This is a late ‘nod’ to the February/March challenge organized by Leslie Saeta. I don’t usually choose a theme and instead explore a variety of subject matter – this is all about the ‘practice’! I started with a dog painting and thought maybe I might do a few more during the 30 days and I ended up with 30 dogs! (And still going) I am learning every time I paint a pup and it is interesting to look at where I started and where I ended up on Day 30. You can see the individual paintings on the gallery page – Year of the Dog
It’s been a busy couple of months. Depending on what I have to organize things can go either smoothly or extremely messy. This go round….extremely messy. Anyhow it is done and I am happy it is! Now I can spend a bit of time in my studio before the christmas season starts.
So where does the dog journal fit into all this you ask? We have just adopted another yellow lab and she is gradually settling in to our home and routine with our other lab Cleo. Both girls have been adopted at an older stage in life and we are very lucky to have them as part of our family. Cleo has the most expressive and unique face – so different from Kali (the new girl). I don’t know Kali well enough yet to capture her personality and features. Cleo having been with us longer has fascinating facial features and expressions.
The first painting is Cleo and will be one of many I hope and maybe a ‘big’ canvas at some point! The other is just a quick painting of no dog in particular, but just experimenting relying on memory rather than a reference.
This painting is actually 11″X14″, but it was too large to fit on the scanner so had to crop it.
Had a few problems – okay several problems – with ‘shape’ in this one – it has gone through several ‘applications’ of paint and collage. I didn’t take before(s) but it started off with small shapes – too small really. This is something I struggle with and I am trying to start with bigger areas of paint/shapes. This painting has the larger shapes, but not sure if there is enough variety within the shapes – these are much better than the ‘start’ though! I am going to call this ‘finished’ but is a painting ever finished?
Fall is here!! We woke this morning to gorgeous yellows and oranges interspersed with the dark greens of fir trees. We weren’t sure how much colour we would have this year. An infestation of leaf eating caterpillars decimated a lot of the poplar trees of leaves in the spring and then a summer of extremely dry conditions left some trees and shrubs withering away. But Mother Nature is undaunted and has provided us with another beautiful fall.
A busy Saturday at our house! Took the last couple of hours to finish off this painting. Inspired by our summer vacation in the Rock Lake Solomon Creek Wildland. In the province of Alberta ‘…wildland parks are large, undeveloped natural landscapes that retain their primeval character….’. And yes they are all that and more!
This view is done from memory – looking to the west from the top of a ridge and seeing the landscape unfold up to the front ranges of the Rocky Mountains.
Last week we had snow, rain and sun. Temperatures in the high 20’s and low teens and frost on the weekend. The perennials are up in the garden – never ceases to amaze me that they will survive through our winter. But I won’t be getting any annuals until the end of June. We can still get frost in June and into July and even the end of August! So – why do I love living here….don’t have to go far for endless inspiration (out the front door), can walk the dog without a leash, have a meadow full of wildflowers, the deer and moose are showing up with their new babes, our horse and mules are just at the bottom of the drive and when the sun shines and the temperatures are in the 20’s is my kind of paradise. So while I wait for some blooms outdoors painted some indoors. Wherever you are may you be enjoying ‘your’ paradise!
‘Spring at My House’
Acrylic mixed media on canvas