Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Small Damson Plum


Small Damson Plum
Oil on gessoed board
A visiting friend brought me a bag of these plums from his tree. I made jam out of them, but saved a few for painting including this one with a bit of twig still attached. I found the shadow to be the most complex part of this small painting.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

One Trick Pony



One Trick Pony
Oil on gessoed board

I have long been fascinated by these plastic animals - I painted a whole series of them on a larger than life scale in the 1980's. So it's a theme revisited for me. Also, I love glass marbles and the way the light plays on the glass. I originaly put this big marble on the bottle top and then later I ended up balancing the performing horse on top. It just seemed to go..! The title came later while I was painting it. People always seem impressed with the way artists paint glass and I always feel a bit embarrassed, because it always seems to be a simple "trick" to me. So the title has layers of meaning in a perhaps slightly self-depreciating way.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Rubber Thimble


Rubber Thimble
Oil on gessoed board

Another postage stamp sized one. Not much bigger than a thimble really. I sometimes think I'm nuts painting these small everyday items at a one to one scale. I used to paint the same subjects on a huge scale many years ago. I guess I've just scaled my life down...

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Posy of Nasturtium Flowers


Posy of Nasturtium Flowers
Oil on gessoed board
145x180mm
I think I've solved the problem of the flowers moving around. The solution, of course, is simple and obvious. Put them in the vase and leave them alone for a day until they've sorted themselves out! I'd plonked these three into a little eggcup the other day in a somewhat artistic, ie contrived, arrangement. The following day, I noticed that they had reorganised themselves into this nice little phalanx, facing the light. It's interesting and instructive, painting subjects in mini-series like this. In the first Nasturtium painting, the composition reflects the searching and confused aspect of the flowers. The second one, I tryed to pin them down and study them. The third, I gave it away and painted a fallen one. I'm happiest with this last one I think.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Monday, February 19, 2007

Two Cones


Two Cones
Oil on gessoed board

This was unusual for me in that it was painted whilst sitting down! I normally stand to paint at my easel, however I needed a lower viewpoint to get the window sill and pinecone in the right perspective, so I perched on a high stool. It wasn't as uncomfortable as I expected. It's a very small painting. Another "postage stamp from Puniho". The snow has just about all melted from Mt Taranaki now. The idea that I was in fact painting two cones occurred to me. One a dormant volcanic cone, and the other a pinecone. And it also struck me as interesting the way that a pinecone actually mimics the shape and structure of a full grown pinetree. Another play on scale that seems to be a feature of a lot of my work. Pinetrees are also an exotic, (though prolific), tree here in New Zealand.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Nasturtiums in Chemistry Bottle


Nasturtiums in Chemistry Bottle
Oil on gessoed board



I wanted to paint some more nasturtiums, this time with a green leaf. I tryed them in various containers and knew I had the right one when I found this chemistry lab bottle. I liked the shape, and the resonance of irony in putting a pretty flower in something clinical and used for scientific study. Also, the green leaf seems to be putting a "lid" on the flowers, holding them at bay.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Three Nasturtium Flowers


Three Nasturtium Flowers
Oil on gessoed board

195x195mm



The problem I find with painting Nasturtium flowers is that they move so much in their struggle towards the light. So I tryed to paint them as quickly as possible. I painted them directly using a sable brush and very thin paint almost like a watercolour style to start with.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Small Fry



Small Fry
Oil on gessoed board
160x160mm

sold

The other day on my regular beach walk, I saw all the gulls having a feeding frenzy just off the shore. As I walked closer I found all these little fish literally jumping out of the sea. They were being washed up on the black Taranaki ironsand and jumping about glinting silver in the sun. Hundreds of them. It was quite a surreal sight! Initially I threw a few back into the sea in some fultile attempt to save them from gasping for air on the beach. The gulls were doing a thorough job of eating them anyway, so I hit a couple of them on a rock and stuck them in my pocket to paint later.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Blue Broken Chalk


Blue Broken Chalk
Oil on gessoed board
60x100mm
Feb 9, 07


A simple little fun one. I find these very therapeutic to paint.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Blue Glass With Yellow Pencil


Blue Glass With Yellow Pencil
Oil on gessoed board
335x150mm

I spent two days on this one and it went through three distinct stages. The initial sketchy phase was completed in about 15 minutes and I nearly stopped then as I was quite happy with it. Trouble is when I'm happy and enjoying something I don't feel like stopping! So I took it further and inevitably, (for me), stopped being happy with it. I'm one of those people who gets stubborn and tenacious when things get difficult so I struggled all afternoon with it and left it with a feeling of indifference. Next day I came into the studio and could see some little improvements I could make. Again, typically for me, that turned into another long afternoon's session on it. I've left it at this stage. I could easily see myself taking it to another level or different direction however. Just about every painting is like that. Indeed my primary objective in starting this daily painting blog was, and still is, to try and curb my habit of labouring everything to death.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Disposable Shaver


Disposable Shaver
Oil on gessoed board
Feb, 6, 07
150x150mm

To purchase for $150 click here
I thought of the white paint as shaving cream.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Dog Shaped Cookie Cutter and Small Tomato


Dog Shaped Cookie Cutter and Small Tomato
Oil on gessoed board

150x180mm

sold
I liked the wimsical nature of this subject and it was interesting trying to paint the "absence of dog".

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Four Cherry Tomatoes


Four Cherry Tomatoes
Oil on gessoed board
Feb, 3, 07
I'd say the third cherry on the left is a bit out of line..

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Dark Chocolate


Dark Chocolate
Oil on gessoed board

Approx 120 x 120mm
February, 2, 07


Friday, February 02, 2007