25 October 2011

Krista (Green Chairs)

30" x 40", oil on canvas, 2008


Detail.

Here's my beautiful wife, Krista, sitting across two green chairs. I wanted to mix things up a bit, so I made her portrait horizontal and added a second chair for composition's sake. That's also why her left leg is bent like that; it creates a nice rhythm as well as continuing a downward angular flow from her head to the top of the chair on the right. 




19 October 2011

Chris (Green Chair)

40" x 30", oil on canvas, 2008, private collection

Detail.

This painting of my old friend Chris Patheiger is the one described in this post as being the first of this Green Chairs series. I was trying out something new as far as skin colouration here, choosing to go with non-realistic colours, the chair being the only thing colored "properly." I then superimposed a matrix background but carried it into the figures, rendering them ghostly* using lighter tones where the figures overlap the background.


I only did four of these before moving on, but I have a great reference image of Kimwun on a green chair for a fifth portrait (perhaps this winter?) from our photo shoot the Kitchen Warfare Trilogy was based on.



*Or "hollow" –in fact, the working title for this series (still in use as the folder name on my computer) was "Hollow Oils."

09 October 2011

Cottage Canoe

30" x 24", oil on canvas, 2009, private collection

This was painted as a gift for Kathryn Winning (that's her at the back of the canoe during a trip she, Krista, and I took to her cottage up north). I became good friends with Kathryn soon after meeting –and subsequently painting many pictures of– her daughter, Ashley. Separately, Krista had become friends with Kathryn as well, and it was when Kathryn was directing one of Krista's plays in Toronto (Love in Swift Current) that the chain of events began that would lead to Krista and I getting together (and getting married and starting Small Pond Arts!). Kathryn really pushed for us to get together and has been a great and supportive friend of ours, so, in appreciation of all of that, I painted the three of us in a canoe on a very happy trip and planned to give her the painting upon our move to Prince Edward County in 2010, but she now lives on a boat and there's no place for a painting there. Until she has a wall to hang this on, it's on display at Small Pond HQ.

This wasn't intended as a self portrait (unlike this and this), but there it is (and there I am), anyway.


06 October 2011

Self Portrait of the Artist as a Young Fool

20" x 16", oil on canvas, 2007

Yep, that's me and, although I chose to wear Rigoletto's fool's cap for this self portrait, I'm not sure where the fiery background came from (I honestly don't think I intented flames or "Hell" when I was painting that –just warm colours), but it does sort of comment on my state of mind at that time. Also, since 2007 wasn't a significant year anniversary-wise (the following year would be my 20th anniversary of painting in watercolours, and to celebrate, I painted this piece), I don't remember what prompted my painting of this.

Come to think of it, I did this self portrait in 2001 which also had no temporal significance except for the fact that I was almost exactly 29 1/2 years old when I painted it. There's also this cheeky self portrait to consider, which was my last deliberate (but, again, cheeky) self portrait. I turn 40 in a few days and I've been gathering self-shot reference photos for another self portrait to be done in the next few weeks, again in oil but quite large this time.

The moustache is actually only a little bit exaggerated.



01 October 2011

Scarecrow Festival 2011 Poster

11" x 8.5", ink and digital, 2011

Small Pond Arts will be hosting the famous Scarecrow Festival in lovely Prince Edward County for the first time this year and this is my poster design for it. For the illustration, I shot reference photos of our own scarecrow, Socrates, who resides in our garden. I added a primitive box guitar hanging onto him because a couple of folks from ArtsCan Circle will be attending to the event and will be playing some live music. I drew Socrates in pencil, inked him using a brush (I used a pen for the lines on his shirt), then scanned the drawing and coloured him in Photoshop. I used flat colours because I wanted to keep the design as simple as possible. Afterwards, the text was all laid out in CorelDraw.

Krista will be blogging about the event soon after the festival next weekend, but, in the meantime, you can read about previous Sacrecrow Festivals at Galloping Goat Gallery, the initial hosts who've since handed the event over to us.