New Representation: my art is now available at the Assiniboia Gallery in Regina! They are located at 2266 Smith Street, a vibrant, bustling part of town.

November 15 - December 31, 2017: Holiday Salon - Small Works Show at Darrell Bell Gallery (street level ), running through the holidays, Darrell and his team have installed a grid of twenty of my 8x8's as well as a small wall of larger pieces at the front of the gallery. Lots of great gift ideas to be found by the many gallery artists on display.

Ongoing: my 8x8" original oil paintings are available exclusively at Darrell Bell Gallery located in the Canada Building in downtown Saskatoon. As well, some of my large oil paintings are now available in this beautiful local gallery.

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

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Girl Unfinished #2

Girl #2 (unfinished)
pencil on paper
© Nicki Ault, 1999
Same model as the previous post, but different day. I like this one more. The last one has a stiffness to it and I prefer how I can capture the detail with pencil. Both would have been done in roughly two hours... clearly not enough time to get the job done!

I just took a break from packing and hope to be on the road in about two hours. I always get this wave of panic and sadness when I leave my boys, but once I am on the open road with my tunes cranked I know I will begin to relax. When I was at a class at Emma Lake last year a few of us were sitting around at the end of the day and one of the ladies asked why each of us had come and why some liked it so much they had returned. "Is it the love!?" she asked. Everyone had varying responses from it being on their "bucket list", to wanting to learn from the instructor. My response was that it is the only place I have found where I can just be "Me". 

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Girl Unfinished

Girl 1(unfinished)
charcoal and chalk on paper
© Nicki Ault 1999

Another old drawing from back in the day before paint.

I am extremely excited because tomorrow I am northward bound! I am going a day early to spend some quiet time alone at my parents' cabin at Waskesiu Lake. I may paint or read my new book... or just sleep, sleep, sleep! I need to arrive on campus by suppertime Thursday at which time I will meet the instructor and other students. It's going to be good!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Say What Now?

Phil
 pencil on paper
© Nicki Ault, 1999

I was a bit surprised to look at the date on this portrait. In fact in my head I said, "Say what now?!" I forgot I began taking drawing classes that long ago, but after a bit of thought it all made sense, I just forget how old I am getting!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Found Sky

Found Sky
17.25 x 14.25"
acrylic on paper
© Nicki Ault, 2001

In five days I am on my way to the Kenderdine Campus at Emma Lake to take a class called "Figure Drawing As You See It". I am getting more and more excited as the days pass. I love it there. Love it. I have been itching to do more with portraits and figures since "In My Aura" and now I will be able to work from a model for two full days. I am also really looking forward to learning from a new instructor. 

I've been organizing supplies for the class and pulled out my old portfolio to see if I had any paper stored away. In doing so I came across more old drawings which I will share with you soon. I also found some of the paintings I did 10 years ago when I was figuring out how to work with acrylics.This sky is one of them and I don't mind it, it's kind of cool. This is a little piece of my painting history; it is how I painted then, but not how I paint now. It makes me wonder what my work will be like in another ten years.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Details

 


© Nicki Ault, 2011 

As promised, fun little details of my most recent painting "All I Ever Want".

I mentioned that the title comes from my desire to make art that will be enjoyed indefinitely and that if purchased, the owner will never become tired of viewing the work. It's all I ever want. Through the sessions of painting this piece I listened to an old CD and found myself replaying one song in particular. This song also influenced the title as well as the energy of this painting. Here is a link to listen to it and see the video (which I had never seen before) on YouTube...

"All I Want" by The Lightening Seeds

Enjoy!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

All I Ever Want

All I Ever Want
30 x 40"
acrylic on canvas
© Nicki Ault, 2011  

sold

I love doing these paintings; my "abstract reflections". I think I am finished- I went to the studio yesterday afternoon and put on a few finishing strokes and I now am loving it. All I ever want is to make a painting that you can get lost in; one that you can look at for ages and never feel tired. As I was deciding if this painting was finished I kept finding areas that I loved, that are almost abstract paintings in their own right. I realized that if I kept painting I might lose them, so I put the brush down. I hope you enjoy looking at it and over the next couple of days I will post details of my favorite areas.

A quick announcement... My painting "Ripple Effect" (a smaller, different take on "All I Ever Want") has been juried into an upcoming show at AyrSpace in Ontario!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

After The Rain

After The Rain
30 x 30"
oil on canvas
© Nicki Ault, 2011  

I have been working on two large paintings at the studio and I am finally ready to show you this one which is based on a small piece I did earlier this year called "Field of Blues". This is the first time I have taken a small painting (8 x 8") and used it as a study for such a large painting. That in itself was a learning process and more of a challenge than I expected. The spontaneity of the brushstrokes in the small piece did not translate to the larger canvas in the same way. After quite a bit of struggle I finally stopped comparing them and began trying to make it work as a new painting in it's own right. Once I changed my mindset and once I got a bit of feedback from a couple of artists in the studio things began to sort themselves out. I am feeling pretty good about where things are at, but welcome any thoughts (D.M. Jr. I'm looking at you!) because I am not sure I am ready to call it done. 

*Note: the colours are overall a bit darker in the photo than in person.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Lost World

Lost World
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2011
sold  

I felt the need to visit the peace and quiet of the Boreal forest for a little zen time, so I found an old reference photo and did this little painting last night. You see my husband returned last night after being away for the last 9 days and let me just say that while he was gone my repertoire of life experiences grew immensely. What's that? You'd like a few examples? Alrighty then....
1) I sat at a baseball tournament in June in 3 degrees Celsius weather

2) City girl me went on a farm field trip and had baby goats chewing on my rubber boots... while I was wearing them
3) I endured a long wait at the medi-clinic with a very fevery 7 year old. (That in itself is nothing new... someone always gets sick when my husband is away, however my son fell asleep- he never naps- in my arms for the entire 90 minutes we waited and I didn't want to move him, so my arms fell asleep and my leg went numb!)
And finally... drum roll...
4) I found myself following through with a very stressful situation involving Sheriffs and bullet proof vests!!!

I'm sure you'll agree that I totally earned the two glasses of wine that helped me find zen as I painted last night!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Elements

Elements
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2011  
sold

As I painted this I was thinking how the silvery blue Wolf Willow reminded me of a wave passing a burning bush. Upon completion I looked at it the trees on the horizon and felt they could almost be read as distant mountains and then of course the sky represents air.  "Elements" seeme like the perfect title.

Lots happening this week... not sure if there are enough hours in the day! I will try to paint and post something, but it might be a bit quiet around here.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Ripple Effect

Ripple Effect
18 x 24"
acrylic on canvas
© Nicki Ault, 2011
sold  

I was at the studio all day yesterday for some much needed art therapy. I even sent lunch to school with the kids so I could stay focused and "zoned'. I painted a small 6 x 6" prairie which I will show you next time, but I am so excited to finally show you a larger painting that I had to put this one on the blog first.

For those that have kept tabs on my blog from the beginning you might recall that I love to do what I call abstract reflections and lately I have been in the mood to do more. You can see a set of them if you look on my Flickr Photostream (find the link under the slide-show on the right hand column of my blog). During the past month as I worked on the "30 paintings in 30 days project" I began two larger paintings of this sort. This is one of them and I completed it yesterday. The second is much larger (30 x 40") and is from the same resource photo, but the colouring will be different. I am really happy with how "Ripple Effect" turned out. The finishing touches I added yesterday were exactly what it needed and I love it more and more each time I look at it.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Inquiring Minds Want to Know

my display board at the 
FFFH Spring Art Show and Sale
© Nicki Ault, 2011  

I have received several emails and comments regarding the board that displayed my 30 paintings at the art show, so I thought I would do a quick post on that topic. It was pretty easy- if I can do it anyone can.

I went to Home Depot and purchased a large 4' x 8' (48" x 96") sheet of 1/2" thick MDF board and had them cut it at 57" (and used the left-over to make more 6 x 6" boards to paint on). I wanted to have a 3 inch border all the way around and then 3 inches between each painting. The math got me to 57" and in fact the vertical worked out perfectly. The horizontal was slightly imperfect because it turns out the MDF was actually 49" wide not 48" (probably to allow for cuts if you were chopping it down), so the borders on the left and right sides are 3 1/2 inches. I don't think it is noticeable. I primed it then measured it all out with my trusty side-kick (mom)! All of the paintings (6 x 6") have a hanger on the back set at exactly the same location... one inch down from the top and at three inches which is the centre. This made measuring the location of the nails on the board a snap because everything was uniform.


And speaking of a snap, for accuracy we used a chalk string to snap our lines once we marked our measurements out on the board. Where the vertical and horizontal lines met was where the nail went. I decided to hammer in nail holes while the board was laying flat because it was easier to set them straight in and not at an angle. This way the paintings all hang uniformly; I never could have gotten 30 angles the same. With the nails removed, my trusty side-kick washed the chalk lines off and painted the board a nice crisp white (satin finish) making sure not to fill the nail holes. Once dry, I went back and hammered in tiny picture nails with a small flat head and set them quite deep so each painting would hang close to the board. Voila! Keep in mind the board is heavy and needs a large-ish vehicle to transport, but it is easy to store and it is reusable. It needs a very sturdy easel to support it with a top clamp so it doesn't shift.

This is how I transported the paintings to and from the show...
Dish racks! I got this tip from another blogger's post ages ago and can't for the life of me remember who it was. If I could remember I would give her a shout-out. I had pre-planned and numbered the layout of the grid so when setting up I just gave the chart to my mom and sister and they went to town hanging the paintings while I figured other things out.

Hope this helps and isn't too confusing.