hanging my work so I got a preview of the show. It's going to be wonderful : ) The gallery is filled with paintings, pottery, glass works, jewellery, sculpture, ornaments...you name it! A great place to shop. Children are welcome so no need to worry about finding a sitter. Above are some of my works after I finished hanging them. I was particularly thrilled to see my triptych "Old Growth Cedar" hanging the way it was meant to hang. It was the first time I'd seen it hung properly due to wall height and it gave me a little chill ; ) Bruce Sherman, another artist blogger you may know has a wall full of his beautiful winter landscapes, and Hank Bos will be there too, as well as many others. If you've never been to Ayr, it's a nice drive. The streets of Paris (that you may drive through en route) are already decorated for the season and look quite picturesque. Hope to see you there!
Opening night: 5-8pm. Show runs till December 24th.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Framing in the works

My. Look what a custom frame can do : ) My good friends at the Framing and Art Center in St. Catharines are displaying some of my art for the next month or so. I left the framing up to them and I was *wowed* (yes, it deserves asterisks) when I saw them today. Here they are laying on a work table, but as soon as the display gets hung I will snap a better picture. I must say, they chose gorgeous frames that compliment each painting beautifully. I have saved the image a little larger than usual so that you can enlarge it to get a better view.

Frosty St. Nick

Today I painted this plastic 1950s Santa that I also painted last year. I am drawn to this figure so I will certainly be painting it again. It belongs to my Dad, and this is what he said about it last year:
This guy came to me via a garage sale in front of a little house in Naramata B.C. If you turn him around, you'll see a hole that most people assume indicates a piggy bank. Actually it's a port for a small Christmas tree light. These were the mainstay of my youth. Most homes had them. Plastic was cutting edge technology and inexpensive.
*Now that I look at him posted, it kind of looks like he's ready to fight! Maybe even he is tired of excessive commercialism ; )
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Small beauty

This painting is from a lovely little arrangement that we received from friends on the weekend. Isn't it sweet? They are the same couple that gave us the cauliflower from yesterday, which by the way, my husband grilled for supper tonight and gosh, it ever DELICIOUS.
In reality these were a luscious clump of white carnations with a burgundy ruffled edge. Very complex and would have drove me to drink. So...I squinted and kept it loose.
Thank you to all who have signed on for the 100 Woman Show - International Women Celebrate! We are still taking artists - from any where in the world - you can read more about it here. ; )
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Monday, November 8, 2010

We need YOU! The 100 Woman Show.

This a shout-out to all my blogger friends: Would you please seriously consider helping us celebrate the centenary of International Women's Day? Yep - 100 years this March 8th! The theme to paint to is: International Women Celebrate! Jill Yuzwa of AyrSpace Gallery in Ayr, Ontario, Canada and I are putting on the 100 Woman Show to mark the occasion. So far we have representation from India, some states and provinces but are looking for MUCH more. A commemorative book is being made to showcase each artist and their work. All art is to be painted on a 24" square canvas. For further details please see our blog or the AyrSpace website. We need YOU to make our show a success. If interested in participating, please email Jill right away telling her you'd like to be counted in. Thank you so much!

Romanesco Veronica cauliflower

This was one of those that seemed like a good idea at the time ; ) As you can see, this is a wonderfully intricate, quirky-looking cauliflower. Kind of like if Tim Burton designed vegetables. I took a photo of the one I was painting and then found this other one online from the Park Seed Garden Journal. It was given to us from a friend on the weekend and it was too interesting a subject to pass up! Tomorrow I plan to cook it ; )
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Antique stuffed Santa doll - SOLD

This is another from my Dad's collection. Again - I feel the need to apologize to viewers (and a couple friends who have a really hard time with the "C" holiday and definitely don't want to see signs of it any earlier than necessary! ; ). I am painting ahead for a show. So the history of this one is that it's from the early 1900s, probably the 30s or 40s and is the middle-sized stuffed toy from a set of three. It can be found in on-line collectors catalogues. The older European dolls portrayed St. Nicholas as more of a serious taskmaster type. This stuffed toy has a painted rubber face and a plush body.
6" x 6" / oil on panel / SOLD

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Plein air - work in progress

This is another piece I worked on today. I like the energy in it but had to stop to assess. I know I need to add more and refine it but I'm at a point where I'm not sure how to move forward.
I also want to put out another call to all the women artists reading this post. Jill from AyrSpace and I would really love to get 100 women (from all over the place!) to submit a 24"x24" painting in celebration of the 100 year mark of International Women's Day. What is your response to this theme? We'd love to see it! The idea is that each painting would sell for $350 with $200 going to the artist, $100 to AyrSpace and $50 to a Haitian relief fund for women and children. You can go to the blog we set up for further details. AyrSpace would like an email of intent to participate by this Monday. Are you in?

Day of plein air painting - Trees WIP

This is the piece I began last Tuesday. I added more defined tree shapes, glazing and splatter. I *think* I may be done but have to sit with it a bit more. I took the picture of the finished piece a bit late in the day - I'll have to re-take it in better light tomorrow. I included close-ups in order to see the surface detail.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Invitation to Exhibit: Celebrating International Women's Day!

International Women Celebrate!
The 100 Woman Art Show
To my dear artistic friends/fellow bloggers:
Jill Yuzwa of AyrSpace Gallery and I are teaming up for an art exhibit celebrating the Centenary of International Women's Day. We ask that 100 visual artists present works in response to what this theme means to you!

AyrSpace will exhibit the works of 100 women from across the globe for five weeks from Tuesday March 8, 2011 to Sunday April 10, 2011.

There are three main objectives: 1) to observe the Centenary 2) to bring together an international artistic response to International Women Celebrate! 3) to contribute to a Haitian charity focusing on women and their children

We will publish a book with your stories and description of your work in response to the theme.

You can go to the new blog we have started or to the AyrSpace Gallery website for the details. We are asking for an email letter of intent to participate by November 8th so that we can begin gathering numbers. This is open to all women artists around the world. Please join us - it's really something to celebrate!!

Email to participate here!

Antique Santa candle

Forgive me! I don't mean to be one of those people pushing another holiday the second the other is over but I am painting for a Christmas show, so... here it is. This is an antique Santa candle I borrowed from my Dad (St. Nicholas collector extraordinaire). It's just a wee thing - about 2" high.
6" x 6" / oil on panel / $75