Sunday, December 20, 2015

1194 Singleton Ice

This is visiting an old friend from 2012 when we used to have winter :>))
This is the view looking southerly across Jim Day Rapids. The ice was really solid and provided a level area to pace back and forth as I painted and picked my colours. The wind picked up and it got decidedly chilly. I had to retreat to the home to warm my hands. The paint also got rather pasty but that adds to the plein air effect. As always, I was interested in the shapes and colours of snow, ice and water - all H2O. I didn't want to get bogged down in busy details while still hoping to capture the essence of the scene. Ice makes a multitude of colours especially at the water's edge.

The patch of cirrostratus on the western horizon was a harbinger of the approaching winter storm. Snow and freezing rain would certainly force me to paint inside on Wednesday. (it did! The forecast from the sky verified.)

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Barriefield’s Bicentennial Book

Yes, Barriefield’s bicentennial book will be available before Christmas... just! The launch is happening on Wednesday 23 December 4-7 pm, at the Kingston Yacht Club. This is the first time that Barriefield's story has been gathered together into one volume. At 200 pages, and with 170 illustrations, it is a fascinating and beautiful book. I have a painting in this book but as am yet, unsure just where :>))

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

1559 Ice Ledge

Started 2:30 pm Monday April 6th, 2015.
I selected this scene to practice looking into the water at small angles of incidence. Refraction of light dominates when you are looking downward into the water at small angles of incidence. In this case you can clearly see to bottom. The colours change with depth though and this was the challenge. The position of the features also are distorted but in this case, that didn't really matter. No one is likely to complain or find any errors.

Monday, December 7, 2015

1691 Pensive Clouds

This Singleton skyscape was from early November. I used a lot of paint on the 8x10 canvas and it was fun!
The abnormally warm weather has continued until today and will last at least another week. The cold polar vortex is located more over James Bay for the time being. El Nino is making the news as well. It would appear that the climate, the weather we expect, is not what it used to be, whether we like it or not. I suspect many like this weather... I am headed out for a paddle...

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Update - The Parry Sound Group of Five Plein Air Painters

This is another in the series of paintings from the October outing with The Parry Sound Group of Five Plein Air Painters. The location of this scene is somewhere around N45.24324167 W80.15092778 according to the GPS on my camera. I tried to find the location of Spar C194 on some map but was unsuccessful. For me, this is classic Georgian Bay and Canadiana.
There is tyalk about making this an annual event. Wouldn't it be nice?! So far I probably have 25 paintings from this trip with another 10 or so waiting in the wings to take flight - so to speak.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Fine Art America Introduces Canadian Fulfillment for Framed Prints

Fine Art America Introduces Canadian Fulfillment for Framed Prints December 4th, 2015
The FAA global expansion continues... "we (FAA) are very pleased to announce that we've begun shipping framed prints from our new production facility in Toronto!
What does that mean?
It means that all orders for framed prints will ship to any address in Canada within 2 - 5 business days!
It also means low shipping rates... no import taxes... and a whole new market of buyers for your artwork!
Check out our global fulfillment network.   We now have 14 fulfillment centers in 5 countries!
The Canada center will be fulfilling orders for all of our websites, including,,,,, and all of the others.   This includes your personal Artist Website and your shopping cart widgets, as well.
Tell your friends... tell your family... tell your followers on Facebook and Twitter... your online art business just went global!"

Monday, October 26, 2015

The Parry Sound Group of Five Plein Air Painters

I had the distinct pleasure of painting with the  Parry Sound Group of Five Plein Air Painters - Six if you include me - ladies all enthralled with Canadian art and the beauty of Canada - Parry Sound in this particular instance. Four of the ladies were also Docents for the McMichael Gallery in Kleinberg. Imagine sharing a campfire on starry night with artists passionate about Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven. I was able to tell a few stories and listen to many more. These opportunities are rare if not impossible to imagine. However, it was my distinct pleasure and honour to paint with the Group of Five - remember that both Five and Seven are prime numbers.
How this outing happened was either a miracle or an accident. It is almost impossible to plan something that turned out as excellent as this.  The following are the demonstration pieces that I painted while in Parry Sound - in chronological order.  I do hope that you will enjoy them.

Friday, October 23, 2015

1667 Pine Curtain

I had the opportunity to paint Limberlost in early October. The colours were just turning but still inspiring. Here are the efforts from that paint-out.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Museum on Tower Hill - Fund Raiser

I should have mentioned that this is a fund raiser for the Parry Sound Museum ... maybe Bobby will come!
I was going to be in the area painting Georgian Bay anyway and an earlier plan to present in Parry Sound didn't materialize.
The weather looks OK... a weakening ridge and a few troughs but nothing crazy. The good thing is that there will be weather. I hope that you can make it :>))

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Tom Thomson in Parry Sound

The Museum on the Hill, in Parry Sound is presenting an evening with Phil the Forecaster. Phil will present "Tom Thomson Was A Weatherman" on Sunday October 4th  from 7-9 pm. The presentation is an unique and innovative look at Tom Thomson's artwork and an eye opening presentation about the awesome weather patterns that still surround us. There is a fair bit of humour as well as science and art ... hopefully a lot of fun too.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

1078 The Son of a Wild Life

It is only four months to Boxing Day... so it is time to maybe post a winter painting from 2009. I painting this in the Watershed Farm Studio on one of the hottest days of the summer.
This is the son of #0610 "Wildlife". I arbitrarily decided to use the word "son" instead of "sun" in this effort. It could have gone either way as there is a lot of light and shadows in this painting.
This is the first painting when I froze my hands but it was worth it. I thought it deserved a bigger format so this is it. I added one more set of cotton tail tracks but otherwise it is pretty much like the inspiration.

Monday, August 24, 2015

686 Rocky Shoreline

Revisiting a past canoe trip... Thursday, June 10, 2004...
This is the view from "Margaritaville" very late in the afternoon. I was having a great time wasting away again in my canoe. In fact this was the best place to be as the mosquitoes had conquered and were still holding terra firma. I painted this from the canoe and didn't worry too much about detail.

685 Entrance to McCrae Falls

A blast from 11 years ago... Thursday, June 10, 2004 to be exact.
This is the view from the bridge that was built around 2001for the snowmobiles to get across McCrae Falls. I was looking eastward toward the water about to spill over the falls. All I could hear was the sound of the water. I was all alone at McCrae.. except for the two billion mosquitoes. I could also hear the buzzing of the mosquitoes.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

849 La Cloche

Started around 2 pm Thursday, October 5th, 2006
On Thursday afternoon,  I canoed George Lake... inspected A.Y. Jackson Lake and Little Sheguiandah Lake. I set up my easel on the large point just west of the portage to Freeland Lake. The La Cloche Mountains just to the west across George Lake were an inspiring site. The wind had veered around to the north and I had to get in the shelter of the spruce trees on the point. The painting just flowed. #0851 "The Sun of La Cloche" is the bigger version inspired by this sketch.

Friday, July 31, 2015

842 Killarney Light

Monday, October 2nd, 2006
On Monday afternoon the group with the Southampton Art School Killarney Paint-out kind of scattered. I headed back to the lighthouse at the eastern end of Ontario Street. I set up looking upward and northeasterly at the Killarney Lighthouse. I stood just above the wave line. If this had been an ocean front lighthouse, I wouldn't have taken the chance standing so close to the water edge because of rogue waves.
The sound of the wind and the waves filled the air. I painted hard from 2 to just after 4 pm. There were so many rocks and shapes that I got lost several times in the details.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

844 Wind Blown

Started Tuesday, October 3rd, 2006. There are a thousand paintings there left to be painted!
On Tuesday afternoon I headed back to the Chickanishing Creek Trail with "Margaritaville. It was an easy paddle out to Georgian Bay down the creek. The Chickanishing Creek Trail is about 8 kilometres north of Killarney just inside the southern boundary of Killarney Provincial Park.
I set up on the very edge of the water looking northerly toward the large island at the mouth of Chickanishing Creek. The surface wind was light easterly while the winds at cloud level were still westerly. Streets of cumulus cloud were developing over the land and then dissipating as they headed out over the cold waters of Georgian Bay. The winds had still not shifted around to the east. This occurred near the end of my afternoon painting session when the influence of the approaching surface trough made itself dominant. The trees on the shores of Georgian Bay are all "wind blown" and thus the name for this painting.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

843 Chickanishing Creek Meets Georgian Bay

A blast from the past - Tuesday, October 3rd, 2006
On Tuesday morning the group with the Southampton Art School Killarney Paint-out headed to the Chickanishing Creek Trail. It is about 8 kilometres north of Killarney just inside the southern boundary of Killarney Provincial Park. All of the group set up just to the east of the parking lot. I walked the trail right to the cliff overlooking where Chickanishing Creek flows into Georgian Bay. The trail is really quite up and down but very beautiful with descriptive plagues along the way. There is a large sand deposit and an island at the end of the creek. The pines on the island are severely wind blown from the southwest. I painted looking southeast from a large flat granite slab just below the crest of the peak.
Several hikers stopped to take my picture as I painted. It was a fun morning. I had a close look at a male ruffed grouse on the way back to the parking lot.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

965 Jones Boathouse

Started around 1 pm Tuesday April 15, 2008. Painting Place from the old River Road Bridge N44.50362 W75.80454.
I stopped at the old bridge where the "River Road" used to cross the mouth of Jones Creek. Apparently the construction crews feared they would never get to the bottom when they were carrying in rock for the bridge. This is township property but the local owner has used it now for a tomato garden. When she came over, she said she usually asked people to leave. I smiled and showed her my art. She made an exception for me. 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

988 Three Sisters

Started around 12:15 pm on Wednesday June 11, 2008.
And the clouds just keep on rolling. Starting just after high noon, I sketched the view to the northeast looking from the balcony of the condo at 55 Water Street East. The towering cumulus clouds are what caught my eye. They developed and moved off so quickly that what resulted in the painting is a composite of many different individual clouds. Thank goodness that the islands and terrain did not move as well. The condo Kitty seemed to approve.
At one time a bridge was planned to join Brockville with Morristown with the three islands, the Three Sisters providing the base for the towers supporting the spans. That never happened although there is some stone work on the closest of the islands. Traffic would have landed on the lawns of Fulford Place, however, and Senator Fulford managed to block completion of the project. Had it been completed, the history of the region would have been quite different.

Monday, July 20, 2015

982 Savage Sunrise

Started 8:30 am Monday May 12th, 2008. Painting Place at N44.50688 W75.78943.
This was painted from the southwest point of Green (A) Island overlooking the flat granite point of Savage Island. The sun was still getting up.
I was planning to paint from the other point but I noticed a Canada goose on a nest and I didn’t wish to disturb her. She (or he) got quite used to me after a while and we did not bother each other. The mate spent its time paddling around in front keeping an eye on me. The geese seemed to remember me and didn’t put up much of a fuss.
The osprey were still playing at there nest. Their call is more like that of a songbird and not a raptor!
The clouds on the southwestern horizon were thickening up from cirrostratus into the odd band of detached altostratus. A low pressure area was on the way and the northeasterlies up the river responded, The waves on the way back to shore were rather large with white caps. As a result the Savage sunrise was foretelling stormy weather on the way. It came to pass.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

A FAB - Plein Air - Experience

So far, we have a small group signed up for the FAB - Plein Air - Experience of August 7-8-9. That is fine by me. Plan A and Plan B are being finalized and will be communicated to the intrepid painters. Painting locations must have shelter and some basic facilities - as well as a good exposure for the morning and afternoon light with vistas to match. There are many such locations in the Frontenac Arch Biosphere but we only need three. The focus will be on painting and I will share the lessons learnt over the decades - as well as those I try to learn every day.
We will certainly talk about the weather - we will paint in it for sure. The attached painting is from one of the special locations that I know well.

Thursday, July 2, 2015


Started Sunday August 3rd, 2008.
It was 4 pm on the balcony at "The Executive" condo in Brockville. We were all enjoying the weather on a beautiful August afternoon.
A cumulus on the American shore shot up to a massive towering cumulus (TCU) in a matter of minutes and I grabbed a canvas and paints to have fun with it. With convective cloud, the shapes, patterns and colours change by the minute and I had to rush before the TCU started to shower out. This was only the first in a series of TCU's that produced showers for the rest of the day. Only one or two way to the east over New York State, ever made it to the cumulonimbus stage.
The "ICU" in the title could be one of two things. It was initially meant to be "I see you" but at times during the process of the painting, it could have meant "intensive care unit" as the survival of the sketch was in some doubt.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

1306 Rain Clouds

Started 4 pm Monday June 10th, 2013.
Rain was certainly on the way. The shelf of clouds on the horizon was there because rain was falling just to the west. The rush of air downward with the rain was lifting the convectively unstable mass of air upward to saturation causing the shelf to develop. The knuckles on the edge of the cloud shelf are indicative of the strength of the air movement and in this case, the instability. I figured I had over an hour to lay in the shapes and colours. Would it be enough time? A raven flew by so I sketched it in. I admire the "Einsteins" of the bird world.
It started to rain fairly hard at 5:15 pm. I retreated to the studio.
It rained all night and most of the following day. The upper jets used to blow strongly from west to east and usher lows eastward on their way. With a warmer Arctic the upper flow is weaker and now meanders like the twisted flow in a flood plain - "ox-bow lake lows". Slow moving systems will become more common and linger for days.