Monday, January 31, 2011

Backyard Bunny Does great Cheverell, UK

Before the move

A bit more color, and a trip to UK.

   It is my wont to leave a painting a bit unfinished, lacking depth and background. I decided to give B.B a locale in southwestern England. It still needs a bit more "play", and I must get rid of the cat hair.

Pumpkin, at the watering hole

   Yes, another of my sister's animals has moved out to the country. The other two male cats were ganging up on her, so Miss Pumpkin arrived on Tuesday morning. She is very good, extremely loving, and is showing some interesting quirks. She is a "tap cat" - loves to be in the sink, playing and drinking running water.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Peony Update ... or ... This Is Being Painted with One and a Half Eyes

As of yesterday

More pinks this morning
More pink, and some shadowing started

    As soon as I finished the background, I started thinking of ways I could have better handled it. And I am still sorely tempted to completely cover the flower, and pour some warm greens over everything else.[probably NOT a good idea at this point] I am using a quiet "flower" pink, and a hot pink in a few areas. The greys are aureolin, pink and cobalt blue.
   As for my eyes, I had what I thought was a retinal detachment about ten days ago - giant floaters and flashing lights, and "seeing" things out of the corner of my eye. When examined the next day, the condition was diagnosed as a "gel detachment", and it would resolve on its own. But my vision is still a bit blurry in my left eye, which had been the dominant eye. RATS!!!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

A Big Project Continues ... or ... All I See Is GREEN!

Here is where I was 3 days ago

First few background washes

Background around flower done. May have to darken around leaves.
   The background around the flower is done. It was a bit harrowing at times, with pigment moving around as I wet the paper for a wash. I think I'll have to get an Isobey squirrel mop; they're apparently much softer. If anyone knows where I could buy one, in or around Vancouver, B.C., please let me know.
   Now I'll tackle the flower, which I hope will be just fussy and not too difficult. Then the leaves will most likely need some shadowing and touching up. To be continued ...

Friday, January 21, 2011

Taking It Slowly ...

Photo I took at Darts Hill last summer

Road map

1st day of painting

2nd day

3rd day

4th day

   This painting will be fairly large, about 17 x 21 inches of framable image, when completed. I'm going quite slowly, many layers of glazing. And, contrary to my usual habit, I am painting the background first. I thought this wiser, as the peony has such beautiful, light values. I hope to finish the leaves this weekend, and paint all the background preparatory to starting the flower. To be continued ...

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A Two Bun Salute ... or ... A Tale of the Backyard Bunny

A lucky photo; they don't stay still very long


1st couple of washes


Another pose


1st few glazes

More glazing and detailing

Bit of shadow for "ground"


   This is "backyard bunny". He, or one of his friends or relations, has been living here for years. He has a good life here - lots of places to hide and be safe and warm, good food [he regularly gets some of Bruno's carrots tossed under his tree] So I thought , considering it will be the Year of the Rabbit on the Chinese calendar, this would be an appropriate post.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Poem - A Small Tribute to My Much-Loved Friends

somewhere in time's own space
there must be some sweet pastured place
where creeks sing on and tall trees grow
some paradise where horses go,
for by the love that guides my pen
I know great horses live again

A poem written by Stanley Harrison, a poet and Canadian thoroughbred horse breeder.


Monday, January 10, 2011

La Serenissima ... or... Another Chicken Alert

Original photo

I did the chicken 1st, then brought some of the background wash into her as shadows.

Some detail 

More detail

Finished. I'm still working on iPhoto to perfect painting color and value.

As promised, here is the next in my "process" series. I call it "La Serenissima" because she looks so calm and serene, and because I love Italian. She is small, only 6 x 9  inches. Again, the painting was an experiment in loosening my technique, and I think , in that respect, it was successful.
My next painting, perhaps with other "smalls" interspersed, will be a floral. I'm quite excited about it, as the colors are gorgeous, with some really strong value contrasts. 

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Damn Cold, or ... as My Dad Used to Say ...

It's cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey. [why a monkey, I don't know] 
Some locals on a little farm down the street

You guessed it - a close-up

Very wooly right now

From High Point, with mountain view

Pat, my inspirational walking buddy
   Pat and I , and her two dogs went out for a good hour and a half tromp through the park and up the hill into High Point. It was quite lovely in the sun, where protected, but very cold in the shade with the wind blowing. The weather is forecast to get even colder next week, with a fair bit of snow to be dumped on Wednesday. Yeah, I can HARDLY wait! I'll have to turn Bruno into the Michelin horse, with extra blankets. And I'll have to start carrying buckets of hot water from the house to the barn. But it does look lovely, so I thought I'd post some photos, and hopefully a painting post tonight or tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

More Feathers

This is the one from the previous post

This photo I took on overcast day, in natural light, i.e. gloomy
   I've been having the devil of a time trying to get the photos to look as much as possible as the paintings. The lighting makes SUCH an unbelievable difference, especially with the browns and greys, I suppose because they are such a mix of hues. Anyway, I had to do the comparison.  If anyone reading this post has thoughts on photographing paintings for computer presentation, please let me know.

Chickens Today ... Feathers the Next ...

Original photo

Ist all-in-one glaze [aureolin, quin. burnt orange, quin. violet,and feet are quin. bt. orange and quin. pink]  Still wet.
Comb in alizarin crimson and quin. bt. orange

Adding depth all over, using same palette with indanthrone blue for darks

HEY! It's starting to look a bit like a rooster.

Very soft, wet background of quin. bt. orange, quin. violet and indanthrone  blue

His Imperial Poultry-ness
  "Chickens today, feathers the next" was one of my best high school/university friends' sayings. Another one I liked was "If you can't dazzle them with your brilliance, baffle them with your bullshit". I still remember rockin' out to UBC for an 8:30 physics lecture, [ WHO scheduled that one??] with smoke of various legal and not-so-legal varieties billowing out the car windows. Hey ... it was the '60's. And all of us in the car-pool made it through university, and  now have decent, respectable professions.