Borscht Anyone and another really good week

Borscht Anyone?  This was a painting I had in mind since last fall.  I took a series of photos at a farmers market in Vancouver while visiting with family (sigh). I took so many photos! These beets were calling to me.  Again with the dilemma. Oil? Watercolour? Poured painting? 

For some reason this past year, when I think of watercolour, I automatically think of pouring.  The freedom I have this this process feels so rewarding. And I can release some of my tendency to be a detail crazy painter,

Borscht Anyone by Shideler

I did the last pour yesterday, removed the masking compound this morning. The underpainting made me happy and I knew I should be able to top dress this in one painting session.  This is a goal I try to set with all my poured paintings of this size.  There are no rules other than ones imposed for me by me.  And apparently I have many....just saying...

Slide show below - click to move through

 

Happy Helen

Sometimes the universe lines up so well. I am having a marvellous May!  I mean pinch me!  I am so grateful and happy I am coming apart at the seams.  This week I sold two 1/2 sheet poured paintings and had an interview with CBC TV News for the painting on the window from the Saint John City Market. And so many people see my daughters in the painting! 

I am so grateful when someone appreciates my work enough to purchase it - and from my website.  Happy Helen

Making a Splash by Shideler

And then there was this...

An interview with CBC TV News for to support the fundraiser for Pro Kids with area artist painting a piece of history - a window from the Saint John City Market!  I am normally quite camera shy - but wanted to do this because I love the project so much.

Link to story here

Link to news story here - it is about the third story in the clip

Link to P.R.O. Kids here

Cheers everyone

 

 

 

 

Special Supper

I choose to paint Special Supper because I felt I needed a challenge! Jeepers!  Designing a poured watercolour around lobsters sitting on a lobster platter may not have been my smartest move.

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Wing and a prayer

The thing is, I could see the finished painting in my mind.  Which when you start a painting you should be able to do.  Breaking the colours out into layers in this case was very complex especially since the painting is basically monochromatic. And red. Once the values started to get deeper, I actually lost my roadmap.  I was unable to distinguish between critter and platter. You see, both the real lobsters and the lobsters on the platter have many legs!  

And I had to start winging it, crossing my fingers and offering up a prayer. This was tough.  The slideshow below will show you what I mean.  Once that final pour was ready applied I basically had to hold my breath.  Did I mention red is tough?

Unsure of what to do

Once I removed the masking compound, I hid it away for awhile until I could figure out if it was going to work or not.  Apparently I hide things from my view if I don't want to deal with it. 

Just the other day, I pulled it back out and the path forward was so clear.  It was like a real aha moment. Oh, I am not showing the painting with the mask removed on purpose.

home and back at it

I returned home from Calgary Thursday night. Happy to be home, but so missing my wonderful  family there.  Every day we connected with Jenn in Vancouver and shared baby photos sigh... and since I have been home I have been very busy.

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Farmers Market

This painting has so many wonderful memories for me.  First of all, I love the translucent quality of tomatoes. When I look at them I always imagine how I would paint them.  The turquoise of the baskets set off the yellows and reds, and hit almost all of my favourite colours (I have so very many). I knew as I was taking the many reference photos that the heritage tomatoes would be a painting.

The biggest decision was to be watercolour, acrylic or oils. And right now I am so loving painting with oils,  There is more freedom for me - does not have to be quite as meticulous as watercolour to be effective.  I can still "sculpt" with the paint - the buttery texture of oil paint is so addictive, so sensuous and the colours so pure!

My daughter is a BC based food blogger known as Foodess.  I love that I can be sure that every visit will include a trip to many of the farmers markets.  This is her happy place. And I love to watch the people, especially the children.  But it is the colours and the smells that truly captivate me.  

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Side Stepping

When I returned home I somehow was driven to continue with the 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge.  I felt compelled to get back at it.  Side Stepping is a fun painting of a raven and is the inspiration for a large painting I will do later in the year.  

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Besties at the Beach

Last summer we had a Hall family reunion on Prince Edward Island.  It was an amazing week with family, great food and the beaches.  Two different beaches each day.  I was in complete heaven!

The beach is one of my sacred places.  My soul longs for sunny, warm days and the salt air.  I think having been born in Cape Breton had a lot to do with this and then the move to Red Head outside of Saint John, NB reinforced it. Salt air is in my soul and I think a bit of salt water is in my blood.  I crave the beach!

Everything I see while at the beach is a painting in my mind. These two lovelies walking down the beach caught my eye.  I actually think that they may be sisters.  Fun painting.

Until next time, may you have a most wonderful week!