Thursday, February 28, 2013

How to find cards they haven't already seen

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Cobalt Lake in incongruous arrangement
Watercolour card
©2013 Charlene Brown

By 'they' I think you know who I mean – those people who have a knack for finding the perfect, appropriate and/or beautiful birthday card every time. What kind of a card do you send them when they’ve obviously seen every known birthday card in the course of finding the one they just sent you… Well, you paint one of course.
Cobalt Lake is one of four stylized versions of larger paintings that I painted on 12.7 x 17.4 cm blank cards. Two of them were masked using Masquepen™ and taped to a board in the folded position, as shown on the right.  (I learned not to tape the cards down flat in a previous experiment.)
The two others were painted with only the back of the card taped to the board, and masked with oil pastel. They flapped around quite a bit under my brush, resulting in an especially casual style.  And they still need some work.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

More wild things where they aren't anymore

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The rest of the family
Watercolour and marker
©2013 Charlene Brown

I posted a painting of a bullmoose in the Bow Valley west of Calgary  at the end of January, mentioning at the time that I had planned to include a calf or maybe even twins.  But then I had remembered that, to the best of my knowledge, calves don’t hang with the bulls that much, if ever.
Anyway, this calf has recovered from the ‘pinto pony’ stage I mentioned last week, so here they are – the rest of the family. I forgot all about the possibility of putting twin calves in the painting, so may have yet another try at painting moose in their former habitat, and next time there will be three of them… 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Another Twentieth Century Flashback

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Banff sunset
Watercolour monotype
©1995 Charlene Brown

I was going to post a painting of the rest of the moose family with the cow and calf situated in the fenlands west of Banff, about 20 km from where I’d placed the bull moose three weeks ago. However, that painting isn’t quite ready… in fact the calf is looking more like a pinto pony than a moose, and is going to need some work.

So here’s ‘Banff Sunset’ instead – it includes the fenlands, just beyond the town, as well as the mountains that I’ve put in ‘The rest of the family.’

Like ‘The Great Wall of China,’ done at about the same time, ‘Banff Sunset’ was painted indirectly as a monotype – a print made by painting in watercolour on a Plexiglas plate, which is then run through a press with a dampened sheet of watercolour paper (in this case, blue-tinted paper) producing one unique print.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A virtual trip home to Banff

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Banff from a different angle
Watercolour, crayon and ink
©2013 Charlene Brown

Here’s the result of a virtual paintout on Google Streetview. For a change, I carried it out without waiting for direction from The Virtual Paintout blog upon which I’ve been traveling around the world for three years now.  

And this time I knew all the best places to look, finally settling on this view, the fairly famous shot straight up Banff Avenue to Mt.Cascade combined with the view of the Banff Park Museum that you see if you turn the Google camera slightly to the left. This building, a National Historic Site, is designed in the ‘railway pagoda’ style favoured for rail station construction in the early twentieth century.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Virtual Paintout in Valparaiso

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Puerto Valparaiso
Watercolour, gouache and crayon
©2013 Charlene Brown

The Virtual Paintout is in Valparaiso, Chile this month, and I had some difficulty finding a really great view on Google Streetview. After some maneuvering, I finally came upon this appealing composition – more of a design than a landscape, really.  Here’s a link to it.  
It reminded me of a painting I wrote about in 2011 after a river cruise in Europe.  That painting was heavily influenced by Friedensreich Hundertwasser, so I let him have a go at Puerto Valparaiso as well.  

Monday, February 4, 2013

Another Twentieth Century Flashback

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Three Sisters
Watercolour and Photoshop™
©2013 Charlene Brown

Last week’s painting reminded me of a picture I painted in 1991 at a workshop led by California artist, Barbara Nechis.   
When I searched out that 1991 painting of the Three Sisters (shown on the left, below) I also found a floral painted at the same workshop.  The first was done as an exercise following Barbara’s demonstration of negative painting, the second after her demonstration of wet-in-wet painting.  I was asked why I had chosen to split the shading of the gradient on this second painting right in the middle.  Of course I couldn’t answer that as I hadn’t actually intended to do it that way.  But now I have my answer… it provides a nicely balanced overlay for the first painting (Photoshop Blending mode>Multiply>Opacity>70%).  The 2013 Three Sisters exists only on my computer.