Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Painting Metal

I was about to say I'm challenging myself to paint metallic objects.  But it really isn't all that challenging.  If you just get the contrasts right, getting a metallic sheen isn't that difficult.
I've set myself up to paint a few more.   It's really quite fun.

Friday, April 03, 2015

Small Dailies

It feels good to be painting small formats again.  I've been doing more watercolor/calligraphy/illustration work lately.  As it happens I am having major renovations (upstairs bathroom and bedroom) at the moment.  So I find myself gravitating to my comfort zone while all the noise and chaos goes on upstairs.

Monday, March 30, 2015

New Card Designs

When I'm painting traditionally I try not to have too many surprises.  Everything is carefully executed. I'm working on being a little more relaxed with my brushstrokes.  But painting in water-colour for illustration, I just start out with a much more playful approach.  Actually letting back runs and surprises happen.  Just letting water-colour be "water" colour.  And for that reason I just love creating for the illustration market.  An agent would be awesome.  Marketing is an art unto itself.

Friday, March 20, 2015

The Start of Something New

Every year, early in the new year for the past three years, I've been taking a 6 week workshop in enamelling on copper.  Having worked with copper when creating jewellery, I had collected many of the necessary components needed to also work with enamels.  A second hand kiln I bought came with a box of enamel powders which, at the time, seemed completely foreign to me.  But now I've been bitten by the bug, and have just ordered more new colours and have a sketchbook of ideas.  I love how one medium can morph into a new one.  For example, using my jewellery saw to cut into the copper shapes created a more exciting copper blank to embellish.  I have to now concentrate on planning my firings to avoid losing the layers of colour to over firing.
It is just challenging enough to be rewarding.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Switching Media


Porcelain Garden

 12 x 16 inches on wood cradled panel
I've used acrylics a great deal in the past and now and then revisiting them.  I used them more for
decorative painting but now and then I come back to trying them out as a fine art medium.  I don't
paint the same way as I would with oils but this time I thought I'd make a concentrated effort to use them this way.  I have a friend who runs a tea room and florist shop so it's always so tempting to
re-arrange her wall of teacups (little works of art on their own) and take pictures.
This will be part of a series.  How many are considered a series?  Hopefully more than three.  Oils
are a pretty strong call for me but acrylics and watercolors give me joy too.
I will be adding a closeup photo later today.


Having fun these first few months of the year participating in Lilla Rogers MATS Bootcamp 2015.
Working towards assembling a portfolio of work for possible licensing.  I've done a sprinkling of
freelance illustration work but would like to have a stronger presence in that field. 

Friday, February 06, 2015

Monday, January 26, 2015

A New Year and a New Interest

January is a time of renewal and the time to explore new interests...Illustration.  Not really new but I 
never really pursued this type of art making.  I did do some illustrating in the late '80's and early 90's
having taken a fun course from a local graphic design studio that had clients like Helene Curtis, Bayer, Participaction (a government sponsored health and wellness initiative) and La Senza lingerie. That led to actual assignments. So without the formal training as an illustrator, I was fortunate to have these designs in my portfolio.  But that was a long time ago before I became enamoured of computer digital arts.  But being self taught and actually putting these new found interests "out there" is quite a bit different.  Which brings me to the here and now.  I decided to take a "Bootcamp" style of online
courses from Lilla Rogers.  A series of assignments over a six month period to hone the skills needed by an Illustrator in the 20th century.  And who knows...maybe even be represented by an agent.

First assignment was to research Edwardian jewellery (brooches specifically) and ultimately create a cover for a journal.  My first design was the photo below of the sapphire stone brooch.  And although I did like the result, I realized it was too much within my comfort zone of being quite literal in the depiction of this piece of jewellery.  After seeing the work of many accomplished illustrators who are
also doing this bootcamp, I realized that the suggested theme was merely a starting point that led to 
many wonderful interpretations.  So for my month's end submission I completely changed my approach.  The jewelled dragonfly is my "nod" to the theme and design became my purpose.  Still within my comfort zone but without being so literal.  The mockup of the presentation is also new to my skill set but necessary in order to pitch an idea.  So within this first month, I am already learning a great deal.