Friday, November 17, 2017

GuessWho? a great success!

This shows the set-up we had for GuessWho? on November 4th at the Pioneer  Church at #3 and Steveston Highway.
We set up grids and hang all the 10x10's on both sides of the grids. We had 137 paintings and sold 52 - all from 10 am to 3pm. There was a terrific selection and we made $2350 for the  Richmond Food Bank. We also had a lot of fun so it was a great success. If you didn't make it this year, mark your calendar for next year when it will be November 3rd. You'll never had a better chance of getting terrific original art for only $100!!

Thursday, November 2, 2017

GuessWho? is November 4th!!

Something different today- I didn't paint this and I'm not telling who did - but this lovely 10x10 painting could be yours for only $100 at this year's GuessWho? sale... and then you will find out who the artist is. The sale is this Saturday, November 4th from 10 to 3 at the Pioneer Church at the corner of #3 and Steveston Highway-- the little church on the grounds of South Arm United. $50 goes to the artist -- so you see the artists are making a contribution too -of time,materials and talent. Then the balance goes to Richmond Food Bank - which is a very good cause especially with the colder months coming up. There are 132 paintings to choose from this year. They include paintings by artists whose works sell into the thousands - and also works by students of Steveston/London Secondary and some of these may be worth fortunes too when the student artists become famous!  Since they are all the same size and don't need framing, you can start to build up a collection. I have some sitting on  strips of wood painted the same colour as the wall. That way it is easy to get them at the same level without bothering with wall hangers. A gallery wall is a lovely way to enjoy a variety of paintings. Often I deliberately do something a bit different - so my challenge to you is to guess which ones I painted this year.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Cultural Days

Richmond Artists Guild planned our usual contribution to Cultural Days - which was September 30th-by having a model and the public could either watch or join in. We decided to have a bit of a twist by having our model pose on her motorcycle. One good thing was, when the model took a break to stretch and walk around, the motorcycle stayed put so some more work could still be done.Some were painting on canvases but I decided to work on pastels and I chose a neutral grey pastel paper. Pastel paper is two-sided. One side is smoother and the other side has more of a grid surface to hold the pastel pigment. Good quality pastels have more pigment than cheaper ones. Pastels come in soft, hard or even pencil forms. There are also very soft powdery ones that come in little cases much like the compacts girls used to carry to powder their noses. In fact, this form of pastel is applied with a sponge - and make-up sponges are cheaper than the ones sold for the same purpose in art stores. Pastels have to be kept sorted to like colours so that they don't rub off against each other and become grubby. One of the joys of using pastels is that the colours have a lush richness to them that can be a delight to apply. Well- it rained on our Cultural Day, but we were under a canopy and managed to finish- but I bet our model would have been happier indoors with a heater.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Sunflowers and yellow paint

Here is the 2017 sunflower painting. I can certainly understand Van Gogh's fascination with sunflowers- somehow they are always a bit different and always interesting. Plus there is the challenge with working with yellow. Yellow pigment tends to be on the weak side - no mater what the medium it is in. I often under-paint with white so the yellow can then show to its best advantage. Today's paints are permanent but Van Gogh had trouble with his yellows because they changed with time and became more green- thus making a challenge for restorers. The question being - not only what to use - but what shade was he actually aiming at?  It is also a challenge to work shadows with yellows and not have them turn muddy, I like acrylics as the shadows can be done with glazes and it keeps the colours fresher. No vase in this one but there is in my sunflower painting in Mila's online gallery at www.va-fair.com  Van Gogh signed his name on the vase- so, as a tribute to him, I signed my  name on the vase too.  There are actually several different yellow paints in this painting- not only Cadmium Yellow Light, Medium and Dark, but also some Azo Yellow and a few more! Tjen there is Naples Yellow in with some blues and Sap Green to make the greens. Colour is fun!

Sunday, September 17, 2017

More plein air

This was a different subject from a day out at Iva's garden. Dave and Iva have a collection of statues and gargoyles that inhabit their garden. I thought this little fellow might be fun to paint because he has a mischievous expression...then it was too light behind him (in reality) so I had to darken down the trees to make the painting work. . He does look like a statue here however and I wonder if he should be "revisited" as a "live" imp? At the moment, he will be left as is- a painting that records a nice day out with friends.
     My paintings that Mila has - all large paintings, not like this little 10 x 8- are now on her online gallery - www.va-fair.com - so take a look

Friday, September 8, 2017

Plein air summer

While not a great summer because of forest fires, this summer has been great for  good-weather Tuesdays and Men in Hats have been busy painting in various locations around the Lower Mainland. A couple of weeks ago, we went to the north end of Trout Lake - aka John Hendry Park. I found a good spot under the shade of a big tree and elected to paint this scene. The strips of light and dark appealed to me - as did the green canopy. It is a small canvas -just 8 x 10- So I mostly finished it on the spot. Hopefully, it captures the mood and the freshness of the day. It is always a pleasure to be out with a bunch of other artists. We are also fortunate to have a great selection of places to paint. We will be painting through to mid-October and post the locations on the Men in Hats website so that other artists are welcome to join us. No instruction - just bring paints and a lunch.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Fun from the Fifties

Men in Hats had a fun day last Tuesday when we went to my trainer's house. He has a great "fifties" collection . The '56 Bel Air Chev, a '56 Ford truck and an old motor cycle were all set up for us ---even  with a couple of mannequins.  (Great models- they never moved!)  The car hop was on roller skates and had a tray with some delicious looking milkshakes - too bad they were wax!  This is an acrylic on canvas painting. It was a challenge getting the chrome shiny enough. Also, I wanted to indicate the Chevrolet "V" and the chrome name on the side - without painting it so exactly that it looked like an advertisement for a magazine, rather than a painting. The "Drive-In", of course, is invented. I've never really done a car "portrait" before- but it turned out to be fun as well as a challenge. The tail fin of this car is going into another painting - but more of that later.