Monday, April 27, 2009

Miniature-Portrait of Bronwyn

"Bronwyn" NFS
2.75" x 4.75" Miniature watercolour portrait

This is a small portrait I did of a very special girl...Bronnie is a black great Dane and is a frequent visitor to our home. She is loving and sweet and gets along with everyone. As I was painting, I noticed I had left the camera on my desk so....

I begin by drawing my subject in pencil directly onto watercolour board and lay a pale red/pink wash to one side. As Bronwyn's collar is a pinky-red, I want this colour to peek through the background in places as well, for a cohesive look.

Cutting in carefully, I lay a wash of greens/blues and burnt sienna behind Bronwyn, coming back and floating in water and/or extra colour where necessary. I didn't use any masking fluid here because of the size. I can get a better outline by just painting.

After my background is completely dry, I start blocking in shadows with warm and cool blues. I also lifted some of the background colour out, as it was looking a little too dark.

Now I build up the colour of the dog with a variety of black and blue washes. Some are cool and some are warm, and I concentrate on what parts of the painting need to come forward or fade back as I apply them.

Now I just generally continuing on with washes and blending, building the colour to where it should be. When painting, I take short breaks and will often look at the painting in a mirror to see what is and what isn't working. Right now, I don't like the way her right jowl is pudging out at the bottom and I think her left ear is a bit too short. By lifting paint (with clean water) and adding washes, both these areas are corrected.

I now finish off the collar, touch up the dog overall with some additional blending and lifting. With the collar now painted, I wanted to see a few more rosy spots in the background, so I lightly laid in some small washes, and that's about it.
I'll come back and take one last look, pass it by my father/son critique panel and if all is good, sign and frame it :-D

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

ACEO-Tabby and White Kitten

"Tabby and White"
2.5" x 3.5" ACEO original, watercolour on Saunders WC paper

It is a wonderful thing when a painting just flows...unfortunately, the two large pieces I am working on are both stuck in a frustrating quagmire.

So to take a break, (and work on something that is a little more fun) here is a little ACEO I did:-)

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Sketches and Painting with Passion

Sketch of Suede
(or "Big Dog in a Little Ball")

I needed to take a moment today to address some of the wonderful feedback (both publically and privately) people have left recently! It is really uplifting, especially when one is working on a piece that just isn't coming together.

I am also amazed with the growth of my little "A Passion For Painting" Award. I got an email from fellow blogger, masmoulin, who (being better with numbers than myself! ) figured out how many people might have received my award (in passing it on to 7 other artists) and the number could well be over 2 million!!

When I got my first blog award from Laura Hardie; I wasn't sure if we were to make a new one to pass on or not, but having a graphics background, I went for a little design of my own, and am really happy that so many people liked it AND was very pleasantly surprised to see how many bloggers took the time to link back to my site (as the award creator) when they received "A Passion for Painting". I was also tickled to have the award returned to me; Thank you very much Robin Roberts!

With my now healthy child back in school (finally!) and all this positive energy, I have planned a wonderfully quiet and creative day of painting... hope everyone else does too!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

River Watch

4"h x 6"w watercolour on acid free rag board

Here is my finished "wet" golden. He is taking a short break from his river swim, with the emphasis on "short". I don't think there is anything a golden loves more than swimming...well, maybe a tennis ball...

Avaliable - Contact the artist directly

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


WIP- Riverwatch
Last week's DSDF challenge "wetted" my appetite to paint some more water... I am currently working on this watercolour; A very happy and wet Golden in his element; near water :-)

We had a golden in the family many years ago, before they became so hugely popular, and he loved to swim. He was a large, solid dog, beautiful in colour; a dark, burnished gold...
At the cottage, he used to sneak off down the path, across a small road to the beach where we would find him swimming away. A very obedient dog, the lure of the water was his one weakness and we finally had to start tying him up or keeping him in the cottage when we weren't down at the beach.

He lived to be 13+ and was put to sleep only because the arthritis in his hips got to be too painful.
And his name?
Why Sandy of course!

Left: A wet Sandy after a long day of swimming

P.S. That is a portrait of Sandy in my sidebar to the right. Titled "Portrait of the Old Man" and was accepted into the Louisiana State University School of Veterinary Medicine's Animals in Art Juried Exhibition a few years back.

Monday, April 6, 2009

I'm a Guest Artist!

19"w x 13"h, Watercolour/CP on 100% acid free ragboard.
$250US (shipping included)
This painting comes double matted and shrink-wrapped.

Linda Shantz, a fellow Ontarian and very talented equine/canine artist, completed an awesome 30 day painting project on her blog in November of last year. 'Thirty Horses, Thirty Days' is a wonderful showcase of her small format oil paintings.

(<---That's Linda and Monster, her baby!)

Well, she is at it again, and has marked the month of April for another "Thirty Horses, Thirty Days" project. Because Linda is also currently playing mid-wife to TB broodmares, she does need the occasional day off, and is inviting a guest artist every Monday.

Yours truly was previewed today! My painting "A Word in Your Ear," picks up on Linda's Thoroughbred theme, and is available for purchase; 50% of the sale price will be donated to Linda's "pet" charity, Longrun, an adoption and retirement program for thoroughbred horses. If you are interested please contact me directly.

So surf on over to check out Linda's blog for daily updates and available paintings and her website to view her entire body of work!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Another place....

"The Pina Colada Sarong"
Watercolour on board 5.5"h x 9.5"w

So I sat down today and painted this week's Different Strokes for Different Folks Challenge.

It was a beach picture and seeing that it was dull and rainy here today, not to mention colder than average for springtime, getting lost in a warm beach subject wasn't hard. Nor was it hard to image myself looking as good as my "model" does in her bikini...:-D

I was stumped when I came to the pattern on the sarong; so many choices, but I wasn't really happy with any of them.
The image I had painted so far was very strong and dynamic, so, following a more lighthearted vein, I put a twist in this piece and painted the sarong pattern with pineapples and cute, frothy drinks.
Now I'm sure all you more mature readers will remember that famous song, "Do you like Pina Coladas, and getting caught in the rain...." hence the title: The Pina Colada Sarong!

Here's to better weather ahead (and better jokes)!