The skies remain grey for most of our short daylight hours. I methodically move paint from the palette to my brush and onto a 30 x 24 inch canvas in the gallery’s winter studio. Seven new large custom-made canvases are ready to pick up in Victoria. Reference images are reviewed in the fold where they have been added over the summer. Edges are painted on a few new pieces but only one of these works is released. It is almost the end of the year and the beginning of the holiday season. This is an insular, quiet time, both in the studio and on the island. This is the best time for studio painting!
I thought you might enjoy this work-in-progress of the latest painting “Arbutus Entertaining a Grey Day” 30 x 24 inch walnut oil on canvas.
I started with one of my signature common yellow grounds and a few paint marks as guides.
Next is the beginning of blocking in the painting and getting a feel for my star arbutus tree.
Slowly over the afternoon, the paint covers the canvas.
Eventually the work comes to “rest” all shiny and too wet to add any more paint. I will set it aside for a few days before I come back and add the final touches. For now, this is what I have for you.
This large 36 x 48 inch arbutus trees painting was completed in late September but it has taken me a while to get to its edges. They are now painted! If you happen to be “on island”, the painting can be viewed in the nook at the Farm Gate Store. Otherwise, here is the direct link to where you can view and make inquires from the online gallery.
To stand quiet and alone with these arbutus trees during a late summer morning is to find the spirit of the place, resting next to my bones with the slow bea...
What Has Sold...
Early in the spring, I put paint to canvas. In October, this large 40 x 30 inch work left the gallery for a trial visit. However, the art collector who is also a newsletter subscriber, had a challenging location and the painting didn’t work in that first desired location. But rather than giving up, she tested in another location... and then another location. The third time was charmed. I saw a sneak preview and believe “When I am Among the Trees” will be most happy there, doing its job of taking the viewer for a walk through the trees into the spirit of the place. And so another landscape painting leaves Mayne Island, and crosses the Strait of Georgia, for a more urban adventure.
Back to Painting and Reference Gathering
The island holiday season is a quiet one for me. We have no family on the island and it allows for additional time for reflection. There are still walks along the shore but the pauses are longer with greater room to just be.
Sometimes, it is so wonderful and delightful my mouth falls open in wonder at the sky and sea...
or at the stained glass effect of a bare maple tree in front of the late afternoon colour.
Life is good in the winter studio and the quiet is treasured.
What I am Listening To
Gail Noonan, a local visual artist, animation filmmaker and singer songwriter (no self-respecting island has ever just done one thing), has just released two new songs. For a dollar each, you can share them as a high-quality download. A great little low carbon footprint gift! However, online listening is complimentary. So feel free to have a listen. Gail’s rich lyrics and quirky humour speak a Mayne Island dialect with a distinctly west coast island life rhythm. One song is about the death of an arbutus tree and the other about warming sourdough. Enjoy! I know I did.
Gail Noonan. Mayne Island, British Columbia. Gail Noonan considered herself a visual artist for the first three quarters of her life. First she was an exhibiting printmaker then an animated filmmaker whose films were screened internationally. Now she focuses on writing songs. The connection throughout is storytelling. Though she was born in Nova Scotia, her interest in music really blossomed on Mayne Island where she continues to reside.
The next issue comes out on December 27, 2019. So this is the last issue before the holidays begin. All the best of seasonal greetings to you and those that are close to you! May this time offer you what you most need.
Canadian Contemporary Artist Terrill Welch Landscapes and more by impressionist painter Terrill Welch
Canadian landscape painter, Terrill Welch, exposes the mystery in an ordinary day, reminding us that there is only one moment – this one.