Wednesday, December 30, 2009

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Salt Spring Island

Another painting from the top of Mt. Maxwell on Salt Spring Island. Did this Monday evening but haven't had time to post it. Yesterday ended up being an exciting day for us. Our new little puppy came home. We think she is a lab/shepard mix that came from the Alert Bay, BC Pound. She was 5 weeks when she arrived there and is now about 8 weeks old. Her name is Twilight and is so far she is good dog. Slept most of the night and barely made a sound. Yeah! And I have another subject to paint.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

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Fisgard Lighthouse

This is Fisgard Lighthouse near the naval yard in Victoria. Beautiful sunny day. I love painting the blues of the sky and ocean.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

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Happy Holidays!

Christmas was a wonderful event in our home yesterday. Kids woke us up early- even earlier than when they get up on a school day- and tore right into the gifts from Santa. My daughter received her requested ipod and my son received more games for the wii. They have been downstairs playing since them which left me to prepare food for the family dinner at my mother-in-laws.
Santa did bestow upon me many wonderful treasures among which was a new Winsor & Newton Series 7 paintbrush and a new vacuum. Now I can paint and vacuum to my heart's content.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

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It has been a crazy week being that it is the week before Christmas. School concerts, holiday parties, and lunches with friends that either have time off work and/or want to do it before the kids are home. And let's not forget the shopping, the baking, and the wrapping! I was hoping to get more done by now but I am lucky to be standing by the end of the day.
This painting I did do today - in between all the craziness. I am teaching a one day class on snow in January. I need a quick and easy lesson for my students. It needs to be something they can go home with at the end of the day. So this is a test run of what I will probably do with them. I am not that familiar with painting snow scenes myself. I really don't like the stuff after living in Boston for 8 years and having one of the longest driveways ever. 
Now that I live in Victoria, I decide to paint snow scenes. And not a flake of snow around. Only rain. At least I don't have to shovel it anymore!

Monday, December 14, 2009

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Bryce Canyon Sky

One of my students was painting a beautiful and complicated sky the other day. It made me want to paint one as well. I pulled out my collection of photographs and found one from a trip to southern Utah. Bryce Canyon to be exact. The sky was filled with layers of clouds and a strange puffy one that appeared to be closer than the rest.

Friday, December 11, 2009

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I did this painting as a demonstration for one of my classes. It is the view from the top of Mt. Maxwell on Salt Spring Island. Vancouver Island is off in the distance with the clouds.
The techniques I wanted to show were pouring and splattering and spritzing of the paint. I started with pouring yellow, red, then blue with each layer of color drying in between. Then I masked out the tree and splattered the part of the island behind it and the ground around the tree. Next I masked around the tree to preserve what I had done and then I splattered the tree with paint and spritzed with water. (Think Jackson Pollack only more controlled)
It is a larger painting (14x20") and obviously took longer to do than my small ones.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

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Capturing the Canadian Spirit Exhibit

These two paintings I did some time ago. I am showing them now because they were both accepted into the "Capturing the Canadian Spirit" Exhibit. The exhibit is in Vancouver during the 2010 Olympics this February. Only 300 paintings were chosen to be viewed in different venues around the city.
The first painting is Willie's Bakery (in Victoria) and is a poured watercolor on a full sheet of watercolor paper (22x30"). A poured watercolor is layers of masking fluid (or a resist) and paint that I build up. I will pour the paint then "save" what I like with the masking, then I continue to pour more paint and so on. At the end, I take the masking off and have a wonderful painting. What is fun is that I don't really know what to expect until I do take the masking off and then it is like magic.
The second painting is Through Rose Colored Glasses. I have posted it before. It is watercolor on clayboard and is 22x30" as well. It is a painting of my teenage daughter.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

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A few weeks ago my family went camping at Ruckle Park on Salt Spring Island. The area was part of the Ruckle family farm for over 100 years before they donated it to BC Parks and Recreation. The family still uses part of the land to raise sheep. It rained the night that we camped there but woke up to beautiful blue skies and many painting possibilities.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

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Mexican Sunshine

This painting is done from a photo of San Carlos, Mexico. Fabulous place. It is on the Sea of Cortez with beautiful views of Baja. I had fun with the rocks and used Daniel Smith's Quinacridone Burnt Orange, among other colors.
I have also been perusing a website that a friend of mine sent me. It is
Have a look. It is inspirational.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

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It has been raining for the past month. I was ready to build an ark. I also felt like all my west coast scenes of the island reflected said rain and dreary skies.
The sun has finally appeared and to celebrate, I painted a sunny scene of where we spent our summer holiday- Montana! Notice that there is not a cloud in the sky. Would love to paint outside. However, looks are deceiving. A beautiful sunny day like today is also very cold. Instead, I will sit in my warm sun room and paint.

Monday, November 30, 2009

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West Coast Scene

Another west coast scene of the island. This is near Tofino. I love all the wood that washes up onto the beaches here. That is why I enjoy painting it so much.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

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Happy Thanksgiving!

This is how I spent my Thanksgiving Day. Painting! Canadians already celebrated their Thanksgiving in October. But being American, I do miss this particular holiday today.
The kids were in school and I am done with classes until after Christmas so I had a quiet day to myself. No turkey feast for us but I am roasting a chicken with a few of the traditional Thanksgiving trimmings. (Pie!)
The above painting is of Campbell River, BC (where Painter's Lodge is located) at low tide.
The painting below is actually one of the few Christmas cards I have painted this year. Haven't decided who to give it to yet.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

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This painting is of a beach near Gloucester, Massachusetts. I had a little fun with this one. The rocks are done using saran wrap placed on wet paint. Then I splattered and sprayed the tree with paint and water. It took less than an hour to actually paint but it felt like longer because the paint needed to dry under the saran wrap before I could define the rocks.

Monday, November 23, 2009

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Point No Point

Another small piece. This one is of Point No Point again but from the other direction.
The heron is a painting I started at my workshop at Painter's Lodge. I used masking fluid to mask or save the heron. Then I poured, blew, and finger painted with watercolor to create the background. Once it dried, I was able to paint the heron and used negative painting to paint the reeds and grass behind the bird. I forgot about it but found the painting as I was preparing for my studio tour. I put it out and it sold.

Great Blue Heron
Prints available through Fine Art America by clicking here.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

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Photos of Studio Tour

Here are some photos of my home that my mother-in-law took during the tour. It was a huge success. I sold several pieces and had a lot of interest in classes, inlcuding my Spain workshop. Yeah! I also find that I meet a new neighbor every time that I open my home for the tour.

This is me explaining something to someone about the painting above my fireplace which happened to be . . . Mt. Baker! It was on loan for the weekend.

This is my friend and aspiring artist, Sam. She was a great help to me on Saturday.

More paintings to come later this week. I took a break from painting because we did go camping in the rain after all! (Hard to paint in the dark and the rain) We went to Salt Spring Island to Ruckle Park. It only rained Tuesday night and was beautiful on Wednesday. Went to the top of Mt. Maxwell and felt inspired to take photos for more landscape paintings. Glad we did the trip. My son enjoyed having roasted hot dogs and smores for his birthday meal.
After the short camping trip, I, of course prepared for the tour and spent the last two days cleaning up and recovering. Now I must get back to painting.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

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This one is for Stacey!

Today was the first day of my studio tour. The weather was cold but clear and the turnout was great. I met some wonderful people and several of my students stopped by to see my studio that I often rave about. (For those of you that don't know about my studio, it is a sunroom at the back of the house that overlooks my garden and has an ocean view).
I sold several pieces and had some interest in classes and in my trip to Spain.
My dear friend Sam was here to help when the crowds got unruly (ha ha) and to keep me entertained when there were lulls. Fortunately there weren't any lulls. It was a steady stream of viewers. She requested that I put a few select paintings up for her sister, Stacey, in Nova Scotia to see. So, Stacey, I hope you enjoy them and just look at some of my past entries for the other ones Sam wanted you to see.
This first painting is one of my small ones that I try to do in about an hour. It is of Point No Point on the west coast of Vancouver Island.

This is another small painting of rhododendrons. It is 8x10 with a matte.

The above piece is of Cattle Point. It is a half sheet of watercolor paper (15x22").

And finally, my big poppies! This is a full sheet of watercolor paper (22x30"). My garden has several of these oriental poppies and I enjoyed painting them.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

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Studio Tour

I should be frantically getting ready for my upcoming studio tour but instead I am painting. This one is a typical west coast scene of Tofino. I love Tofino but I sure wish it would be sunnier whenever we go.
As I said, my studio tour is approaching and I have a crazy week ahead. My son's birthday is Tuesday and what does he want to do? Go camping! We haven't decided when we will go but it might be when the rain stops long enough to build a fire. That should be sometime next June. We may be cooking hot dogs and smores right here at home in our own fireplace. Sounds good to me. I don't like the rain and I like the cold even less.
Once the birthday bash is over with, I can get serious and clean my house and hang some paintings.
I will be having a sale on some of my older and some smaller pieces. My daughter is also making these amazing watch bands. I have enjoyed helping her but she is definitely better at it than I am. I think it is because my fingers are too big for small delicate beads. I prefer a brush in my hand.
Studio Tour is this coming weekend, November 14-15, noon-4:30pm. Hope many of you can make it!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

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Mt Baker

Here it is! The painting of Mt. Baker as viewed from Oak Bay Marina. It is spread across 5 canvases and yes, it is a watercolor. I think you can click on the painting to view it closer.
The client has a fireplace with a wraparound mantle. The first 3 panels will be above the fireplace and the last 2 will be on the side. She requested a view of Mt. Baker with the colors of a Caribbean ocean since she felt like the colors of the ocean here are too grey and drab. Her living room can be dark during the winter months and wished to have it brighter to offset our grey and drab winters. (Imagine that!)

I originally painted it the way the ocean looks here with the aquamarine colors but discovered that she actually wanted not only the colors of the Caribbean but the way the ocean looks as well. Our ocean is dark up close and fades to light at the horizon. Caribbean water is light and gets darker in the distance because of the white sand.

The sky is done with a pouring technique and created some wonderful effects It is interesting to work on canvas. It doesn't absorb the same way that paper does. And if I drop any water on a finished part, I have to redo the whole area! Crazy.
Today my client gave the final approval and now I will seal it so it doesn't need to go under glass. O the wonders of canvas.

I also received the news today that I have been chosen to show my work at the Gallery Cafe at the Cedar Hill Rec Centre this coming March. Now I need to get back to work!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

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I started this painting in one of my classes and finally had the time to finish it a couple of days later. It is from photograph I took while I was whale watching near Quadra Island. Didn't see any whales but my friend and I did see every other kind of wildlife imaginable (excluding sheep).
I feel like I overworked this piece. Maybe it is because I did it over a couple of days and probably broke my 1 hour rule. But I will try, try again.

Because I did feel like I overworked the other painting, I did have to try again and this is the result. It is of the Great Salt Lake again. It was done in 55min and I am quite pleased. There is a freshness to it that the other one lacks. Now I know that I need to do it all in one go and I can't put it down until it is done.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

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I was telling my mother about a recent painting that I did of Willows Beach. She asked me to post it for her to see. So here it is Mom.

It is the view from Willows looking towards Cattle Point. I did it as a demonstration for one of my classes and finished it off just before a showing at the Stonehouse Pub in Canoe Cove (near the ferry). The painting is on a half sheet of watercolor paper and I used several fun techniques, including splattering paint and pouring.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

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Had a fabulous weekend teaching a workshop on pouring watercolor through the Federation of Canadian Artists. All the paintings turned out well except mine! I just had to keep reminding myself that they got a chance to paint and I didn't. If I ever finish the piece I will post it.

On Monday I had a short demo on portraits with a private group. This group of artists have been meeting once a month for 10 years to paint. They sometimes ask an artist to come demonstrate and teach them something new. This month it was me that they asked. I did a portrait of a girl that I photographed at the Pioneer Park in Salt Lake City. Didn't get to finish it of course. Only had a couple of hours to paint. What was funny was that these women thought the photograph was from a magazine.

I started this small painting of Montana at my class on Monday night. Everyone was busy doing color studies and I am sure they were annoyed by my hovering. So I painted.

Today I finally went out to Goward House to see the FCA exhibit. I won an honorable mention for my painting Summer Shades. I guess I should post that as well. The show was fun to see. The same people that always win, won again. Not sure why. I would have chosen differently. Especially Mary Conely's piece. It was an oil of a clown painting the face of a child. It was well executed. Her work is definitely under appreciated.

I also found out that a friend of mine has been chosen to be on the cover of Splash 11. Congratulations to her for such an exciting achievement.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

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More Paintings

I was able to complete 2 more paintings. These are around the same size as the other 2. One is of the Maine coastline.The other one is of a potting shed in Windham, NH that was torn down shortly after I took the photo.

My goal for these small paintings is use my largest brush only (a round #12) and to try to do it in an hour. The NH one may have been the exception. It was done as an exercise for one of my classes. I have a harder time concentrating on what I am doing if I need to demonstrate! The lesson was to do a painting using only raw sienna, burnt sienna, and ultramarine blue. I was trying to teach the importance of values and that any color scheme can be used in a painting as long as the values are correct.

Thank you to all of you that voted for my paintings at the Sidney Fine Art Show for Viewer's Choice. Not sure who won the award but I appreciate the support I received from many of you. Several of my students mentioned to me that they voted for Vermeer's Coffepot. So thank you.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

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Rainy Saturday

Woke up this morning to pouring rain. I wanted to go for a run but didn't want to be washed away so I painted instead. I completed two small (7"x10") paintings. I have a stack a mile high of photos taken over the years of landscapes I would like to do and today was the day to start. One is of Yellowstone and the other one is of Farmington Bay on the Great Salt Lake. I am now hooked on doing these small paintings and might start another one before the day is over.

My daughter and I then went to Mattick's Farm to get out of the house and browse through all the little gift shops there. At the Gallery, we came across these beautiful books designed and made by a Vancouver artist, Charles van Sandwyck. The paintings in the books are just little gems. What an inspiration.

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Yesterday I tried to put a map onto my blog but somehow put it on as a post instead of a sidebar tool. Finally realizing that, I deleted it so I could put it elsewhere. Unfortunately I also deleted my beautiful comment from Carol. I am so sorry Carol! Thanks for the encouragement though. I promise to keep painting and to keep blogging. And I would love to paint your children some day!
Now I need to figure out how to get that map back and into the right spot. (sigh)

Friday, October 16, 2009

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Sidney Fine Art Show 2009

Last night was the opening reception and awards ceremony for the Sidney Fine Art Show. It was an amazing evening and the art was wonderful to view. I had 3 pieces accepted into the show. One is a watercolour and the other 2 are frescoes. (The watercolour is in the middle)

The frescoes are done by painting watercolour onto a board that has been covered with clay. It is similar to what was done centuries ago when artists painted on the walls. The paint was applied to wet plaster or clay. Therefore, my work is similar. I wet the clay and paint into it with the watercolour. The the surface is fixed with a spray and a clear acrylic coating to protect the painting. I am enjoying it immensely. My new series on the clayboard is of young girls in sunglasses.

It was nice to see so many watercolours at the show. When I first entered the show 2 years ago, there were very few watercolours chosen. But this time, wow! I couldn't believe how many there were. There was even watercolour on canvas, which is something I have been working on as well.

I was also happy to see that a few of my former students made it into the show. A few of my friends won prizes and a few others sold.
My pouring workshop for next weekend is full. A few people are coming over from Vancouver and the interior for the workshop. That is exciting. Now I need to figure out what to do. And I need to figure it out soon.
I am also finished (finally!)with my commission on watercolour canvas. It is a view of Mt Baker from Oak Bay Marina spread out over 5 canvases. I will post it when I get it photograph.

Monday, February 2, 2009

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On Friday I met with Hilary and Mike Powell to discuss the workshop I am teaching in Spain in May 2010. It was very cool. Mike and Hilary are lovely, genuine people. They organize the workshop, Mike cooks, and I show up to teach.
We spent the evening discussing brochure layout and what to expect from the trip. The painting vacation is held in an old mill and bakery that has been converted into a bed& breakfast. This beautiful mill is in El Molino, right in the heart of Andalucia and about an hour north of Malaga.
Excursions are being planned to Alhambra, Ronda, and Iznahar. More information can be found on their website
So, I spent the weekend painting these steps for the brochure. I will be teaching a fabulous pouring technique in watercolor. It will be so exciting to be there and to take in all the sights and the culture as well as painting material! I am just buzzing with excitement.

Monday, January 19, 2009

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This past Saturday I demonstrated a portrait at Opus Art Supplies in Victoria. I was surprised to see people there waiting to watch it before I even arrived! I did a watercolor of my niece in the 2 hours that I demonstrated. Wasn't able to finish her but came close. I will post it when she is done. May not get to it this week though. Swamped with other work and classes.

It was a steady flow of people and had about 20 people watching at one point! Unfortunately I was so into my work that it was hard to see who did show up. There were some great questions and I hope that I answered all of them.

The best part for those that watched is that Opus offered 10% off of all the supplies I mentioned, if they carry them. And they carry most (all except the easel and my favorite brush, I think)

I did have a calendar of all my upcoming workshops for those that were interested. And it is alot!

Each workshop is different so I hope that I am able to cover a range of interests. Watercolor is so awesome!

I am off to the studio to finish a pen and ink of a house for a client. Not my favorite thing but looks like I will get a portrait commission out of it.

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