Thursday, December 30, 2010

Little Romanian cups

A few years back when my lovely wife and I were in Hungary we took a day trip to Romania and we bought these little cups including a wooden tree to hang them on, completely forgot about them as they were hidden in a closet all these years and just happen upon them the other day. Love these little things

The other day I was searching some artists blogs and read one about an oil painter taking about how much working time he had so it didn't really worry about how things looked at first when he was blocking in colour as the oil could be pushed around even long after it had been put down on the canvas, got me thinking. Currently I am using acrylic paint and one of the limitations is the the paint dries so quickly there isn't much working time at all, so today I decided to add a bit of water to thin it out a touch and give me a few more minutes to play around a bit. almost like a light going on, the extra time gave me a lot more time to experiment which turned out to be a lot more fluid for me. This painting took about 3 hours from start to finish, probably the quickest painting I have turned out in the last few years and it has a nice quality to it. I think in the next few weeks I will pick up some oil based paints and give it a try.


Title: 3 little brownies
Acrylic painting 10 x 12

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Study in Red

As promised here is my latest work.

This set out quite nicely and my subject and I were getting along great and paint was flying magically onto the canvas, so you know something had to go wrong, halfway through things just took a turn for the worse and it was a bitter fight to the end. overall it turned out fine but I must have lost my focus somewhere, must have been daydreaming, for when I stepped back from the canvas, I thought what the heck,. From that point on it was more of a recovery than anything else. I did manage to get back to a point that I was satisfied with so I was able to continue painting but it was close.

Every painting I do goes through a phase where I want to toss it across the room but I don't usually. But I have in the past, which was pretty satisfying, but I do go and pick them up and continue on.

Anyway more about this piece, not sure if you can tell, but the top of the glass has a gold rim which proved to be rather difficult to capture, I think the problem was with my observation and what I thought it should be. Gold should be gold colour right? but when I looked at it appeared very dark with warm highlights, like yellow and orange but I couldn't convince myself to paint it that way. I think I got a happy medium of what I saw and what I actually put on the canvas. Overall the glass turned out fine but there was still a disconnect between what I saw and what I painted, this happens when I loss focus and don't believe my eyes. Colour mixing wasn't an issue for me with this painting. which I am happy about.

Now you may think I don't like this painting, but that isn't true, I do like it and I especially like that the objects are not 100% accurate and the deep red shadows, this works for me. I also like the coffee cup, really nice to paint and it seemed to come together rather quickly as it is really simplified.

Comments welcome,

10 x 12 Acrylic painting
Study in Red

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Tuesday, thoughts

Well, no painting to post today, although I am working on one at the moment, but in the early stages and should have something for you possibly today or tomorrow. I have moved away from the blue colour scheme for this one and I think I will continue working in various colour schemes for a while, really helps me out quite a bit and I see my art improving which each painting.

I hope you and your family had a great Christmas day, mine was good, My wife's family was over and we had a nice turkey dinner of which we have been eating ever since, except for yesterday when we visited with my Lovely Aunt and Uncle. I decided to give her a paintings, the green apple study that I did earlier this year. She was so moved and was almost in tears. It surprises me the reactions i get when I give someone some of my work. Very nice to see.

There comes a time when most artist start to sell their work, for various reasons of course as with anything. Materials cost money and time and of course to be able to continue working and I think this is my time to consider selling my paintings, I have quite a backlog piling up and I have to start making room for new paintings that will no doubt come along. Currently I don't have many visitors to my blog and have to find a way to increase traffic to my site and of course look into setting up a buy now feature, anyway more to come on this topic I am sure.

Well back to work.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Blue cups 2

I love these little cups I picked up at the thrift store, Although photographing the finished piece has been problematic but I am working on it, I have tried taken pictures outside which tends to work a lot better but these days their isn't much day light it is difficult, not sure how oil paint fairs but with acrylic paint, the more pigment the colour has the more shiny it becomes.

Well this is version 2 of my blue and I decided to add a few objects with them, I found myself daydreaming a bit and not very focused sometimes and would have to snap myself out of it. The brown jar was awesome to paint, love the rich colors and the highlights turned out great, learning quite a bit about reflections lately and local colour. Seems I had forgotten a few things since my college days. Before I can start another subject I have to get to the art store seems that all the canvases I picked up last time are all gone.

I have another painting in mind to do which will be a little larger the 10 x 12 but really liked painting the brown jar as I said so maybe this one deserves it own canvas first.

Anyway enjoy
Blue Cups with jar Acrylic 10 x12

Welcome to winter.

Title says it all, although it nice outside now, but I am sure this will change.

Started a new painting yesterday, didn't get too far as I been feeling a bit under the weather the last few days and my heart just wasn't that into it, but today is a new day and although I am not 100%, I am excited to get cracking on it today. I am using the same cups from my last post but I have added a few more items. Perhaps I can finish this one off today but it may be tomorrow. Over the last little while I have been framing some of my pieces and hanging them around the house and I must admit they look pretty good in frames, so happy. I also noticed the the last paintings I have done since taking some time off really look quite painterly and loose compared to some of my earlier work, although I am still struggling with colours a bit, it isn't nearly as hard as it has been in the past, I tend to be more focused and observe far better this time around.

Anyway better get at it


Sunday, December 19, 2010

Blue cups

Hi Folks,

Here is my latest work, these cups I found at the thrift shop, as I said before I love going there and picking up things to paint, I set this up yesterday and didn't get around to painting this afternoon, really surprised at how quickly this one came together for me. I think my last couple of paintings really helped me out more than I had thought, seemed to be easier for me to decipher colors and values with this one.

What I am pleased with most though is I didn't have struggle to much with this one so I didn't have to rework any area too much, which didn't end up with areas being built up too much.

Another successful painting for me at least in my eyes. Tomorrow I am going to do something similar with a few changes of course so watch this space for for another update soon.


Blue cups 10 x12 Acrylic painting.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Winter coming, can feel it my knee.

Just setting up for my next painting, going to get away from white objects for the time being, learned a lot and I think I will try something similar but in a different colour range. Just got back from a trip to the Thrift shop and picked up of few things that peaked my interest, love going there, can get some really cool stuff. Can't wait to get started.

Christmas is upon us, not sure how much time I will get in the next week but I do have the week between Christmas and New Year's off, which I am really looking forward to spending a lot of quality time in front of my easel. Gotta stock up on paint and canvases.


Thursday, December 16, 2010

Hmmm Coffee.

I have been on a tear lately, this is my latest painting which is my 7th in the last month.

Some of which I haven't posted, as I have been debating whether or not to upload them. 1 is still in the works and  2 others I started but wasn't exactly thrilled with and just tossed them aside, I still have them and keep them close at hand for a reminder of how things can go terribly wrong in an instant.

With this painting I was trying objects of the same color range, the coffee cup is a warm white, same as the cloth almost the same colour, the jar is a cool white. The lighting is a single spot light. I thought this would be a nice challenge for me.

Although I wanted to have the objects of the same colour I thought I needed a little something so I added some coffee.

I really like this one for a few reasons, 1 is I started and finished this today, which I think is a first for me. The 2nd thing is usually I set up the still life and take a photo of it for reference, for colour and so on. today the camera was not around so I have to figure it all out on my own. 3rd is the shapes are not perfect and that's ok with me. If only my object drawing teacher could hear me now. LOL!

This is the second time I have painted this little white jar and I must say this one turned out better, still some work to do with white objects but I am getting closer.


Monday, December 13, 2010

Orange still-life

Well our first real taste of winter has arrived, not a lot of snow but -12 C but with windchill feels like -22 C. So with that in mind I thought it perhaps paint something with a warm summer feeling so here is my latest painting, orange still life, I turned this out pretty fast for me I would say around 5 hours, I would have been done sooner but I wasn't happy with the first attempt with the orange, didn't seem right so I painted it over and the 2nd attempt was even worse, go figure. My wife brought it home for me on Friday to paint the colour was so rich she said that I had to paint it. She was right of course.

I noticed since I have started painting again for my break that I have been a lot looser and very painterly, which is great, finally getting away from illustration style paintings. I haven't been spending much time worry about the details and just letting the paint flow, which I really enjoy hopefully this is a start of something good.

In my last post I mentioned I was looking to enter a juried show in January, I was thinking of entering my painting of the lilies I did a while back but now I am not so sure, I may need a bit of help, I can only enter something painted in 2010, while I like the lilies and it is quite large and would show well in a gallery setting I am just wondering if it is my best work perhaps I should consider entering one of my latest paintings, any thoughts of suggestions would be appreciated.

Cheers and enjoy

Acrylic painting, Orange Still life 10 x 12

Sunday, December 05, 2010


Hey folks, how are we on this fine Sunday evening?

 Below is my latest work, this is the first time I have tried to paint anything with this much transparency, I spent a few hours a day over the last 4 days or so painting this. and it sure made me thirsty as I love this stuff. As I was painting this subject I found it difficult to stay loose, as the subject matter seemed to be forcing me to really detailed and accurate, this turned into a tug of war. Even now as I look at it I see a few things some shapes that could have been defined a little better but I am not going to worry about it, I know I can and that's enough.

Overall I consider this one a success, as I said I haven't really tried painting glass very much, so this is a good first attempt for me. Still struggling with what's in my mind and what comes out onto the canvas, but I guess this is what every painter goes through, wondering if this needs a second attempt using a different technique say with a palette knife or larger brushes so I don't end up getting bogged down in the details.

Today I framed my painting of the lillies that I worked on a few months back, found a pre-made frame today mounted it on my wall and it looks great in the living room, next month I am going to enter it in a juried show here in town, would be nice to see it hanging in a gallery somewhere, wish me luck.

I was wondering what other artist do when they photograph their work, mine never seems to come out that great.

As always comments welcome

Title "awful Stuff"
Acrylic painting 10 x 12

Monday, November 22, 2010

Cups painting

Well as promised here is my latest work. 10 x 12 Acrylic, Stacked cups.

Overall I am pleased with this one, still a bit rusty of course from such a long break. I haven't painted white objects very much and feel I should tackle more white objects, very difficult to achieve a convincing piece, contrast and subtle color shifts can be hard to spot and so I really have to focus, Using the new natural  flood light really helped. Comments welcome.

Looking forward to working on my next piece, Still have a 2 x 4 ft. canvas to work on but think I will do a few smaller one first.

Until next time


Monday, November 15, 2010

Painting update

Well I promised to post my latest work, but it hasn't gone as I would have hoped, for a few reasons, weekend didn't go according to plan so I never got a chance to spend some quality time with my easel and my still life dried out a little to much to work from I did take a photo before hand but didn't  much care for it, no matter. I am sure this won't be the last time this happens. I think for my next painting I will stick with something that doesn't have a limited shelf life unless I can block out a number of hours. I will start something possibly tonight of tomorrow morning and hope to have something to post soon for you.

Today I was at my local art supply store and picked up some more canvases, looked at getting some new brushes but they were out of stock of my favorite. I did pop into the hardware store and picked up a few light bulbs for my studio lights, 2-50 watt natural light plus flood lights, suppose to mimic natural light. This is a problem I was having in my studio as sometimes I can only paint in the evening and I was using some regular incandescent lights, not very flattering, so hopefully this will correct it.


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Painting again!

picked up my brush this afternoon, listening to some old classic rock, currently have my rough sketch painted and working through some colors, subject matter isn't complicated, some fruit from the kitchen, came to the realization that it doesn't matter what I paint as long as I paint something, ideas seem to come while working through exploration anyways.

Well back at it my first layer is just about dry, pics to follow later today.


Monday, November 08, 2010

Happy Monday

How is everyone?

A few things have changed since my last post, was on facebook but decided to give it up as I was wasting a lot of time doing a whole lotta nothing. I have also started a new part-time job back in August, I work as a kennel assistant for Dog Guides of Canada, I spend on average 3 hours a day (sometimes more) making sure all the dogs are looked after everyday, not a well paying job but I love working with the dogs, the people are great as well. but the dogs need my help so I am more than happy to help anyway I can. Anyway, I sure I will post more on this subject later.

Haven't done much painting of late with my new job, which takes almost all my energy, as it pretty intense work, I have finished up most of my web design and development projects for the time being so I have dug out my paint and brushes and I am currently playing with some still life compositions, so watch this space for a new painting or 2 in the next little while.

I must have about 25 paintings framed and unframed kicking around so last weekend I started to hang some up for display, it was really nice to see them up on the wall, I am not tooting my own horn but after letting them sit for a while it nice to see them again and enjoy them, forgotten how well some of them turned out.

Talk soon

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Be back sooon

Hi Folks busy working around the house so I haven't painted anything since my last post. Hopefully soon.

I had a major PC crash so I have been spending most of my time backing up files and moving them over to a new computer, my monitor, cpu and hard drive all crapped out at the same time, maybe I had a power spike or something, not sure exactly what happen. I had to work on the hard drive for 2 days so that I could access the information on it. currently setting up the new pc and getting all the info off the old one, sure is taking a long time.

Usually I am the one that receives tech questions from people as I have a pretty good knowledge of pc's so  when mine crapped out I was on my own for this one. Fortunately I have 2 hard drives and most of my files where safe but let this be a lesson for everybody, backup your files regularly.

This includes emails and password files and bookmarks, as programs can be reinstalled but if you lose your personal stuff it's gone for good. Anyway enough of that.

Last Weekend, My wife and I drove to Niagara on the lake, we also went to the butterfly Conservatory, Really great day, saw thousands of butterflies and I was really amazed with the amount of parks and places to see in the region, I would really love to take my paints down there and paint the landscape for a couple of weeks, maybe next year I can schedule something.

Until next time

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Green Apple Study

Well here it is, my latest work,
Green Apple Study
9 x 12 Acrylic

I started this painting last week, I think on Sunday, I wasn't going to post this one but thought better of it, I actually saved this one, well for the most part anyway, I almost through this out the window today, came close the window was close so it just bounced off and came back at me, guess it wasn't quite ready to stop beating up on me.

I must have painted over the left side of the apple 10 times and each time it was getting farther and farther away from what I wanted, I had a similar experience when I painted a pair last winter, maybe it has something to do with the color range of these items, I have a hard time determining the colors in light greens and yellows, I may have mentioned this before in a earlier post, maybe for my next painting I should pick something that is in a warmer color range maybe a plum or something of that nature, to get some confidence back.

Round 1 goes to the Apple. Rematch to be set at a later date.


Thursday, July 08, 2010


Looks like I am on a roll again, I have a busy day tomorrow so I my not be able to get back to easel for a few days but until then.

This is a painting I started near the end of last year and it has been kicking around since then, it was almost complete but the subjects of this have long since been eaten, Yum.

So rather than just forget about this one and reuse the canvas for something I decided to finish this as best as I could. I liked where I had left off, when I first started this the colors we very lame, very little contrast so I pumped up the saturation a little.


10 x 12 Acrylic painting

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Lemons and such

10 x 12 Acrylic painting.

This took quite a bit of work coming up with some realistic colors, must have spent 2 days trying many different color combos until I came up with something I liked. The lilies I painted last was 3ft x 2ft and took about 5 days to paint, so you would figure a painting 10 x 12 would take maybe a day at the most but I think I spent 2 full days on it, weird, granted most if that time was finding the right color like I said.

This is my 2nd attempt at lemons, feel I am getting closer with this one and overall I am pleased with the final image, not exactly what I had in my mind but I like it. Painterly as my painting instructor use to say.

Comments welcome.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Lillies final

Well here it is in all it's glory, made the final touches this morning, sorry I didn't take any more photos, was too involved to stop, it gets like that sometimes. I perhaps could do more but I am at the point where I think I could do more harm then good, so I have stopped and have signed this one. Overall I am pleased with this.

As I said this will be a series but I am going to put off doing the next, as I have something else in mind for this week.

Cheers and feedback is always welcome.

Acrylic painting 24 inches x 36 inches

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Lillies getting getting closer

So here is the latest update, I reverted back to the original background colour, the dark grey just wasn't working, the blue really makes it pop I think. Next step is working on the small details, maybe later today, but this year my wife and I have been working on some landscaping around the house and it looks like today will be no different, lots of new flowers to paint soon.


Friday, July 02, 2010

Lillies getting near the end

Hope all my Canadian friends had a great day yesterday.

Well painting continues,  As you can see I am progressing, it's more then a struggle but I am not giving up.;)

 I like the movement in this painting, there was a point yesterday when I thought about starting over, that happens with every painting I do but I managed to work past that again.the flowers petals are almost complete just some minor tweaking I believe but this will have to wait as I do some other details and save it for the final stage.

I will post more later
Til then have a great day.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Lillies Cont'd

As promised here are a few more image from my latest work in progress, progress has slowed a little but I am making headway.Before you see the them I must apologize for the poor lighting conditions.

Still working with a fairly large brush for now as I am still blocking in color but I am starting to fine tune a little as I go. Don't know what other painters are like but for me I very rarely get things right on the first try, so I find myself going over areas several times, ah well all part of the experience. What's interesting though are colors are always darker then I think they are, so it takes me a few tries to build up enough confidence to go straight for the dark colours. I guess my eyes and brain just aren't in tune right off the bat.

Anyway more later, have a look and see what you think.

Feed back would be great.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Lillies in Process

So as promised here are 2 images the first is a light wash with my image transferred to my canvas, the second is my progress to date. Painting size is 3 feet by 2 feet, I know I said I wanted to do a large painting but this will do, my plan is to do a series of these so perhaps this is a good size to work on. Still the largest I have done before.

Currently just blocking in color at the moment, have stuck with 2 brushes and fairly large which are leaving some great brush strokes. Time to take a break, hopefully I will get back to it a little later today.


Sunday, June 27, 2010

Working on sketches for my next painting.

Thanks for your patience.

I have found my next subject, I feel a large painting coming on and as I have not painted in a while I will be started today I think this time I will document my process for all to see, have never made anything larger than than 30 x 20 or so, should be a great learning experience, wish me luck.

Until I have something to post here are a few painting from last summer.

The first is a Acrylic still life at 16 x 20.

I never was able to finish this one,  as the carrots turned black on me within a day so they aren't as finalized as say the orange and plum, but still learned a lot from this painting.

The Second is also a Acrylic painting at 16 x 20

Red pepper.

Enjoyed this one and it turned all right, still as I progress I am sure I will revisit peppers again, love the look of them.

Anyway til next time

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Drought continues

I know it's been a month or so since I posted anything, sorry for that, not much happening in the painting realm for me at the moment, I prepped a watercolour paper a few weeks ago and it's waiting for me on my drafting table, I also tried a few small still life arrangements but didn't get very far. I have had quite a few web development jobs on the go at the moment and it keeps me rather busy not much spare time and when I have some time to spare I have been working hard landscaping my property. Hope everyone is doing well.

Here is something I did a while back, there are a few things that bother me about it but I liked the direction this one took, starting to make some real progress I think. Some of my work tend to be really defined and while this started that way I worked and worked to loosen up and not care if the edges of objects were drawn perfectly still lots of work ahead but coming along.

Until next time

Metal in the sky.

Acrylic painting 18 x 24

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Happy Easter!

Hi Everyone, I hope for all my friends that celebrate Easter, have a great day of celebration.

I have been really busy of late, not painting of course, There are times when I take long breaks from painting and it seems this is one of them, I have been working of some website development with a large company for quite a while now, which is taking up huge amounts of time so painting has taken a back seat at the moment, the project is almost finished so I can begin to put brush to canvas again, I did find time to prepare a full sheet of watercolor paper so once my project has been completed it is all ready to go.

In the meantime here are a few drawings I have done in the recent past, One of my passions is life drawing, it has always been a struggle for me though, I watch others produce amazing drawings which seems so easy for them, for me every line, every shadow is a fight to the end. Portraits is particularly hard for me, perhaps I need to work on my observation skills a little more. Anyway until next time enjoy!

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

A few blasts from the past.

Hi Folks, Happy March. Spring is just around the corner.

I have been too busy of late and haven't had the chance to get in front of my easel, it's been since early December since I painted anything, and unusually long time for me, I have had a few things come up, one of my Favorite Aunt's passed away quite suddenly 2 weeks ago so I was a away for an entire week and have been quite sad as she was 1 in a million. I have also been doing a few jobs outside of the city where I have no access to a computer at all and spotty cell phone reception, scenery is great , but alas I forgot to pack my camera and no time to paint anything, silly me.

So anyway here a few paintings from the vault, both of which grow in the small garden in our backyard, the first is a rose mallow, the flower that grows is quite large and is a great deep burgundy with bright red highlights and last for about a day or so but constantly blooms throughout the summer, one of my favorites. This was my very first attempt at painting a flower and for the longest time I wouldn't have even considered painting one as I thought the subject matter was a bit girly, LOL, but I got past that. The colors are quite striking in this one

Rose Mallow
Acrylic painting 20 x 24

Once I finished the 1st painting, I was really happy with the overall feel and brilliance I thought I would tackle another flower. The second is of a Rose of Sharon tree we have in the garden as well, it's still young so the tree isn't that big yet but the flowers are in abundance all season,  Another on of my favs. The lighting with this one was on a overcast day so keeping the painting from looking flat was a challenge but I am happy with the result, both of these remind me of some of Emily Carr's work, once spring has come around I think I will try my hand at a few more. Until next time, Enjoy!

Rose of Sharon
Acrylic painting 20 x 24

Friday, January 29, 2010

Home for a day or two

Hi there, just got home, I have been out in the country, not much work around here so I managed to get a few jobs through my brother In-law and have been staying with them for the last few weeks, no email or cell phone service, lots of snow and great scenery so peaceful at night, heard an owl late last night when I was out with the dog at midnight, full moon was so bright almost like daylight the colors where so vivid, was about -26C with no wind, amazing. I have to remember to take my camera when I head back up on Monday so I can try and recreate some of the great colors I have been seeing, so no new paintings at the moment. hopefully I can get back to my easel this week at some point but it may not be until Friday, really starting to miss it. So please bear with me I will start producing again, just may take a bit of time. Nice to be back at home, even if it is for a short time.

I will post again before I leave, see you in a bit.


Thursday, January 07, 2010

Little Pumpkin

It's been a while since I put brush to canvas, now that the holiday's are over I can finally sit down in front of my easel, This year for the first time instead of buying my family gifts I decided to give give each of my family members a painting for Christmas, I was amazed to see the reactions from everyone, they all commented on how good they were, I guess because I look at them all the time I just see where I can improve but others take it all in and enjoy it for what it is. I suppose there is a lesson in there somewhere that we can all learn from.

I have been itching to paint again, so I set up a new still life, for the last week or so I have been thinking about what to paint, if I keep thinking about it then nothing is going to happen so I just pulled out a few objects, should have something new to post in the next day or 2 until then here is one of the paintings I gave to my brother.

10 x 12 Acrylic painting.

Little Pumpkin

I searched all over town for one of these just before Christmas, think I could fine one, looked for a week but nothing, stopped in at my Father In-laws one day and he had a small basket full of them, how cool was that. I love these little things.