For today's painting, I am taking a break from my oil paintings, and instead - sharing a small watercolour sketch. This is a scene I painted in the parking lot of Trissa's Family Restaurant on Dundas Street (near the Trails End Market).
For any of my artist friends - if you are interested in watercolour/gouche sketching - I'd highly recommend Nathan Fowke's Landscape Sketching in Watercolor and Gouache. This online course is available through Schoolism (I am doing the auditing stream).
Sweet Cora the Donkey is having a little Roll.
Curious about why do Donkey's roll??
(credit to the Donkey Sanctuary for this information)
- Rolling helps groom/scratch hard-to-reach areas
- Dust provides great insulation, protecting donkeys from both hot and cold conditions - especially in their natural dessert environment
- 80% of donkey rolling occurs in a spot where another equine has rolled. Depositing scent over the body may be a function of rolling.
Here is the Donkey Sanctuary's bio on Cora:
"Born in 2008, Cora is a grey dun, small standard donkey. She was admitted to The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada in November, 2012 with another donkey named Jace, and a miniature pony named Honey. Cora, Jace and Honey were part of a petting zoo located in Southwestern Ontario and the owners felt the DSC would be a more appropriate home.
Despite being at capacity, the DSC made room available for Cora and Jace, and Honey was taken in by Wind Dancer Pony Rescue Foundation.
Cora’s keen curiosity and friendliness soon made her a favourite among staff and volunteers, and she enjoys living with our main herd with our other jennies and gentle geldings."
~ Donkey Sanctuary of Canada
Meet Archie! Archie the donkey lives at the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada, which is located near Guelph, Ontario.
I visited the Sanctuary a few weeks ago and was very moved by my the experience there. According to their website: "Since 1992, The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada has been a refuge for donkeys, mules and hinnies who have been neglected or abused, or who can no longer be cared for by their owners."
The Sanctuary is very well run and very educational. The donkey's receive exceptional care. I would highly recommend visiting if you live in the area. To learn more, check out their website (the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada).
One of the neat things the organization does, is allow people to sponsor a donkey from the farm. The money from donations and sponsorship goes towards feed, hay, vet care, farrier care, stall bedding, etc. The website has a bio for each donkey at the farm.
As today's painting features Archie, I thought I would share his bio.
Archie is a grey dun standard donkey who was born in 1996. He came from Sault Saint Marie, Ontario with two other donkeys, Betty and Veronica. Archie had resided in the same loving home for 20 years. However, his previous owner moved farms and was finding it difficult to care for the donkeys in the new setting. Archie was well loved by the owern's grandchildren - who regularly groomed and cared for him. Archie is settling in well and is very sweet to handle. He is very curious and loves to be patted on open days over the fence."
(Click here to link to Archie's Bio)
PS - stay tuned for a few more donkey paintings during this challenge!
Attempt # 3 at painting people this month. This scenes features my dad and my bro chatting at the dairy farm.
Perhaps this painting is better viewed from afar? Final painting aside, I did really enjoy the process of painting this one.
What do you think matters more (either in life or art) - the process or the final product? I would love to hear your thoughts!
Day 15! Half way there... only 15 paintings to go. Today's painting features a young bull from my parent's farm. Handsome little fellow!
Today's painting is a studio work in which I used both a photograph and a plein air study for my reference. This painting illustrates why it is so important for landscape artists to work from life (at least some of the time). As you can see below - the reference photo's colours are quite dull and boring. I used my painted study for value and colour reference - which I think really helped make this painting a success.
This sweet little goat wants to make sure everyone finds the goat yoga class at Full Circle Ranch!
If you live in the London or St. Thomas area (in Ontario, Canada) check out Full Circle's Facebook page to find out more about attending a Goat Yoga class! I can vouch, you will have an amazing time (as long as you like goats; if you aren't a goat lover, perhaps consider a regular yoga class).
Curious about what exactly is goat yoga? Check out this CNN video that talks about the trend of goat yoga:
This painting features my 2 nephews and my niece (from left to right, Ronan, Aelwen, Lachlan). These 3 little kids are definitely bonafide country kids. They love tractors, wagons, and puddles! :
Today's painting is a plein air piece I painted during a paint-out with the London Plein Air Group depicts the Jury House at Fanshawe Pioneer Village. As I have mentioned previously, I LOVE Fanshawe's Pioneer Village. I have a season pass and visit on nearly a weekly basis (either to paint, or to take my dog Wylan on walks).
Here is the history behind this old farm house (quoted directly from the Fanshawe Pioneer Village Website):
"Original Building: Lobo Township, c. 1888
The Second Generation - The Jury Farmstead is representative of a second generation farm at the turn of the 20th century.
Boyhood home of Wilfrid Jury, the founder of Fanshawe Pioneer Village. It is an excellent 1888 example of a typical Ontario farmhouse.
The Jury house was built on Lot 12 Concession 2 of Lobo Township and is the childhood home of Wilfrid Jury, the founding curator of Fanshawe Pioneer Village. William Jury Jr., built this home in 1888 for his son Amos on the occasion of his marriage to Charlotte Julia “Jewel” Alder, the daughter of the weaver Thomas Alder. The house was occupied by the Jury family until Amos’ death in 1964. The farmhouse was rented to various tenants before it was sold in 1968 to Murray Manson. When Manson donated the house to Fanshawe Pioneer Village in 1973, the building had to be cut in two with a chain saw and the roof removed in order to transport it."
(credit Fanshawe Pioneer Village for History of the Jury House).
Ontario, Canada is known for it's beautiful rural countryside. This painting depicts the countryside from above. I used a photo reference for this piece - a photo my dad took many years ago, on a hot air balloon ride.
Today's work is a little plein air piece I painted back in July at Fanshawe Pioneer Village.
There is this field of flowers that blooms a golden yellow - it is really quite striking.
Today's painting, one of the larger pieces I will do during this challenge, features the same barn from day 1 (at a different angle).
If you love old barns, comment below ... share a word, a story, or a sentiments that captures your feelings towards these old, rustic barns! I'd love to hear from you!
Change is inevitable
In the spirit of honouring rustic old barns and their evolution over time, I have included some aerial photos of how my parent's dairy barn has changed over the years.
Quick studies lead to more finished studio paintings
This painting was completed using a smaller painting I did on location as my reference. The original study was a small value study - an assignment for an online course I have been auditing ("Landscape Sketching in Watercolor and Gouache" - taught by Nathan Fawkes). I was quite pleased with the final painting.
The subject of today's painting is a little bit, shall we say, different. At first glance it probably looks like a rustic little hut, but in actuality, it is the restrooms at a local winery, Quai du Vin. I hope this painting serves to show that beauty can be found in unexpected places!
I was visiting the winery as part of the 'Off the Wall' Art Show were I was one of the 'plein air artists'. I've included a couple photos from the day.
I am very lucky to live close to 'Fanshawe Pioneer Village' and frequently visit to paint plein air and take my dog Wylan for walks.
"Fanshawe Pioneer Village tells the story of rural communities in the former townships of Westminster, London, North Dorchester, Delaware, West Nissouri and Lobo in Middlesex County from 1820 to 1920 and the founding and development of the City of London up to 1840." (from the Fanshawe Pioneer Village website)
This painting depicts the old Pond Mills School, which back in the day was known as School Section #7. According to Pioneer Village's website, "The school was originally located in the village of Pond Mills, Westminster Township, which is now a subdivision in south east London. S.S. #7 was in existence from 1825 -1966 and began as a one-room schoolhouse on land which is now part of Pond Mills Cemetery." Today, the inside of the school depicts a Masonic Lodge.
This scene was painted on location - at my parents farm. This small dirt road can be found behind their dairy barn and leads to the back fields. I have many memories of this little road...
Today's painting captures a heifer (aka a young female cow) and a cow grazing at the end of the day, as the sun is setting. I painted this from photo reference; I snapped the photo last June (2016), on my way home from the 'fun fair' at my nephew public school. I decided to share a few photos from our evening at the fun fair!
Welcome to my September 2017 painting challenge in which I will be posting a new painting everyday for the next 30-days (aka 30-in-30). This will be my 5th time doing a 30-in-30.
So, here my first painting of the challenge. This little painting was completed back in July when I stumbled across this nice lookin' barn right beside a vacant public school yard (Centennial Central School - North of London, Ontario)
For the duration of this challenge, I have chosen the theme 'Rural Impressions' and hope my paintings can serve as a glimpse into country life in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. Growing up on a dairy farm, I have a deep nostalgia for country life (despite now being a bonafide city slicker). This is actually not my first time doing a series of farm paintings. Back in high school, during OAC (grade 13) art class, we had to choose a theme and then create 6 art pieces (I chose 'Farm Life'). See below a college I created of my Grandma MacKay and my dad (he's the baby). My dad has lived on the same farm, in the same house, for his entire life.
30-in-30 is back!
Each day for the month of September, I will be posting a new painting on my blog and Facebook page. My theme is "Rural Impressions" and will feature paintings depicting country life in Southwestern Ontario!
What else have I been up to?
It's been a good summer thus far. While I haven't been sharing many new paintings, I've been doing lots of painting. In particular I have been doing both plein air work (i.e. painting outdoors from life) and painting ahead for my Sept 30-in-30.
I have been continuing my online training at Watts Atelier. The work in the program is mainly drawing and focuses on figure and portraiture. These are definitely outside my comfort zone - but I am making slow and steady progress. Me and some of my peers at Watts are also taking a landscape sketching class through Schoolism, taught by the talented Nathan Fowkes. I have learned a lot thus far and it is definitely informing my landscape work.
Dappled Sunlight, Springbank Park (plein air)
Oil on Canvas, 8x10 inches.
Edges painted black.
Ready to Hang.
I painted this during a paint-out with the London Plein Air Group. It was a beautiful morning and I couldn't resist the patterns of light and shadow.
This past Saturday I spent a lovely morning out with the London Plein Air Group at Springbank Park. It was the perfect day for painting - not too hot, nice breeze, sunny.
While it wasn't my plan, this painting turned out quite loose ... I think I may have been channelling my inner Monet. Hope you enjoy.
Have a great day!
A few more photos for the day:
Back in February (or around that time), I stumbled on a website called the "Travelling Chicken". It turns out, there is this little a ceramic hen that has been travelling all over the world for the past 5 years. The chicken travels from artist to artist and each artist paints their interpretation of the chicken. I LOVE this kind of stuff, so signed up immediately. Now... fast forward 5 months, and yes, the Chicken has FINALLY arrived. I've included a fews photos at the end of this post if you want to check her out!
While I will spare you the details in this blog post, you can learn more about the Travelling Chicken Project if you click here (if you are an artist, you could even consider signing up yourself). You can also check out the Facebook page.
If you would like to learn about what the Travelling Chicken and her friends got up to while they visited me check out my two blog posts:
1. Blog Post #1 - TC & Senor Azul have arrived in Ontario
2. Blog Post # 2 - Happy 150th Bird-Day Canada!
I highly recommend the above blog posts!
Here is the portrait I completed for my part of the Travelling Chicken Project!
Fresh off the easel...
Last September (2016) my sister and I visited Telegraph Cove in British Columbia. It is such a beautiful area and I have been itching to capture it in paint. Here is my first painting. This photo was taken as we departed the harbour for a whale watching trip.
Art Show News
Miniature Show, Portside Gallery, Port Stanley
Cows everywhere! Here are my three submissions to the recent Miniature Show at the Port Side Gallery in Port Stanley (Ontario, Canada). Two of the three sold - which delighted me. These little paintings (all 4x4 inches) were really fun to paint!
What else is new?
This plein air painting was done on location at Springbank Park in London, Ontario. What a warm day - especially for February...
12C (53F) & sunny - a nice reprieve from Canadian Winter! I really tried to soak up the warmth as I'm sure it's only a matter of time till man winter is back!
I believe art is meant to be shared. I am a Canadian landscape painter that works primary in oils & acrylics. I create works both en plein air & in the studio.