Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Monday, December 29, 2014

The Virginia June Series # 1

Virginia June Series # 11,  acrylic & ink on paper,  2014
I really like how this portrait turned out. Looks like gouache, but it's acrylic. I like how the paint is nice and loose. I was relaxed and listening to some good music while making this.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Historical Portrait: Robert Gascoyne-Cecil (1861)

Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury (1861),  acrylic goauche & ink on panel,  (5" x 7"),  2014

The original of this historical portrait was a black and white engraving by William Holl, so I had to improvise on the colours.
My kids love his beard.
He kinda looks like a cool bad-ass bearded man with a "don't f*** with me" attitude.
I love how his eye turned out.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Everyday life: look at all the pretty icicles

It's been exactly a week with no sunshine here in Montreal. Now it looks like we have to wait until this Friday for the sun to come back.

Our apartment windows are surrounded by a fortress of icicles. Very pretty indeed. At least it's not cold out. I've been a rebel and have been wearing my running shoes outside instead of my winter boots. It's nice to be able to walk at a normal pace.

I think I'm going to find a lightbulb or something and stand under it to simulate sunshine.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Historical Portrait: Moses Gill

Moses Gill c. 1759,  acrylic on 12" round canvas,  2013

I painted this historical portrait in the spring of 2013. My son Lorenzo was quite impressed with it and asked me to not put it up for sale. And so I obliged and have kept this painting in my studio ever since.

Yesterday afternoon, I decided that it was time to sell this painting (with Lorenzo's blessing).
You can find it listed in my ETSY shop.

There are some paintings that an artist makes and decides to keep forever no matter what.
And there are other works that are kept for a little while until the artist fully absorbs what he/she needs to still learn from a particular painting.
In this special case, my family and I have enjoyed this work and I've spent many times standing in front of it and staring at it.

For me, I believe this painting represents a point in time when my historical portraits took a leap forward. It is not super-realistic, but realistic enough that it feels like a real person. You can feel the weight of the flesh.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Historical Portrait: Effie Ruskin

Effie Ruskin,  acrylic & ink on panel,  8" x 10",  2014

A new historical portrait that I finished yesterday. It was originally painted in 1853 by John Everett Millais.
She has dreamy eyes.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Everyday life: look at the pretty snow

This is what I woke up to this morning. This is technically our "real" first snowfall for Montreal, because this time the snow will stay and not melt away. The forecast calls for snow pretty much non-stop till Friday.

The first snow fall is always the prettiest because it is still fresh and new for me even though I've lived through many winters since I was born.
The snow looks light and white and clean and oh so pretty.
Makes you want to make hot cocoa.
Makes you want to sit by a fire and read a good book.
Makes you want to go out and buy a pair of skis and do some cross-country skiing up North.

My nostalgia for winter will last about 3 seconds, after which I mark my calendar like a prisoner and wait for spring to come back.

Will I become one of those retired folks that will move away and live the rest of their days out in some tropical climate?
I only hope so.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Everyday life: clay sculptures

I took this photo this week to show a client in New York the scale of my sculptures. By chance, it turned out to be a nice photo as well. I'll try to find a way to incorporate it into my website and ETSY shop.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Historical Portrait: Isaure Chasseriau

Isaure Chasseriau c.1838,  acrylic gouache & ink on panel,  (5" x 7"),  2014

This historical portrait painting was originally made by French painter
Eugene-Emmanuel-Amaury Pineux-Duval…aka Amaury-Duval (1808-1885).

And I thought I had a long name.

Isaure Chasseriau was the sister of Amaury-Duval's wife, so like his sister-in-law for short.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Everyday life: Ceramic Dog Sculpture

Ceramic Dog 2014

Lorenzo sold his first piece of artwork this weekend to a collector in New York! I'm very proud and happy for him. Congratulations!
If you want to see more of my son's work, check out his new ETSY shop:  Spockstar

Thursday, November 20, 2014

KYOJIN clay sculpture busts

Looks like a party!
I've been working like crazy in my studio.

Looks like a very strange police line-up. 

I love my latest batch of sculptures. I know I always say that after I finish them, but I'm always amazed at how they turn out. I need to make more of the underwear girls.

Friday, November 14, 2014

The Parker Series # 10

The Parker Series # 10,  acrylic & ink on wood panel,  (4" x 5"),  2014

Another new one in the Parker Series. I think I'll bring this one to the McGill Holiday Market next Wednesday, November 19th at McGill University. Maybe I'll also put it in a gold frame to make it extra special.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Parker Series # 9

The Parker Series # 9,  acrylic & ink on wood panel,  (4" x 5"),  2014
Finally, some landscape to go with my portrait. She's not as "realistic" as some of my other portraits that I've been doing lately, but I like her.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Historical Portrait: Anne Duchess of Cumberland

Anne Duchess of Cumberland,  acrylic gouache on panel, (5" x 7"),  2014


A new historical portrait that I recently completed. I love her hair and the eyebrows.

Monday, November 10, 2014

The Parker Series # 6

The Parker Series # 6,  acrylic on panel (6" x 8"),  2014
The Parker series has been evolving over the last couple of weeks.  It would seen that the common denominator in all the paintings  in this series is that they're inspired from my archive of magazine photos. Last week, I took a detour and decided to lose the brush and use my trusty palette knife. There's something about not thinking too much about precise lines and just working the paint. It's both relaxing and frustrating to not be able to control the palette knife the same way as a brush. You learn a lot by going out of your comfort zone every so often. You go back to your regular techniques relieved and more focused.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Historical Portrait: Jane Eyre

Jane Eyre,  acrylic, gouache & ink on panel, (5" x 7"),  2014


I admit that I'm a sucker for historical movies. The PBS station is my go-to channel for all things historical when it comes to TV series. Jane Eyre by Emily Bronte makes for good reading and the 2011 movie version was somber, but good. Hence, the above historical portrait painting of Jane Eyre is intense, but beautiful and moody. I love how the lace collar came out.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Historical Portrait: George Washington

GEORGE WASHINGTON,  acrylic, gouache & ink on panel,  (5" x 5"),  2014


Another new historical painting that I recently made. I've always wanted to do George Washington's portrait. It's a face everyone knows.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Historical Portrait Painting - L'Amant

L'Amant,  acrylic & ink on panel,  (5" X 5"),  2014


I've finally found my groove and it feels good. My new portrait paintings are finally headed in the right direction.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

SUPERMAN painting

SUPERMAN,  acrylic gouache & ink on panel,  (5" x 5"),  2014
My son has been asking me for some time now to make a portrait of Superman. He's big on comic books and science fiction and all that Dr Who stuff. And he likes to paint and draw superhero characters.
So, I finally got around to finding a version of Superman that I like (there are so many out there these days). I must say that the late actor, Christopher Reeves made for a very sexy Superman. He had some great facial features. Now, that's my kinda of superhero. If you're going to wear a cape and tights, better have your mojo on.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Aquarium # 1

Aquarium # 1 , acrylic on gessoed paper,  (11" x 14"),  2014
I haven't done much abstract painting in a while. This weekend, I spent time in my studio working from photos that I took of the aquariums at the zoo in September.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Everyday life: art studio space

The fall season is in full swing and the days are passing very quickly. The word "holiday" is already part of many people's everyday vocabulary. I saw folks buying twinkle lights and wrapping paper at IKEA yesterday morning.
I've been busy getting my ETSY shop ready for the holidays. A selection of clay brooches are almost ready and should be in my shop by the weekend.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

She Wanted to Continue Looking

She Wanted to Continue Looking,  acrylic & ink on wood panel,  (4" x 5"),  2014

A nude painting that I did recently. Lately, my nudes come about out of the blue. I usually start with a portrait painting which ends up becoming a nude painting for different reasons. Nude painting is very familiar territory for me. I made so many of them since the age of 17 until well into my early thirties. After I had kids, my focus turned to smaller figurative works and now I think the tide is turning back to larger scale works and perhaps back to nudes. But I don't think I'm quite done yet with portraiture. I still have a lot of portrait painting that I need to make.

Friday, October 17, 2014

The Parker Series # 4

The Parker Series # 4,  acrylic on panel,  (6" x 8"),  2014

The latest in the Parker Series paintings. Took a while to paint all those flowers on her dress.

Monday, October 13, 2014

The Parker Series # 3

The Parker Series # 3,  acrylic & ink on panel,  (5" x 5"),  2014

A new painting that is part of my new The Parker Series. I'm quite liking this new direction in my work.

Psycho Cat art zine

A new art zine that I just completed with 10 full colour illustrations.

The cat that started it all.

There's an array of special characters in this art zine.
I've always loved the idea of art zines and I have a small personal collection of my own of different artists from around the world. So, I figured it was high time that I made my own art zine. I did it the old-fashioned way by hand with no computer. I hand cut each page and stapled each book myself. I think I need to invest in a saddle stapler if I want better, more precise results. But, I guess a crooked staple just adds to the charm of the book.
10 pages with 10 new full-colour illustrations.
Psycho Cat art zine is now available in my ETSY shop.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

FALL Clean up Time in the Studio

Yesterday was a fun day at the Market Cooperative Arts fair at McGill University. The students were sweet and the organizers of the fair were really helpful and very nice folks. Gives me hope for the future when I see that the young folks of today appreciate handmade goods in all its various forms.

So today I'm back in my studio and I have the urge to purge. We only have a barbecue grill on the balcony in the back, otherwise I would make a bonfire and burn some of my old work that's been hanging around for too long and taking up space for no good reason.
My approach from now on with my artwork is that if I think it's ok, it's just not good enough. I want all my art that I make and show to the world to be top quality, not just so-so quality. With this in mind, I need to be a better editor of my own work and be ruthless and objective. Sounds harsh, doesn't it, but it has to be so.

I did a big clean-up last night in my Etsy shop and created a $20.00 SALE section which will last for the whole month of October. I'm curious to see what the reaction will be if there is one at all.

I'm excited to start some new projects for the upcoming Holiday season. I'd like to do a couple of more art fairs and I want to get my portfolio updated and ready for 2015.
I have a feeling it' going to be a BIG year!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The Market Cooperative Arts Fair today

I'll be at the Market Cooperative Arts Fair today located on the McGill University campus in downtown Montreal. Open from 11am to 5pm.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Everyday life: Nikki Carr Last Comic Standing

This past summer, the whole family got into the new 2014 season of the Last Comic Standing. Here's one of our favourite comics from the competition: Nikki Carr.
We all thought she was pretty funny. Got some good laughs watching her perform.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

New Giant Clay Figure Series

The KYOJIN series
acrylic & clay
I went back to my pile of clay that's been sitting in my studio for some time and decided to make some new larger size clay sculpture figures. I was going to call these new sculptures: The Giant Series, but thought best to find a translation in another language for the word "giant" and found the Japanese word: KYOJIN a suitable match. Sounds more exotic. My reasoning for all this was that "The Giant Series" makes me think of baseball. And my figures are definitely not about baseball.
I love these new clay figures. I think they're awesome! I think some time away from making clay figures was good for me and I came back with a better and stronger approach. (I love the orange guy).

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Historical Portrait: Unknown Man c.1860

Historical portrait: Unknown Man c.1860,  acrylic on panel, (6" x 8"),  2014

A very recent historical portrait which I am very keen on. I've put it up for sale in my Etsy shop, but I'm not sure if I really want to sell him.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Historical Portrait: Diana Armstrong

Diana Armstrong (1872) by John Everett Millais,  acrylic & ink on panel, (5" x 7"),  2014


As promised, I've been working diligently on my repertoire of historical portraits. I'm hoping to have a least a dozen new works by the end of this month. Above is a portrait of Diana Armstrong. I plan on making the portrait of her sister soon.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Everyday life: Mystic Seaport

 I have a copy of this photo on my desk in my studio. I laugh every time I look at it.

Lorenzo and Greta at Mystic Seaport in Connecticut this summer.

Friday, September 5, 2014

The Girls Wanted Everything

The Girls Wanted Everything,  acrylic, ink & gesso on panel,  (5" x 5"),  2014

Here's another new painting that I made recently this summer. Not sure where they came from, but there they are. Not quite anatomically correct, but who cares? Boobs are boobs.