Winter Marsh

I live near a wetlands area connected to the river system and a large lake so there are many different forms of interesting wildlife in this area too that this precious habitat supports. I wanted to capture the essence of this natural setting in one of my few wetland paintings and the first one that I have done of this type of landscape in the winter season. In fact I seem to be exploring the theme of water and wetlands in the winter season just lately and have completed three pastel paintings describing this type of habitat in the snow.

Winter’s Warmth Along a Marsh

Winter’s Warmth Along a Marsh, Pastel and Pastel Paper, 12×18″

A Winter’s Evening

A Winter's Evening

A Winter’s Evening, soft pastel on paper, 9×12″

I’ve been concentrating on painting a few winter scenes lately since we have a white winter this year like we are supposed to here in Canada and it has put me in the mood to depict this type of scenery. I wanted to capture a scene at the end of a winter day so there are some warm tones in the snow which are being cast by the setting sun. I wasn’t happy with the finished painting and neither was I happy with the photograph and think that I need a new camera. I don’t like the gold light higher up behind the trees either. I also think that there should be more violet and blue shadows in the foreground to the right side of the picture. That bright blue color in the tree’s might be a little intense too. Maybe continue the snow covered shrubbery to the bottom of the painting on the left side.

I made a few changes as described and I think that this work has improved. I also was careful to adjust the photo on the computer so the contrast wasn’t as sharp and more like the actual painting. I also tried to adjust the photo so the colors were more like the actual painting although the colors are a little too soft perhaps.

Before the Changes

Before the Changes

Morning Mist on a Northern Lake

I first picked up oils again about four years ago and this was one of the first paintings that I did and actually liked and triggered a memory of a natural landscape which I can’t quite identify which leaves me with a feeling of nostalgia.  It has been hanging on a wall in my house ever since I finished it and I finally decided to part with it and try to sell it online.  An artistic teacher had said something about how artists don’t try to paint mist and fog in their landscape paintings often enough and these atmospheric weather conditions have always held a certain attraction for me so I try to do this periodically and this was one of the first oil paintings where I practiced this.  I used artist grade Windsor and Newton oil paints on a pre-stretched canvas which is also an artist grade support. After about a year and a half of painting with oils I found soft pastels and enjoy using them since they require less clean up and you get finished results much sooner or at least I usually tend not to play around with pastels as much as the oils. I also needed to put the oils down since lifting the brush up and over the level of my shoulder was painful and the whole arm would go numb and the shoulder joint would hurt like crazy! I’m hoping that the shoulder will permit me to pick up the oils again if I should feel the lure of the brush again. I pulled the oils out recently and looked them over however the desire to use them didn’t quite hit me yet hopefully it will in the future and I would like to develop a more mature style with the soft pastels as well.

This piece will be shipped sandwiched between two pieces of foam board and packed in a card board box with packing media for protection.

Morning Mist on a Northern Lake

Morning Mist on a Northern Lake, pastel on paper, 16×20″

 

 

Redwoods in Color Pencil

I have two redwoods growing in my garden and love them both and really appreciate the beautiful color then turn into in the fall. I found a picture of redwoods that change to bright red and wanted to do a pencil piece about them. I completed this piece about four years ago and found it in my portfolio where it had been left forgotten and decided that I should pull it out and see if anyone would like to add it their art collection. There have been several hours involved in creating this piece as there is for all pencil art. I have a bad shoulder and don’t work in pencil anymore since it’s very aggravating so this is one of my few color pencil pieces. Faber Castel Colored pencils on acid free Stonehenge acid free paper.

Redwoods

Redwoods, color pencil on Stonehenge Paper, 11×15″

Greywood by Twilight

After creating some landscaping paintings of brightly colored trees I decided to paint a woodland scene with softer and more neutral gray colors. I wanted to capture the cool and tranquil atmosphere of the interior of the woodland in the beginning of autumn. I added a touch of warm orange to add a little color to the scene as well. I used artist quality pastels by Terry Ludwig and Unison on acid free pastel paper by Wallis.

Greywood by Twilight, Pastel on Pastel Paper, 12x18"

Greywood by Twilight, Pastel on Pastel Paper, 12×18″

Impression of a Red Maple

I like the contorted shape of this tree and the layers of bright red foliage which really captures the attention and reminds me of my Japanese Maples in the autumn which is a theme I have explored recently. I especially like the warm reds and purples in the cooler months. I also used cooler blues and greens with the warm reds to help balance the colors and make them less dominant and create harmony. I once again used high quality pastels including Terry Ludwig and Unison on Wallis Pro White Pastel Paper which is a high quality paper as well.

Impression of a Red Maple

Impression of a Red Maple, Pastel on Pastel Paper, 9×12″

Woodland Fire

Now that the snow is on the ground and winter has set in I wanted to post a nice colorful picture of some maple trees that have turned a lovely bright red autumn color. There is something exciting about the autumn that can inspire a certain vibrancy of spirit in a person who is in connection with the natural world. And yet there is a kind sadness of things passing into the realm of endings until the next rebirth of life, however there are lots of warm and cheerful colors which are a welcome site once the snow is on the ground or even if it’s not in your area.

My materials include artist quality pastels by Terry Ludwig and Unison on the high quality Wallis Pro White Pastel Paper. I don’t spray my paintings due to the color change which darkens and kills the vibrancy and also due to asthma which makes it really difficult to deal with the fumes.

Woodland Fire

Woodland Fire, Pastel on Wallis Pastel Paper, 12×18”

Rustic Woodland Cabin

I decided that I wanted to paint something with a little more color so this one fits the bill even if I am doing an autumn painting in the spring.  I love the dark red of the tree contrasted with the browns, greens and golds around it. I don’t usually paint buildings but sort of liked this one so opted to include it, I probably need to practice painting buildings a little more but this is so far away and it’s festooned in foliage that I can overlook it. I used Ludwigs and Unisons on Colorfix Suede Paper. I couldn’t get the camera to co-operate with the lighting so the picture is a little dark and the colors are a little dull.

Rustic Woodland Cabin

Rustic Woodland Cabin, soft pastel on paper, 14×18″

Lakeside by Twilight

Lakeside by Twilight

Lakeside by Twilight, pastel on paper, 14×18″

There is something that is so beautiful and tranquil about sunsets, I can’t help to paint them every now and then. I’m not really sure where this is but it reminds me of the lake I live near so I decided that this was good subject matter. I also really liked the warm pink and violet tones in the sky and tried to reflect and cool them in the water. I also liked the combination of the rock and shrubbery in the foreground and tried to bring a little detail into the picture.  I used my usual combination of Unison’s and Ludwig’s on Colorfix Suede paper, which I’m starting to like better despite the lack of tooth to this paper.

Poppy Field Study

I decided to create a few works with brighter colors using pinks and corals and found a beautiful reference photo of a poppy field. I actually did this painting back in November right around Remembrance Day but am just getting around to posting it now. Better late than never I suppose. I wanted to keep things fresh, loose and more gestural than my usual detailed interpretations and hope that I accomplished a good piece. I tried to capture a sense of movement and the energy of a field at the height of a clear and sunny day. I can almost see the bees and butterflies going from one flower to the next in the search for nectar.

Poppy Field Study

Poppy Field Study, Pastel on Wallis, 9×12″