Bits and Bobs 6

I’m continuing to fit in little projects between larger pieces. Here’s another piece in the series I’m slowly building that’s based on doodles. It’s acrylic on 8″ x  8″ gessoed hardboard panel.
Dusting of Snow

Below is a study of autumn milkweed rendered in acrylic on rag paper. A subscriber to my other blog – http://www.odds8ends.wordpress.com – asked why I use photos with my posts instead of drawings or paintings. To be honest I never really considered it simply because my own photographs and words have always been the standard I applied when posting there. The study below is a little step into exploring possible methods of creating images to use with text on that blog.

Waiting on the Wind

Bits and Bobs 5

I’ve been busy putting together a small show that’s currently running at a local performing arts centre. Here are 3 new pieces that I included in the exhibit. They’re all acrylic on 6′ x 6′ gallery wrapped canvas.

Red Peak

 

Foggy Corner

It’s a little hard to get an idea of the scale of these small canvases. I refrained from cropping this photo in order to provide reference points to better illustrate the sizes.

IMG_0211

Milkweed Autumn

This portrait is acrylic on a 2 foot by 3 foot medium rough canvas. The canvas presented a problem as it already had the roughing in for another piece which didn’t get very far. If you’ve ever worked with canvas you know that it can be very difficult to completely eradicate any under painting. I didn’t want to trash the canvas (it was gallery wrapped so it wasn’t cheap). I opted to sand out as much texture as I could and put down 2 layers of opaque undercoat. Finally I incorporated a bit of the spatial characteristics of the original paint sketch to negate any issues that might arise from the canvas having a prior partial life.

Rosa at the field's edge

 

Portrait of a Young Man

This portrait is on a 2 ‘ by 2 ‘ canvas and it’s executed in acrylic. It’s a very personal piece as it’s a portrait of my son. Many of the decisions I made, from composition to lighting, came about for very specific reasons. Several years ago he came home from school for a month to recover from surgery to correct a life threatening medical condition. We all have a number of “befores and afters” in life and this was a very significant one for him (and for all our family). Here I’ve set him alone against an ambiguous background. There’s a source of light behind but his face is cast in partial shadow. He doesn’t gaze out of the canvas but inward, caught up in his own thoughts.

 

Portrait of a young man

 

 

Bits and Bobs – 3

I’m continuing to work on smaller scale pieces to keep up momentum when I need a break from larger paintings and drawings. This piece is on a 6″ by 6″ birch plywood panel (it’s mounted on a 1.5″ basswood frame). I didn’t seal the panel so that I could take advantage of the pigment bleed to suggest foliage in the background.

Eastern Towhee

Studio Bits and Bobs

My rechargeable batteries for my Canon camera have bit the dust so I’ve used my printer scanner to upload some of these images. 

This is a pigment sketch I completed in 2013. I never really liked it (scale was weird- angles were off) so it was the perfect piece to mess around with.

Crowing FloralI decided to add some colour and texture. It was an improvement. But… I hadn’t bothered to secure the paper to keep it from wrinkling when it got wet so it was pretty lumpy. I tried spraying it and weighing it down, several times, but it didn’t work. I had some paper tape that’s normally used for printmaking with rag paper so I thought “what the hey” and soaked the paper and hung it up. Of course the sketch was drawn on cheap sketchbook paper which doesn’t react like print paper and the whole thing became even more of a mess with the glue soaking through the thin paper. I ended up throwing the drawing into the sink, giving it a good rinse, and wiping off as much of the glue as I could. As you can see below it finally ripped and the brown glue stain never came out. All in all I think it was a positive exercise as I learned quite a bit about the limits and characteristics of some of my materials.

Learning exercise

Sometimes when I’m feeling a bit stale I try to doodle my way out of it. I’ve never done anything with the little drawings…until now. I had some small canvases (they don’t look it here but red and blue are 5″ x 7″, the yellow is 8″ x 8″) that weren’t ear marked for anything and decided to take the doodles one step further.   I like how they turned out. They’re just simple little images not really located anywhere. I’m looking forward to completing more and seeing where they go.

Red

Yellow

Blue