Sunday, March 14, 2010

A day of few words

Boy and his cat
Gesture drawing
black marker on bond
10 x 14
Barbara Muir © 2010

I found a gesture sketch I did a few years ago
after taking a course with Skip Lawrence and
Toph Schink in California. Today I
tried doing a 20 minute watercolour portrait
of a famous person -- a complete flop.
I was trying to respond to Laura Starett's
beautiful watercolours. Mistake. But a
good learning experience.

Zoey and Steven in the park

Inside there are flowers everywhere.
This is my strange, new teapot shaped watering
can for indoors. In green -- a colour I used
to dislike. I'm changing.

Outside the very last of the snow clings
to the matted stalks of bulrushes in the ravine.

Inside -- more of the beautiful flowers
that Steven and I bought each other.
Roses, and what is that other
flower please? I love it, but I
don't know its name.

From inside it looked dismal out today, but
outside it was completely different. Grey, but
punctuated by Robins, Chickadees, Red Wing
Blackbirds, even tiny white spring flowers.
I marked papers all day except for a brief
trip to the bus terminal to say goodbye to
Sam, and a short walk in the park with Steven.

Have a getting-out-there day.


eldon warren said...

Winter is winding down. We'll start having more warm days than cold. Seems everyone in the winter world is ready for spring. I'm no exception.
Have a great day!

laura said...

I don't know the flower's name either, but I love them too--those papery petals, so delicate.
White roses are my favorite--make me think of the Snow Queen!
Your sketch is great, paradoxically, considering the subject, so full of energy!
(I inspired you? There's a turnaround!)

Nicki said...

Hi Barbara,

Thank you for sharing these lovely pictures with us. It is beautiful here, too, and has been for awhile. I even went outside to paint yesterday and plan to again today. It is a glorious day on the prairies!

I like that watering pot- definitely something that can stay out for a decorative touch as opposed to being stored in the cupboard. I know another artist who doesn't like green... and she is a landscape painter!

Take care,

Nicki XO

Gwen Bell said...

Wonderful drawing. Love the quick look of gesture drawings.
Great photos too. The one of the vase and green tea pot looks like it's begging to be painted by a certain artist. ;)

Nicki said...

I love the looseness of this and the obvious speed in which this was likely done contributes to that. It gives a very energetic feel to a very relaxed pose.


cohen labelle said...

Barbara - All your images -the photographs, the gesture drawing - beautiful! and the words of course are great too - as usual!

Melinda said...

Thank you for sharing the photos. I can see how the landscape is in transition. Green? Yes, I used to dislike it too, but really, there are no bad colors--just colors that misbehave once in awhile, right?!

Love the energetic drawing. Wow!

p. s. Oh, I do think watercolors keep us humble.

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Eldon,

All of a sudden we're back into the spring temperatures again. Yeesh. An absolutely beautiful day today. You have a great day too.

Take care,


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Laura,

I'd love it if you could find out that flower's name. Now they've opened up and are as big and luscious as the roses they are in with. So magnificent.

No you always inspire me.

Take care,


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Nicki,

Your work is probably part of what convinced me to give up that ridiculous idea. I think it started because it's very hard to find, or mix good greens in acrylic. They happen quite easily in watercolour. But it was a post by Edward B. Gordon that made me see how absolutely ridiculous it was to dislike specific colours. I'm still not wild about burgundy, but I'll use it if it works.


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Gwen,

I don't know what possessed me to buy the teapot watering can. Well actually I do, it was my friend Joanne at a wonderful store near the flower shop. But I don't think I'm ready to paint it! It is really good for indoor watering. But you know what? I already had a beautiful and elegant, stainless steel indoor watering can.


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Marcia,

No you are great. You are too kind.

Come to Toronto!


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Melinda,

Although I agree with the idea of being a painter, or artist, not someone married to one medium, I find that watercolour is more responsive when you are immersed in it (no pun intended) for months on end. I did nothing else for ten years, and every time I go back to it, I understand why I like acrylics so much.

Thanks for your sweet encouragement. You made my day.


Portrait Artist

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at:
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!