Saturday, September 30, 2006

Another Madonna In Progress

This shot was taken just minutes into my work on another Madonna painting, taken this morning after Jenna and I returned from our walk. Although I see this as a sort of early Renaissance styled piece rather than the Byzantine inspired piece I did earlier, I’d still like to use lots of liquid gold and silver leaf. We’ll see how the work continues.

Vitamin D and Catnip on a Sunny Saturday Morning

As I considered this morning’s musings, the sun was brilliant and the sky was irresistably blue. A perfect time for Jenna and I to head out for our dose of Vitamin D! One of our usual routes takes us past a tenacious little catnip plant that has somehow survived the aggressive weed spraying that still goes on around here. This tough little plant has provided many moments of wild feline abandon for Sydney and my daughter’s cat, Berlin. But I didn't pick any this morning, it seems just about dormant even though everything is still such a fabulous vibrant green. The kitties may have to wait until the spring for their guilty little pleasures.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Is it OK to say "Two Paintings Today"?!!!

Live Life To The Point Of Tears

Size: 28" X 36"

Well, it is a bit of a stretch to say I've met my challenge of a painting a day. But at least I've finished the two pieces I've been working on all week. This is a big one! I could barely squeeze it in over our mantel! It's difficult to see the several shades of liquid gold leaf in this one. I think I'll try another shot tomorrow in morning light, might give a little more glint to the gold!


Mystery In The Eye Of The Beholder

" No object is mysterious. The mystery is your eye. ”

~ Elizabeth Bowen

Size: 8” X 16”

I used Klimt’s La dame à l'eventail, painted in1917 as my jumping off point for this Frida study. Although it’s not a large piece, it took hours to finish. It will be available on my eBay auction site tonight. Now it’s back to the other Klimt inspired piece with the four figures. Other than the odd dash of liquid leaf here and there, the background is finished. I’ll develop the faces further today and if the stars are aligned I will call it finished tonight!

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Thursday, September 28, 2006

A Painting For Today Finally - Frida

It's late and I've just put down my paintbrush...been a long rainy day. I've taken this shot of the finished painting in artificial light with my little Coolpix. I'll have a better shot tomorrow in natural light.

I'm calling it "Mystery In The Eye Of The Beholder"

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Dog, Cat, Sardines and Paint

Dog, Cat, Sardines and Paint

I took these shots of my buddies before it started raining this morning. Jenna was waiting patiently for her breakfast, raw sardines while Syd surveyed the backyard. It’s been raining since noon, which means working in artificial light. Work continues on the large canvas and I might get finished today after all!

“A Painting a Day”…Not Quite…Sometimes…Wishful Thinking

If you read my post yesterday, I was determined to finish both à la Klimt paintings. And if you read my post today…

It’s becoming apparent that if I intend to continue with this à la Klimt series, my “Painting A Day” project may have go on hold.

Most of yesterday was spent on the large piece, building texture and developing flow in the background. I’m still figuring out how I want to treat the fabric of the Frida piece.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Insanity, Mess and Yes, Painting

Was I totally mad to have started this self imposed challenge of completing and listing a painting a day?! Well as you can see from yesterday’s post there was no finished painting for Sept 26 2006. So, in the spirit of insanity, I’m going to march down to my studio and complete the two paintings I started earlier this week. Yikes, it’s going to be a long day at the easel, actually at my two easels, for sure.

Postscript: …my husband is absolutely correct; my studio is a total MESS!!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Painting in Progress - Sept 26 Frida and Klimt

I'm working on another canvas today inspired by Klimt. My approach is usually pretty straight forward. Once I've decided on the general idea for the piece, I simply start with a watery mixture of a neutral tone. Perhaps because my work is often a single figure I don't start with preliminary sketches. It may seem a bit haphazard and I do have to gesso over the odd one, but in most cases I can finish the piece with some sort of satisfaction.

Monday, September 25, 2006

A Painting A Day Strange Little Girl in Pink

Some Strangeness

“There is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion.”
~ Francis Bacon Sr

No time today to return to the large canvas I started yesterday...that darned shipping!!! But there was time to get a small piece on a wooden block finished. There is something just a tiny bit strange about this naive little figure posing so formally in her pink dress. For some reason, I saw her surrounded by a pale aura...not sure why, but that's the way I painted her.

For some reason the computer gremlins wouldn't let me post this entry here goes today!

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

SHIPPING - A Necessary Evil of ART!

Got Them Shipping Blues!

Here I am, still in my flannel PJs this morning, contemplating my least favourite aspect of being in the business of art - the dreaded ordeal of packaging and shipping off my work! It's not that I don't want to say goodbye to my paintings...not at all! I'm delighted to send them out to my much-appreciated collectors. I feel this huge sense of relief as soon as I walk out of the post office. But it literally takes me hours to package up a couple of canvases!

No way around it, off I go!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Another Painting For Today - Frida Tragedy

Frida Tragedy

I did this mini painting, 4 X 6 inches as a commission for an loyal client who has purchased several of my mini Fridas over the months.

Painting A Day The Angelic Life

The Angelic Life

"The highest point of philosophy is to be both wise and simple; this is the angelic life."

~ John Chrysostom

Yesterday's "Painting A Day" is finished. I added a few touches here and there and feel like it's a more successful piece.

New Painting - Slightly Abstract & Modern

Even though the Romantic as of yet angel without a title is still unfinished I've started another large canvas that I hope will work as an à la Klimt piece. I had originally envisioned slightly more abstract figures but as I worked, the faces became more traditionally feminine. I plan to use plenty of Klimt inspired metallics and shapes in the background. This is a large piece, 28 X 36 inches and I have a feeling I’ll be returning to it all week.

Painting A Day - Return To Romance

Well, just as I had expected, I need to spend a little more time with that little romantic angel I painted yesterday. Although I'm pretty much satisfied with the movement in her body and the "feel" of the muted tones, her face and hands don't look finished to me.

But I am absolutely delighted to mention that the à la Klimt piece has sold to a wonderful collector who has hung several of my pieces in her collection. I can't thank her enough. I have an idea brewing for another large Klimt inspired canvas... Perhaps it's the warm colours in the autumn leaves drawing me to the golds and coppers of the art deco palette.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

So Far Unamed Angel

Today flew past me! Here it is dark and already time for the couch and I've just put down my paintbrush. When I see this little angel piece in daylight I may decide that it needs more work, but that will have to wait for tomorrow and sunlight!

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Painting A Day - Naive Angel

Angel Beginnings

I woke up to the sounds of light fall rain. Although I miss the natural light, I always feel like painting on a day like this. I'ved dabbed on the first bits of colour for an angel...not sure where it's going from here.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Virgin Mary Icon - Painting A Day

Golden Mary

Size: 8 X 10 in

“Mary is the lily in God's garden.”

~ Bridget of Sweden

I’ve used my scanner again for the finished shot of today’s "Painting a Day". As I worked away this afternoon, I realized that this painting would not become a “Klimt” Madonna after all. Instead I chose a more Byzantine approach to complete the painting.

I just about forgot to mention this painting will be listed on eBay tonight.

*all image rights reserved *

Amateur Camera Talk and Madonna in Progress

Madonna In Progress

Size: 8 X 10 in

Trying to get a decent shot of the Adele painting has convinced me that I desperately need a new camera. I’m currently using a tiny Nikon Coolpix. It’s a great little camera, fits in my pocket, great for holidays, but not meant for shooting big canvas. So, the research begins.

I’ve used my Epson 3170 Scanner to capture a shot of today’s Painting a Day. I scan everything that will fit on the screen at a high resolution. It takes some fiddling with photoshop to ensure the colours are true. But it’s quick and I’m happy with the results.

I expect I’ll complete this Madonna today with plenty of metallic gold. I may use art deco style again for her halo and background. It may be that a more traditional approach to the metallic works better, but I'll have to see as the work progresses.

*all image rights reserved *

Thursday, September 21, 2006

A Painting A Day X 2 - Frida Ornament

Beautiful Mystery

Size: 3.5 X 5 in

Much of today was spent working on a commission, but there was still a bit of time to finish this little Klimt inspired ornament. I've just listed it for auction on eBay this evening.

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious."

~ Albert Einstein

I've painted this Klimt inspired wooden ornament in
rich acrylics and metallic gold. The ornament is made of two pieces of wooden ply; the Frida painting is done on on the oval and is encircled by the wooden frame. The back is painted gold.

Your little Art Deco, Art Nouveau Ornie will arrive ready to hang with a little
gold cord.

*all image rights reserved *

Today's Painting Took All Week!

What I Am à la Klimt

Size: 36 X 18 in

“Whoever wants to know something about me - as an artist which alone is significant - they should look attentively at my pictures and there seek to recognise what I am and what I want.”

Gustav Klimt

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Painting A Day à la Klimt

Painting a Day à la Klimt

“There are many things in life that will catch your eye,

but only a few will catch your heart...pursue those.”

~ Michael Nolan

It’s already past my bed time and here I am still working. I just put down my paint brush after a long day of à la Klimt. I’ve finally finished the Adele piece but I’ll save that for tomorrow.

This little piece is my entry in the Nibblefest Art Contest, a themed art contest beginning on the 20th of each month on eBay. This month’s theme is “Eye Ball”. It’s a bit of a gamble, cause all entries must start at auction at a mere $0.99!! Yikes, I’ve got my fingers crossed that there are plenty of Klimt lovers

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

How To Cure Blog Anxiety

As I approached the keyboard this morning with more than a touch of trepidation, I realized that for this artist, making daily blog entries holds the same terrors as does speaking before a crowd. Although, I may not be blushing uncontrollably, I do feel my fingers starting to stutter, my palms are damp and I have a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach. And then it came to me, to conquer my fears; I should employ those well-worn speaking hints learned in high school. So, I shall write as if there is only one of you out there (which may well be the case, given the number of hits so far), choose one to make direct eye contact with, accomplished figuratively, I suppose. And finally, my personal favourite, I will consider that each one of you is naked as a jaybird.

…There I feel more relaxed all ready.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

New Painting Today

God Given

Find out how much God has given you and from it take what you need;
the remainder is needed by others.

St Augustine

This little painting is on 8 X 10 inch gallery stretched canvas. I worked on it today as a little break from the Klimt inspired piece I’ve been painting all week. You can find this piece at auction starting tonight on eBay.

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

And The Headline Read "Dog and Cat Bored By Klimt"

Well, it seems that my faithful companions have better things to do than watch me paint. Jenna is catching a nap and Sydney is attending to a very thorough pedicure.

Monday, September 18, 2006

In The Pink

“Life beats down and crushes the soul and art reminds you that you have one.”
Stella Adler

It was only a couple of years ago, that I found the art of Frida Kahlo. I can’t find a good explanation as to how I had missed learning about her life as an artist and revolutionary. There’s obviously been more than one gap in my liberal arts education. But having finally discovered her, I’ve recreated her distinctive features in my own little folk style more times than I can count. I finished this little one on a 4 X 6 inch wooden block this afternoon.

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Day 4 à la Klimt

There is nothing that special to see when looking at me. I'm a painter who paints day in day out, from morning till evening - figure pictures and landscapes, more rarely portraits. "

~ Gustav Klimt

Day four has arrived and I'm still working with Adele.

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Conquer By Forgiveness

"The glory of Christianity is to conquer by forgiveness."

William Blake

When it was time to take a break from the à la Klimt piece I returned to this small angel on a fibreboard cross. I began painting folk style Christian images a couple of years ago after receiving a book on Orthodox Icons. Traditional Icons represent the Christ, the Virgin and the Saints, following strictly governed canons. A true iconographer is on a spiritual journey, the icon not “painted,” but ultimately written by the “hand of God”. Although I can never call myself an iconographer, I am captivated by the passion in these quiet images of the Christian faith.

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Day Three à la Klimt

Adele is a more ambitious undertaking than I had first thought! But with any luck, I'll dab on the final bit of gold by tomorrow and I'll be all set to start another canvas.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Day Two à la Klimt

When I started this perfect fall day, I had actually thought that I might finish this painting. Well, I've made progess but it's still far from finished! I'm working in acrylics with metallic golds and silver. Perhaps tomorrow I'll add a touch of gold leaf.

But it's time to give my wrist a break...I'm sure even Klimt stopped for a glass of wine late in the afternoon...


I woke up to a perfect early autumn morning here, all blue skies and sunshine. Hubby is on the golf course and the house belongs to me and the animals! I share every day with Jenna, our big goofy Malamute and Sydney, our old orange cat. Syd wasn't ready for the cameras this morning...couldn't quite wipe the sleep out of his eyes.

And I’m headed for my paints; even the most productive days are never long enough.

Today is a large canvas à la Klimt! I simply can't resist Adele!

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Friday, September 15, 2006

Of The Soul

“Accustom yourself continually to make many acts of love, for they enkindle and melt the soul.”

~ Saint Teresa

For Mothers' Day, 2005 my daughter gave me a lovely big book The Secret Language of Art by Sarah Carr-Gomm. Oddly enough it didn't even mention any of that Da Vinci "code"! But happily, it did reintroduce me to the work of Girolamo di Benvenuto (1470-1542). With any necessary apologies to you art historians, I see folk art in the work of early renaissance painters. So as a sort of humble homage to these earlier artists, I've painted this Madonna, with a nod to Benvenuto's St Catherine of Siena.

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Thursday, September 14, 2006

From The Dark

"In order for the light to shine so brightly, the darkness must be present."

Francis Bacon

This morning it is difficult to write about anything but the senseless tragedy that struck the city of Montreal yesterday. For reasons yet unclear, at mid day yesterday, a young man opened fire at Dawson College, in the heart of the city. Before he turned the gun on himself, a young woman was dead and as many as nineteen others were wounded.

As I write this, six victims are in critical condition and two are on life support. The facts, details, and speculation will of course unfold as the investigation continues. I'm struck by how impossible this seems. Yet it is real; seventeen years ago, a gunman shot and killed fourteen female engineering students at
Montreal's École Polytechnique. My mind wanders to Columbine, Taber... and mixed with my sadness are the inevitable questions. As a woman, a mother, I can not imagine the pain, loss and anger. As an artist, I can no more make sense of this than anyone else can.

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Flying With Molly Kate

As a child, I was in love with horses (isn't every little girl?) I read every horse book I could find. One of my absolute favourites was Misty of Chincoteague by Marguerite Henry. A wonderful book! I truly hope parents are still buying it for their little ones. No surprise I was tickled when asked to paint something for a little girl who dreams of becoming a unicorn trainer when she grows up! What a perfectly wonderful plan!

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Teach Patience

"Patience is the companion of wisdom."

Taken from the writings of St Augustine.

I've loved the art of Quebec artist Jean Paul Lemieux for many years.
When asked to do a large commissioned piece for a delightful collector I welcomed the inspiration of Lemieux. Two women, a mother and daughter, connected, yet independent,
their clear blue eyes gazing unfaltering at the viewer.
* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*

Monday, September 11, 2006

A Simple Remembrance.
Today is Sept 11. I am an artist, a wife and mother.

* All image rights reserved copyright © Wendy Ryan*
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