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.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Soft Sky

#7- Soft Sky
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2012
30 paintings in 30 days- Project II
sold

I am recalling that one of the great things about this 30 in 30 challenge is the opportunity it gives to play, experiment and grow. After completing this painting I envisioned another way of tackling the sky- good thing I am doing another small painting tomorrow!

On a more personal note, my oldest boy turned 10 today. It is amazing to me that a decade has gone so quickly. He is a smart, funny, kind, caring "old soul" and he lights up my world on a daily basis.

*note: I left this painting at the studio, so it is not here to compare for accuracy of colour next to the image on the screen. I think it is close, though.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Place to Rest

#6 - A Place To Rest
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2012
( 30 paintings in 30 days - Project II)
sold 

I can't get enough of the grasslands. 

Well, the show with my Dad is next weekend so this will be a busy week getting final touches on paintings and doing all of the pre-show preparations. I have not put many of the paintings on this blog yet... so if you come to the show hopefully it will be fun to see them for the first time in person.

Tomorrow I will be taking down the show at O'Reilly Insurance. What a fantastic experience that has been!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Feelin' Sketchy Saturday and Unreal Sky

#5 - A Real Unreal Sky, Waskesiu
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2012
(30 paintings in 30 days- Project II)
sold

I took so many photos last summer and some of the skies I caught were magnificent! The photos weren't of the best quality, but I use my pictures as a reminder and go from there. What struck me was the neon strip of colour at the bottom of the cloud mass... a mind blowing neon pink. The concern is that in a painting it comes off as unreal, but I had to try. Here is the actual photo...


I went to the drop-in drawing class for only 45 minutes this morning, so I didn't come away with much to show. One of my favorite models was working today, so I wish I could have stayed longer.

15 minute pose
© Nicki Ault, 2012

Happy weekend!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Witness

#4 - Witness
6 x 6"
oil on board
(30 paintings in 30 days - Project II)
© Nicki Ault, 2012
sold

I often think about the array of sunsets and skies witnessed by the forest. I am always filled with gratitude when I am able to be a witness as well.


Thursday, April 26, 2012

A Dream Before Sleep

#3 - A Dream Before Sleep
6 x 6"
oil on board
(30 paintings in 30 days - Project II)
© Nicki Ault,2012
sold

In the northern boreal forest, after the sun sets- sometimes as late as 9:30 or 10:00 p.m.- the sky gets dark and very blue, but it is still lighter than the treeline. With the majority of the sun's rays gone, sometimes it is the glowing moon that illuminates the activity in the sky. I find it all very dreamy and I could watch the sky forever... day or night.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Woods

#2 - The Woods
6 x 6"
oil on board
(30 paintings in 30 days - Project II)
 © Nicki Ault, 2012

I'm having flashbacks from last year's daily painting project. I'm now recalling how difficult it can be to name the paintings and how hard it is to get a good photo under less than ideal circumstances. And how leaving the painting to the end of the day means scrambling to get it on the blog so as not to lose face! :)  And this is just day 2!

I will re-post a better image tomorrow.

* update April 26: this is now a more accurate image.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

September High Noon

#1 - September High Noon
6 x 6"
oil on board
(30 paintings in 30 days - Project II)
© Nicki Ault, 2012
sold

I am somewhat hesitant in making this commitment, but here we go! I am starting another short term daily painting project like I did last year. Once again I am going to make 30 small paintings in 30 days which I will then take to the 2nd Annual Friends of The Forestry Farm House Art Show and Sale. I will be posting these paintings in my Daily Paintworks Gallery, however they will not ship until after this event which is on May 27th. I want to have the entire series on display that afternoon, so if something sells before the show it will be displayed with a red sticker beside it.

There is so much happening right now... the show at O'Reilly Insurance ends in a week, the show with my Dad is pulling together, the daily painting project is now under way and I am on a committee planning an event for June (which I can hardly wait to tell you about... but it deserves a post of it's own). Stick with me and see how it all turns out!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Family Tree: A Father-Daughter Show


The time is fast approaching! The show I have planned with my Dad is less than two weeks away and we are both getting quite excited. Lots to do between now and then, but one of the first things to check off the list is distributing the invitations. Here it is for you to see. If you will be in Saskatoon on the first weekend of May, please stop in and say hello!

Friday, April 20, 2012

NUTS! x 3


The reception at O'Reilly Insurance was fantastic! After counting the wine glasses at the end of the night, it was estimated that about 100 people came! It was terrific to see friends and family and I really enjoyed meeting so many new and interesting people. One of the reasons this post is called "NUTS!" is that somehow I forgot to put out my clipboard for people to sign up their contact info. if they want to know about future shows and events. Even during conversations when I was telling people about the upcoming show with my Dad it never dawned on me to ask them for their address so I could send an invitation. NUTS!

A second reason this post is called "NUTS!" is that I was changing settings on my camera the other day and now, somehow, the date stamp is on... and the date is wrong! I painted this today and took the picture today, but that is not today's date! Instruction book where are you?

The third and final reason to say "NUTS!" is that I decided to use cradled panels for the next couple of paintings because I love the natural colour of the wood- it is basically Naples Yellow. I thought it would be pretty showing through here and there once the painting is finished, so I used GAC-100 (Golden) to seal the surface. Once I got the location of the trees, logs and grass sketched in I began with painting the sky, which I wanted to be a pale yellow (you can see the start in the top left corner). It soon became apparent to me that I should have, in fact, been painting on a coloured ground because I was not going to be getting any zings of energy from pale yellow wood under a pale yellow sky. NUTS! The problem was that I sketched in the trees with oil paint and I liked how they worked so I didn't want to wipe it off then glaze the surface with oil paint and then have to wait for that to thoroughly dry before I could continue. My solution was to do a glaze of acrylic in all the non-oil areas-in other words where the wood colour was showing. I took this photo when I was part-way done. What a pain! But I think it will work in the end.

I hope you have a NUTS!-free weekend!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Lily Pads at Spruce River... and O'Reilly Insurance

Lily Pads at Spruce River
 36 x 24"
oil on canvas
© Nicki Ault, 2010
sold

Just a quick note before I head off for a much needed beauty rest! I have been fighting a bit of insomnia, so my fingers are crossed that tonight is the night for deep sleep.

I really love this painting- it looks great in my bathroom... and it looks great at O'Reilly Insurance which is where it is hanging right now. I am looking forward to the reception tomorrow evening. I hope to meet new people and see familiar faces. All are welcome, so if you are in Saskatoon please swing by.

I really have to say a huge thank you to Declan O'Reilly and his staff for this amazing venture they have begun at their office. Declan has a vision of supporting local artists, in particular newer artists, by providing a beautiful venue for them to show their work and also by organizing a reception at some time during the show. It is not easy for an artist to get their name "out there" if they are not represented by a gallery, so to have a business step up and offer their walls is what I consider a gift. It feels like that to me and I am grateful.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Bog

The Bog
20 x 16"
acrylic on canvas
© Nicki Ault, 2012

I just realized I put this painting on my Facebook Fan Page (feel free to "like" by clicking the button on the right side of this blog), but I hadn't shown it here. It will be in the tree-themed show I am doing with my Dad in a few weeks. You can read about that here. A good portion of Northern Saskatchewan is made up of the boreal forest and the photo I took for this painting was at a hiking trail called Boundary Bog in Prince Albert National Park. We love doing the hike with the kids, but depending on the month and amount of water around the mosquitoes can be the size of birds!

On a note of curiosity... I was just looking at my "stats" and it seems that the number of my visitors from Russia has skyrocketed! In the last month I had 188 visits, but 152 of those were in the last week alone! Why, I wonder? At any rate...

 Здравствуйте, друзья! Надеюсь, вам понравится мои картины!

(Welcome friends! I hope you enjoy my paintings!)

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Feelin' Sketchy Saturday

20 minute pencil sketch

Oh my goodness, the model we had at the drop-in drawing session today was goooooood! I have never seen gestures like that and unfortunately I have nothing even remotely worthy to show you for her efforts! She was so strong and beautiful and graceful. Really amazing. I'm sure I couldn't hold some of her 2 minute poses for ten seconds! And this was the first time I've seen a model actually break out in a sweat. She really gave herself a work-out, and I am sure she was glad to get to the slightly less physical longer poses...

 10 minute pencil sketch

... except for this next one- that knee had to have been sore by seven minutes in!

 10 minute pencil sketch

20 minute pencil sketch

I love the curves and angles on this last one. It took me a few attempts to find my way... one tricky part was the left thigh which hardly showed except for a small triangle shape. And her head looks oddly tilted here, but it was held up by her hand at an angle... and I ran out of paper so I couldn't properly describe what was going on.

I am so looking forward to this week! I plan to paint, paint, paint! The only other thing on the calendar is to help out with my son's Grade Two class field trip... to the Mendel Art Gallery, so even that will be about art!

I hope you have a wonderful, creative week ahead of you!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Announcing The Upcoming "Family Tree" Show

Good Morning Meewasin
 18 x 24"
oil on canvas
© Nicki Ault, 2012
sold

Hello friends! I am still here! Sorry for the unexpected disappearance. After the Gardenscape show I was completely exhausted. When I woke up on Monday morning I was very stiff and I, unfortunately, made one wrong move while washing my face and put my neck out. Not good! I have been in pain since that time but still had to get through my son's birthday and Easter! The third time to the Chiropractor yesterday was a charm and I am feeling so much better today. It is like a fog has lifted.

Now I have loads of business to tend to and the first on the list is making an announcement about my upcoming show at the beginning of May. I am so excited about it- I just know it will be a highlight of the year for me...

I am doing a show with my Dad!

When my Dad retired several years ago he began turning wood bowls and doing other wood related projects (he makes beautiful wooden wine bottle stoppers). As I began showing my artwork around town he would occasionally say that maybe someday we would have a show together. At first I didn't take him seriously, but then my mom told me she thought it might be on his "bucket list". Well when I heard that I was instantly on a mission to make it happen! We have rented a little gallery space for the weekend of May 5 and 6 and we are putting together a show called "Family Tree". I am doing paintings with the theme of trees and he, of course, will have his beautiful wooden bowls.The icing on the cake is that my sister (who lives down east) will be home in time for this show, so it will really be a family affair (she doesn't know this yet, but we might put her and my other sister to work!)

beautiful wooden bowls by my Dad, Bob Racine

So there you have it... the details for this show are at the top of the blog and all are welcome to attend if you happen to be in Saskatoon that weekend.

* I recently painted the above piece "Good Morning Meewasin" which will be in the show. Meewasin is a beautiful trail that follows both sides of the South Saskatchewan River that flows through Saskatoon. I took the reference photo while standing on the Broadway Bridge looking down toward the trees lining the riverbank. The early morning sun on the autumn foliage was spectacular!