Friday, June 24, 2011

June 24 - and what do I have to show for it?

It's true. It's June 24 and I have hardly done any art for almost 2 months.

But - here I am at the Nanaimo Arts Council Gallery putting in my first of three shifts for June. That must count for soemthing. Or maybe it just takes away from my painting time.

It is pretty quiet. 2 hours have gone by and only 2 people have come in. One was a most interesting woman. . She is newly arrived from White Rock and may join the Arts Council. She is about my age and interested in things people my age like - art, gardening, eating... She is so mad that the deer are ruining her garden. We had a great chat!

Well, I did do a bit of art during the past 2 months. I can't put any pictures up becuase they are still on my camera and I didn't bring it to NAC - so I will just write about them.

First a reworked my painting of the VIU Forestland. I spent a lot of time trying to make it more interesting and finished. I mainly put a lot more mauve in space between the trees trunks and changed the point from where the light was centred. Then I worked for days and days on my April Maple. I made the light between the maple trees quite orange and worked hard to get the firs and cedars working. I now declare both those forest paintings done. They are sitting in my art room and they are driving me crazy. They are so busy! I know the forest is busy and full of details - but - up close - this is too much! I think my problem is that the brushes I used were too small - so I ended up with too many brush stokes and squiggles.However, they are done and that is the end of it.

A couple of days ago I started 2 new paintings of a fish boat which I photographed from our boat off Protection Island a year or so ago. I used a large brush to sketch it in and was very careful to get the proportions right. For example, the trolling poles are much longer than the hull - which I didn't realize at first. That meant I had to redo the excellent sketch I had made of the first boat to make it the right size for the poles and canvas I decided the paintings could be a pair. That meant I had to redo the second boat to get it at the same level of the canvas as the first boat painting. I also worked at roughing in the sky and islands in the background on both paintings. I actually like them both a lot in their preliminary state.

My next plan is to start a third painting. This will be of Nanaimo Harbour with the Baston in it somewhere. Once that is sketched, I will work on all three paintings at the same time. Hopefully I'll be able to make a good job of all of them. My aim is bold and calm - so busy as my 2 forest paintings.

The other art thing I did over the last 2 months was the read the life of Van Gogh. My book has copies of all his paintings interspersed with his life story. I love the colours in his French paintings and I love his sense of design. But I don't think I will ever paint like him. I read this book whilel we were out crusing on our samll boat for 3 weeks.

The rest of my time was spent working in the garden and working on my parents slides. I moved a lot of plants around int he garden - and it looks good. I think it will look even better next year. Having the deer fence has made a huge difference. I figure my parents took and kept about 5000 slides and the slide carousel boxes were cluttering up my art room. Mike and looked at every slide and threw away about 2/3s. of them. The next thing will be to get them put on a CD so we can actually look at them occasionally and share them with other family members. I guess both things sort of count as art - but I need to get back to actual painting if I still want to be an artist.

I will put up photos of my forest paintings and preliminary boats paintings when I get home. That will be after supper - I am already starving and still have 1 hour and 20 minutes to go and no-one else seems to be dropping in!

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