Posted tagged ‘winter scene’

Monday Night Art Class: The Winter of my Discontent

May 3, 2014

For some reason, I find my art is better, when I have some angst in my life.

And this past winter, I had a bit of angst.

Not that I wanted it.   It just turned out this way.

But at least it helped my productivity.

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One winter barn

January 17, 2011

Whenever I’m outside, I take lots of photos.    I’m always looking for the next subject to paint.

(Although I have such a back-log, it might take me years to getting around to actually painting any given scene)

Here’s one I took (???) Lord knows when.   All I know is that it’s within the last 10 years.

The photo itself is somewhat BLAH.  It’s almost black and white.    But that’s where artisitc licence comes in.  You can add or delete what you want, as you see fit.

So that’s what I did, with this quick study a month ago.   I basically added blues and yellows to enhance the mood of the sunset on the snow.

This was a very loose and free painting.  It was towards the end of my art class and I wanted to whip off something quick.   So I did this in ~ 30 minutes, not caring if I got it right.  I just let the paint fly wherever it went,and I had a blast.

Today, I decided I’d try this again, but this time, a bit larger, and taking a lot more time doing it.

I figured that if I got such nice results with the first attempt, imagine what I’d get the next time, when I really meant it.

Here’s what I came up with:

But I admit I was a bit tense when I painted this.    The results turned out okay, but this second painting was not quite as much fun to paint as the first.

And what’s interesting, is this second painting took almost 90 minutes to do:  almost three times longer than the first.

But it’s not necessarily three times better.

In fact, I tend to prefer the first quick-study.


So this has been an interesting little lesson for me.

Sometimes, it’s not about the time you put into a painting, but the energy you feel while you’re doing it.

Also, sometimes the first impressions are the best, no matter how hard you try.   And they’re often impossible to duplicate.


Okay…enough navel-gazing for now.

‘I’m off to watch some bad TV.


A few new Watercolors

January 18, 2009

In between my blogging and my kids’ story book, I’ve somehow managed to get a few more landscapes in.  Especially since my painting group started again last fall.

These first two are quick (~ 1 hour) sketches.  These scenes are from Gatineau Park, from the cross-country ski trails.

From a pure laziness point of view, I like winter scenes, because it involves less painting (i.e. you have to leave lots of white).   The down side, though, you have to know WHERE to leave the white.    (It’s really easy to screw up a winter watercolor painting if you’re not careful).



This next scene is from Alaska, between Homer and Anchorage.   Alaska is awesome.   You can see glaciers like this right from the side of the road.


This next one you might recognize.  It’s from a photo I posted last October, from Upstate New York.   I couldn’t resist the brilliant yellow colors;.


Finally, here’s one from my summer vacation, at Neys Provincial Park.     The North Shore of Superior always fascinates me…it’s so untamed and rugged.    And cold.   This was Labor Day weekend, and you can see the leaves were already starting to change.


Watercolors: Fresh Tracks

June 27, 2008

In oil paints, if you want to make something appear white,  you can apply white paint to the canvas any time you want.   The white pigment covers up anything underneath.  It can even be used to erase mistakes.  

In watercolors, you dont’ have this option.    Once the pigment is down on the paper, it’s down.  You can’t cover it up, and there’s no turning back.

If something needs to be white, you just don’t paint that area.  The white color you create on watercolor paintings is the white of the blank paper itself showing through. 

That’s what I find so interesting about painting winter scenes.   The trick is not so much knowing where to put the paint down…the key is knowing where NOT TO PAINT…

This is one of my favorite scenes of a cross-country ski trail in Quebec.