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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Graphite Family Portrait Commission Completed

Family Graphite Portrait Commission
Further refinements have been added to each of the subjects and I think this portrait is complete.  As always I will check with my client to see if there are any edits needed on her end and of course if I come back in the morning and something pops out at me.

The completed portrait size is 13x19" which will be 18x24" framed.  I will also take  a photo of the piece framed as once the matt is on it is amazing how the values pop against the matt.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Graphite Family Portrait Commission Update

This is a full view of the portraits which are all roughly brought up to the same level.  The changes will now be very small for each subject -- smoothing out small areas, adding a bit more depth to other areas, small refinements to capture better likenesses.  As always, the transitions look much nicer in real life than online. 
The jackets and shirts also need to be further developed for a more even texture on the jackets and a bit more definition in the shirts.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Graphite Family Portrait Commission - Father #3

Father's Portrait
This is as far as I wanted to take the father's portrait until the final subject is brought up to the same level.  Then I will come back and push the tonal range a bit further, develop his hair more to give more depth and do any further refinements for likeness.

Whew a long day but a good day, now for a glass of wine!

Graphite Family Portrait Commission - Father #2

Father Update
The features of the father's portrait are being slowly built up and refined.  I am focusing mostly on the mid tonal values and will start to build up the darker and lighter values.  Several more layers will be needed the build the form and each layer will refine his features further to build up the likeness.

I blocked in the younger daughter so that I could build up his suite jacket with several layers of darker graphite without drawing around her hair.  This will help her to settle into the suite rather than looking cut out.  I have also pulled graphite into the other kids hair and will further lighten and darken their hair as needed.

Graphite Family Portrait Commission - Father #1

Father Sketch
Holidays are not "officially over" but I managed to wrangle some time to work on this commission.  Thank goodness as I have been getting twitchy going so long without drawing/painting!

I have roughed in the sketch of the father and loosely blocked in the beginning tonal values.  I will continue to build up the values of the father slowly building up the tonal values and refining as I did with the kids.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Graphite Family Portrait Commission - Daughter #1 and Brother

Sister and Brother Portraits
Well I probably should have posted an update sooner but I just kept thinking, one more thing, one more thing.  So the eldest sister and brother are at about 90% completion but I always like to move onto the other subjects before doing the final refinements and softening of features.

I actually went back to the sister after the brother was brought up to the same level of completion and redefined her entire face and hair.  As the brother will represent the darkest values in the portrait I had to strengthen the dark values on the sister to bring her up to the same value scale. 

I did not want to draw him first though as even though I cover the areas worked on with paper to avoid smudging, smudges still occur so I try to work left to right as much as possible. 

I will now move onto the father and then the youngest sister after that.  As it is the holiday season my updates will be (and have been) intermittent but I still am managing to squeeze in art/work time.  Funny to spend all these years doing various jobs to finally have a job where I look forward to going to work :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Graphite Family Portrait Commission - Daughter #1 Sketch

Daughter #1 Sketch
 This is a sketch of one of the daughters in my latest commission.  The whole portrait commission will be 18x24" done in graphite pencil.  Each head size will be roughly 4.5" which is as small as I like to go as the smaller the face is the trickier it is to fit in all the details that represent each subject.

Her features have been blocked in and the light and dark values have been laid down lightly. Her features are not exact yet as I tend to lay in the graphite and then refine the features to capture the resemblance. 

I have added in much more of the details in the sketch phase for this one as the photos I am working from are actually quite small so I really want to make sure I get the likeness early on.  I am quite happy with the progress so far and am looking forward to starting to add in the depth to really make her features pop :)

Thursday, December 09, 2010

When is a painting done?

Side View - to show a bit of the irridescence and texture
This is the latest abstract piece I am working, or finished...or working on!!??  I can tell more easily with other mediums and more realistic paintings but with acrylic and abstract I could just keep going forever....

I do think I am "almost" done though, maybe just one more layer...heh heh

These are a triptych of 5x7" panels

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Graphite Portrait Commission of Brother and Sister Completed

Just a few minor tweaks were needed.  I bit more detail was added in his hair and a few areas were softened on both of them.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Christmas Graphite Portrait Commission - Brother and Sister Update

This is an update of the portrait commission I am working on.  The majority of the work is done, just maybe a few finishing touches on the resemblance and possible the sister's hair.

I am working from a couple of different photos and they are quite blurry so once my client has a look I will know if the resemblance is close or not :)

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Abstract Acrylic Painting from Advanced Abstract Workshop

18x24" Acrylic on Raw Canvas

This is one of the paintings that I worked on at the abstract workshop a couple of weekends ago.  It is funny how stuff like this looks like the paint was just thrown on the canvas but really I spent a fair bit of time getting all the layers built up and trickling down just right :) 
I used raw canvas so in areas the paint disperses and feathers out around the edges of paint.  In other areas I built up the layers of paint to create crisp edges with the paint trickling in layers. Now to come up with a name....

Super fun to paint looks pretty cool over the mantle, a little shocking with all the builders beige walls ;) One day I will get around to painting the house....one day ;)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Photos from the Artisan Fair in Port Coquitlam

My Table Display
I wish I had thought to bring my camera, but luckily my neighbor Maxine took photos for several of us.  We had a really nice time as the volunteers and staff at Leigh Square were really great at making sure all the artisans had everything they needed.  There was live music from some of the local talent so we had live entertainment all weekend which was really nice :)

I met a lot of really nice artists and art lovers as well which is always fun.  It is nice to see others get as excited about paint as I do ;)

There were several really talented jewelers Lonnie Jackson, Nyne Olson, Laura Foreman were some of my favorites.  I made more than a few friends over the weekend and managed to only spend a bit of my profit ;) I could not resist the aprons that Maxine made (she was on my left) for the kids on my list.  She makes the double sided so you get two aprons in one with little pockets and cute kid patterns and lace for the girls.  Initially I wanted them for painting but they are too cute to get paint on so maybe for the little chefs on my list :)

I wanted to spend more but could not get away from my booth long enough . Probably a good thing as of course they were Xmas gifts for me, not the ones on my list ;)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Getting Ready for Winter Artisans Fair in Port Coquitlam
Nov 27 & 28 - 11-5pm

What a mess! I actually got a lot of progress done too, hard to tell ;)  I have everything set up to bring to the art fair tomorrow so now just to paint a few sides of canvases, print out labels, pack everything up and I am off!  Sounds faster in print, may need to call in the assistant :)

I will be at the art fair both Saturday & Sunday (Nov 27 & 28) from 11-5pm hope to see you there!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Christmas Graphite Portrait Commission - Brother and Sister Sketches

Sister Graphite Sketch
This is a Christmas commission I am working on which is a gift for the father.  This is the sister's sketch so far.  She is about 90% completed, just a few minor refinements which I will make once the brother is near completed and I have had a bit of distance from the sketch to come back with fresh eyes.

The full sketch of both the brother and sister will be 11x14" to fit inside a standard 16x20" mat and frame.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Registration Now Open for Realistic Graphite Portrait Workshop - Feb 5 & 6, 2011

Feb 5 & 6 Workshop Brochure
Registration is now open for my portrait drawing workshop being held at the Outlet on Feb 5 & 6, 2011.  This workshop will focus on techniques for drawing accurate portraits but the techniques can be used for drawing everything from landscapes to animals.

If you are interested in this workshop, you can register directly online, by phone at 604-927-8400 or contact me at info@stateofartportraits.com for more information.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Abstract Workshop Photos

We had a much larger room for this session which was full of windows which was a real treat with all the new snow and sunshine.  We spent most of the first day  learning about what makes an abstract painting and doing exercises to help us create abstract compositions from magazines and photos.  Although we all really enjoyed the exercise, so much we had a hard time stopping, I am sure I was not the only one anxious to get painting.

Turns out the time preparing was well worth it as when we did get painting we all seemed to really be much more clear in the directions we were taking on each painting and we all ended up with several completed paintings by the end of the weekend.  It was so much fun to play with acrylics again after working on commissions and playing with my oil paints for the last while.  These workshops are so great as they really free you up to play with such a great selection of paints, so much fun!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Acrylic Abstract - Seafoam

9x11" Framed

 Yet another acrylic abstract painting that is on display at Place des Arts.  At first I thought this one may be too busy but once I popped it in the mat the separate layers started to emerge and it actually has cool levels of depth to it.  A little hard to see online with my poor photography skills ;)

Hope people brave the rain and gusts of wind to check out the opening tonight, right now I just want to curl up in front of the fireplace and have a nap....better fire up the espresso machine!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Abstract Acrylic - Autumn's Glow

Autumn's Glow
9x11" Framed
This is one of  my abstract acrylic pieces now on display at Place des Arts for the Positively Petite show. 

The gala opening reception is tomorrow, November 18 at 7pm.  I am looking forward to some yummy wine and great conversation & art!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Graphite Portrait Commission - Family Portrait Completed

Family Graphite Portrait Commission
 Well I think this is complete but as always I will leave it sit with me for at least a few hours to see if anything jumps out at me.  I always check with the client as well to see if any edits are needed.   The graduations are much nicer in real life so the dark and light values tend to pop out more in the photo, in real life they settle in nicely with the rest of the values  :)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Graphite Portrait Commission - Granddaughter Update #2

Granddaughter Update 2
The granddaughter is looking much better now.  Her features have been built up to near completion as I did with the other two portraits and now I will do the finishing touches on all three.

I think she is pretty close but just need minor adjustments for her.  I think her chin needs a little softening as does her mouth but letting the paper sit for a bit always seems to help with the blending.

I will start with the grandmother as I have had more time "away" from her portrait to better judge what changes need to be done to finalize her portrait. 

I thought I would upload a photo of the whole portrait as it stands before the final edits.  Of course, it never looks as good online as it does in real life (no really) as the computer only caputures half of the tonal values so things look much more choppy online.  The paper is actually a soft white so that gives you an idea of how the values change online.  Onto the finishing touches!

Full Portrait - 18x24"

Graphite Portrait Commission - Scott Update #2

I think the resemblance is getting closer but I will leave for now and move onto the granddaughter again so I can come back with fresh eyes.  Under his right eye and jaw line needs to be softened a bit but will let the graphite settle in a bit more before blending.  I think his forhead also needs to be darkened a bit more as it is looking a little light now that the rest of the face has been darkened.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Graphite Portrait Commission - Scott Update #2

Scott Update
Well he is at a funny looking stage right now but I had to call it a night :)  The resemblance will get better in the next update as the shading is quite harsh in areas and not fully established in others. 

Lots of details needs to be added around the eyes and hairline which will give more of a manly appearance and capture more his character.  The mouth looks harsh right now but once the cheeks are fully shaded in and refined the mouth should settle in more.

Graphite Portrait Commission - Rough Sketch of Scott

Rough Sketch of Scott
Ok so not much explanation needed for this update.  Onward... :)

Graphite Portrait Commission - Grandmother Update #2

Grandmother Update
Much more depth has been added to the grandmother's portrait and her features have been further defined.  Although there is more refinement needed, I will move onto the last subject in this portrait so that I can come back with fresh eyes to the first two subjects.

For the grandmother, her hair on the top of her head will be darkened further, her nose is a little too wide on the bridge and tip so this will need to be refined further and more highlights will be added to her cheeks to give more shape and capture more of her likeness.

She has been really fun so far to work on as she has such a happy face and all of the wrinkles and wisps of hair are really fun to work on, kind of like a jigsaw puzzle :)

Of course when I come back with fresh eyes there could be more ;)  It is always good to take a break whether it be working on something else or just stepping back from the easel as with anything, focusing too long you tend to see what you want to see, not what is necessarily there.

Graphite Portrait Commission - Grandma Update 1

Grandmother Roughed In
I have not touched the granddaughter since the last update so she is still at the funny stage.  The grandmother has been roughed in to establish the darker values and now I will start refining her features to capture the resemblance. 

I always wonder what my clients think at this stage as everything looks so strange! I think watching the progress though makes you realise how the littlest details either make or break the capturing of a subject's character.

But the next update things should be starting to take shape :)  The grandmother's face looks very long right now as her jawline and hairline have not been refined so that is where I will start and then start adding in more of the wrinkles, or should I say character ;)) on her face.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Graphite Portrait Commission - Sketch 2

Rough Sketch of Grandmother
I have roughed in much of the granddaughter but it is very rough so is kind of at a funny looking stage.  She does not look like "herself" but the basic shapes are there.  I want to wait to get a larger image to start putting in the details which will lock in her resemblance. 

I have moved onto the grandmother for now and have just transferred the rough sketch to the paper. I think with all her character she is going to be really fun to draw! She seems so sweet and I get the feeling she had a great sense of humor :)

Graphite Portrait Commission - Sketch 1

Rough Sketch
This is the first update of a commission that I am working on.  It is of a young couple and the girl's grandmother.  I have decided to crop the subjects in slightly more than in my original lockup to allow the faces to fill the matted area nicely.  The completed portrait will be 18x24".

So at this stage I have transferred the sketch to the paper and just refined her features slightly.  Now I will build up the values slowly refining her features as I go.  This commission will appear to progress quickly as I have a tighter deadline than usual so I will just be putting in longer sessions than usual, which I quite prefer but usually do not have the luxury of  "getting" the time :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Exhibit Photos from Port Moody Art Show

Well I took a bunch of photos opening night with all the guests and artists but my phone camera does not seem to want to give them up so I took a few quick photos the next day.  Gotta Love technology :)  This was my first time at this show and I was surprised to find the place packed with eager art enthusiasts as soon as the doors opened, nice :)

There was a really great variety of works and it was nice to put faces to many of the fellow artists work that I have seen online and at other shows.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Abstract Acrylic - Flow

9x11" Framed (frame not shown)
 I was busy framing my acrylic miniatures series over the weekend, between doing "show duty" at the Port Moody Art Show this weekend.  I had to frame about four of the paintings and drop them off at Place des Arts between shifts so did not get a chance to take a photo of this painting, Splash, in the frame. 

I did end up with broken nails and blood oozing out of my thumb from a errant framing clip, I so suck at framing! Luckily no blood got on the nice white mat ;)

I am really happy with how this one turned out.  I love how the paint swirls together in gradual layers.  I have a couple others that are similar that will look nice as a set...once I get them framed that is!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Ensemble Show - The Act Gallery
November 20 – December 19

16x20" Framed
Several of my paintings from my seashell series have been selected for the juried show Ensemble at The Act in Maple Ridge.

There will be an opening reception on Saturday, November 20 from 2 -4 pm  and the show will continue to run until Sunday December 19.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Abstract Acrylic Painting - Sedimentary Layers

Sedimentary Layers
9x11" Framed
Latest in my abstract acrylic series which will be on display at Place des Arts for the Positively Petite show. 

All of the pieces are ready for the show and I am now working on pieces for the Art Fair at Leigh Square for Nov 27 & 28.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Abstract Acrylic Painting - Trickle Down

Trickle Down
9x11" Framed
This is another in my abstract acrylic series part of which will be on display this month at the Positively Petite show at Place des Arts as well as at the Christmas Artisan fair at Leigh Square in Port Coquitlam.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Nut Oil Painting Series - Under Pressure

Under Pressure
8x10" Oil on Panel
This is a painting I have been working in between commissions and my abstract series.  Needless to say it is a total change of pace from the abstracts!

I just finished working on it this morning so I will leave it a bit to see if it is finished or not as I have been so close to it over the past couple of days I need to get some fresh perspective :)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Abstract Acrylic - Closer to the Flame

Closer to the Flame
9x11" Framed
Well the good thing that comes from all the running around and not being in the studio is having frames and mats handy to actually framed my pieces as they are finished rather than haunt me from the far end of my studio :)

This is the latest piece in my abstract acrylic series,  yes I am a little hooked on the blue.  It is such a peaceful yet vivid color it makes it hard to play with any others :)

Friday, October 29, 2010

Studio Photo Published in the Now for Port Moody Art Show

Working on "Torn"
12x24" Oil on Panel
Well this is a nice way to start the weekend :) This photo of me working on a painting in my studio and a short article appear in The Now newspaper to promote the Port Moody Art Show. 

Sadly I was not painting at all today but running around buying frames from one location, mats from another and battling all the construction currently underway in the tri-cities.  Now that I have all my mats and frames I can get back to painting, yay :)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Positively Petite Poster
November 18 to December 17

And last but not least, the Positively Petite  poster :) It is nice to have shows with opening receptions for a change.  So much funner when I actually get a chance to see the exhibits and sip wine & chat with other artists, not just drop off a painting and run to the next errand ;)

The gallery will also have their Christmas Boutique and an exhibit by Sandrine Pelissier who paints really unique watercolor portraits so show be quite the show :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Port Coquitlam Winter Artisans Fair

The Winter Artisans Fair is fast approaching.  Funny I felt more prepared two weeks ago than I do now! Looks like I will be in for a few late nights getting everything framed and organized :)

I don't know what I was thinking having three exhibits/shows in one month, good thing I work best under pressure! Now where is that expresso....

Monday, October 25, 2010

Abstract Acrylic Painting - Blue Nebula

Abstract Acrylic Painting
9x11" Framed
This is another abstract acrylic painting I did during the summer and matted and framed today.  It is called Blue Nebula and will be on display at the Port Moody Art Show from Nov 5-7 along with Ripple Effect

I love the color of this one and how the layers built up in swirling layers.  I plan to do more with using this color scheme, now if I can remember what colors I used...hmmm.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Abstract Acrylic - Ripple Effect

Ripple Effect
9x11" Framed
This is my latest abstract painting, Ripple Effect. Well actually I think I painted it during the summer and finally got it framed, I have been a little busy ;) 

I am working on a series of these.  They are as fun to watch dry as they are to paint.  They remind me of watercolor in their translucency but with the shine of acrylic.

This painting will be displayed at the Port Moody Art Show from Nov 5-7, 2010.  The opening reception with wine & nibblies will be held on Friday, November 5th at 7:30 pm.
The show continues from 10am to 5pm
both Saturday & Sunday, November 5 & 6th,  Admission is free so please drop by to visit and see some great art.
Port Moody Social Recreation Centre
300 Ioco Road, Port Moody

Friday, October 22, 2010

Harley Davidson Commssion - Photos of the Birthday Boy

Well it looks like the Harley Davidson portrait will be well loved :)  My client, his wife, sent me photos of the birthday boy with his gift at his 50th birthday party.

Too funny having the bike in the house for the party, or maybe it is kept inside whenever he is not out cruising? Ah wouldn't blame him if it were ;)

It is funny as I am not really a bike person but man I miss this drawing everytime I see a photo of it, aha separation anxiety settling in again :)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Drawing Realistic Graphite Portraits Workshop
Feb 5 & 6

Graphite Baby Portrait
Before the workshop was half way done I had several requests for another session, as soon as possible, yay :) So, I have scheduled another workshop for February 5 & 6 at Leigh Square in the Residence Room.

I found that eight was a really nice sized group so we will be limiting workshop sizes to ten.  Six artists have already preregistered (ie asked me to email them as soon as registration online opens) so if you are interested just let me know and I can add your name to the list.  If we end up with more than ten registrants, I will see if we can add an additional workshop around the same time. 

I think it is best to keep the class size limited and just have more workshops so everyone gets more than enough one on one time as well as the group demos as that seemed to work really well last weekend.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Realistic Graphite Workshop Photos

Well I think it is safe to say we all had a great time this weekend at the workshop :) I was very fortunate to have such a great energetic group to work with for my first workshop. The artists ranged from total beginners to very advanced artist, some local some from as far as the sunshine coast and one with over 40 years of drawing skills!

It was a very relaxed and fun class but everyone was very hard core and focused which is so great.