Thursday, January 29, 2009

San Francisco Victorian

San Francisco Victorian
Watercolour and crayon
©2009 Charlene Brown

This week I tried something different. None of the painting I did in my on-going projects resulted in anything to blog about, so I’m posting this painting, which I entered in the Week 21-22 Challenge at Different Strokes From Different Folks. I heard about ‘Different Strokes’ when it was presented as The Best Art Blog Project of 2008 on Katherine Tyrrell's Making a Mark blog, and have really enjoyed following it. The widely varying interpretations of the photos posted for each Challenge are fascinating. I think that entering these challenges (occasionally, at least) may become another on-going project for me.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Back in Action

Canada Day Fireworks, Inner Harbour, Victoria
Watercolour and crayon
©2007 Charlene Brown
This has been a big week for getting back to work on various projects – weeding the Asian Garden at the Art Gallery (Victoria gardeners get the shortest winter break in all of Canada), training for the annual 10K Race in April, and volunteer work for the Victoria Film Festival. So, as all these things take time, I didn't actually finish my 'weekly painting.' Okay, I’ll admit the weeds hadn’t grown much since the fall clean-up in late November, and at my running level (I’m hoping to improve on my 7033rd place finish last year), training got off to a pretty casual start, but I did put in many hours at the Film Festival office. Part of the Festival, by the way, is the ‘My Victoria’ one-Minute Video competition, which I entered with a computer-painted video based on this watercolour, posted in lieu of a weekly painting. To see the whole video, click here.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Finishing up my Paintings of Egypt

Deir El-Bahri, from Karnak
Watercolour and crayon
©2009 Charlene Brown

During my University of Victoria travel study in Egypt, I completed eight crayon & watercolour sketches in a 15 x 25 cm coil-bound Arches ‘Carnet de Voyage,’ and have since been working on some larger watercolours and computer paintings (which I will include in a blog if they turn out). 
Most of my paintings relate to the archaeology of ancient Egypt, including this one, based on a photo of the mortuary temple of Queen Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahri on the west bank of the Nile. I like the idea that Hatshepsut’s temple lines up with the huge Karnak Temple across the river, and took the photo from the entrance to Karnak. 
In fact, you can barely see Deir el-Bahri from that point, and you can’t see the Nile at all – but it seemed a good time for some artistic license…

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Hitting the road on Christmas day

Squamish, Mount Garibaldi, The Chief and Shannon Falls from the Sea to Sky Highway
Watercolour with Photoshopped sky (I’d had my usual difficulty with the Prussian Blue wash)

©2009 Charlene Brown

We planned to spend Christmas with our daughter’s family in Squamish, at the north end of Howe Sound. It’s on the spectacular Sea to Sky Highway about midway between Vancouver and Whistler, the venues for the 2010 Winter Olympics. We’d had a huge amount of snow, but on December 23 the roads had been cleared and we made it to Squamish before it started snowing again. Like most Victorians, however, we don’t actually have winter tires on the car, and Squamish got another 15 cm of snow by Christmas Eve – so, although Christmas dawned clear and bright, when we heard that another 20 cm was expected, we fled south as soon as the highway was cleared. Not only did we get all the way home without any difficulty, we set a new record – 3 hours and 40 minutes – for the trip, which included downtown Vancouver and a 95-minute ferry ride!
I took lots of pictures, and hope to do a series of paintings of the Whistler area and the road to it between now and the start of the Olympics. Not right away though – I have other projects, like the Egypt pictures, I’d like to work on first.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Finally getting started

Nile at Aswan
painted following a University of Victoria travel study program in Egypt
©2008 Charlene Brown

‘Write a painting blog’ has been one of my New Year’s Resolutions ever since 2006, and several times I’ve proceeded all the way to step 2 – ‘Name your blog,’ where the enormity of getting it right stopped me every time. Thinking up a title with the perfect words to draw in lots of Googlers – watercolour, travel, video painting, Obama (just kidding) – didn’t work. All the titles short enough to remember have been taken. Finally, I hit upon ‘Weekly Painting Worth 1150 Words,’ mainly because it will commit me to painting and blogging regularly. It will also keep my entries short (the reasoning being that the painting will be, by definition, worth 1000 words, so I’ll only write 150 more) which I hope will increase the likelihood that my blog will actually get read. It will certainly increase the likelihood it will get written.