Monday, March 31, 2008

Precious Metals

The NZ Art Guild holds Monthly Master's Challenges which challenges you to paint an interpretation of, or paint in the style of a particular artist. This month the artist was Gretchen Albrecht who is a New Zealand artist who paints very distinctive abstracts. In recent years she has used oval shapes to paint on and often utilises rectangles into her work. This is my effort inspired by her ovals and rectangles.

Acrylic on canvas 300 x 225mm

The oval shape and rectangles are all obviously inspired by Gretchen Albrecht. These rectangles symbolise the earth's resources of which are finite and at some point we will have exhausted these if we continue to operate as we do currently. The main rectangles are interlinked to demonstrate how human behaviour affects all resources as everything is inter-related. The small complete rectangle on its own symbolises that we have a choice right now to look at how we utilise the world and minimise our excessive consumption to then live in a sustainable manner.

See, I'm getting all deep and meaningful at the moment..... Lack of sleep may have something to do with it - my little girl is sick and has had a temperature all weekend. Her first temperature which is then really horrid for the parents. She's almost 7 months old and is currently asleep so once this is posted I think I'll follow suit!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Forgotten Depths

This is a painting that I have done both for my study (incorporating both abstract and realism) and also for the current NZ Art Guild fortnightly theme which is Evolution and must incorporate the use of a palette knife.

This is about the evolution of land. Where we now see our city (or any city), below is the remnants of the past. The heavy texture and layers and layers of paint on the bottom half of the painting, symbolise how everything sinks within the land and all the history of the land can be found by looking in its depths. The city (and I have used the Auckland skyline as I live here and actually think it is a very attractive city skyline) is painted with the palette knife and has gaps and holes within the buildings to symbolise impermanence and that one day too (far far in the future), they too will be part of the forgotten depths of this land.

This is acrylic and lots of lots of modelling mediums for texture (the very bottom of this painting is probably 5-6mms thick with texture. The size is 500 x 500 x 35mm.
I've got a whole lot of paintings on the go at the moment so hopefully I'll get some more completed and post them up in the next few days.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

WIP - another road

I'm working on another 2 road paintings at the moment. The other one is going to be a blue sky, white clouds with mountains in the distance. This one is an evening sky and I might put some telephone poles or something up the side of the road to add some interest.

The sky isn't finished, it probably needs one more attack and then some glazing to get the effect I want and then I will be back to the road and the sides. I love glazing with oils!

I haven't been doing much painting as it has just been Easter weekend and we have had family staying over from Australia which was really great. We did lots of family activities like going to the zoo, wakeboarding on the boat (and yes I managed to get a wakeboard this time and felt the pain in my shoulders for 3 days) and family get-togethers. There were 5 cousins hanging out, 4 of which are 2 or under so they all had lots of fun playing together. They left to go back to Australia early this morning so I'm sure my son Carter was looking for his cousin when he got up.

I also got the email confirmation that I have been accepted to put in 4 pieces for The Original Art Show which is here in Auckland in June. There is also the NZ Art Guild exhibition around that time as well and the Affordable Art Show in July. I better get painting!!!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Piha Seascape

Today I paid my 15 year old step-son Alex to look after babies while I painted. This is the result. It's not completely finished as I've done the whole lot wet in wet and I will need to go back tomorrow when it is drier to touch up areas and put the splashes of pure white in.

I can't get a true picture in terms of colour, I think I've left it too late in the day for that so the colours you see below are not accurate and is more subtle and slightly purple-ess due to the Ultramarine Blue. Once I have completed it I will post a photo with the right colours.

And tomorrow is "my day" too so I can paint all day if I want. My husband and I have turn about days in the weekend. Today is his day and he is out on the boat wakeboarding. I have just been clever this weekend by paying Alex to be babysitter for the day!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

The long grey road

I finished this painting last night which felt good as I kind of feel that I have all these works that I have started but haven't finished and I need to feel finished to feel that sense of achievement.

I'm not 100% happy with this piece, it hasn't come out quite as how I wanted it to in my head. However I am not sure as to what more I could do to it so I am going to leave it as it is. DH likes it, so that's good. It is oil, 600 x 400 x 35mm.

I really didn't feel like painting last night - it has been a busy week with babies and work stuff and lack of sleep and all I felt like doing was curling up on the couch and watching crappy American sitcoms. I hardly ever watch TV so I never have any idea what is on anyway, so I decided just to do a little bit of painting and then have a bath and watch crap on TV. I never got my bath or the TV as I just kept on going until I realised that suddenly it was bedtime.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A bit stuck with this one.....

I find with oil painting, I tend to have several on the go at once. This is purely making the most of the time when I can paint. When I reach a point where I need to let it dry before I continue, if I have another one, I can use my time to work on that. Time is a very very precious commodity once you have babies (sleep is perhaps the most precious commodity and as both babies are asleep right now (sleepidossse is what we call it in this family), I should be asleep on the couch right now). But no, thought I would post this one as I'm a bit stuck with it.

Please ignore the whole bottom part of it. That part is just blocked it at present so needs all the tidying up and also the road needs work and the lines on it. What I am concerned about is the sky which is what I wanted to be the dominant thing in this painting. I wanted to capture that feeling of a dominant oppressive sky coming over you. But with patches of thinner cloud from which bright light is poking through which is illuminating that field near the back. I just don't think it works as to how I want it to work and I'm not too sure what to do about it and how to fix it. I'll keep you posted though. I'm also trying to use a limited palette. For this one I used: Ultramarine Blue, Alizeron Crimson, Indian Yellow, Burnt Sienna and Titanium White. I really like mixing greys from complementaries now and I can't see myself every again using a grey from black and white. I just find the greys have so much more life when they are mixed from colours.

And right now while babies are sleeping I am about to prepare 2 canvas's with modelling textures as I have an idea for 2 abstract landscapes that I am going to resin (as resin is just so cool). Just need to think about colours and as I am resining I will have to do both paintings in acrylics.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Spiralling Lives - an abstract for once!

Here is something completely different to what I normally do. The fortnightly theme challenge for the NZ Art Guild is Journey and must incorporate thread of some type. So I thought that I would play with some textures and mediums and I had some doming resin that I have been dying to try on an acrylic based piece.

So this is 'Spiralling Lives". The spiral is an ancient symbol of a Journey and each spiral represents our lives. The spirals are made up of a variety of threads etc from twine for when you are strong, through to cotton when you feel you are holding on by a thread through to chains for when you feel chained to something and unable to change. The spiral also demonstrates that even when we think we are going nowhere, we are still moving and what happens within our lives makes us who we are.

Here's some of the detail

So for someone that is normally a fairly representational artist, this is something different and it was so fun to do (and so very very messy). It is 500 x 250 x 53mm and includes: modelling textures, acrylic paint, liquid acrylic ink, water-soluble crayons, silver leaf, gel medium, a variety of threads, chain and a thick coat of resin over it (love love resin).