Saturday, February 28, 2009

Ribbon Gum Tree (sketch)

The drawing looks a heap better than the scan. Darnit......

Future Juice

Hi ladies, I have been away and am not very perky of late, but I tried my own challenge on WC and posted this. Boy do I need practice. Acrylic on canvas, 8X10"

Gum Trees

Acrylic. 5"x7" using Ree's gum tree challenge reference picture.

Friday, February 27, 2009



My drawing for today of our old dog Gypsy...
I used some colour..she had a beautiful coat.
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Landscape with a figure .....

This is crap!!
I will say that before anyone else says it!
This is what I did at a workshop today ....the theme was a landscape with figure/s.
The artist taking the workshop, Ray Elwood, was excellent. He is mainly a watercolour artist and that was what he did in his demonstrations. He did two demos ....I could have watched him all day .....
He had lots of ref pics of landscapes and figures and we had to pick a landscape and paint it adding a figure. I couldn't find one that I really liked and so I was only half hearted in painting it...... it shows ....
I could have done my own thing as he did say that at the start of the class ....maybe that's what I will do next time.
Sorry JJ ....I didn't take notes .....

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Tissue? anyone.. Aaaaachoooooooo!

While Ree was talking to me on the phone, adn playing with her facebook account, I drew my tissue box. See! I am committed..;-)) Sorry the scan has wiped out the bottom of the box though darn it..

Long black with caramel.............please.

It isn't good, it is bad, even if the scan hadn't lightened out the saucer it is still bad, but I did sketch today. Did you? ;-))

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Mount Warning from Beechmont

I posted this painting a couple of days ago, before I posted it on wc, so I don't know why it hasn't shown up here. Phantom post stealer is at work again.

14"x10.5" acrylic on paper

Still Life

This is a still life painting I have done for a thread on Wetcanvas.
8" X 10" acrylic on board
C&C welcome

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Blowing the snow with a golf club ....for Bruce .... :)

.....well I don't even know what a snow blower looks like ......



Hi folks...this is my second attempt to post this image this morning.Sorry if I have confused anyone ...I have certainly confused myself!!
JJ has reminded me that it is my turn to post an image for the challenge...I hope you like my choice!
The challenge begins this Thursday 26th Feb and concludes on Thursday 5th March...please post your paintings by thursday March 5th.
Have fun!!
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Monday, February 23, 2009

Shack in the Woods

See what happens whenyou try to paint an 18-inch wide picture on an 8X10 canvas? I scrunched up this and it became a mess. I posted this on WC and I said I have terrible trees. I have such a bad time with trees.

I asked JJ to show me how to paint tomatoes and got cherries, so I dare not ask for help with trees lest I get green celery trees, lol....

I painted this tonite while waiting for my wife to get home form her trip. I hope you all don't laugh too much...
My try. I edited out a fair bit of vegetation.

Cherries that started out life as tomatoes..

I actually thought they looked more like persimmons, but Colleen and her husband convinced me they were cherries rotflol.
A lesson learned. Be careful painting at night with reds. I painted with napthol red over cad yellow to start with, adn it was a gorgeous tomato colour. Then I added magenta and cad red for the shadows, so then I had this brilliant idea of adding a little quin rose where I had lost the lights a little. It all looked reasonably ok that night. When I went down tot he studio the next morning, man did I not, I repeat NOT have 3 juicy tomatoes on my board. I added the centres, and they really did and still do btw look like persimmons with cherry stalk to me. What a hoot. Gives new meaning to cherry-tomatoes..

Nova Puppy

This is a quick study sketch I did in acrylics on a 3X4" card to experiment with minatures and see if I can paint my wife's dog in acrylics. I tried in watercolours but all I got was mud on a piece of card stock. So I am trying to live up to the name of teh group, at least initially. This isn't a great rendidition, but it is some painting of yesterday. Today I start on the mountain cabin pic.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Some rock practice .....

I am trying to improve my rock painting ....and I have a long way to go ..... here are 2 I did last night. One with brushes and one with knives .....

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Knock Knock

Hello ladies, my name is Bruce MacKinnon, or Mackb on all my forum sites.

I have been invited by JJ to join your esteemed group of happy painters. I feel like I have joined the infamous "Group of Seven" painters of the early 20th century in Canada.

I hope I don't cramp your style. I was looking at all your posts, well some of them anyway, and I didn't see any cat fights or foul language, so I think I can fit in. But I feel like a puppy dog in a house full of felines, so put away your claws.

I have been painting for 10 years off and on, mostly off, once I moved to Timminsin 200 to get married and to get a new career in journalism after painting houses for 25 years. I have a damaged heart from a virus that hit me a decade ago, and was put out to pasture in 2004. So I am now Mr. Mom, taking care of my two little boys and the house while my wife Carol works full time as the administrator of a retirement home.

I started off in oils but now am in acrylics since Sept of 08. I am still learning so I hope I don't embarras you or me. I noticed a few of you use knives to paint which is my preferred way to paint, so I wil be following you all with interest.

Thank you for allowing me to join you.


Anne, in the interests of "one sketch a day", here it is.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Colleen'a photograph challenge

I did this knife painting quickly tonight and enjoyed it a lot until I mucked up the greenery on the right hand side ....maybe tomorrow I will give it another go .....

On the rocks!

Update on the boots ....I worked on them at my artgroup today .....
They are now on a rock with the sea in the background.
I am really pleased with myself .....
C&C most welcome of course ......

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Sketches - Tomatoes

I have a small demo to do for someone on WC do do with tomatoes red and yellow. I have been sketching tomatoes as a pre painting exercise. I scanned them and the values are out of whack a little of well, this is only to show you I am indeed drawing, and to prompt you guys to do a drawing for this week and post it. Come on it is easy!! :-p

One of these days these boots ......

I started painting my walking boots last night. I used a grid to help me draw them out. As this is obviously a WIP I would appreciate any advice at this stage and I would also like some suggestions as to what I could call this painting .... a title that would give the viewer something to think about .....

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Sky Demo (watercolour)

Mimi is struggling with skies.

Now I am no expert by any means, but I can show you two sky studies I did, today, one not good, the other a little better. Skies in watercolour take a lot of practice. I haven't painted w/colour skies on a regular basis for many months, so I am very, very rusty.
I think this is a good opportunity for all the watercolourists amongst us, to paint these skies and compare notes. Between all of us, we must come up with a technique of some sort. I have to be honest, and tell you, I never did master the real wet in wet skies. I prefer to wet my paper, leaving any missed areas, missed. I paint on my colours, starting from the top down. I have been doing it that way for years, so to me it is natural. Now this is not always an ideal way, as the sky is darker at the top than on the horizon. When one is learning,, it is easy for the depth of colour to get away from us, so I do suggest you start at the horizon and work your way up. Turn your paper upside down, for a start. See! Now it is right way up.. ;-))

Wet the paper thoroughly.
I took some photo's of my progress, and I hope you guys will too. I put my camera on my tripod (the one with the bent leg Ree)

Wait until the sheen has gone from the paper for the best results.

Mix up your colours while you are waiting. (I used Ultra Blue - Quin Rose - Raw Sienna) They shoul dbe the consistancy of cream if you want bright skies. You don't need much, see pic' below.

Now you need to work fast. Have you paper on an angle, I prop mine on a piece of 4"x2" that has had one side planed on an angle. Dip your brush into your Raw Sienna and place a swipe across the paper at the horizon line. Rinse the brush and dry it on your cloth or in my case a toilet roll wrapped in a paper towel (I use this for acrylics and oils too) and load it with a little quin rose. This colour is strong, so practice the strength on scrap paper first. You need to be working quickly as the paper is continuing to dry. One pass across the paper, picking up a little of the R/S. Next do the same with the Ultra Blue. Wash the brush, dry by dabbing, and load with U/Blue and swiping one way then the next one pass only at a time fill the rest of the page. Mine was not successful, see below.

Now the second one I did, i wet the paper, waited for the sheen to go. I left the paper right side up, and painted the Ultra Blue first. Then I picked up a little Quin Rose and paint one pass of that, and then the Raw Sienna. The R/S was weak. AS you can see from the dry painting, the lower sky is very pale.

Mimi wanted bright colours, so using the full strength (you made up in your dish) pigment was the way to go. Not weakening it down. If you let the Quin Rose mix a little with the Raw Sienna you will get a sunrise glow. IF you use Quin Gold instead of Raw Sienna, you get a beautiful Sunset Glow!! (I just remembered that) Remember!!! Only one pass. Do not go back over the sky or you will loose the beautiful translucency of it and it will look dirty.

I will try some more of these tomorrow, if I get time. I will do some more though, and I will post here when I do.

I urge you all to give it a go and post yours please..

gives a neat demo.. CLICK HERE and then click on Technical File (new)

Reference Photo for this week. Mt Warning was named by Captain James Cook in May 1770 while sailing up Australia's east coast. The mountain 'warns' sailors that they are about to encounter a rocky reef.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Sorry Mimi!

I tried to paint your beautiful photograph but with little success.
I started it with watercolour pencils which I know nothing about and I only had a few colours was not one of them .... it looked awful ....drab and dirty. So I painted over bits of it with acrylics and it is a bit more respectable but still awful .....

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Causeway Stones ....again!

This is another one I started of the Causeway Stones ....trying to get it right ....not succeeding ....acrylic on board 8" X 12
I have started Mimi's ref pic is a bit C.R.A.P. ...maybe I will slip it in when JJ's asleep .....

Elliott Bay from USA

Here is my interpretation of Mimi's photo. It sure was a challenge, but I have to say, I really enjoyed painting this and it made me feel good. It is still wet, as it is in oils. Raining here, has been for 3 days makes drying oils very difficult. Any c&c is welcome.

I ask you to stand up, move back from your monitor by 5-6 feet and then turn around and look at this.. ;-))

Update on collie pup .....

I have been working on this little collie pup and I am not sure if she is getting better or not but one thing I am sure of lot will tell me!!!! .....

Friday, February 13, 2009

Mimi's Challenge photo.

I just want to let you know I am painting it, I am half way through, on a 30"x12" canvas, and I am painting it in oils. I am loving it so far. I am having a ball. I actually got up this morning, and before I even had my cup of tea, spent 3 hours on it. It is darn well slow drying as it is raining, and that is frustrating. You will get to see it soon. Just wanted you to know I am working on it.

Sandy is still busy with her cleanup and Colleen is busy sewing a gorgeous jacket for her dress..




Border Collie Pup

I painted this at my art group today.
Acrylic on board 8" X 12"
C&C welcome.....

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The little pig on a surfboard, who was eaten by a shark!

Poor little pig, I yelled out to him to look out, but he just was not quick enough, shark ate him surfboard and all right in front of my very eyes!!!!

Painted with soft pastels..

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Sky Sketch and a puddle

Here is another sky study I painted, and a part of the "fence" reflecting in a puddle..

The Sky is the Limit

I went out plein airing today. Colleen went out plein airing today too. Pity we were both a separate addresses. So what is new lol, keeps life interesting.

I sketched a little, and I painted a little and I did some sky studies. I LOVE painting sky studies, one of my most favourite things to do. (Anne sorry no photo of me...... next time ok..)

Monday, February 9, 2009

Hello Everyone,

I am sorry I haven't been keeping up with the blogs and painting this week. My mind has been focussed on the 'mother of the bridegroom's' outfit. My youngest is being married in Seoul next month. It will be a traditional Korean wedding with the bridal party and family wearing traditional Korean dress so I have to do a little better than drag out the old dark suit. So please forgive me if I become a silent follower of the blog for the next week or two. Have fun. I'll be back soon. (JJ is keeping me busy anyway.

Life is Good!

Update on the little contented piggy ....not sure if it is getting better or not. I am not too hot on the pig hair!!!!

Another short video ....

It's snowing again!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Ree asked, what is the difference between Chroma, Hue, Value.

The Three Sides to a Paint Color's Personality: Hue, Value, and Chroma
Why hue, value, and chroma are important in accurate color mixing. By Marion Body of

Colors are the basic elements of a painting. Gaining an intimate knowledge of the personalities of the colors you use is crucial in learning to paint. We tend to simply call paint a particular color, whether general such as “light blue”, more poetic such as “aquamarine blue”, or specific such as “ultramarine blue”. But in fact every color has three sides to its personality: hue, value, and chroma. A painter trying to mix a color on their palette to accurately match a color in their subject needs to consider all of these. If you don’t, you’re doomed to never get the color mixed correctly.

What is Hue?
Hue is the easiest to understand: at its most basic, it’s artspeak for the actual color of a pigment or object. But the use of hue becomes more complicated when it comes to the names that paint manufacturers give their paint colors. This is because the term “hue” is used to indicate that a color is not made from the pigment(s) that were originally used for that paint, but modern equivalents that are either cheaper or more lightfast. Judging a hue is the first step in color mixing as it identifies what tube of paint to reach for.

What is Value?

Value or tone is a measure of how light or dark a color is, without any consideration for its hue. Think of it as taking a black-and-white photo of a subject where you clearly see what’s in the photo but everything’s in grayscale.

The problem with a color’s value or tone is that how light or dark is seems is also influenced by what’s going on around it. What appears light in one circumstance, can appear darker in another circumstance, for instance when it’s surrounded by even lighter tones. (See Tone is Relative to Other Tones for an illustration of this, and a longer explanation.)

What is Chroma?

The chroma or saturation of a color is a measure of how intense it is. Think of it as “pure, bright color”, compared to a color diluted with white, darkened by black or grey, or thinned by being a glaze. Variations in chroma can be achieved by adding different amounts of a neutral gray of the same value as the color you're wanting to alter.

But Aren’t Value and Chroma the Same Thing?

Color mixing would be easier if they were, but they’re not. With chroma you’re considering how pure or intense the hue is, whereas with value you’re not considering what the hue is at all, just how light or dark it is.

Do I Need to Consider Hue, Value, and Chroma Ever Time I Mix a Color?
As a beginner painter, yes you do. But the good news is that but with experience of color mixing it becomes easier and less of a systematic process. Initially it’s well worth taking the time to consider the hue, value, and chroma in a color you’re want to match, making a judgement or decision on each before you attempt to mix the color. You’ll waste less paint nor have as much frustration by mixing the “wrong” colors.

For more wonderful information, Click Here

Marion Body has a wonderful website, with easy to understand articles on all things painting..Her site is easily searchable too.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Giants Causeway Stones

Another painting of a local scene. These stones can be found at The Giants Causeway which is about 13 miles from where I live. The Giants Causeway is an extremely popular tourist attraction with over 500000 visitors coming every year from all over the world.
As this is still a WIP any help would be appreciated .....
acrylic on board 8" X 12"

Bunny Wabbit can you see it JJ?

....well can you? LOL
Mimi my apologies to your husband!

Friday, February 6, 2009

My hand and my fingers ....well why not?

I did these quickly last night just in case JJ shouted at me because I was not sketching all know what she's like ....a real hard taskmaster!!

Especially for JJ

I had to take a picture from my front door this morning was snowing .....not that much but I have been telling JJ that it was supposed to snow for days now but somehow it always missed Ballycastle here is the proof that it does snow in Ireland.

I can't believe none of you see it!!!!!

The rabbit with the funny mouth putting on a sock or something like that because he has his leg up and is holding on to it with his front legs I going crazy?