Thursday, 21 January 2016

Painting Pears



oil on wood 20x20cms/approx 8x8"



2015 was a good year for pears...both on my tree and on my easel.  I have pear tree and most years it's weighed down with these little pears.  I can't resist painting them as being home-grown they are all different shapes and sizes.  They look to me as if each one has their own personality, especially if I put them in a row.

Oil on wood, 17x40cms/approx 7x16"

This isn't the first time I've painted pears and it certainly won't be the last.  I've come to the conclusion I quite like painting fruit and veg!

or

Sunday, 17 January 2016

Sketchbook Sunday catch up




I'm playing catch up...these are my sketches from December at the Zisa Palace, Palermo.

'La Zisa' was built in the 12th century in an Arab/Norman style and is set in peaceful gardens, designed as somewhere to relax, it even has a primitive form of air conditioning. A series of vent ducts and air tunnels captured the wind to maintain a cool airflow through the building.




I didn't have long there but from the park/garden I also sketched the S.Stefano church.
A beautiful sunny day, although now I'm sitting by the fire with far more wintery conditions!

or

Monday, 21 December 2015

It's that time of year again



oil on wood 20x20cms 
Christmas time is here again, this year has flown by. I have been concentrating on my oil paintings for most of the year, especially the small 20x20cms size.  They are fairly quick to paint and allow me to try out new subjects and techniques, I'm really enjoying them and getting a lot out of it so be ready for more in the next year.
I hope all of you have had  great year and I wish you a festive and peaceful Christmas!



Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Into the Blue




Oil on mdf wood  20x20cms (approx 8x8")

I know that in a lot of places it's freezing cold and wintery, so here is a memory of a warm summer.

This is the edge of an island, at the top of a hill... a view from a castle.  In the middle of Lipari town on the island of Lipari, Sicily, there is a steep walk up to what was once a castle and is now a museum.  The views are spectacular from all sides, out to sea and over the town

I'm always curious to see what's over the wall, round the corner or on the otherside, so if you are wondering what could be seen from between these trees......here you are.


To paint this painting I made myself use only a large brush for everything, which was fun as I often fiddle about too much. I liked it so much I haven't touched my little fiddly brushes since!

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Purple Plants





Oil on wood 20x20cms 
I realised that I hadn't posted for a little while, but I have been painting... this is a terracotta vase filled with a purple plant called 'miseria'.  It's from the garden of a 17th century villa but I'm sure the vase isn't that old.  I was attracted to the shadows of the plant falling on the terracotta in the sun.


Here's the garden, my vase is near the house on the right of the pretty garden.



Monday, 21 September 2015

Lemons, lemons, lemons




Oil on mdf wood, 20x 20cms

These are lemons from my garden earlier this year.  They're not perfect, they're uneven shapes but they smell and taste wonderful.  Sicily is famous for its lemon cultivation, although  in recent years it seems to be in decline.  The price of  lemons on the market is so low that it is not worth while growing them.
When we first bought our house the fields around us were golden yellow in the spring with fruit.Wild fires and construction have sadly changed that forever.






This is my original sketch in watercolour, I decided to lose the reflection from the glass dish as it looked odd  and untidy.


                                                     


Wednesday, 9 September 2015

People Watching




Do you like people watching?  I find it fascinating to observe my fellow humans and their habits, even inventing characters and lives for them..
There is an art  to the social science of watching without being noticed and  I like to sketch or even photograph people discreetly.
A nice place to sit with a coffee is ideal, as in this case on the seafront at Siracusa.
These local lads were chatting and watching a friend fishing. it was the beginning of the summer holidays so I could imagine them planning some exciting activities for the coming months and wonder if they'd caught anything.




Later in the day as the sun went down I sat in almost the same place with a pizza, people were very relaxed walking and chatting.  This man and his dog were out for an evening stroll...I couldn't resist!
I enjoy painting my 'unaware' subjects, but I'm never sure if one day they'll come cross their portrait by accident online. I d love to know their reaction and is it allowed anyway? mmmm..

Both are oil paintings are 20x20cms on mdf board.





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