Friday, April 14, 2017

A walk along the canal

"A walk along the canal" by Hilary J. England
oil on canvas, 8" x 11"
It was very important for me to get out and about and do some plein air painting.  The last few weeks saw me melting away indoors, and I could feel my soul dying in inches with each passing day -- at least that's what it felt like!

I get depressed when I'm not outside, enjoying nature and the air, feeling the breeze on my face.  Oh sure, it's not all moonlight and magnolias when I'm out painting, to be sure -- there are lots of frustrations and problems to be solved, associated with outdoor painting -- but when the day is good, and all the factors fall into place, there is no better experience.  And today was one of those days.

I just happened to get a real feeling in my soul for the woman and her little child as they strolled quietly along.  I imagined my own conversations with my little ones, explaining the flowers and the butterflies, and the million or so questions they would have over everything, and it brought a tear to my eye, thinking of those days that are gone now.  I have new little ones to stroll with, but my original babies are all grown and sometimes, the nostalgia is overwhelming.

So, enjoy this fair, fair day, and here is a little painting to recall your own happy memories with!


Saturday, April 8, 2017

Study of whole and cut lemons/Zorn palette

"Study of whole and cut lemons/Zorn palette" by Hilary J. England, oil on canvas, 8" x 11"

I wanted to go out and do some painting outdoors today, and this morning, the weather seemed promising.  I worked in my garden for a little while, and then when it was time to head out, the wind got very heavy.  I went to the store to wait it out, but it never died down, even knocking down a few portions of the fence in my yard that was a little rickety.  I decided that today was not a day I wanted to battle the wind, so I would sadly take it back indoors.

I had a lot of lemons -- some ripe, some overripe, and some underripe and I thought I would do a study of them using a modified Zorn palette.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with a "Zorn palette" -- it is a palette based on the colors used by the Artist Anders Zorn.  He used a very minimal palette of only Ivory black, Yellow ochre, and Crimson, and of course a white.  I did not use this exactly -- since I am still waiting on my Ivory black reorder, I was forced to use Lamp black, which is a much flatter less blue hued black, so to compensate, I added some cobalt blue into the palette.

I have to say, this was.a challenging palette to work with, especially when you are not used to such a limitation.  Trying to build value, chroma, and contrast with this limited amount of color was a very good exercise, and I think I will do a few more for good measure.  It's good to challenge yourself and do things you would not normally do every now and then -- keeps the mind and hand sharp!

So, hopefully in the next few days, the wind dies down, and the rain stays away, and maybe I can get outdoors like I really want to!

But, when life throws you lemons, do a still life of them! (Sorry, I couldn't resist!).


Thursday, April 6, 2017

Red Raspberry in space


Here is a little painting I did today, "Red raspberry in space".  It was a cold, rainy mess out today, so I just decided to stay in and paint this little raspberry.  It was a good model, and tasty too.

I hoped it would have helped the stomach ache I had all day, but not so much.  I don't know what's wrong with me today, but hopefully it clears up tonight along with the weather.

I have three more paintings I am working on, studio projects, and tomorrow, will be doing some figure work.  I am so looking forward to Saturday, when the weather will be fine and beautiful, and I can go out and get some plein air painting done too.

I have a show coming up in NYC this month, but I will release the information as it comes.


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