Saturday, 22 November 2014

Watercolour vignettes



I am fascinated by Turner's watercolour vignettes which you can see and read about here. It is interesting that the vignettes that he did weren't intended as paintings in their own right but as pieces to be translated into print that were subordinate to the text that they accompanied. In my opinion they are all little gems.

It has prompted me to look again at breaking out of the formal constraints of the rectangular or square format of paper and canvas which can lead to something altogether more interesting. This is something I explored briefly some years back but hadn't returned to. Whilst my explorations are no where near as free flowing and randomly shaped as Turner's it might be the start of a journey that develops in that vein. To have the same confidence in guiding the paint rather than controlling it is definitely something that I aspire to.



Vignettes   watercolour  9x9cm   ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec



I have presented these part circular paintings within a square aperture mount which reinforces the formality that I am breaking away from. I like the tension between the formal and the chaotic. Where this will lead I have no idea but it is an interesting idea to experiment with.


Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Guiding lights



Guiding Lights acrylic on canvas 50x50cm   ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec


Finally I have finished this painting started in June. It's not quite as dark in real life but I might have a wait to get a better one as more wintery weather seems to have settled in and whilst it is very mild in temperature we are having very heavy rain showers with skies much like in the painting. It feels quite apt to be posting it now.

To see the beginning stages of this painting click here.


Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Sea shell notebooks


Well I don't know where my mind is at because I thought I had posted about these weeks ago. It seems I saved the post as a draft instead of publishing it.


A little side project that I had been working on...

A5 Sea Urchin notebook hand painted in acrylic ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec




Detail of A5 Sea Urchin notebook hand painted in acrylic ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec


There are six in the series and they are available in my Etsy Shop here .

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Watercolour shell studies



Shell studies 6x8inch approx ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec

Shell studies 6x8inch approx ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec
Shell studies 6x8inch approx ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec


Some new shell studies available individually at my Etsy store here .

I love painting shells, this series is growing and growing as I am always coming home with new subjects. With the little 'un' so close to the ground I'm thinking he might be a good hunter gatherer for new subjects too, in time ;o)

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Sunset sketch



sunset sketch   watercolour 20x20cm   ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec


I love how sometimes the sun seems to set the clouds on fire..... so challenging to paint. One day I will crack it. A really difficult sketch to photograph, I think it is too contrasty for my camera to cope with so it has greyed out somewhat...

There is so little time to paint now as the little one is on the move and not sleeping so much ;o)



Wednesday, 3 September 2014

De La Croix



 'I never know a moment's boredom when I have a brush in my hand.'    De La Croix


I haven't had much time to paint or sketch lately. A certain little someone has been keeping me on my toes. I have been taking little snatches of time to finish a book that I started back on maternity leave though - The journal of Eugene De La Croix  ISBN9780714833590. I have a shortened version but it is still a long read. It is however, absolutely fascinating with many insightful observations not only on art and painting but also on human nature.

One quote in particular has given me food for thought;


'As a rule marine artists do not paint the sea well.... they make portraits of waves...They are not sufficiently concerned with the effect of imagination which, by multiplicity of details - too minutely described even when they are true - is distracted from the main theme, the vastness or depth which art is capable of expressing.'     De La Croix



On The Coast   photograph ©2014Vicky Le Quelenec


I don't have too much left of the book and am wondering if anyone could recommend another for me to start on a similar vein. What is your favourite book written by an artist?


Thursday, 14 August 2014

A beautiful moon



Super moon   watercolour sketchbook ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec
I am a little late in posting about it...... but wasn't it beautiful?

Monday, 4 August 2014

Seas of Red



Poppies   acrylic ink A3 sketchbook page   ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec


It has been a very good year for poppies in my garden, there has been a lovely display. They are particularly beautiful when they are back lit from the sun. I have found it particularly poignant that the blooms were so many and lasted so long during this time of the 100 year anniversary of the start of World War I. Of all the things that I have seen and heard in the media about the commemorations this installation by ceramic artist Paul Cummins has been the most moving and beautiful to me so far. It is something I would love to see.

To buy a poppy and support six service charities register your interest here.

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

A storm in a WIP....




Guiding Light (unfinished)  acrylic on canvas 50x50cm   ©2014Lisa Le Quelenec



I didn't appreciate before just how long putting together a blog post takes. There has been painting going on during the past month just not much time to sit at the pooter to edit pictures and get a post together......must try harder.

This is the canvas that I have been battling with. I think I am almost there. I need to live with it a while to 'see' the adjustments that need to be made. I feel that it needs more colour. The reality is not so contrasty and more warmer and subtle in the tones but the camera hasn't picked that up. So the battle continues....


©2014Lisa Le Quelenec


I started by going through my colour notes sketchbook and choosing my palette. I wanted to keep the colour fairly subtle and not too dark. It was important to me that the colours leaned to the warm side, to give the feeling of the hot, humid, heavy feeling before a storm. This palette of ivory black, indanthrene, azure blue, buff titanium and parchment fitted the bill. I have added titanium and zinc white and a touch of pthalo turquoise to the mix.






©2014Lisa Le Quelenec


Blocking in and deciding the tonal patterns are my starting point. Everything is very rough and ready getting the bare bones down quickly. I stayed fairly close to the original watercolour which you can see in my previous post here .











©2014Lisa Le Quelenec



I was starting to work on the shafts of sunlight by dry brushing the paint and added the sail of the yacht in. The painting was trying to tell me that it needed something else. Something subtle but very necessary was missing.










©2014Lisa Le Quelenec

I did what I usually do when faced with such a dilemma. I turned to my sketchbooks. Flicking through I found a tiny sketch of the Isle of Wight and the Needles and decided that the small little detail was just what I needed. I had to keep it subtle though I didn't want anything fighting with the light which is the focal point of the painting.

My sketchbooks are beyond valuable to me and such an important part of the way that I work. Sometimes just for small details like this and the notes about light and atmosphere.









©2014Lisa Le Quelenec


I kept the tones very close so that the land is a mere suggestion. It also appeals to me that the there is a second 'guiding light' with the addition of the lighthouse but that it is outweighed by nature's guiding light.





©2014Lisa Le Quelenec



Reassessing the painting I concluded that the yacht was now too far over to the right of the composition and needed to move to the left a little. I also increased the scale. The sail is acting like an arrow to the sun streaming through the cloud.









Friday, 20 June 2014

Inspired by this years storms


This Winter saw some terrible storms here in the UK with much damage and flooding. As well as flooding from the river and very high tides locally we have also had some landslides with sections of the cliffs tumbling onto the beach. Luckily they have happened at times when no one was around to get hurt. As much as I love a good storm to clear the air, this Winter was hard on many people and I could take no pleasure in them.

This painting was inspired by the feeling of the dark and relentless rain - longing for drier days to come.


Toward the light   watercolour on paper 20x20cm ©2014 Lisa Le Quelenec


Those drier days are here now, touch wood, we have had some lovely hot weather. I still spare a thought for those who are still waiting for their houses to dry out though. It's such a long process and there must be quite a few still waiting to get back to normal.

I enjoy painting storms in watercolour and am wondering if they would work as well in acrylic on a large scale. What do you think? Whilst I like dark watercolour I'm not so keen on dark acrylic, perhaps because of the more dense nature of the medium. I would have to adjust it to a brighter tonal range perhaps? Time to experiment....