Monday, December 27, 2010

Portrait Painting -- in Oils

The above is my first attempt at portrait painting, using a photograph of my niece. I am using techniques which I have learnt since taking up a class in the summer. I painted it back in October but as it was a secret present for Christmas, I couldn't post it then. Anyway, my niece has changed her appearance quite a bit since the summer when the photo was taken, but I include the photo for viewers to compare. Below is a closer view. Comments welcome, regarding how you feel I succeeded or didn't, thanks ... Wishing all blog readers a Happy New Year, Jim

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Winter in the Woods - New Painting in Progress

Winter in the Woods
The above is the first look at a painting I began today. This shows the initial progress, as I am drawing the painting as I paint it, and not drawing it in beforehand. I am using Prussian Blue and Raw Umber to paint the dark in the trees and adding Cadium yellow to the mix to produce a lighter colour in the edges. I also add Titanium White to the mix of blue and umber to obtain the greyer shades in the foreground. The sky is straightforward Cerulean Blue and Titanium white, with more white than usual to create the colder look to the sky. I am going to add touches of other colours such as ochres and reds as I progress, but that's it for now, so enjoy. Check back to see further progress updates of this and other works which I have on the go at the moment. Comments welcome, thanks Jim

Friday, December 10, 2010

Finished stilllife, Wine glass with bottle and fruit in bowl.

Above is my finished still-life painting of wine and wineglass with fruit, which has been something different from my usual subject matter. I have been seeking to learn more techniques and painting still-life subjects is something I have little previous experience of, so I was interested to do this painting. I have learnt a lot from it, and it is another step forward in my ability. I hope you enjoy it and comment if you feel like it. I like to hear some feedback what you think. I am moving on to next paintings now, one of which is an outdoor scene again, of a meadow and an oak tree. I will show some photos over the next while. Bye for now - Jim

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Still Life -- Wine, Wineglass and Fruit in a Bowl

Above is an unfinished still life painting, I am currently working on. There is still a lot of colour balancing and refinement to do. I am unsure how much it will take yet, but I still need to alter certain parts. I need more reflections on the wine bottle and glass perhaps. I also need to work on the background somewhat. I am posting it here as a blog update, to show what I am currently exploring as I continue to learn new technique and increase my ability to paint different subject matter. It was for this reason that I chose this subject as I have seldom painted still life. Feel free to comment on the current progress of this painting.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Reflections on the Blog - Painting Progress

The blog appears to be getting more traffic lately. I see that page views have edged up past 1000 per week in the last few days. I am unsure if this is a true reading but may be an indication that I am slowly gathering a presence in the online art world. Not to get ahead of myself, this is a minor amount of traffic compared to most web sites. Still can't complain. Now if it was translated into sales of my paintings!!

I have been working on a still life at an art class I have been attending since August. The techniques I am learning are really helping speed up and improve my ability, and I consider it well worthwhile so far. I have made some fundamental changes to how I approach paintings since August. I hope you can start to see it in the last few paintings I have shown here. Scroll down and compare my last four paintings with previous works. Maybe it's not so noticeable but I feel it, in speed of completion and ease of getting things right.

The above work is "Under the Cherry Tree" by John Lavery, Irish Artist. He is one of the best Irish artists and in the top echelon of Irish art, selling usually in the 100K range or higher. Hopefully I will eventually be producing work of that quality. That is one goal to aim for!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Jumping the Surf -- Finished Painting

Now I am working hard to finish a number of outstanding paintings, so this is finished this morning, although I have yet to sign it. I will do that in a few days when I have let it dry a bit. The painting is medium size, 22 x 16 inches and on canvas. I am not sure if I will sell it yet. I will think about that, as it is of my niece and nephew. I will probably make prints of it and hang on to the original. Unless I get a very big offer! So enjoy it and wait for more updates as I have several other works which are in progress that I should get to over the next while.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Daisy Meadow -- Finished Oil Painting

Short Update -- here is the finished painting of Daisy Meadow, which actually looks better in reality than this photo portrays, as my camera ability, or camera is not always the best. However here it is, and I will try to get a better photo sometime, as the colours as not as vibrant here as in my original painting. Enjoy and feel free to comment. More updates when new work is progressed further. This work is available for sale along with other work in my gallery, scroll down to see, and send an email to enquire regarding any piece. Thanks Jim

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Further progress shots...current works.

The above is the next stage of my daisies painting which is quite complex and I am reducing the amount of detail to some extent. I have painted completely the flower heads of the top rightmost daisies and still have to complete the other flowers. I will then go back over the whole painting, trying to refine and balance the emphasise of light and tones, to bring a muted feel to the background while allowing the daisies to take centre stage. Update during the week hopefully.
The above seascape is not quite there yet. I have more to do on the waves on the left and some refinements of small discrepancies in the background near the horizon and around the childrens heads. It is not too far away from finishing. I will post an update this week most likely.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Daisy Flower Painting in Oils -- Update

As followers of the blog will see, I have several paintings on the go at the same time now, and this is an update of my flower painting of daisies. It is really at the end of what I generally call the first stage, which is underpainting. Sometimes, underpainting is enough in some areas of the painting but normally there is more work needed in most to create the tones and shadows which are required. Here, you can see that some parts are barely covered in paint...but to get this far has been time-consuming enough as it is an intricate painting. I like it, and hope it appeals to all you flower lovers out there. Maybe it will remind you of walking in summer meadows on a warm day.
I am considering the addition of a few butterfly, ladybird companions for the flowers. Not sure about that yet. Will think about it. Anyway, that's the short update. Continue to check in as I progress all my current paintings during the weeks ahead, and start new ones.
I am gathering a collection of work now towards a possible exhibition, and have to think about venues in a few months time perhaps. I still have a lot of work to do if I am to do that. I will see.
Also I am toying with the idea of doing a series of some subjects, as in slightly different paintings of similar themes. I haven't done this so much in the past, as I like to vary my subject matter. I do see that most artists do stick to limited subjects, and gain a following by being recognised for such. I however would rather gain recognition for being an artist capable of excelling in many types of subject. I don't want to be limited. Yet, I may concentrate on some themes more than others in the future. I have yet to decide. For now, I will try to build a style which regardless of subject is recognised as being my own.
So as always feel free to comment and enjoy stopping by. Lastly - another plug for my etsy shop, call there if you would like to buy my art as affordable prints! Jim

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Surf Painting Seascape further progress shot

As promised, here is my latest update shot of my current seascape painting. I have done some work on the children in the centre, and although they are not finished entirely, as there is some shaping of them to do, this completes the initial covering of the canvas. This allows me to see the overall impression of how the red on the horizon looks as it is very different from the photo I am working from which is a completely blue horizon. I think that the tinged horizon adds something to the painting and shall leave it while I continue to develop the rest of the painting. I have more work to do on the waves and foreground apart from touching up the children a little more.

I am very pleased with how this is turning out so far, and have learnt a lot in the process of working on it, especially about how photos are deceiving in their capturing of what are eyes see so much better. Hence, painting from photos is not ideal by a long shot, although sometimes we have no choice. Feel free to leave comments as always if you like my work...

And stop by my etsy shop to see some of my work for sale as prints.
Thanks Jim

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Daisy Meadow Flower Painting

This is the initial stage of my next painting, which I have just sketched out. I don't use pencil on the canvas as it is difficult to cover in paint and instead I draw out with charcoal before going over it in paint. Here I have drawn in a medium green, made from mixing viridian and cadmium yellow. I am blocking in the background darker areas for now with viridian mixed with raw umber. I will update during the week as I progress this painting.

If you want to buy a print of a daisy I painted before, visit my Etsy shop. To see previous art demonstrations, here are some links: snowscene, clew bay, fishing in a lake, etc. You can also search under art demonstrations on the blog tags list on the right column. I hope you enjoy the site and spend some time browsing my art. I am selling original paintings in the gallery at the bottom of this page. Please scroll down to view them.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Croagh Patrick from road to Delphi Valley - Finished Painting

This is the finished painting I did this last week of Croagh Patrick. It is not the usual view of the mountain. It is looking at it from the south west side, so view above is facing north west. If you drive the road, which heads south, you arrive at Mweelrea Mountain and then onwards into the Delphi Valley heading south towards Killary Fjord, the only fjord in Ireland. This is the boundary between Galway and Mayo counties. Mweelrea is the highest mountain in Connaught but Croagh Patrick is not far behind. The colours are very close to those on the day and I am not brightening them too much compared to reality. I have also been working on other different types of subject, to see what I can do to improve. I have started a painting of children playing in surf, see below. This is a larger than the above painting, 16 x 22 versus the above 12 x 16 inch work. All my paintings are on canvas and I am using the Artists grade paints from Windsor and Newton, so all should be very good quality and fade proof.

When I get this finished in the next week or two I will post the final work online here. Due to the slight difficulty in photographing I have cropped a little of the picture off in the above, so it is slightly larger in reality, especially at the bottom. In the meantime I will be working in other ideas alongside this one. If you want to see my continued progress, make sure to subscribe to the blog and get automatic updates, or call back often. I post approx. once a week now, when I have new work. I am getting faster at painting due to learning better techniques, hence there will be faster progress in my ability, and more paintings to see!! Hopefully! I have several works finsihed now and when I get enough, approximately 20 - 30, I will explore organising an exhibition of my work. That appears to be a way of showing my work on a wider scale here in Dublin.

Anyway that's it for now - hope some people will leave comments and feedback as it's a way for me to know if you think I am improving. Something I am trying very hard to do now.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Croagh Patrick from Delphi Valley Road Update

This is where I am at on the current painting, almost finished, maybe another two hours or so. Still some work to do on the middle and foreground especially, but looking pretty okay already. Will post finished version very soon. This is 12 x 16 inches on canvas. - That's it for a quick update, feel free to comment. Jim

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Art Marketing, Croagh Patrick Painting

I have been researching the state of the Irish Art Market, talking to artists and just trying to get a feel for how things are out there. I talked to artists selling on the railings in Malahide, a small but popular town just north of Dublin, and also on Merrion Square, in the city centre. They sell their art there, week in, week out, through the summer months. The season for Malahide is winding down now, but I believe that Merrion Square is a year round event. There is a long waiting list to get on this venue!! Two years possibly...

Anyway I have just finished reading the book "Sold, the inside story of how Ireland got bitten by the art bug" by John Burns. It is a real insight into who is who around the galleries and auction rooms of this city. I have had dealings with one or two of the people mentioned or interviewed in the book. It really is a worthwhile read for anyone trying to understand how the galleries and auction rooms operate. The main conclusion of the book is how the auction rooms are taking over the primary market from galleries where they used to only focus on the secondary market. Now the galleries are changing their focus too, to compete against them. Now galleries are moving more into art fairs to stay ahead of the auction rooms taking their business. In fact, last year I sold through auction, which is exactly why galleries are losing out. I am now more conscious of how this may be bad in the long run for both gallery and artist, as galleries are the main promoters of artists, not auction rooms. However, most artists that sell directly through auction are like me, unrepresented yet by galleries, so maybe the galleries are not doing too bad. I do see though that many seriously successful artists are also selling in auction rooms. The end result I guess is that the market will decide what eventually happens, although some galleries have closed in the last while.
The above is a shot of one of my latest in progress works, of which I now have several. I will post further when finished. Due to learning and changing from this, my painting technique has got faster. I hope that this will still mean acceptable quality, something I have to be careful of paying attention to. The above is an indoor shot and a little dull due to this. It's also underpainting, and needs more colour adjusting. The place is looking at the back of Croagh Patrick in Mayo, from the road to the Delphi valley. The time is middle of summer. If just a few weeks later, the vegetation colour changes a lot! Enjoy and check back to see further progress...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Mermaid Watercolour Painting - Sketch Development

The above is what I have been working on after the last oil painting. As you can see, it is a photo of a printout, which is various pages scanned and stuck together in paint program and my printer only prints A4 so the above is 20 x 16 inches or so.. The creation of the final idea was a gradual process changing and shaping ideas in my head. Eventually I have what is a reasonable idea which I am relatively happy with. Since the above photo, I have made some more small changes, adding in more surf droplets, changing the shape of the mermaids tails to have them all like the mermaid on the left top, and suchlike. I am hoping to have the time to do two versions of this image, mirror images of each other, the above in watercolour and the other in oils. It will mean a bit of dedicated effort, if I am to do it. I may just do one, in watercolour for now, as I want to concentrate on creating more images of fantasy nature. I want to build up a small portfolio of similar work, all based on fantasy themed subjects.

To all followers of this blog, and would be artists out there, I have to say, that creating original ideas like this takes some time and effort, stretching the imagination, but it really is worth it. I don't know how imaginative it is, but it is a small step forward, and the feeling of satisfaction at creating something really original can't be beat!

In the beginning, I had started with the below idea, and it evolved into the above. I may do a version like below at some stage too, but it contains a lot of spaces which I don't find so interesting, such as lower left and top distance, so decided to try a different arrangement. That was what led to the above. As always, feel free to comment on any sketches, paintings, etc. And check out my etsy shop too -- a lot of my art will eventually make it into prints for sale online there.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Teddy Bear Painting - Just Finished!

Childhood Friends
The above painting is my latest, just finished work. I have put a watermark on it, but this is only on the digital image of course! Anyway, this has been a step forward for me in terms of technique and ability, so I am quite pleased with how it turned out. I have been taking classes in oils recently and the above has been influenced by that fact. I have concentrated on improving the tones and colour matching so as to improve the light and feeling of reality in the painting. I took a lot of photos to get the right composition for this painting using my niece's teddies! This painting is oil on canvas 24 x 18 inches. As always I'd like to hear feedback and comments on it, that's why I put it up here. Hopefully I can do the next one as good!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

My Etsy Shop - Click on Picture below to visit!!

My etsy online shop is being revamped and will be showing more of my work for sale in the coming weeks and months. I am researching and working on improving and offering more work for sale there. Please feel free to call in and enjoy browsing, and maybe even see something you would like to buy. Regards Jim

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

What is real talent? Take a look...

You use a mirror to see your face, you use art to see your soul.

I am reading a book at the moment about the last decade of craziness in the Irish Art Market. Basically - the last decade was characterised by an unsustainable boom and now we have the bust. I doubt if we will return to those times in a hurry. Many rich people bought what to me would be considered mediocre art. Take for example Markey Robinson. He is a deceased artist whose works change hands for quite a lot, yet he is considered very mediocre by the critics. What was considered important is that you had a recognisable style and also a distinctive brand, after that talent and technique fell a distant third and fourth place. I want to show you what real talent is...take a look at the artist called Akiane, and she is still only 16. You can see videos of her working here, and her website here. This is real talent. She is rated among the top 20 achievers in art at present worldwide. Her paintings sell for 100 - 150,000 dollars, with 175,000 being her top price approx. to date.
The photo above is one I took in Sardinia in April. It's taken from a beach on Santa Maria island in the Magdelena Archipelago, here for you to enjoy.
Given my feeling that my last painting was a reasonable success I am going to try a larger scale painting again for my next effort. So be sure to check for to see progress over next month or so. Jim

Monday, July 19, 2010

Irish Landscape Painting - Atlantic Coast Achill Island

This is my latest painting, done using a reference photo taken by my sister while travelling in Achill, Mayo. Those who have been to Achill Island, they will perhaps have driven the Atlantic Coast route which really is breathtaking and full of scenery like this. The photo I used was taken in grey overcast conditions with low cloud so I have had to do a lot of colour changes. I will leave it up to you to judge the outcome, so comments and criticisms are welcome. This is a larger painting than usual for me, 24 x 18 inches, on canvas. I will continue to work on some larger sizes for the foreseeable future as I haven't done so in the past and want to see how they look. To see this painting larger scroll down this page to my gallery below. That's it for now and enjoy it. I will be working on something new fairly soon...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Summer Update to Blog

I haven't posted for quite a while, the reason being various, but mostly due to that I have been pursuing other interests and working on various house projects. I could have applied myself more to my art but something has to give when you want to get so many things done. One of the reasons my art has taken a backseat was a need to gather reference material. I went to the west of Ireland recently and have gathered a small reservoir of photographic material which I will work through for a while, in between using other ideas too. So now I shall get back to finishing existing works and start on some new stuff. To all my patience followers I say thankyou and hope to start posting on a more consistent basis for a while at least.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Swan painting and my painting style developing more.

Here is a further update from my latest painting. It is almost finished. I have done a slight bit of manipulation of the colour on the computer to make it reflect reality, due to the light I took the photo in, as the reality is not so dull. Anyway, this is showing that I still have some work to do on the upper part of the background. I have used a bit of free expression in the brushstrokes in the water and other areas - so the design of the swirls is similar to lines I often make in my handwriting. I can't help it, it's just my style coming through. If you are interested in painting a similar painting, then it is most likely you will fall into your own style naturally and it won't be the same. I can't change my painting style easily and actually I quite like the way it turns out. Some people say that they can recognise my paintings instantly from my brushstrokes, so that can't be a bad thing. I want to be unique from other artists. Anyhow, if you like to see my swirling style, have a look at "In the Desert of the blue Stones". That really shows it. I hope you will comment on this work, to let me know what you think of current progress. I am really trying hard to make this a great painting! The lower half is just about finished. Soon, I will post the full finished version. Enjoy this current glimpse of my progress. Happy Easter to everyone! Jim

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Swan Painting -- Further Progress

Further progress shot of my latest oil painting, showing the underpainting, and the start of the next layers on the top left and bottom right. I am avoiding using extremely dark black colours in the reeds for now. I want to see how the colours that I am using here look and see how the tones work together, before darkening any necessary areas. I am using a number of blues, cobalt, prussian and cerulean to make the blue water, and mixing them with lemon and cadmium yellow light to achieve the various greens. I have used some paynes grey, but not a lot. Titanium white is plentiful in the colour mixes. I also used some cadmium yellow with cobalt blue to mix darker greens.
I am hoping that if I put in the extra effort on this painting I can get it to a stage where, without it looking overworked, it should stand as one of the best I have done in the last two years. To do this I am concentrating on focusing while applying each brushstroke, instead of just painting lots of brushstrokes without really thinking. I am trying hard to concentrate and "think" before applying any paint, asking myself is it the right shade, location and how will it fit in.
If I have time I want to go to the National Gallery, here in Dublin, to get a look at other artists work and see if I can learn anything from their work. Hope I can do that soon. That's it for today, and check back as always for the next update. -- Jim

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Swan in Reeds -- Work in Progress March

Here's a snapshot of current progress on my next work, which is a return to what I have found to be a popular theme. Swans seem to appeal to people a lot, and they are quite enjoyable to paint. This is a square canvas, the last of three I got prepared years ago for some fantasy ideas I had, (see my paintings The dream by the river, and Symphony of silence). It is a linen canvas as opposed to cotton. This painting is not as complicated as some I have done so might progress quicker, if I don't devote too much time to my other interests. Anyway - that's it for the moment and check back over the next while as always for further updates.

If you are interested in prints or originals of my work - scroll down and feel free to email me . Prints cost 12 euro and postage should cost only a few euro extra to worldwide. They are generally A3 size or as close to it as possible, on 300gm paper and are laser prints from a high quality industrial machine. Originals are available but I never seem to have more than a few at any time due to ongoing sales, so choice might be a little limited. Prices range from 200-500 euro.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Poetry Corner -- Featured poet -- Anna Vera Williams

It's been a while since poetry corner featured on the blog. So here is a poem from a very original poet who is still producing some astounding work. It is reproduced here with kind permission, and you can see more at her blog.

Do you wish

Do you ever wish
To paint your life
In black and white,
And hang some sad nostalgic music in the back,
And put it on a TV screen
For men in future years to see
And say, "This must have been
The way things used to be"...?

Do you ever walk the street
And half-imagine you might meet,
Some half-forgotten face from long ago
Although inside you really know
You're walking where they'd never go?

Do you ever sit and look
At ancient photos you once took,
Long-lost faces in a book,
And examine them a million times
As if to read between the lines,
As if you might see something more,
That wasn't ever there before...
Something new, that might resolve
The mystery you never solved?

Do you ever wonder why
Faces wilt and flowers die,
People change and time goes by,
Leaving you to stand and sigh
At night beneath the starry sky
Watching comets fall and fly...?

Anna Vera Williams

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Final Posting of Birch Forest

Just a few touch-ups since the last post, hardly noticeable but this is the final version. Enjoy it! See it also in the for sale gallery, just scroll down.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Birch Forest further update... Almost finished.

Here is another step closer to the finished painting. There is still a bit to do, but mostly it is adjustments of the tone or painting the tree trunks lighter sections. When finished, this painting will be put in the gallery below, scroll down to see other paintings.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Oil painting of Birch Tree Forest continued...

Another update for anyone following this current painting in progress. Almost there, and coming on nicely - if I do say so myself! I am stretching myself a little on this one, which is good. No point in painting easy subjects all the time. Challenging yourself is well worthwhile. Anyway comments are welcome and enjoy! Final updates will be coming up soon as I am close to finishing this one. Now what will I paint next?? Hmmm...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Ongoing progress with Birch Forest Painting

Here are some update photos of progress on my latest painting Birch Forest. The colour varies slightly from photo to photo due to my taking them in changing light conditions, sometimes near a window indoors or on a cloudy day. The above is pretty close to the reality. The previous shots all seem a little dull compared to the actual painting. I use artists grade pigments so the colours are more intense. I think it's worth the extra expense for me. I hope to finish this painting this week. I have had a lot of distractions in the last three weeks, as I had to complete a commissioned mural design and other obligations. Anyway comments welcome and enjoy!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Dragon Fairy -- Oil Painting and Print

This week I have put the birch forest painting on hold for a few days, which actually have turned into a week and a half. The reason is I have been drawing and designing some other ideas, the first of which I have shown a part of above. Yes, it's a fairy painting, and I am going to paint a series of them over the next while interspersed with my landscape art. I intend to offer prints of the above and the other ideas I am working on. These ideas are somewhat along the lines of the fantasy art I concentrated on back in 2004, see below gallery - Desert of the Blue Stones, Symphony of Silence (see my artvitae site for this work -- link on right below) etc. So comments and criticisms welcome. I am interested in your feedback. I really enjoyed working on the above this week as I had to get back to my basic drawing skills, and also it gets my imagination working again. So check back again to see the finished work. Faery and fantasy art is something I like doing a lot as I have enjoyed painting and drawing fantasy since my childhood days some of which I spent reading lots of comics and fantasy books. I shall most likely finish the birch forest painting this week if possible so will post it when done.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Birch Forest Update and Painting Style

As I am progressing this painting I have been thinking about style a lot and just exactly what it is. I think a lot could be written about it but I just want to put up a short post now so will write more another time. For now my thoughts have been that we are always told we will develop our own style, but what if that style fails to be one you are happy with. Is style out of our control? Can we fight against our natural painting inclinations (which seems to be what partially if not entirely is what style is defined as). I think we can change our style, but it can only be done in small steps and has to be a very conscious effort. If we don't think about it and paint we will see what our default style is, but starting from there we can refine it towards the direction we want. It is like trying to change your handwriting. I did this when I was a teenager. I consciously made small incremental changes in my writing letter by letter incorporating ways of writing that I liked into my writing and dropping shapes I didn't. Eventually I had developed a very unique writing style which to this day I don't want to change anymore. In my own painting over the last year I have begun to see my default style. Now I can assess it, and slowly I may make changes as and where I think best. I may not change too much at all, but it has to be a conscious effort and I am reasonably happy with many features of my current style. However there is always room for improvement, either in brush stroke or colour choice or many other areas. So as I tweak things from painting to painting maybe I will be able to improve my style making it more my own, and maybe it will be harder than I imagine. We will have to wait and see.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Birch Forest -- Update

I think it's quite fascinating to look back on the photographic records I am making of my painting progress. I can see what I have done right and wrong when I do so, and I especially like to have the record of progress when the painting turns out particularly well. As for this painting it is reaching maybe the one third of the way stage. There is still a lot to do, but things are starting to take shape, and that's exciting and what spurs you on to finish. Enjoy today's offering and check back again for more updates on this paintings progress and other works which I will display.

Feel free to subscribe via my links on the right and scroll down to see the paintings in my gallery section -- some of which are for sale, also many of which I have available as laser prints, just email me for availability to Prints are 10 euro not counting p&p.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Birch Forest -- Current Work in Progress Update

I will be posting more progress shots of this current painting over the next week or so, so if you would like to see how it develops, be sure to stop by again. Why not bookmark or subscribe to the blog via the link on the right? Anyway enjoy, and check back for more when you can.

This year, apart from my usual size paintings of 12 x 16 and 16 x 20 inch paintings, I intend to paint some larger works, up to perhaps 30 x 30 maybe. That might not be so large for some artists, but they have to fit into my car, and I have to be able to sell them too!! So have to be practical also. However I believe there is a shortage of larger paintings such as would be above a fireplace or as a centrepiece in a room available at a reasonable price, so I intend to offer something along those lines. So that will be something to try in 2010....

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Art Marketing and the year ahead...

One of the aims I have set for this year is to get more disciplined about marketing, and hopefully more productive on the art side. I have so many other demands on my time that art can find itself on the back burner sometimes. So I think if I can at least paint a little on a regular basis, it will be still more productive than a longer session on less frequent basis. That said, I have been thinking about ways of gaining more sales from and interest in the blog. So how has it been doing since it was started in June 2008. Well as can be seen from the visitor logs on the right (scroll down) the vast majority of the visitors are coming from 7 or 8 countries.

United States 3000, United Kingdom 1000, Ireland 800, Canada 400, India 200, Australia 150, Germany 100, Phillipines 90. These are the top visitors to the blog and with the exception of India, Germany and Phillipines, are fairly predictable. These 8 countries are 75 - 80 % of all visitors to the blog. The counter on the bottom of the blog shows 18000+ individual page hits (many of which are mine).
I would be interested in gaining an idea of how many regular visitors I might have. So if you are a repeat visitor, please feel free to leave a short comment or sign up to the subscription on the right, which will give you an automatic alert to any new posts.
During the next year I hope to be able to offer a larger range of painting sizes and prices, which will allow a greater choice to you, the customer! So feel free to visit the gallery below, just scroll down to see all my available art! Currently if you like to buy anything I can be contacted by but I will be putting prices on all new work. If your budget doesn't stretch to buying an original, I currently sell laser prints on 300 gram paper of most of my more popular and recent paintings, for 10 euro each. Just inquire by email of you see something you would like to purchase a print of, as it may be available. Unfortunately I can't vouch for their lightfastness as these are laser prints, but giclee prints are much more costly to produce at the moment!!
Finally - I intend to be reintroducing the buy it now buttons which I had on previously at some stage. I just have to refresh how to do that and use them when I know I will be around to send on any painting purchased. I have found that it is possible to send a small to medium size painting (up to 12 x 16 inches) safely in the post unframed to anywhere in the world, for a cost of approximately 20 euro or 30 dollars.
So looking forward to an enjoyable 2010 -- a belated Happy New Year to all! -- Jim

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

January -- Painting Trees

I have been taking a few photographs of trees and currently have a book out from the library which specialises in painting this subject, so I have decided to practice a bit on that score. So this is to show the initial sketch of what I did last night. Hopefully I will be able to progress a bit each day over the next while. The run up to Christmas and the Christmas season took me away from painting so I shall try to update the blog as and when I can.