I am the artist of the month for the SASCU (Salmon Arm Savings and Credit Union) in Sicamous B.C. I love how my paintings go with the beautiful colours they have on the wall and chairs. These paintings are up until the end of August if you get a chance to go in and have a look. The poppies are from an en plein air study I did and photos I took in Rigmor and Ken's garden (blog write up here), the cherries and pears are from nearby yards and the lower painting is an en plein air painting I did from the back camping area of Joe Schmuck's restaurant in Sicamous, B.C.
Ujamaa Grandmas is an organization that is being supported by the DeSonus Fundraising Gala in Airdrie and Calgary this fall. My water colour painting "With Gratitude", (below) is one of the silent auction items that will be in the Calgary Gala on Sept. 22, 2019. Ujamaa Grandmas is an organization that several of my friends are very passionate about and work hard at supporting. If you get a chance to check out their websites (click on their names in orange above), have a lively fun musical evening and support these wonderful soulful groups.
20" x 16" water colour, framed
DeSonus Silent Auction Item for Calgary Gala, Sept 22, 2019
These beautiful cards were created in a FUNdraiser (for Eagle Valley Arts Council) beginning water colour class that I taught. Two ladies had to leave before I could get their 6 cards in the photo. The most interesting part for me is that they created the cards while learning the water colour language and different ways of working with it, BUT without having a final product in mind, it was process learning. That is very difficult as adult learners because we are so driven to get the final product right. These ladies were given as little direction as I could on using the colour and placement of their "objects" and I found it inspiring with how well they developed their cards. It was a very uplifting evening for me, thank you ladies!
I have found a new place to sketch that is both unique and fills my soul. I have packed my sketch book, travel water colours, pencil and pen and headed off on my paddle board on Mara Lake, B.C. If the lake is fairly calm, I sit on my stand up paddleboard, hang my legs in the water and sketch the scene in front of me. I can't be too particular or detailed as the board bobs with any waves. I do get some funny looks from boats passing by but thankfully no one has stopped to ask me if I need help! The second favourite is paddling to Hyde Mountain Golf Course boat docks and sitting there sketching. Again the bobbing wave action occurs but I don't have to worry about grabbing anything in the waves. I love sketching and being on the water so you can understand the "fills my soul' part. If you happen to go by in a boat, be sure to honk and wave!.
I taught this beginning water colour class as a fund raiser for the Eagle Valley Arts Council in Sicamous B.C.. My friend Karen was staying with me so I had a great helper. The wonderful ladies were in the mood for fun and learning as we worked through various instruction. The painted pieces were then made into beautiful cards to take home with them. This was so much fun, I am looking forward to teaching the same course again on August 1.
I finally remembered to take photos of a painting in progress. The first picture is after I did the thumb nail to figure out placement as well as orientation (portrait versus landscape). The second photo is the drawing done with watercolour pencil on black gesso. The rest of the photos are the painting in progress with the final painting below. This painting was done based on the reference photos and sketch that I did at Rigmor and Ken's yard (see previous post).
"Rigmor's Luminous Poppies"
Acrylic on Board 34 1/2" x 26" In a black distressed frame
I had an invitation from Rigmor and Ken to paint their beautiful huge poppies. Early the next morning I grabbed my sketch book and water colours and headed by bike to their house. I found a nice flat rock to sit in the sun in their garden and happily sipped my coffee and sketched away. I forgot Ken goes on a daily early morning walk and was not finished before he came home. My surprised gracious hosts offered me a latte and a comfortable seat but I had everything I needed. Rigmor took photos for me and I am sharing them now (how great to have green thumbed friends!). Below are the photos of their very healthy a vibrant poppies. I am planning to paint these.
My sister Shannon and I were lucky enough to get seats and enjoy Alex Fong's water colour demo at Opus Art supplies. He was generous in his sharing of his process as well as painting 4 small demo's that he raffled off at the end. Unfortunately we did not win one but certainly enjoyed learning how he works and what inspires him.
This art show was the first one I ever entered with the encouragement from my art friends in the Eagle Valley Brush and Palette Club. It was incredibly hard to put my art out there, to be displayed among talented artists, pricing it as well as learning how to frame and finish the paintings to hang. Happily this is also where I sold my first piece of art (to the town mayor). Since then I have helped set up this art show and enjoyed hosting time, all again learning moments. There are all styles and levels of painted art as well as a variety of crafts. I try to craft something for a table each year and this year I painted Dominoes and made them into necklaces. I also have unframed paintings and art cards and book marks for sale. If you are in the Sicamous, B.C. area, please join us at the Red Barn Art Centre.
This painting is a representation of all the hidden beaches in B.C., particularly in the Okanagan/Spallumcheen area. There are so many places to stop for a swim in a lake or river off the main roads, you never know what hidden gems you will find.
"The Hidden Beach" Oil on canvas board 8" x 10" #20013619 For Sale, if interested please contact me.
"Returning To The Natal Home"
30" x 36" oil on 3/4" canvas with painted sides (no framing required). 5th fish painting in this series so far. #20005619 For Sale
My reference photo was taken from a highway bridge near Malakwa B.C. of the salmon spawning below. The fish were resting in the water cooled by the bridge's shadow. They would rest facing the current and then shoot ahead a few feet or when another salmon got in it's way. The water's current gave them an abstract look and feel.
30" x 24" Oil on canvas, framed #20028519
Not sure why I am so enamored with fish but this large framed painting of Koi was fun to create and another addition to my fish series. These Koi were very fluid with dripping colours, as well as a variety of colours in the fish and background made it really intriguing to paint. I had to step back a lot so that I did not get into small details that did not matter. I wanted the painting to look and feel fluid.
30" x 15" Oil on canvas with 1 1/4" painted sides (framing not required)
The reference for this photo was taken on our daughter's phone when she was in Bali. I loved the blues and the contemplation factor in her body language. The long format gave me the opportunity gave to show the great expanse of the sky over the ocean. The vast scene aligns with her contemplation of the rides ahead.
Shannon and I drove to Keluki Beach parking lot and I had to paint the wild Balsamroot. Due to the end of the day and dull light I painted it very loosely in acrylic and added ink (see photo below).
aNothing like finishing a very full en plein air painting day with framing in a parking lot. These paintings will be on exhibit and for sale at the Vernon Community Arts Centre 2704A Hiwy 6 in Polson Park from May 31 to June 11.
The photo reference for this painting was taken by Karen Jensen Letendre. Karen posted it on Friday February 13 on the Sicamous Rant and Rave Facebook site. It is taken from the town beach park out towards the lake. I found it just stunning and of a place I love and know well.
I sent Karen a message asking if I could have her permission to paint it. Not only did she give me her permission but also let me know she is part of the Arts Council and is going to submit to the Eagle Valley Brush and Palette Club/Eagle Valley Photography Club annual photo to canvas painting show tomorrow May 12 in conjunction with a Mother's Day Tea. As I am part of the EVB&P Club, I was thrilled to be able to participate. The tea and exhibition are from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. with a slide show at 2 p.m. at the Red Barn Art Centre, The cost is $5 and everyone is welcome to this celebratory event.
Instead of the photograph landscape view I decided to do my version square (24" x 24"). The other noticeable difference is the reflection of the sun on the back of the tree (camera lens reflection). I felt joy as I painted this one, loving the colours and reflections. I am also using Karen's title for her photo. A huge thank you to Karen Jensen Letendre for her generosity!!!!
"A Splendid Day In The Neighbourhood"
Oil on canvas with 1 1/2" painted sides 24" x 24" #22001519
Reference photo by Karen Jensen Letendre
This is a photo of my beautiful sister Shannon and my en plein air set up. You can see how much the light has changed already from the start of the painting. Shannon met me in Oyama, we filled her Red Flyer wagon and off we went on the Rail Trail. There was a cool breeze off the water which made painting in acrylic especially challenging for me.
There were periods of time with few people passing by then a group of bikers would stop, chat, watch and even take photos.. I even had a budding artist try her hand with my paint and palette, what fun!
The first acrylic painting titled "Red Buoy" completed and framed! 16" x 20" #20008519 This painting will be on exhibition and for sale from May 31 until June 11 with other artists that sketched and painted en plein air (on location) for this event. These Trail Festival art works can be seen at the Vernon Community Arts Centre 2704A Hwy 6, in Polson Park, Vernon, B.C. #vernonarts #okanaganrailtrail
As I hadn't painted plein air (outdoors) yet this year and the Rail Trail event was coming up I decided to pull out my water colours and see if that was the medium I was going to use. I usually enjoy painting en plein air in oils but needed to frame and hand it in to the Vernon Arts Centre as I was not going to be in town to hand in later. I painted the same scene at the unfinished rail bed in Sicamous two different times of the day in 2 days. The lighting was very different! Both are done on 1/8 sheet of water colour paper. These two paintings have already been chopped up for bookmarks.
I am looking forward to participating in this first annual event. Four things I love are: painting, biking, being outdoors and spending time with family and friends. Imagine getting to enjoy all four in one day! If you get a chance and want to paint add your name (free registration this year only). If you so desire, your en plein air art can be in a show and sale following the event (email email@example.com).
This painting is part of a fish series I started. So far salmon and koi have intrigued me. This one in particular because of the deep colour of the pool with the brightly coloured koi. The variety of markings and colours are also very intriguing to paint. It struck me that these fish are as visible as a pet gold fish in a bowl.
"Beyond The Bowl"
20" x 16" Oil on 1/2" canvas with painted sides
#20025419 For Sale
A Beautiful Day Awaits
8" x 10" Oil on canvas board
#20015419 $80 unframed
This is a misty view of Mara Lake in the early morning before the sun has burned the mist off the lake and the clouds away. The sun's paint brush is just starting to add colour, love this time of day.
10" x 20" Oil on canvas board
#20009419 For Sale
This painting is based on a couple of photos that I took along side the Eagle River outside Sicamous, B.C. The salmon were taking a short rest before they zoomed up a few feet against the current. Their heads were turning from red to green at this point. It is quite amazing to watch their struggle and how shallow the water can be as they head upstream to spawn. I was so enamored with the first painting, I have decided to do a series. I love the narrow and long length of this canvas.
8" x 10" Oil on canvas board
#20002419 $190 framed
This is the 3rd salmon run painting that I have done in this fish series (first one posted) The photo reference is from just outside of Sicamous, B.C. of the Eagle River. Some salmon found a deeper spot to rest in while others were partially out of the water. It is amazing to think of the distance and difficulty these salmon had going back to their original spawning spot.
This painting has been juried into the Thompson Nicola Shuswap Chapter of the FCA Open National Show 2019 April 11–20 at the Old Court House, 7 Seymour Street W., in Kamloops, B.C. If you are in the area, check out the beautiful art from across the country. They always look so much better viewed "live".More information on the TNS Chapter National FCA show can be seen on the "Midday" TV show.
This painting of the Volkswagen Van was fun from start to finish. It provoked a lot of memories of my youth and the fun I had with friends. I never owned one but a camperized van is on my bucket list to travel and paint in.
The photo above is in progress, blocked in and starting to get the correct values and colours. The middle photo is nearer completion and the bottom is the final painting....fun, fun, fun!!!
"The Fun Continues"
12" x 9" Oil on canvas, unframed with 1/2" painted sides
I have been working on a new blog posting spot on my website in a tab instead of having 2 destinations to go to. This hopefully will be easier for me to post and for people that are interested in following my art journey. I am grateful for everyone that is and has been interested as I started this blog to be able to watch my art journey unfold.
This is a photo of our new Grandpuppy "Freddie". My husband Gord developed allergies to dogs and cats as an adult so our kids were never able to have either to call their own. We had guinea pigs, fish, gerbils etc. instead. This is our daughter and son-in-law's new love. We were able to spend the first couple of hours with Freddie after they picked him up from his previous owner. What a bundle of fun and love! Freddie is a heart full! This photo might be a future painting!
A wonderful hand made thank you!
You can imagine my sheer delight when I opened the large envelope to find this wonderful thank you card made by a grade 3 class at Louis Riel Elementary School in Calgary. I made book marks I call "Art Marks" from my original painting that I cut up. Doris ("Grandparent Volunteer") asked if she could have some for her class and I was more than happy to oblige. The wonderful gift I received was this thank you card that looked like the bookmarks and each child signed their name with one word to describe the bookmark: as blue as the ocean, artistic, awesome, beautiful, gorgeous....can't you just feel my happy dance.
16" x 20" Oil on canvas
#20011319 For Sale
This is a typical view of hiking near the Canadian Rocky Mountains with the river valleys. We have wonderful hiking within 1 - 2 hour drive from Calgary.
I go on an annual hiking trip with a group of ladies and take all kinds of photos to inspire me later. The ladies generously share their photos as well so it is great to see different
perspectives and what interests them in a landscape scene.
Karen Oliver's Art Journey
Thanks for stopping by to see my art journey and what I am currently working on. If you are looking for previous posts, they can be found on my old blog: http://karen-oliver.blogspot.com/