Barn Swallow


This was one of those paintings that just didn’t pan out as it was meant to.  The barn swallow was on the fence post of the pasture with three horses conferring under a tree in the background.  Well, what was once 16 x 20 is much more impressive as a 5 x 7!  Goodbye, out of focus horses.  The Barn Swallow is the main event.


Cutting it Down to Size

Sometimes a painting is much improved by a liberal cropping.  This one was a typical shape, 12 x 15 or so, and the point was the bright sky overhead.  Something looked a bit “pretty” about it though.  It wasn’t quite appealing.  When looking for something for a members’ show, Carolyn needed to frame something fast.  There was a small frame in a long rectangle… hmm!  Cutting out that bright sky changes the centre of interest.  The river still reflects the sky without having both actually showing.  The shape is lovely for accentuating the depth of the valley.  Success!  And just in time 🙂FullSizeRender (78).jpg

Demos for a Flowers Class


Judy and Carolyn led an outdoor class on flower painting.  Flowers of all kinds!  Here are some of the love demos as well as some practice doodles.  This is great for learning about wet in wet, lost and found edges, painting in layers, and being loose!  The less detail the better for a flower sketch.  We had a great time with all the ladies, sitting under the trees and painting away the afternoon.

Watercolour Retreat – Judy’s Efforts

Judy and Carolyn spent a lovely, peaceful morning painting by the river at the Peace Valley Guest Ranch.  Rain threatened in the distance( mostly) and created beautiful misty/ hazy scenes and incredible clouds.  The shore is still covered with masses of dried Peace Country mud which is very hard to paint “prettily” but that’s OK.

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Revisiting the Sparkle Experiment

When I thought I might be finished with my mica-based Daniel Smith sparkly paint experimental painting, I set it up to look at for a while.  In the first photo, you can see how it was at that point.  As the sun moved across the room, there was a moment when the shadows fell in just the right places to look as if they were right in the scene (middle picture).  I snapped a photo and went off to adjust my painting.  I liked the streak of shadow across the water and the beam of shadow across the centre, showering the left deer.

The photo on the right is the result, although I find it really difficult to photography the sparkle paints.  The colours did not change that much.  It’s more on the teal green side than the navy blue, and the deer on the right is definitely in shadow, so much so that it is difficult to see on first glance.  Here’s a close up to show how much sparkle there is.  You can tell it would be a different painting from each very slight change in angle.


Scenes From the Ranch – Carolyn’s Efforts

Our Peace Valley Guest Ranch Watercolour Retreat was fantastic!  What was forecast to be a wet, cloudy weekend was in fact hot, sunny, and interspersed with some spectacular clouds and atmospheric fog.  We thoroughly enjoyed the place, the people, the trail rides and the meals.  Getting some half decent paintings was a bonus!

Here are Carolyn’s efforts from three days at the Ranch (not including dozens of photos):