White Wolves and goats…

The Stare-Down ~ 6″ x  6″ oil on handcut hardboard panel
So…I’ve read that it is important to share things about yourself as an artist and a blogger…really, my life isn’t all that interesting, but if you’ve ever wondered, here are five totally useless things about me that you probably didn’t know:
  1. I curl my toes under when I sit. Yup, weird, eh? (Oh yeah, I’m Canadian too, can’t you tell!) I’ve done it for as long as I can remember. I have big calluses on all of my toe-knuckles…Attractive, isn’t it?
  2. I chew the inside of my cheek when I’m nervous, bored, thinking…well, for any reason, really. It’s a habit I’m trying really hard to break, because it makes me really ugly, but it’s not working. See! I’m chewing it right now! Sigh:(
  3. The sound I hate most in the world is when a musician slides their finger down the string and their nail hits it and it makes…THAT SOUND! I just got jeebed out thinking about it…(shudder)
  4. My most favourite snack in the world is popcorn with coconut oil and curry powder. I sometimes eat it for lunch. Yum…I think I’ll go make some. I’m hungry.
  5. And finally, number five…I was a total dork in school. I mean the dorky dork. No friends, chubby with inch and a half curly hair…can you say mini fro?!, and I smelled like goats…I had to milk them before school. Not a pretty picture, really. 

Well, I hope that you all still like me after that brutal confessional. If you don’t, at least I hope you still like my art!

So bye until next time…when I talk about the consequences of goat milking on teenage developement…

Texas Gold ~ Texas Longhorn Cow oil painting demonstration

Texas Gold ~ 9″ x 12″ oil on canvas panel
I think I’ve mentioned before that a man down the road from us has Texas Longhorns. They’re such a fascinating animal. They look so powerful and intimidating, but in actuality they’re quite gentle and sweet natured.  Unfortunately, we live far from Texas, on the rainy West Coast of B.C., and light like this just doesn’t happen. I tried to imagine and convey the heat and intensity of a summer Texas sunset in this one, as I don’t think the mist and cedar trees of Bella Coola are a fitting environment for these magnificent beasts. For sale now at Daily Paintworks, click HERE to take you to the auction page.
Below, I’ve showed a few of the steps that I took in creating this painting. I know I should take more pics but I get so into what I’m doing that I forget to stop to show you my progress.

                         

Step 2 ~ about halfway done…I’m working out the shadow of the cow, and experimenting with the color of the background, adding some lights and mid tones, throwing in touches of pure color to excite the eye…(I hope, lol!)
Step 1 ~ the first block in. I do the darks first, working out the composition…It’s much easier to work darks into light than the other way around. I find that the darks provide the framework, and it’s everything on top that adds form.

Out of the Shadows

Out of the Shadows ~ 6″ x 6″ oil on panel
Here’s a change from the cows…I missed my horses! Cows are fun, but maybe I’m feeling more serious today. Horses are a lot more dignified, don’t you think?
The challenge in painting this was taking my substandard reference photos and getting the look of dramatic light on them! This worked out alright, me-thinks!
You can own this little lady by clicking right down here, to bid in the Daily Paintworks auction…

Got Milk? ~ Cow portrait

Got Milk?” 6″ x 6″ oil on canvas panel
click here to BID NOW on Daily Paintworks
I’m having a bit of fun again with the complementary colour scheme, and of course, cows…Painting cows always makes me happy. They’re just so endearing, that I can’t help but smile while I’m painting them. This little darling had just finished nursing from her mom and had a milk must mustache, but she’s not a bit concerned about it!
I’m really happy with how she turned out. I almost want to keep it for myself 🙂

Thoughts on Why I’m an Artist

False Modesty ~ 7″ x 9″ oil on canvas panel
For sale on Daily Paintworks
Why am I an artist?
Hmmmm….
I remember sitting at the coffee table, at five or six years old. We had a brown shag rug that tickled my knees. 
Someone had given me a sheet of tracing paper and it was a revelation.
I could draw something that looked like what it was supposed to! It wasn’t childish circle faces and triangle trees. It was a dog, or a horse, or whatever it was…I don’t even remember the subject, but it looked like what I’d meant it to look like! 
My parents had beamed and exclaimed over how beautiful it was, always encouraging even my most childish scribbles.
As I sit writing this, my six year old daughter has just run up to me, beaming,
with her tracing of Draculaura. “Look how good I’m doing, Mom!” she trills.
“Wow! That’s awesome!” I say. 
It doesn’t matter that it’s traced, it matters that it looks right to her. That day on the brown shag rug, I suddenly had confidence that maybe my little hand holding a pencil, could make something look right, how it was “supposed” to look. And I know that is what my daughter is feeling right now.
That day I decided I would be an artist. I didn’t stop drawing. I drew everything I could and soon I didn’t need to trace. I could make it “look right” all on my own.

Signs of Spring

You know it’s spring when these colourful little critters start popping up in fields all over the countryside!
I just can’t resist those long eyelashes and that little mischievious twinkle. She looks like she’s full of “piss and vinegar” as my dad would say;)
For this one, I tried to work the complementary colours of blue and orange to make this little gal pop. 
Curly Sue ~ 6″x 6″ oil on canvas panel
For sale on Daily Paintworks
Click HERE to bid.

Sunlit Bay

Sunlit Bay  6″ x 6″ oil on panel
For sale on Daily Paintworks
My attempt at showing strong sunlight on a dark horse…I must say he was a bit of a challenge, but I really enjoy working with the rich colors. 
This little guy is on Daily Paintworks starting at a really reasonable price. Click the link above, if you’re interested.

Sneek Peak ~ New painting in the works


Preliminary sketch for new painting
Here’s a sneek peek at my upcoming painting. This one will be larger than my little 6 x 6’s…at 16″ x 20″.
As usual, I combine multiple references and lighting effects to come up with a composition that works for me.  I try to stick with the rule of thirds for my center of interest, in this case the beautiful highlight on the face and the horse’s eye.
I also have some really exciting news today! I was the featured artist on ArtPromotivate, a popular art site. I’m so thrilled!
Check out my interview HERE
Happy New Years!
I hope you all have a fun night:)

Sundance the Buckskin

“Sundance” ~ 12″ x 16″ oil on Raymar Panel
BID NOW on Daily Paintworks
My newest painting…I’ve always been particularly enamoured with the buckskin, ever since “Dances with Wolves”. I wanted that horse so bad! I love the feeling of exuberance in his pose, like he’s about to explode into flight. I tried hard to achieve that feeling of liquid gold, how the sun glistening off of a horse’s coat can sometimes look metallic. The photo didn’t turn out very good this time. I’ll try to post new photos when the paint dries and the glare dies down.
Also, it snowed here, at least 6 inches over the last few days. It makes it much harder to get good photos. I usually take photos of my art outside, on an overcast day, which isn’t usually hard to do here, because it’s usually overcast! But the snow bounces light all over the place. I’ll have to come up with another solution.
Well, Bye for now:)

Dreams of Pegasus

12″ x 16″ oil on canvas covered wood panel
For sale on Daily Paintworks BID NOW
Lately I’ve returned to my first love…horses. I have to say, I was really inspired by this month’s International Artist winner, B.K. Lawes and his beautiful horse painting…just stunning with the black background and dramatic lighting. 
This painting is from one of my ACEO’s…revisited. I haven’t painted horses larger than 11 x 14 in years. This one isn’t much bigger, but as it was successful, I think I may try an even larger canvas…fun!