Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Holiday Reflections

"Holiday Reflections"
12" x 36" Oil on canvas with 1 1/2" deep painted sides

This painting is of the channel view in front of the apartment we rented when we enjoyed a holiday in Edinburgh, Scotland. Lucy, Gord and I toured around for 4 days. Other than suffering colds we had a really enjoyable time travelling around the city enjoying the sights, sounds, scotch, castle, museums, walking and food. This painting is quite a bit darker, particularly the buildings but the camera keeps lightening it up. It is more of an evening painting but looks daytime tin this photo.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Summer Living

"Summer Living"
20" x 16" oil on canvas with 1/2" painted sides

This painting is based on a photo I took while travelling in England. Lucy and Peter took Gord and I on a holiday to the English coast and toured us around for a few days. Hengistbury Head is where these beach houses (and many more) are lined up. Some are very tiny and are basically one room with washrooms being in a different communal building. They reminded me of the "Painted Ladies" in San Francisco. We had such a wonderful time on this exploring holiday.

Sunday, November 26, 2017


20" x 16" Oil on 3/4" canvas with painted sides

This is a painting that just flowed. I loved the way it looked and felt through the whole painting process. I think it is one of my favourites of the year.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Alberta View

"Alberta View"
16" x 20" Oil
on 3/4" canvas with painted sides

This is a very familiar view if you travel around Alberta. The big open land with the beautiful Rocky Mountains within view. There is just something about the majestic Rockies that makes my eyes sing at the first mountain glimpse when travelling. The big open sky is a given. 

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Roadside Attraction A & B

As I was driving back to Calgary from Sicamous, I finally stopped at a view point I admire every time I drive that way. The parking lot is just off the highway and is usually quite full and chaotic so I don't stop.

I painted Roadside Attraction below but felt like I was struggling with the values. I am happy with the final result but took a break and started all over again only this time with a palette knife, chunky and not detailed (left). What the camera doesn't pick up is how textural it is. They both have a different feel and look.

"Roadside Attraction 2"
16" x 20" Oil on canvas

"Roadside Attraction"
16" x 20" Oil on canvas

Friday, November 10, 2017

Mountains Revisited

I wish I had taken a photo of this painting in progress when I became "stuck". The painting on the right is in stage 2. The trees in the front were to fussy and the mountain shadow colours were not receding enough in stage 1. Doug corrected the shadow colour and "smooshed" all the trees I had painted in the front with a large brush.

This is the finished painting. I reworked around the painting with Doug's direction and suggestions and am now quite happy with it. The sky is lighter, more definition in the ground plane and of course the tree line reads correctly now.

"Mountains Revisited"
16" x 20" Oil on canvas

Monday, November 6, 2017

Happy Urban Space

"Happy Urban Space"
8" x 10" oil on canvas panel

I wish I could of painted this en plein aire (on location) but loved the sunny feel of it against a very dreary building background. The planter looked unkempt and wild growing but still bursting with colour.  "Grow where You are Planted" seemed like a metaphor for my art journey.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Alberta Fall and Dinner Time

"Alberta Fall"
8" x 10" Oil on canvas board
"Dinner Time"   10" x 8" Oil on canvas board       #20101117B
I started taking a weekly group art class with Doug Swinton. We work on what we want and he walks around and helps as needed. I usually like to go in with a painting at least half done but did not have anything ready or photos of what I wanted to do. After asking what I wanted to paint, "Buildings" I said. He produced two photo references and away I went. The photos were really busy and complicated. The lesson here was to pare and chop the reference into something meaningful and interesting. His vast knowledge and very humorous way of teaching keeps everyone in the class entertained and progressing in their art journey.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Leighton Christmas Sale Invite

3 Is Not A Crowd
11" x 14" Oil on canvas
Photo reference by Mya Helena

This painting (and a wide variety) of 14 others are going in the Leighton Art Centre Annual "Christmas in the Country Art Sale". There will be over a thousand pieces of fine craft and unframed artworks by local artists. Each artist can put up to 15 pieces of unframed art in a named bin. The prices reflect unframed work. It is worth the drive to see the spectacular views, free admission and a crazy amount of original art. Two weekends of Christmas Cheer - Nov 4 & 5 and 11 & 12.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Harvest Ready - Grape Escape Series - #11

"Harvest Ready"
"24 x 18 " Oil on panel
#11 in Grape Escape Series
Photo Reference by Joan Keating

This is the last painting in this series. I started painting grapes as a distraction from watching the sump pumps and preparing for a flood on Mara Lake this spring. When I asked my friend Joan Keating to help name my paintings, she also supplied more photos from her travels. Her husband Ross suggested I paint a grape rolling away and title it "Grape Escape", voila I had the series title! This series was a mental escape.