July and August 2017: A small selection of my work, courtesy of Darrell Bell Gallery, is available at Boffins restaurant (111 Research Drive, U of S campus) throughout the summer months.

November 10, 2016:
I was interviewed by Daily Paintworks as their Spotlight Artist for a week! Read my interview on the DPW News blog!


Ongoing: my 8x8" original oil paintings are available exclusively at Darrell Bell Gallery in Saskatoon. For a limited time several of my large oil paintings are also available at
their new street front gallery on 21st Street (formally Lifestyles By Darrell Bell Gallery).

Ongoing: a selection of my larger work is available at The Black Spruce Gallery at Northside on Highway 2 just before the turn to Christopher Lake.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Spring Day On Janzen Road

Spring Day on Janzen Road
10x10 
acrylic on canvas
sold

Well, this is the other piece I did while out in the country last weekend. It was a clear spring day with these soft, wispy clouds scattered through the sky. (Hey Deb, if you are reading this... I was thinking of you while I painted this and the story about the art teacher who told you there was no such thing as wispy clouds!) A fox ran through the field as I was setting up and there must have been a pond somewhere behind me on the other side of the road because the geese or ducks were making all kinds of noise. I sat in the shade of the truck, no music (giggle), and pushed paint around for about 90 minutes. Things didn't gel as well as they did the first day I went out, but it was still such a peaceful and relaxing afternoon so I am certainly not complaining. 

I brought this painting home with the field section incomplete and, quite frankly, looking very wishy-washy. It was pale yellow and uninteresting with a few golden stripey marks suggesting grass. Lame. I stared at it in the studio and got some input from another artist. She really liked the brush strokes in the other prairie painting and wondered if I could make something like that work in this one. At the same time, though, I needed the brush strokes to make sense with what I had happening in the sky. We pulled out a couple of books on Van Gogh to see how he handle his fields and yowzie, was that a humbling lesson! He was one wild and crazy guy! He really just went for it, didn't he? That thick, rich oil paint; the movement and expression in each and every mark he made; the mastery of colour. We "ooohed" and "aaahed" with the turning of every page. Then I glanced over at my "effort" and had to chuckle. However, looking at his work gave me that small push I needed to take a chance and try something with my piece that I never would have thought of... I ended up putting some lavenders and soft blues in the field as a compliment to all of the shades of yellows. They are subtle, but they are there (and more noticeable in person). And I added more movement to the field as well as incorporated a version of that texture found in "Out on Valley Road". I then needed to beef up the wispy clouds after the field became a bit more committed to the cause! I should have taken a before picture and I might have if I knew just how much it was going to change.

Anyhoo, it was an exercise and I learned some stuff, plus I had a great painting afternoon with no embarrassing mishaps! Doesn't get much better. 

3 comments:

-Don said...

You're right, Vincent was THE MAN when it came to color and expressive strokes. Every time I get in front of one of his paintings I end up standing there with my mouth wide open. Those lavender touches were just what the Dr. ordered. Nice job.

-Don

TJ Lynde said...

That 10x10 feels much more like a 40x40!- which shows just what a pure and fresh expression of Spring it is. Very nice, thanks for posting it.

Nicki said...

Thanks Don! And you are THE MAN when it comes to helpful advice! It is always welcome. I'm glad you think the touches of lavender worked... a far cry from how Van Gogh would have used the lavender, but a step for me!

Hope you are having a great weekend,
Nicki


Hi TJ,

Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment. I'm thrilled you see it or read it as a larger picture than it actually is. I'm glad it appeals to you and also, thank you for following me! Hopefully there will be more you feel moved to comment on.

Warm regards,
Nicki