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.