Friday, May 28, 2010

Salmon Bay.

I did a commission for a woman from back home who grew up in this particular place called Salmon Bay. This is the third painting I've done of Salmon Bay Stage Heads (The fishing huts you see here), and it's quite the place for inspiration. I will be heading there this summer when I am home painting.

This is my regular way of painting you could say. I am much more used to acrylic paints on canvas than any other medium, I like the bold intense colors I get from the paint. :-)


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Late night watercoloring.

I have a little less than two weeks here in Newfoundland before I head home to work on my grant work. It's certainly a jam packed week full of commissions as well, which is slightly crazy but I'm gonna try my best to get them all done.
In the meantime, between commissions I STILL have to keep life interesting and exciting for me. SO last night I decided to start a new little watercolor... at about midnight no less. I'm one of those people who gets inspired around 10-11pm, I drive the husband nuts cause that also includes furniture re-arranging. Heh!
Anyhow, my cousin Mick showed me a picture of a blue poppy a few weeks ago that really caught my eye. So I fiddled around with them a bit last night for fun. Here's the result. :-)


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Illustration Friday: Early.

Noone wants to be on a bears bad side if woken up early in spring. As you plainly see here. ;-D


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Inspiration full circle.

I get inspiration from many sources. A lot of the time other artists inspire me. I saw one artist online use tea to dye her watercolor paper, so for fun, I tried it out. Here is the end result! I used what tea I drink the most... which is of course Newfoundland's #1 tea: Tetley's Orange Pekoe. I immersed the white paper into hot water and three teabags for about 5 minutes or so. I was pretty surprised one how much pigment came out of the tea, but it certainly made the paper a pretty color. I used watercolors mainly, but some acrylics and ink.

It's funny how things come together like this unexpectedly. I always said every time I sip that particular tea I can't help but close my eyes and think I'm at my families summer cabin, just after supper, looking out over the water at dusk. This place is also where these berries grow, they are called bakeapples, or cloudberries for those of you that don't know. I will be lucky enough to be home this summer when they become ready to pick. And what do I drink when I eat these? Orange pekoe tea. :-P


Thursday, May 20, 2010

A change of scenery.

So tell me, which view would you prefer?
My current view...
Or this view?
See that cabin in the second picture? Yeah that my families summer cottage. A place called Clark's Tickle, and where I consider home more than any other place in this world. Since my father was a fisherman, we spent every summer out here throughout my entire life. He doesn't fish anymore, but my folks still spend their summers there, and this summer, so will I!

I applied for a professional Artist grant from the Newfoundland and Labrador Arts Council in March, and on Tuesday I found out that I was awarded the grant. This was the first time I have ever applied for anything like this, and I was over the moon about it! In fact I planned on writing about this days ago, but I guess it wasn't till now that I finally realized that I had gotten it. It's a little surreal for sure. :-)

My proposal was basically to be able to go home and paint a series of works based on the culture, and wildlife, intertwined with some of my childhood memories, of the region between Old Fort , QC and Red Bay, in Labrador (since once upon a time, there was only a road connecting us and no one else.) This shore is so incredibly rich in history, and I think that too many people overlook the major historical significance of this region. It is literally the gateway to North America! In my proposal I have listed three shows, one in my home town of St. Paul's River QC, another in Blanc-Sablon QC, (Where the Quebec/Newfoundland Ferry docks), and the third is at Point Amour Lighthouse in Labrador, where I will also be having some art work-shops for the locals. I have never had a work-shop before, so this will be a completely new experience for me. :-) I hope I ace it! Anyhow, thats mostly whats been running through my noggin the last few days. There are so many preparations to do that I don't know where to begin first.

In the meantime, here is another triptych that I did, and sold, this week. I love things in three's. :-P


Saturday, May 15, 2010

Theres only one thing I can say...

... about this particular piece.

I. Want. A. Cupcake. Like. Right. Now.

Watercolor and acrylics this time! Just to do the white spots. Got inspired last night with my skype buddy, Sabrina. anyhow, hope you like it! :-)


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Horray for Aiden: My third illustrated book!

Well the book is for sale! I illustrated this book for the lovely Karen Hollett from Yellowknife, NT, and I am so pleased to say it's printed and ready for purchase! Please check out the books website!


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

New member of the family, and new inspiration!

Well now, I dunno about you, but does the term "Hammie Fatties", sound hilariously cute together? Meet my new little buddy, Navi the teddy bear hamster.
I bought her today from a pet store, and I have her here with me in my studio, right next to my table so I can see her, and so she can keep me company during the days. She is quite adorable and I'm sure she will inspire me till the cows come home. :-P

Edit: Here is her Cage's shnazzy new sign. It's a Hammie Fattie. Bwaha! ;-)

Just a little Illustration!

I got inspired by my cousins little girl and her awesome new raincoat and rubber boots! It's easy to illustrate when you see something that cute. :-P


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

My love of Art Nouveau and birds.

I have always admired Art Nouveau as a style when drawing. Especially in highschool during my fantasy art years. I have always wanted to try creating an image in this style, and since I have been recently dipping my brush in watercolors, I thought that would be the perfect medium to complement it! The gentleness of the paint's textures with the romantic whimsical designs, I think it works, don't you? :-)
Also in the past few weeks, I have been watching David Attenborough's, The Life of Birds , and I managed to see the most beautiful bird, called the Himalayan Monal Pheasant. The plumage on that bird was just too irresistible NOT to try and paint a picture of. I am such a bird lover anyhow, (I have a cockatiel and a lil' budgie) I thought maybe I could incorporate it into my image. So here you have it!
I originally drew this image into my sketchbook, and had to then transfer the image over onto my watercolor paper. However I did manage to ink the original as well. So, for all you peeps who own a pack of crayons, or coloring pencils that belong to your kiddies, grab 'em and color away!

Here is the image if you would like to have a nice day relaxing while coloring. You may laugh but I buy my mother coloring books all the time, she sits in the afternoon with tea and relaxes. If any of you decide to color then by all means email me your version! :-D
Just click on the image here and right click to save. Happy coloring! :-)


Sunday, May 9, 2010

Paper paper everywhere!

As much as I love to use paint and pencil, in the last year I have picked up paper as a medium as well. Soooo much paper. Different patterned paper, textured, thickness, you name it! Paper collage is sort of a side step from scrapbooking, which is where my love of paper began really. But as you can see here, I still find a functional use for paper collage. I made my own cards! Just thought I would share them with you all. :-)

The first one here is a collage card for my mother for mothers day. Yes, that would be her and I when I was little. :-)

This one was a birthday card I made for my Husband, Dane! Who turned a lovely 28 this week. I also turned him into a blue fattie. (I call him my original 'blue.')

And this last one is another card for my mother, but for her birthday at the end of this month, You can't see the details much on the flowers because of the vellum on top, but click on the image for a larger view. :-)
I made the two cards for my mom last night with my friend Sabrina, who actually lives on the other side of this island. Thank god for Skype! We crafted for 4 hours and it was great fun! Isn't Technology wonderful? She gave me great feedback and ideas for my cards, since she is the scrapbooking queen and all. Check out her scrapbooking and hobby blog. :-)

Everyone needs a craft night with friends, it's SO peaceful and relaxing. :-)


Saturday, May 8, 2010

Illustration Friday: Fearless. (First post!)

I have heard of this site and thought I would join in on the fun. Here is my submission for the theme, fearless.I always thought she had a cheeky look about her, as if to say, " Bring it on furball." :-P


Thursday, May 6, 2010

Portrait drawing in 4 steps.

There is nothing more natural then pencil on paper for an artist. Drawing is the root of all forms of art, and still one of my favorite ways to capture it. In the last few years I have figured out a way to draw pencil portraits a tad more easily. So if any of you have any problems with portrait drawing then by all means, read on! (Or if you're just nosy like I am read on too.) This blog is featuring a drawing of my grandfather Arthur, which I did yesterday. :-)

Now, The first question I always used to start with when drawing a portrait is... "OMG, where do I begin?!" I tend to focus on the head first, usually somewhere in the middle of the face, like the nose or the glasses in this case, usually the face will be the center point of your drawing so it's good to position it where you would like it to be, then draw the rest! The first step I do is lightly using a hard lead (I used an F pencil here) draw all the outlines of things, that way it's easier to fill in afterwards.
The next step I do, and this is new for me, but it works GREAT, is with a very soft lead, (I use a 6B, but you can go darker using an 8B) I draw in all the darkest areas, usually which would appear black in the photo that you are using. If you have a hard time seeing these places just scan the photo and up the contrast so they stand out more, especially if you're using a photo without much contrast.
Step 3 I use a slightly harder lead, but still pretty dark, in this case I used a 4B pencil. This is just to start shading in the shadows in the picture, usually they are from or around the dark areas that you already put in.
Annnnnd step 4! You add... everything else! To outline, and shade the rest of the portrait I use a 2B which is lighter still. The key to adding detail, in this case for all the lovely wrinkles, is to have simply... a sharp lead. Thats it! Just remember, when doing details not to add too much pressure, less is better. You don't want your subjects face to look like the Sahara desert am I right? ;-)
Here is a detail of the face. The wrinkles are still soft, not dark and hard. In this case I made his wrinkles a tad softer than in the photo I used for reference. He looks a bit younger this way. He would have been 101 years old this year. :-) Also, another quick tip, see the light bouncing off the glass lens? An easy way to achieve this is to use your eraser and lightly dab and rock the edge of the eraser back and fourth on the spot where the light shines. You get a nice faded affect this way. Works for me! :-)
Anyhow, thats it for now. Try drawing a portrait yourself! It's easier than you think. I did this as a Mother's day gift for my mom. There is something very special about giving a gift made by you and your two hands. :-)


Sunday, May 2, 2010

My fatties!

[fat-ee]plural -ties.
1. A round fat animal done in cutesy, cartooney form, usually birds.

2. Lori's obsession since the fall of 2009.

All jokes aside from "my imaginary dictionary", I have to say, fatties have taken over my life... or just my spare time. :-P

I conjured these little guys up last year while experimenting with scrapbooking. I tried my hand at paper collage and whatnot and produced the beginnings of the "fatties" I make today. I guess you can say over the last year they have been evolving into something so cute that I can barely stand it. Barely. ;-)

This week I tried doing some fattie drawings in watercolors and here is what came of them!

This one I decided to ink them, and I really liked how they were looking. They had the soft delicate colors that came from the paint, but I found with the ink, it made it much more simple.

I am also an avid Facebook nut, and yesterday I decided to ask friends and family to help a gal out. I would create a personalized fattie avatar for them, in exchange for some "free advertising" to spread the word of this new blog and my site as well. I knew they would do it anyhow, but I am grateful nonetheless. I seriously have THE coolest friends and family, and got to create a whack of awesome little fatties yesterday. Here are some of them. :-)

Anyhow, I have a new pencil portrait to do this week that I can't wait to get started on. So be prepared to see something completely different! Story of my life! :-)