Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Autumn - acrylic, miniature paintings

Oh boy, I really am having fun with these aceo / atc sized paintings. It has been so long since I used a brush - except to brush away the pastel dust - and I am feeling a little awkward but I will persevere. I have used a relatively large brush for the paintings in the last couple of posts, hence the lack of details. I have tried using an 00 size brush fo a couple of details in these paintings but have been having problems with the viscosity of the paint - I need more practise.

Anyway take a look and see what you think. I have now done seven of these and am considering trying to sell them on Ebay or Etsy. I have received some complimentary comments on Flickr and Facebook. No one seems to read this blog though, note the lack of comments. That's not quite true I know that I do get readers from the stats supplied by Blogger perhaps these are people who come here from those two sites (Flickr / FB) and feel that one comment is enough, LOL.

Here they are:-

Red Sky At Night

The Way Home

As you can see the detail work, especially, leaves a lot to be desired. I will be practising with that brush which may even be a 000. It does not seem to have much in the way of hairs in it, and my old eyes have difficulty with using it. The images are just about life size, on my screen anyway.

If you would like to see some of my watercolour ACEO / ATC's from a while ago then take a minute to watch this video, well it is actually 7 mins but you dont have to stay until the end. The sountrack is also by me. Composed and created on the PC.

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Miniature acrylic landscape painting - Autumn

I have been having fun with the miniature paintings on stretched canvas. being so small of course does mean that there is a very noticeable weave pattern when taking a photograph.

This one is a little disappointing in that the pathway does not have enough tonal contrasts, but see what you think. Of course one of the beauties of using acrylics rather than say watercolour, is that if I am not satisfied, I can of course go back over it, even starting again by painting a white layer over the whole thing. I sometimes forget this as I paint only making the point to myself when it is finished.

I am not sure whether it is teaching me anything but at least I am getting away from the pastels which seem to have taken me over. I do love soft pastels though but I have of late been painting with them to the exclusion of  other media. Therefore, this project is very welcome as it is making me question where I am going

I was looking thru some You Tube videos, acrylic demos in a loose style and came across this one by Jennifer Perez. Caught my attention because she takes a landscape which didn't work, covers it with white and some texture and then starts another painting. Also she is painting from sketches which she does in quiet moments from her mind / memory. Just like I often do. Many times I will simply draw something without using any refernce material. I can do this because my paintings are kept very simple. I do not like to add too much detail as you will have noticed if you have read any of my previous posts. One other point she seems to like colour, and uses colour because she likes it, not necessarily because it is in front of her. Here is the video:-

Loose and colourful painting, just my kind of art. Another artist I noticed was Robert Joyner, one to go back and watch another day.

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Painting Art To Sell

I wonder how many artists select themes or subjects to paint because of a wish to sell their art? I have always painted for myself but realise that it is possible for an artist wishing to make a living from their work to wish to paint subjects ( at least some of the time) which will sell and make a living.

A recent pastel landscape

I found a report recently about the top themes for art which sells, I may even have posted about it on this blog, and decided to write a Squidoo lens on the subject. It was not a new report, possibly 2-3 years old but I found it interesting.

In fact my favourite themes of abstract landscapes and local views came out well up in the list. I often wonder whether I should be stretching myself a little more and getting out of my comfort zone once in a while. I did at one time and have some decent portraits to show for it, but skills need practice and these days I do not paint enough to keep up with all the skills I would like let alone find new ones.

Sketches from life, from the past

Take a look at the Squidoo lens and make up your own minds about the usefulness of such a listing, is your favourite theme there and if not why not?

I would love to know what you think, leave me a comment on the lens or here on the blog

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

John Hopkins Demonstration at Knowle Art Group

I have mentioned my art group (Knowle Art Group) many times, mostly it is a way of providing a little discipline into a very busy life. Once a week at least I sort out a few supplies, get into the car and drive to a meeting with some fellow artists where we all sit around and paint. Oh and we also put the world to rights while busily painting it. There is no formality, we all simply get on with painting anything that takes our fancy and the group uses, individually, a number of mediums. Oil, acrylic, pastel and of course watercolour are all represented. It is a small and happy group and we enjoy our Tuesday evenings. I am afraid that I have too many distractions these days to find time to paint in a very busy life, so attendance is the spur to create art.

However, four or five times a year we have what we call one of our special nights. These take the form of demonstrations or workshops, as many of them as possible with professional artists in the lead. Being a smallish group, we have to watch the pennies, after paying for the rental of the premises, exhibition expenses, refreshments for out meetings and various other fees we spend any surplus on demos by professional artists. One such artist, who gave us a very interesting and inspiring demonstration yesterday, is

John is a local professional artist with a very informal approach who is always willing to fully answer all the questions put to him. The group has in fact received several demos from John (see another) and one or two members know him from classes which he holds locally. You can see some of his watercolour paintings in his site gallery.

I am posting here a couple of watercolour sketches which I did some time ago, I guess that this type of painting still comes over in my pastel work. In fact the second was a painting which I did as a demonstration to the group, once upon a time, because of a large influx of  inexperienced painters and we put on a number of demos to try to encourage them.

But I have not done any water colour painting for some time. However, when we have these demos it is surprising how inspiring they can be. I have a small project on with the miniature acrylic canvases mentioned in the last two posts; I fully intend to do a few more for potential sale on Ebay, etc. I will be dusting off the watercolour paints though and putting in a little practice to get the feel of a brush back. Watch this space!

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

And Then There Were Four - Acrylic Paintings

Again this week I was painting more of the miniature canvasses. I have really enjoyed this and now I am all set to try and sell them on the internet. Not sure if it is going to be Ebay or Etsy, or maybe even both. I have not yet tried Etsy although I have an account on there and then again there is always Ebid, I keep saying that I am going to close the Bonanza account and move the items (all collaged ATC's) to Etsy. Bonanza certainly hasn't done any good at all for me, I think they leave promotion to the individual and Of course promotion is not one of my strong points, which is why I am not sure which of these two sites I should use. Ebay has the more buyers but Etsy is at least specialised. Procrastination strikes again!

OK enough chatter, here are the four canvasses together:-

They make a nice set according to my colleagues at the art group, and I think I agree with them.

Here is number 3 and 4:-

The set is really not a single theme, two are sunset / evening, and the other two are mornings; at least that is my interpretation.

I am intending to buy some more of these because as I said I enjoyed the experience. I love working samll and being able to work "sketchily" and complete a particular piece in an evening / session. And it is certainly very easy to complete these in 40-50 minutes as described in my last post.

As usual larger images are available on my Flickr account.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Sunset/Sunrise; Acrylic paintings on stretched canvas

Two canvases, each on its own easel, But hang on they are standing on my laptop! No, it's not a composite image, they actually are that small. In fact they are 2.5 x 3.5 inches (64x89mm), the regular ATC/ACEO format. If you don't know what this is read my article on Squidoo titled "Making Artist Trading Cards - 1001 Technique". 

I have been considering creating some art to sell, it is coming up to christmas, and the small ACEO was very profitable for me at one time. I found myself trading work rather than selling and moved into mixed media and collage but there has always been a desire to move back into that activity. Most of the ACEO's that I sold were actually in watercolour but when I saw these dinky little canvas and eaasel sets I thought to myself, "I must get a few and see where it takes me". Last night at my art group I finally decided to make a start and try to capture a few skyscapes. A subject I love painting.

These were the outcome, took me about 45-50 minutes for each one, I do put a lot of myself into these paintings even though they are quite simple and very small. Here is a close up view of both of these paintings. The size of the weave on the canvas is obvioualy quite big relative to the canvas size.

In actual fact, I painted them from imagination so they do not represent any particular place or time but I will still call them sunsets. I have a few more to paint and then I think I will be posting them for sale on Etsy, I have not tried this site yet but I am loathe to go back to Ebay and other sites I have tried have not been very successful.

I will accept offers before they are posted for sale, LOL. Expect more in the near future.