Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Canada and Me . . . (part 1)

Red Onion - 14" x 10" - Watercolour
A few years ago I was invited to take part in an international symposium of artists in Quebec, Canada. At the time I had no idea why I was chosen but have since discovered that it was as a result of some paintings (mostly landscapes) that I had posted on my website. All expenses including travel, hotels and food were paid for by the symposium committee. In return the artists attending were expected to present a display of their paintings and to work on a current painting so that visitors might observe methods and techniques. At the time I was working on a series of still-life studies of fruit and vegetables and I thought that a continuation of this would be ideal for the situation. Normally I work very slowly and watching me in the studio is about as interesting as watching paint dry which is, when you think about it, precisely what the observer is watching. However when I work on a still-life (or any 'live' subject) I work fairly fast. Hence my belief that watching a series of still-lifes being made would be more entertaining than witnessing the slow, drawn out process of painting a landscape from photos and drawings.

Wandering through a market across the road from the symposium in Canada I found two prize winning onions: one red and one white, coincidentally the colours of the Canadian flag - perfect, or so I thought . . .

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