As we gather together the best bits from the year that has ended and set our intentions for another year that has just began, I am reminded of something I wrote about waking several years ago... “Soft light of dawn creeps into my sleep. Waking, I find the trees silhouetted against my dreams.”
Even though the days are starting to lengthen, January to mid February are always the toughest part of the year for me. I have learned to take each day as it comes. I do what I can and I leave it at that. I encourage you to do the same. There will be energy and daylight hours for doing more soon enough.
This issue will share the best work for 2020 chosen from my own painting inventory. I have a larger commissioned painting under way, interview questions sent to a new artist, Bill Hibberd, whose work will be showing in the next two artist online exclusive show. The Arbutus Room artists have a couple of outstanding large canvas works near completion, along with other gems that all need final photographs, hanging wires and edges painted. But these are simmering pots and not quite ready to serve yet. We are just going to have to wait. So, grab your beverage of choice and settle in to enjoy what is ready for sampling today...
The Sky and Temporary Winter Studio Space
My temporary winter studio space is less than ideal as the warm afternoon sun slams across our south-facing sunroom. I am always talking to the sky while I paint.
“A few more clouds please! No not that many, I haven’t got enough light to work by even with the studio lamp! Awwck! Too bright! Too bright! Pheewwwf! Now this is just right... hold, hold, hold. Alright, we got it! See you again tomorrow.”
The sky smirks, “yeah, we will see you tomorrow alright. How about with 70-90 km winds. How would you like that!?”
I shrug and keep painting... “I can’t hear you.... la, la, la...”
Nope, I’m not even going to raise an eyebrow. Paint to canvas, paint to canvas, paint to canvas.
And so the days go. I remind myself how lovely and warm and dry my work space is and how easy it is to slip up the stairs and make a cup of tea in the kitchen and bring it back down. And how the subject I am painting is stunningly gorgeous and intricately satisfying. A perfect commissioned painting to paint in January. I shall just keep wrestling with the clouds and counting blessings.
Top Ten 2020 Paintings by Terrill Welch
Top Ten Paintings for 2020 plus one runner up, artist’s choice. My apologies to those that had a chance of see these already and that this old news now. I am hoping you won’t mind a second look along with those that are not in my Facebook family of friends.
First, thank you to the 11 people who stepped up to help choose this year’s Top Ten Paintings from the 42 paintings that were released in 2020. It was a tough job and I was glad to have the additional support. No one painting received over four selections as one of the three choices made by those participating. Several people went through the whole album selecting paintings way back beyond 2020 and of course selected way more than three which tells me the task was a lot of fun! I only counted those selections that were paintings from the 2020 year. This lead to one paintings with four counts, three with three counts, four with two counts for a total of eight paintings. Then I chose one from the ones with just one count plus one other and one runner up that was my artist’s choice for a collection of eleven paintings selected for the best of 2020. Two of those included were commissions. This exercise was extremely useful to me and so much fun that I think we just might do it again this way next year!
I will write a caption to go with each painting and if it is still available, I will add the link just in case someone wants to take a closer look. So, here we go....
1st Place! Hope For A New Day - In Private collection.
Three way tie for 2nd place! Blue Heron and the Chinese Poet - Available.
Available for sale from Terrill Welch Gallery, Terrill Welch, Blue Heron and the Chinese Poet (2020), Walnut oil on linen board, 16 × 12 in
Three way tie for 2nd place! Arbutus Tree in Breaking Sun - Available.
Available for sale from Terrill Welch Gallery, Terrill Welch, Arbutus Tree in Breaking Sun (2020), Oil on canvas, 36 × 48 in
Three way tie for 2nd place! Poppies Beside The Sea Revisited - In private collection. Commission.
Four way tie for 3rd place! Arbutus Grove East - In Private Collection.
Four way tie for 3rd place! Maple Tree Edged Summer Morning - Available.
Available for sale from Terrill Welch Gallery, Terrill Welch, Maple Tree Edged Summer Morning (2020), Acrylic on gessobord, 8 × 10 in
Four way tie for 3rd place! Arbutus Entertaining A Grey Day - Available.
Available for sale from Terrill Welch Gallery, Terrill Welch, Arbutus Entertaining A Grey Day (2020), Oil on canvas, 30 × 24 in
Four way tie for 3rd place! Rolling Wave French Beach Vancouver Island British Columbia - In Private Collection.
In 4th place and the ninth painting which is chose from several in fourth place by the artist. Wickininnish Beach in the Pacific Rim Park Reserve - Available.
Terrill Welch | Wickininnish Beach in the Pacific Rim Park Reserve (2020) | Available for Sale | Artsy
Available for sale from Terrill Welch Gallery, Terrill Welch, Wickininnish Beach in the Pacific Rim Park Reserve (2020), Oil on canvas, 30 × 40 in
In 5th place and the tenth painting chosen only by the artist. Rough Seas and Sunshine by Terrill Welch, oil on canvas, 20 x 24 inches - In Private Collection. Commission.
The 11th painting and runner up for this years Top Ten Paintings of 2020 and artist only choice. Infinite Impermanence - Available.
Available for sale from Terrill Welch Gallery, Terrill Welch, Infinite Impermanence (2020), Walnut oil on canvas, 40 × 60 in
So there we have it! The Top Ten out of 42 paintings for 2020 am done runner up. Is your favourite painting from this past year in this list? Yes? No? Either way, it is simply a fun review. Many paintings were selected with one vote. Maybe one of these was also your favourite. I was asked shortly after this selection process if there was any indication which of my various themes were more popular than others and I could confidently say - no. Different paintings are liked by a wide range of people but people don’t seem to like one subject in any meaningful numbers over another subject.
What I am Watching
How we live everyday is a ceremony. ~Akeekwe
In the end, we are all keepers of the earth. ~Rolf Winters
From DOWN to EARTH
DOWN to EARTH - A journey in search of the Earth Keepers
As it says - this film is not to be consumed, it is to be worked with.
“Leaving behind their cosmopolitan life, a [Dutch] couple and their three young children travel the world searching for a new perspective on life. During their five-year journey they live with some of the oldest indigenous communities on the planet. They record their encounters with the elders tribal sages never filmed or interviewed before. Without a crew or schedule, just one backpack and one camera each. And the curiosity to listen.”
The film was free to watch on YouTube during the holidays but I have shared the main website link as it has the background story and I don’t know when the “free” offer will end. So you can try searching for it there if you like as well. Though it is possible to watch by just making a donation at the website link provided. I am deeply taken with the film and have watched it twice so far. The film is very much in alignment with my paintings and my life for that matter.
Opinion Piece - Hang In There!
There was a high wind warning for Tuesday of this week. It arrived maybe not as forcefully as expected but sustained long enough to topple trees over in our saturated ground. The power was only out for about four hours. I thankfully, had managed to get the first draft of our issue completed by late Monday evening. Wednesday, I painted while listening to the U.S. election live coverage to confirm the President Elect and Vice President Elect. That didn’t get very far until things really went sideways and didn’t finish up until about 4:00 am the next morning. I don’t stay up that late. I kept painting and kept thinking how fragile our clarity, goodwill, generosity, kindness and integrity really are until supper time and called it a day. We must treasure these things and share them often and far. Differences of perspectives and views really do not benefit from chaos, fear and, in this case, even death. I wish our southern neighbours a smooth Presidential transition on January 20th. The world needs it not just the United States.
Someone wrote recently “Dear 2021, I would like to cancel my subscription. I sampled the seven day free trial and I am not satisfied. Thank you.”
Someone else said “2021 just told 2020 to hold its beer.”
And let’s just say, with COVID-19 numbers still climbing in many places around the world and a more contagious variant starting to spread, vaccinations will be feeling like they are taking forever.
So, with all this in mind, I have decided to hold off on a price increase on my work for a few more months until there is a better indication of where we are at. This is good news for our art collectors at least and a little good news goes a long ways these days. I am just going to keep painting. The other artists are also just going to keep painting. And, with a bit of luck, hopefully, some of you will find yourselves in need of a few more paintings in your homes and businesses or, equally as important, you share our online gallery with someone else who does. All we can really do is keep going and just wait and see. In the meantime, enjoy our online gallery and spending time with our landscape painting that are offered for your viewing and purchasing pleasure. I am still open by appointment for in-person visits. However, this option is only available for those on the island because the province is under essential travel orders for another month at least. Hang in there! Thanks for sharing this journey with us. It is likely going to be a bumpy ride but we will get through this.
Until Next Time
With warm distancing hugs, take good care and smile at yourself in the mirror as you start each day. Even if it is the only smile you see until the next morning, it will still boost your spirits.
~ Terrill 👩🎨🎨❤️
Our gallery program brings extraordinary connections to ordinary moments in our natural landscape. The Terrill Welch Gallery opened in August 2017. Since then, the gallery has more than doubled its physical gallery exhibition space and online reach.