Jan 30, 2014

Happy Chinese New Year - The Year of the Wood Horse


The Year of the Wood Horse by Becky McMahon - Available

For this special day I have a friend and special guest, Becky McMahon.  Becky is a Chinese Brush Painter and likes to work on Rice Paper,  Her Horse seems to add the excitement and pleasure that comes with this special day.  Becky lives in the Blind Bay area and is a busy artist and instructor.  Her work may be seen in the Interior but also here in the Lower Mainland at Gallery Shop at Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden, 578 Carral St, Vancouver.  www.triskeltreecreations.com

Becky tells me "those born in the Year of the Horse are thought to be forthright, energetic, eloquent and achieve succes through hard work coupled with persistence.  They are extremely social and love excitement.  They can be selfish, and can charge ahead without thinking.  Most compatible with Dog or Tiger and least compatible with the Rat!"
To purchase The Wood Horse Contact Becky

So Gong Hei Fat Choi to everyone (Congratulations and be Prosperous), 

Jan 27, 2014

The Lady Vanishes - She's DONE!!

THE LADY VANISHES  - 18 x 24 - unframed - $650

WOW!!   She is done!!  

She did turn out to be quite a job but I really enjoyed it;  I was very excited with how it all came together. My favourite part was working on Michael and Margaret - who know I would enjoy drawing people so much!  I have always been a birds and animal person!!  The large format was also fun and I will try that again.

In working on this poster I did a bit of research into the movie itself.  For Margaret Lockwood, the female star in the movie, this proved to be the peak of her career.  She did go on to other movies and even experienced quite a bit of success as a villainess in the 40’s, but she nothing matched the success of this movie.  On the other hand, Michael Redgrave faired much better.  He originally did not want to leave the stage to do this movie but was talked into it. It was a good move; this movie proved to be a strong launching pad for a very successful movie career. 

My Lady will head off for jurying on Feb. 8 and hopefully she will make it into the show. The show opens with the reception on Feb. 18, 2014.  I will definitely be there as I want to see what other artists did for the show.  I am sure there will be some very interesting interpretations of this theme.

Reception Information:  Feb 18, 7-9pm.  Newton Cultural Center, 13530 72 Ave.   The show will also go on tour so I will keep you informed. 

If you have a special moment in time you would like me to draw for you just  Contact Wendy and I will be happy to work with you.  Much of our work can be done through phone and email. 

Have a good day. 

Jan 24, 2014

The Lady Vanishes - WIP Part 2

This is a BIG poster – 18 x 24!

 I don’t usually work in such a large size and I didn't realize the size would make such a difference in my method of working.  First of all I had to adjust my drawing table, I usually sit to draw but for this project I found it better to raise my table and stand.  This allowed me to work at the poster from all sides and to visual my progress better. 
Hard at work but the end is in sight!!!  

Taking frequent pictures of my poster helped me see what was happening with the drawing.  When you see your drawing in different formats it is often easier to see where changes are needed.  As I reviewed the photos of my work in progress, the smaller format made it very clear I needed to do more work on my actress’s eyes.  I could tell something was wrong when the work was flat and upright but once I reviewed the photos I could really see the problem.   Give it a try the next time you are fighting with a painting or a drawing. 

My usual soft pencils were dull in a minute and when I was working on the lettering I needed them sharp.  I started using my Staedtler Pencil Holders more as they could be quickly sharpened to a point and seemed to hold it longer.  I used a H lead, 2B lead and 2B lead. As my work came closer to completion I also used my bridge more.  You can see mine is made from 1/4 inch plywood but the commercial ones are more transparent.  They do give you a place for your hand that keeps it off your work.  With so much graphite on the drawing just using a piece of paper under my hand was starting to cause trouble.

If you have a special moment in time you would like me to draw Contact Wendy   I would be happy to work with you.  
Have a good day. 

Jan 22, 2014

The Lady Vanishes - WIP

The Lady Vanishes Poster - just getting started

Have you seen the movie - THE LADY VANISHES - 1938???  - Starring Margaret Lockwood and Michael Redgrave, directed by Alfred Hitchcock

This is will be my entry into the Silver Screen Poster Competition with the Surrey Arts Council.  The competition focuses on the Golden Age of Motion Pictures, the 30’s and 40’s.  This was an exciting time in movie industry; colour, talking and acting were the focus.  This was when some of those really great films were made as well: Gone With the Wind (1939); The Wizard of Oz (1939); Stagecoach (1939); Casablanca ( 1942 ); The Maltese Falcon (1941); were just a few from that period.  But more important many careers were launched.  I chose the movie The Lady Vanishes (1938) as it marked a turning point for Alfred Hitchcock.
Work is underway - Ooops! Seeing the picture in a different format helps to see where changes are needed 

 Hitchcock had started career as a director in England but it was this film that caught the eye of Hollywood.  I grew up hearing about his movies, they were scary, exciting and yet gripping.  I must admit I never had the nerve to watch all of Psycho!!  I liked his tamer movies, my favourite being To Catch a Thief (1955) with Cary Grant and Grace Kelly. Do you have a favourite Hitchcock movie?

If you have a special moment in time you would like me to draw for you  Contact Wendy   and I will be happy to work with you.  We will be able to do most of our work through phone and email. 

Have a great day and I will keep you posted on my progress.

Jan 14, 2014

On The Trail


ON THE TRAIL - Watercolour, 14 x 18 - Commission

This is a special commission for me as I am personally involved with the picture; I am in it!!  Yes, that is me, second from the right. 
This was an order from my friend's husband to paint a picture that captured the flavour of their special cabin retreat.  They had lots of 'lake' pictures for their fishing activities but nothing for all the time they spend walking and riding the many trails in the area. The photo shoot took place when I was visiting the cabin in August with my 'university' group.  We went for a great walk on one of the trails; what wonderful country to walk in.  We went through meadows, heavy forested areas, open pastures, old ranch lands, small lakes and more.  I took lots of pictures and really enjoyed the day.  This picture evolved from several I took and seemed to capture what we wanted. There is the heavy treed area in the back, the open pasture/meadow lands in the front, the fence posts suggesting the days gone by and the bonus, our little group stopped and chatting along the trail. 

If you have a special moment in time you wish painted just Contact Wendy.  I would be happy to work with you to make your dream come true.
Have a good day.

Jan 9, 2014

Hayley - The Great Hunter

 Hayley - 14 x 18 Commission 

Yes, this is another of the Christmas Commissions.  Hayley is a great drawing and I am really pleased to share her with you. Needless to say her owners were very thrilled with the picture.
Hayley is a very tall black lab and loves to chase things, even in the water. She loves that game and will keep you busy till your arm falls off. I got some great shots of her in the water waiting for that stick to be thrown.

 Drawing an all black dog can be a challenge.  The key is to have reference material that has lights and shadows that define the animal.  When I took my pictures it was a warm sunny day at the end of August, so I really had to close my filter down in my camera to reduce the bright light and capture the shadows.  The results, a great set of photos to work with.
If you are interested in Commissioning a drawing just Contact Me.  I would love to work with you bringing your picture to life.
Have a good day.

Jan 4, 2014

Ali - One Fabulous Little Dog

Ali - 14 x 18 - Commission

Happy New Year and welcome to 2014!!  
I wanted to start off the year with Ali, she is a lovely little Collie and one of my Christmas Commissions.  I completed several commissions in the fall but of course they couldn't be shared until the big day.  Ali came to visit in early October when we were having some lovely fall weather for a photo shoot.  She danced around the yard checking things out but always following her owner.  She was so sweet and of course her and Rusty hit it off right off the bat!
We got so many great pictures of her it was hard to pick one.  This one really seemed to show her sunny personality and of course her lovely coat of hair!
I will share a few more of my Christmas Commissions in the next few posts as several were very memorable for me as well as the new owners.  Then it will be on to the new pictures for the new year. Already I have a few underway that will soon be ready to show off.

If you would like to Commission a Drawing just  Contact Me,  I will be happy to get things rolling. We can do it all by email so don't feel you have to come for a photo shoot. If you have a picture you would like me to work from just send it along and we can get started. 
Have a good day,