Tuesday 29 May 2012

At last!

Oriental poppy sketch   pencil, ink and watercolour on A3 cartridge paper ©2012 Lisa Le Quelenec

I've been (not very patiently) waiting for my oriental poppies to bloom in the garden. This morning I woke up to not one but two beautiful fiery blooms. In between framing and working on an unexpected commission I took a break to go out and sketch them.

It's been hard the last week to get much painting done as it has suddenly gotten so hot here in the UK. The twenty minutes or so that I was outside today was enough for me in the heat. As I was drawing the sky started to turn a delicious blue/grey that threatened rain but soon passed. I'm hoping for a thunderstorm they might possibly be coming tomorrow. This heat is making me consider a return to oils....

Tuesday 22 May 2012

Watercolour observational studies

Watercolour studies shell, sand dollar & urchin ©2012 Lisa Le Quelenec

Time is racing towards exhibitions now and there is a lot of framing to be done and sorting out of what is going where. In between waiting for frames to dry (I white wash wooden frames to suit the picture) I painted these small watercolour studies. It was lovely to sit under the shade of the apple tree listening to the birds and to have a bit of time out of the studio.

Watercolour studies grey feathers ©2012 Lisa Le Quelenec
I really enjoy making these small observational studies. It's nice to slow down looking at details and really getting to know the subject. The patterns and textures of the urchins and sand dollar are just beautiful. I'm hoping to fit in some more in between the big framing day that awaits me tomorrow. Fingers crossed.

Wednesday 16 May 2012

Sand dunes and shadows

Sand Dunes & Shadows acrylic on paper19x28cm  ©2012 Lisa Le Quelenec
I love the changing colours of sand in shadow. The cool blues, warm lilacs and the unexpected light tones of some shadows are exciting to paint. Here and there grass, sea holly and other vegetation poke their way through the sand. Plants always find a way to grow somehow and the green/yellow/purple is a favourite combination.

Something strange has happened when I add a caption to the pictures in a post. I used to be able to write the caption as three lines but now can only do it as one. Does anyone know how I can change back? (I post in compose mode rather than HTML) I'm wondering if this is a blogger glitch or just me.

Monday 14 May 2012

Sunday sailing

After a gloriously sunny Sunday it's back to being chilly and grey today making photographing this painting hard work. (The sky is slightly bluer in the painting than this picture shows.) A sleepy evening sail on a silent sea.

After my trip home I am having trouble settling down to work as there are so many ideas running through my mind. It's the opposite to painter's block and just as tricky to overcome when there just aren't enough hours in the day. I've been making lots of thumbnails and notes to get things jotted down on paper so as not to forget. Any tips for silencing my inner butterfly would be greatly appreciated.

Sunday Sailing acrylic on canvas board 20x20cm ©2012 Lisa Le Quelenec  

Friday 11 May 2012

In the soft moonlight

In the Soft Moonlight
Water media 12.5x24cm
©2012 Lisa Le Quelenec

Did anyone see the 'big' moon last week? I was hoping for a good view in Jersey but the sky was full of cloud.

This painting began it's life as a piece of paper used to blot excess acrylic ink from another painting. The paper is a rough watercolour paper so the 'print' only took in some areas of the texture. At the time I put the paper aside thinking I would get back to it later and use it for collage. I pulled the piece from a drawer yesterday and began to build more washes of watercolour and acrylic ink into it.

Working more intuitively than I normally would and letting the paint dictate the direction that it wanted to go in, a landscape started to appear. In the sky area I used some pearlescent ink which has added a subtle shimmer. Keeping the paper very wet and tilting the drawing board in different directions to help the flow kept everything very loose which I think helped the ambiguous feeling of a moonlit landscape. I'm left wondering what is just over the rise.

Thursday 10 May 2012

Sketches from a quick trip

Well now, has it really been three weeks since I last posted? It doesn't feel like it. I've had a busy time with a lot of non arty things and a ten day break to Jersey in the middle having a good catch up with my family. On the trip out on the ferry we were just heading around Old Harry Rocks when a dolphin arced out of the water, had I been looking out of the window a split second later I would have missed him. It felt like a good omen to start the trip. I haven't seen them very often, maybe a dozen times, and when I have it's mostly been in Cornwall but the thrill of seeing a dolphin in the wild is just magic.

My good omen to start the trip didn't extend to lucky weather unfortunately with only a couple of good days of sunshine so not much sketching was done. I did manage a couple though... and I always feel inspired after a trip home. -I still call it home even though I haven't lived there for half my life :o)

From the ferry  Gouache  ©2012 Lisa Le Quelenec
Beach finds  Gouache  ©2012 Lisa Le Quelenec

Now to knuckle back down to work, exhibitions are looming and there's lots to do.