Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Leaf it Out!

Gosh, has it really been that long since my last blog post? I had no idea, and how quickly time flies. Well, things have been quite busy here with lots of new tech, (and the headaches that go with trying to fathom it all out), and I've been trying out some new compositions for future pieces. With the broadband changing over in the next few days, I'm really taking my chances trying to publish today, as the server keeps dropping off the face of the earth. Is anyone out there certainly comes to mind. 

With 'Husband' home for a couple of weeks, very little has been going on in the studio, but the house has had a bit of a makeover, with the bathroom finished and an assault on the garden. It's nice to have that quality time together, but blimey, it's terrible for getting any work done.

Having a bit of a play with the proportions

Time to clean up and get some vibrancy in the palette 

It's awful really, but I just had to check to see what it was I was actually talking about in the last blog post. Well, of course it was the peony, and in fact there was a dilemma on that one. To leaf or not to leaf was the question. The larger leaf that I had planned on looked a bit off and away to the rest of the composition, so indeed I decided to LEAF it out, (do feel free to have a groan at that one). Framing it will prove interesting no doubt.

And with the leaf.
Partially finished, but not sure to finish it  

Next up I feel like an injection of colour. It's been so cold and mightily grim here with so much rain that I feel I should draw up plans for a new ark, so it's time for some much needed vibrancy in the palette. I have some lovely photos I took earlier this year from the flowers I used for one of my classes, and as they were going over, I got some great shapes and forms.

"The best thing one can do when it's raining it to let it rain"

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Just going to get one going to see how it goes before I post here, but it does mean I get to use some of my gorgeous new M. Graham paints. Talking of paints, I was asked to give some new Maimeri Blu colours a go and although the palette was more suited to landscapes, and there were a couple of naughty cadmiums in there, I kept an open mind and gave them a go. More detail on my findings in the next post.  

I know these aren't exactly the zestiest of subjects but they are quite fun

Earthy browns and greens against my new bright blues, pinks and purples.
Oh and a new sunshine yellow 

Thursday, 6 August 2015

Trials and Tribulations

It's been painting of a different sort that has been keeping me busy for the last couple of weeks. That and a short visit to London to keep tabs on the rest of the family. The bathroom has needed a face lift for ages, and last week turned out to be the time to get the emulsion and brushes out. Of course there is always more to do than you think, so the job has taken a little longer.

"Quality is never an accident, it is always the result of intelligent efforts."

John Ruskin

With decorating keeping me busy, my peony had to take a bit of a back seat. I was able to do a bit more on it, so now I only have the large leaf to do. Luckily the photos will help me out here as unfortunately, the seed pods have shrivelled up a bit too much, and I don't think I will get to see the seeds unless I get the scalpel out and perform an autopsy.

Peony leaves are wonderfully shiny with a darker green above and a bright green below. Very obvious veining and slightly wavy edges make for an interesting subject and with the browns and crispy bits going on in the seed head, a cluster of leaves gives a softer look to the piece. 

Shiny and bright.

Deep greens with wonderful veining

Making a start on the leaves

Standing room only on the palette

Elsewhere, I have been asked to test out some watercolours by Maimeri Blu. Although the colour selection would be more suitable for landscape painting with some cadmiums in there too, I'm happy to give them a go and see how they shape up against my favourite M.Graham and Daniel Smith. Once I have put the colours through their paces, I'll let you know the results.