Sunday, January 27, 2013

Incriminate-Ted WIP 3

Thank you so much for all your ideas for statements. I have had a so much fun reading them.

I am now working on Ted's fur. It will take me a while as Ted is quite big but I thought you might enjoy seeing him begin to take shape. The photo isnt a good one colour wise but I am pleased with how the actual painting is progressing and I just love the distorted perspective. The shiny parts on his face are just the masking fluid protecting what will be maple syrup.

The fur is not difficult to do just time consuming so I will probably be four or five days before my furry suspect is finished. Until then you have plenty of time to decide if he really is guilty or not.


Saturday, January 26, 2013

Incriminate-Ted WIP 2

I so totally admire those artists that paint a lot of glass. Painting the jar with all its reflections, refractions and sticky maple syrup was quite the challenge.

Now I can begin the culprit. I wonder what his statement to the police would be?


Thursday, January 24, 2013

Incriminate-Ted WIP1

 So, for my first '....-Ted' painting of the year I couldn't resist choosing a very topical theme here in Canada. Congratulations Tony and Sue for guessing the sticky clue I gave you a couple weeks ago.

Canada is well known for its maple syrup production but last year it made headline news across the world! According to news paper articles, on the morning of July 30, 2012, an accountant named Michel Gauvreau arrived at the Global Strategic Maple Syrup Reserve to audit the maple syrup inventory. Inside, baby-blue barrels of maple syrup were stacked six high in rows hundreds deep. Full, each barrel weighs about 620 pounds. With grade A syrup trading at about $32 per gallon, that adds up to $1,800 a barrel, approximately 13 times the price of crude oil! There were around 16,000 barrels in the warehouse, about one-tenth of Qu├ębec’s annual production. The gap between the rows was barely wide enough to walk through, and the rubber soles of Gauvreau’s steel-tip boots stuck to the sugar-coated concrete floor.

 The accountant scaled a row of barrels and was nearing the top of the stack when one of them rocked with his weight. He nearly fell. Regaining his balance, he rattled the barrel: It was light because it was empty. He soon found others that were empty. After notifying the Federation’s leaders and returning with them to examine the stockpile, they unscrewed the cap on a full barrel. The liquid inside was not goopy, brown,  it was thin, clear, and odorless. It was water! Sixty percent, or 6 million pounds of syrup, had vanished, worth about $18 million wholesale!

But who would have been able to syphon off so much of the maple syrup so skillfully and without detection? I have my suspicions. What do you all think?  :)

I have completed the background to my theory and am now working on the jar my '-Ted' has stored some of the maple syrup in. Whether he really is the thief or not I don't know but from the evidence already clearly visible he certainly seems to be Incriminate-Ted. More sticky evidence to follow as I complete this painting!


Monday, January 21, 2013

You are the Sunshine of my Life

It was the words of Stevie Wonder's song and the wonderful personalities of my two subjects that inspired this watercolour. 

 You are the sunshine of my life
That's why I'll always be around,
You are the apple of my eye,
Forever you'll stay in my heart

I feel like this is the beginning,
Though I've loved you for a million years,
And if I thought our love was ending,
I'd find myself drowning in my own tears

You are the sunshine of my life,
That's why I'll always stay around,
You are the apple of my eye,
Forever you'll stay in my heart

You must have known that I was lonely,
Because you came to my rescue,
And I know that this must be heaven,
How could so much love be inside of you?

 Love has joined us,
Love has joined us,
Let's think sweet love

I hope that even a small part of the emotion in these lyrics comes across in the painting.


Friday, January 18, 2013

You are the sunshine of my Life WIP 3

I have now almost finished the faces of Steve and Darlene. Just a couple of shadow colours to add as the clothes are added. They are such a wonderful couple to paint, so full of warmth and love for each other.

I haven't done as much as i would have liked to this week because I haven't been well but any progress is better than none and painting is a wonderful escape for me when I am able to. I am trying to convey their love for each other in the painting and the light that this love gives them both. Hope its working


Sunday, January 13, 2013

You are the sunshine of my life WIP 2

I have now completed the background and am well on the way with Steve. I still have some work to do on his glasses and a little tidying up to do and then I can begin painting Darlene's face. The colour match is not brilliant in this photo. Some of the golden browny yellows on his skin  have been lost but it gives you an idea.

I wanted that romantic sunny warm feel  for the background. It is fairly simple but the suggestion of the sun compositionally helps to create more balance and the colours of a sunset help to create that warm loving feel.

I have made a decision this year to add the writing above to all my on line images. A couple of artists including me have had our images posted in various places with no attributation. At least now anyone looking knows who owns the copyright whether the person posting our image credits us or not.


Sunday, January 6, 2013

Doubling up

 I have chosen the two paintings that I am going to be working on first this year. Until now I have always worked on one painting at a time but this involves a lot of waiting time both for the physical time it takes for the glazes to dry and also  for the more meditative time as I evaluate and plan my next steps. So I have decided to try something new this year and  'double up'  on a regular basis...

...and what better way to begin this than with a double portrait. I often get asked when receiving enquiries regarding commissions if all the subjects need to be in one photo because they just can't get everyone together or everyone looking their best in the one photo.  This is especially the case when the subjects are small children or pets but can happen with anyone. How often have you looked at photos and noticed that one person looks great in one photo but the other person looks better in another. I am happy to work from several photos as long as the  angle of perspective isnt completely different. eg. If a client wanted a painting of a boy with his dog and the photo of the boy was taken looking up at him but the photo of the dog was taken from above looking down this would be very hard to gel into one painting.

Steven has kindly agreed to me painting him and his wife so that I can talk you through the process and enable a future client to understand the process more clearly. I have two photographs that I will be working with.  Both are taken from similar angles  which means it is relatively easy for me to take the pose of one person from one photo and the other from the other.

  I liked the way Steven was leaning towards Darlene in the first photo. It just feels so loving and warm.  Unfortunately Darlene has her eyes almost closed but in the second photo, although she is not cuddling up to Steve as much we can see her eyes much more clearly.  You can see below how I have combined the two into one outline. (click on each image to see it larger)

 The background in my outline is blank at the moment but I have plans to use it to help create a warm loving atmosphere. When you are taking or selecting references for a commission  it is much better to choose photos that have the subject(s) nicely lit and in focus than worry about a distracting background because this can be changed.

so to summarize:

1. I can use multiple photos as long as they are taken from a similar perspective.
2. Try to choose  photos that are in focus as it is very hard for me to guess missing or blurry information
3. Try to find or take photos with interesting lighting rather than an inbuilt camera flash. Its better to go outside or next to a window and take a photo with light coming in from an angle and have a distracting background than choose a less clear photo of the subject but with a perfectly clear of clutter background.

 I will tell you about the other painting I will be working on soon but until then here's a clue.... it involves a sticky but topical subject.


Friday, January 4, 2013

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to all my readers. I'm having a wonderful couple of days while the family is still at home for the holidays sketching ideas,  taking photos and planning future paintings.

I love the 'birth' of the idea. That moment when I first really see the painting in my head and know what I want to convey is such a thrill. Occasionally its an actual photograph or photographs that sparks the idea. Other times the idea just appears on its own and then I need to find the materials or people I need to take the references photo(s).  Although this second way takes a little longer to plan I really love turning an idea from just a glimmer in my head into the actual full blown paintings.

My plans for this year? .... well they do involve some more Ted themed paintings but these will be mixed in with a variety of other paintings too.  Now I just have to decide which of my ideas to begin painting first..... oh to be spoilt for choice :)

I also hope to get the DVD on how to create gallery wraps and how to paint fur put together in the coming month or so. I had a great new gift to help me with this.... meet 'The snowball'... quite an apt name for this time of year in Canada and yes, that really is its name. Its  actually a microphone that I can plug straight into my laptops USB port so creating the voice over  for the DVD will be much easier. I've written the script and now I'm ready to begin recording the sound. This will certainly keep me occupied as I'm waiting for paint to dry.

 While I'm on the subject of gifts, I promised that I would share a photo with you of my Rinse Well water container. Its so wonderful to have clean water at just the touch of a button. I thoroughly recommend it especially if you are like me and glaze with pure colours.

Have a wonderful first weekend of the New Year.