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Getting bigger

ArtStudio 2

Stockbridge – work in progress, 30x40cm, oil on canvas

Now that that’s over, I’m moving on to some larger canvases, and now suddenly I have too many options. Do I focus on cityscapes next, as I had planned? Pursue Highland landscapes a bit more, as they turned out to be my favorite new subject last month? Go back to the Edinburgh pub and restaurant series I was starting to sketch out in my head? Sometimes I wish someone would just tell me what to do, so I could know which direction to run in.

ArtStudio 1

Highlands – work in progress, 30x40cm, oil on canvas

As it is, it seems I’m kind of going the Highlands route, with a little Edinburgh thrown in. It’s cold, wet, and windy outside this week, so I don’t feel like going out to gather new material, but I have 1000s of photos of the Highlands that I’m still sorting through, so plenty to work from there. When I put it that way, it all sounds so logical. More Highlands for me!

Day 30: one last Scottish landscape

PlocktonPainting 1

Plockton study, 10x15cm, oil on canvas.

So here we are at the end of Art Every Day Month, and what a lovely month it has been. I started out painting cocktails and desserts, and ended with moody Scottish landscapes. Given that at the beginning of the month I had no plan whatsoever (beyond making & sharing art every day), it was fun to watch how things unfolded (for me, at least, and hopefully at least a bit for you, too?).

Thank you so much to everyone who has commented and given me feedback over the course of the month (especially my fellow AEDMers) – you’ve reminded me why I have an art blog in the first place: to share and talk about my work and ideas, and get reactions from others. While I love the solitude of my studio space, I also enjoy interacting with other people, even if I forget that sometimes.

All my paintings from the first half of the month are now available on Etsy, and the rest of them will be there just as soon as they are dry enough to ship. Subscribers to my newsletter will be receiving a code for free shipping, so if you’re interested, make sure you’re signed up.

I’m looking forward to developing some of the ideas from this month into larger works, or even whole series of paintings. Going forward, perhaps I’ll aim for a weekly blog post about what I’ve been up to in the studio (which would be better than the every-few-months I’ve been posting for the past year or so). Thank you all again for reading, and thank you Leah for inspiring me to make art every day for a month, yet again.

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It’s Art Every Day Month! Towards the end of the month, these new daily paintings will be available to purchase in my Etsy shop. Check out Leah’s blog for more information about Art Every Day Month, or follow the discussion on Twitter with the #aedm2014 hashtag.

Day 29: paint like frosting

AbstractHighlandPaintings 2

Abstract Highlands, 10x15cm, oil on canvas.

Stepping away from the smooth white skies of yesterday, I decided to play around with some thick impasto abstract skies today. Which do you prefer?

The paint on these reminds me of frosting, like what you would put on Christmas cookies. Mmmmm frosting. Maybe I should go back and paint another cupcake or two.

AbstractHighlandPaintings 1

Abstract Highlands, 10x15cm, oil on canvas.

It will be a long time before these two dry, but fortunately I don’t always paint this thickly. I added a bunch of the other new AEDM paintings to my Etsy shop yesterday, and now there are over 70 paintings in it (by far the most stocked it has ever been). The 10% off coupon (HOLIDAYS2014) will be good through (Cyber) Monday.

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It’s Art Every Day Month! Towards the end of the month, these new daily paintings will be available to purchase in my Etsy shop. Check out Leah’s blog for more information about Art Every Day Month, or follow the discussion on Twitter with the #aedm2014 hashtag.

Day 28: white skies

AbstractHighlandPaintings 3

Abstract Highlands, 15x10cm, oil on canvas.

In my mind’s eye, when I think about the imaginary landscapes I want to paint, they almost always look like a variation of these paintings: white skies, low horizon, dark land, sometimes a strand of bright color in between. I’m very compelled by this basic structure. Is it interesting enough for an entire series of paintings?

NovemberArt 1

Abstract Highlands, 15x15cm, oil on canvas.

I’m surprised by how much Black Friday chatter is going on here in Scotland. It’s an excuse to have a sale, I suppose, even if it is a regular workday here. It might as well be Black Friday in my Etsy shop, too, right? So today you can get 10% off any order with coupon code HOLIDAYS2014. I’ll be adding more paintings throughout the day.

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It’s Art Every Day Month! Towards the end of the month, these new daily paintings will be available to purchase in my Etsy shop. Check out Leah’s blog for more information about Art Every Day Month, or follow the discussion on Twitter with the #aedm2014 hashtag.

Day 27: Stockbridge, and texture

StockbridgePainting

A street in Stockbridge, 24x18cm, oil on canvas.

Last week I bought some plaster of paris, mixed it with pva glue, and smeared it on some canvases. Today I picked up the canvas I had made the bumpiest, and decided to paint this Edinburgh street scene on it. This was a challenging task – the surface was so uneven, I had trouble creating straight lines to denote the edges of buildings and other generally straight things. Originally I had planned to use this canvas for something with more organic shapes, such as a landscape, but this was a fun exercise. I liked seeing how different types of brushstrokes were received by the surface, and finding out what I could control and what I couldn’t.

I want to texturize some more canvases with this mixture (although probably in thinner layers) and experiment some more. It seems an interesting way to treat new canvases before I use them, since I prefer working on surfaces with some sort of pre-existing character.

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It’s Art Every Day Month! Towards the end of the month, these new daily paintings will be available to purchase in my Etsy shop. Check out Leah’s blog for more information about Art Every Day Month, or follow the discussion on Twitter with the #aedm2014 hashtag.

Day 26: painting Plockton

NovemberArt 4

I love these tiny little 10x15cm canvases – I can easily paint several of them in a day. Right now I seem to be a little obsessed with Plockton, a Scottish Highland town we recently visited. (Yesterday I wrote about our trip to Plockton on my travel blog.) Going back through the dozens of photos we took, there are just so many compositions that catch my eye.

PlocktonPainting 3

I think I’ll just keep painting my way through them and see which ones translate well into my painting style. Perhaps some larger works could come out of it, eventually? My project list is getting longer by the day.

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It’s Art Every Day Month! Towards the end of the month, these new daily paintings will be available to purchase in my Etsy shop. Check out Leah’s blog for more information about Art Every Day Month, or follow the discussion on Twitter with the #aedm2014 hashtag.

Day 25: Highland-like

Abstract Highlands painting

Abstract Highlands, 15x15cm, oil on canvas.

Less than a week to go in the month, and then I will probably go back to painting larger pieces. So what do I want to create in these last few days? I decided I need to push myself a little more – to make images that are unexpected, not my usual creations. One way I can do that is by exploring landscape more, since I usually stay away from it. So here’s one of my little creations from today. I think I like it, but I’m not sure. I’ll see how I feel about it in a couple days (or  months).

This one was mostly done with a palette knife, on a canvas that had an old, failed painting on it. I love painting over old paintings.  I wait a long time to do it, usually a year or more, in order to make sure the underlying oil paint is completely dry first (old acrylic paintings, on the other hand, can be painted over immediately, in either acrylic or oil). It’s good to have such a long time to wait, too, because it keeps me from making rash decisions about which paintings are worth keeping. Over the years I’ve sold some paintings that, had they stayed with me, would have definitely gotten scrapped.

Part of why I love re-painting canvases is because it feels good to be re-using them. I hate clutter (which is incongruous with being a painter, let me tell you), so I prefer to keep my stock of paintings at a minimum. If I can re-use a canvas I already have, rather than purchasing a new one, then all the better.

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It’s Art Every Day Month! Towards the end of the month, these new daily paintings will be available to purchase in my Etsy shop. Check out Leah’s blog for more information about Art Every Day Month, or follow the discussion on Twitter with the #aedm2014 hashtag.

Day 24: castle silhouette

castle

Edinburgh Castle silhouette, 15x15cm, oil on canvas.

It’s the last week of AEDM already! I’ve been having so much fun, playing around with new subject matters and styles, interacting with the other participants. Thank you so much for all your insightful and supportive comments. I’m energized going into this week, and I hope to come up with some interesting paintings to share with you.

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It’s Art Every Day Month! Towards the end of the month, these new daily paintings will be available to purchase in my Etsy shop. Check out Leah’s blog for more information about Art Every Day Month, or follow the discussion on Twitter with the #aedm2014 hashtag.

Day 23: Edinburgh oil sketch

Edinburgh skyline

Short on time today so just a quick little oil sketch of Edinburgh (10x15cm). That’s supposed to be the castle over on the left, and Princes Street on the right. Not my best work! That’s OK – if you’re not having some ups and downs during Art Every Day Month, you’re doing it wrong.

Yesterday we were busy with an “instameet,” where you get together with a group, go for a walk, take pictures, and then hang out together as you all upload them to Instagram. We walked through Edinburgh’s Christmas markets, and had the most perfect weather for it. You can see the results on our Instagram page. Perhaps some future painting inspiration in there!

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It’s Art Every Day Month! Towards the end of the month, these new daily paintings will be available to purchase in my Etsy shop. Check out Leah’s blog for more information about Art Every Day Month, or follow the discussion on Twitter with the #aedm2014 hashtag.

Day 22: smooshy paint

highlandpaint

Smooshy paint in the vague shape of a Scottish Highland landscape, 20x20cm, oil on canvas board.

I’m not going to lie to you: this is just a bunch of paint smooshed onto a panel with a palette knife. And it was lots of fun to make.

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It’s Art Every Day Month! Towards the end of the month, these new daily paintings will be available to purchase in my Etsy shop. Check out Leah’s blog for more information about Art Every Day Month, or follow the discussion on Twitter with the #aedm2014 hashtag.