Saturday, September 26, 2009
Friday, September 25, 2009
Watercolor & pastel on paper
My first attempt at painting a portrait in a realistic style. It was my first move away from the cartoonism I started with as a kid. As a cartoonist back then, I thought realism was old school museum stuff that were for grown ups and therefore boring. What did I know? I was a kid! This painting started as a doodle of an eye while I was bored taking a break from my math homework. Then somehow, realism didn't seem to be as boring as the math homework so I found myself eagerly working on this piece. It was supposed to be a doodle, which turned into a sketch, which later evolved into a watercolor painting. Finishing this changed my perspective on it all as I started to appreciate the fun challenges of realism and began to add my love of the fantasy genre by creating fantasy portraits.
The setting itself was actually inspired by a dream in which I was followed by the lady in the picture who appeared to be some sort of mystic sorceress or otherwordly being who was benevolent yet frighteningly powerful and wise all at once. I like to think of her as my muse since I couldn't rest until I painted this picture, which was a turning point in my artistic development and inspired me to keep pushing myself.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Entry #2 for Square Foot 2009 at the AWOL Gallery. Since I was informed that a lot of artists take the annual Square Foot Show as an opportunity to try something different from their usual style, I decided to enter some pieces that are a little more "relaxed" and abstract.I almost always find myself instinctively painting the image of a graceful willow whenever I feel like painting trees. Often found growing near water and long associated with magic and the underworld in many legends such as that of the Greek goddess Hecate of witchcraft, the tree is veiled with the mysteries of stories long told. Once they were believed to be able to uproot themselves and follow travellers. Some cultures believed they housed kind forest spirits who offered guidance. On a scientific note, the willow also has medicinal properties and were used by the ancient Greeks and Native Americans for common ailments and fevers.
Monday, August 17, 2009
Fiery Flamenco 12" x 12" Acrylic on canvas
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Instead of presenting you with another explanation of the concept I had in mind, I invite you to look at it. Really look and try to see if you can see something hidden. I'm not giving away the answer for now since it's always interesting to hear other people's theories on what they see in a particular piece before hearing my take on it.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
"In life, man is soft and tender,
Gentle Strength 6" x 6" Acrylic on canvas 2009
Lotus: Birth, rebirth, perseverance, transformation, spiritual awakening, triumph.
The lotus flower has many symbolic links in Asian religions as a symbol of enlightenment and transformation. Its association with birth and rebirth is due to its nature of opening its petals to greet the sun at sunrise and closing them after sunset.
As a symbol of triumph over hardships in life, the lotus begins life as a small flower hidden deep in the bottom of the pond, its beauty obscure, its strength unapparent in the mud and murky water, until it rises above the surface to bloom with all its beauty.
Its stem anchors the flower firmly in the ground so it is not easily washed away in a storm, representing fortitude as well as our ties to our personal roots and past while the flower represents the fruit of our labour. As the lotus bud had to struggle to rise above its humble beginnings to transform into an object of beauty, so is the human spirit beautified and made stronger with each challenge it overcomes.
Dragonfly wings: Light, joy, strength, maturity, change, adaptation.
Dragonflies are associated with many different meanings depending on cultural beliefs. The Japanese see them as symbols of strength, courage and happiness as well as martial success due to the similarity in the sound of the word "dragonfly" and "victory" in Japanese. Fragile, gentle, yet powerful in its flight as it gracefully darts in the air devouring other insects and peacefully hovers above water at other times, the dragonfly can be viewed as a symbol of gentle strength. As a creature that starts its life in the water to soar as a creature of the air most powerful in the summer with its wings reflecting the light of the sun, it symbolizes change and the self knowledge that comes with maturity.
Monday, June 1, 2009
Hi guys! It's been a while since my last post as things have gotten really busy on this end. Preparing for three art shows all opening in one month while taking time to train and write is not easy. I haven't painted flowers in a while and I had a specific angle in mind from which I wanted to approach this piece so I spent one day of the long weekend taking some reference pictures of tulips at Centre island for the painting I'm donating to the Parkinson's society at next week's charity art auction. I'm really excited to see how the show will turn out.
Next Wednesday, June 10th, drop by Gallery 402 at 402 King St. East to help support the Parkinson Society of Canada in funding their research for a cure. The theme of this show will revolve around tulips since the tulip is their symbol. The best news? Bids start dirt cheap at $25 so there's a great chance you can walk away with the following painting at a great price.
Eight tulips represent positive change:
- Green bud: Growth, life, hope.
- White: Purification, peace, hope, faith.
- Gold: Life as the life giving source of the sun, positive thinking and optimism. The yellow tulip opens like a cup receiving heaven’s blessings with gratitude and a bright face.
- Pink: Love, friendship and healing.
- Orange: Energy in motion.
- Red: Strength and freedom.
- Blue: Tranquility and healing.
- Magenta: Vitality. A purplish pink shade containing the joint meanings of pink which stands for healing, with purple representing healing and progress.
Dawn brings illumination and hope as well as improvement and progress with each day.
Dandelions, representing optimism and dreams, are often unappreciated, considered to be weeds despite their medicinal properties. To adults, they are insignificant plants, unwanted in a well-groomed lawn. To children, they are pretty flowers who listen to their whispered wishes before rising to the heavens to carry those wishes to the stars who always shine as rays of hope.
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
As a child, I was very inquisitive and often asked many questions. Fascinated by nature's theatrics of thunder and lightning, I wanted to know what caused them. I remember I kept asking the same question over and over again until someone simply explained, quite matter-of-factly, that St. Peter and the saints were having a bowling game in heaven. I knew I was given that quick answer just to make me stop asking too many annoying questions (it didn't work). However, I never forgot the amusing mental picture I had of winged souls wearing long white robes and halos running around on clouds to bowl a few rounds. I never listened to thunder the same way again.
Speaking of nature, I had a pleasant afternoon dropping by Gallery 402 on King Street East to pick up my pay for a painting of the elements which sold during the Bare Naked Truth art show last month:
Despite their differences, all work together in the circle of life. Air feeds fire, fire sets a balance with water, water nurtures the fertile earth, while the earth fuels fire and its trees sway to the wings of the wind. In the end, all are rooted to the earth metaphorically in the painting as they are literally in life.