Saturday, 2 April 2016


I've been working on this painting for a while, inbetween art lessons etc.  Her name is Sunita and I got to walk with her at Australia Zoo with my daughter.  What a beautiful animal and a wonderful experience.  Australia Zoo donates a percentage of the fee to go towards saving these beautiful tigers.

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Last Lesson for our Cats Painting

Well in this, our last lesson, we went over all the edges of the white cat's fur, softening and flicking out across that hard edge.  I painted in the cat's claws with a dark mix of Ultramarine Blue and Cadmium Red, and put some soft purple shadows underneath.

Sorry but I don't have the final photo of my finished painting, as I sold it before I got around to photographing it!  Never mind, I'll just have to paint another one!  I called it "Gracie's Cats" and Grace told me she has heaps more photos of these two to do.

Monday, 21 March 2016

"Rose" by Barbara Newton

I have finally finished the portrait of my mum who passed away last June.  She loved camping, so I set the scene on Fraser Island with her much loved Cockatoo called Fred in the background.  Fred loved to travel too, and had been around Australia a few times with my parents.  For me, this portrait isn't just a picture, but tells a bit more about the person being painted.

Friday, 11 March 2016

Lesson No.12 - Give Your White Cat Depth and Solidity

We're working on the edges of the cat today.  Objects can be lighter as they come toward you, and darker as they recede.  So as the hair of the cat recedes into the background, the hair is darker and softer at the edges.  Where the background is lighter, (in my case the top of the head), mix one or two shades darker with your background colours and using a fine brush and a bit of Liquin or flow medium, flick out through the hard white edge into the background so it is just visible.  Similarly, with the darker areas of the background (my cat's back) make the mix one or two shades lighter and flick through the edge with this.

Once done, you will have a fluffy blue-edged cat but don't worry, we haven't finished yet.  Load up your fine brush with white and flick through the blue hair and softly into the background.  You'll have to wipe off your brush constantly as you will be picking up blue paint on the way.

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Lesson No.11 - How to Give Whites Depth and Shape in Oils

We use the same techniques when painting the white cat but with different colours of course.  So remember to paint in the direction of the hair growth, darks first, highlights last.  Block in the different tones with a larger filbert first, then go over the details in a fine brush with Liquin added to the mix.  The tip here is that white colours reflect the surrounding background colours - don't be afraid to use some of those blues and greens from the background and oranges reflected off the other cat.  This will help give the cat shape and depth.

Monday, 29 February 2016

Lesson No.10 - How to Give Black Depth in Oils

Black tends to be very flat on it's own, so I usually mix Ultramarine Blue, Cadmium Red and a dot of Lemon Yellow for the darks first.  This allows for colourful darks and highlights.  To create depth in the fur, I then use a black with a bit of Ultramarine mixed into it.  Black also reflects background colours, so I used my background colours in my highlights.  The hair on the cat's back is done in a mid-tone dark Pthalo Blue to indicate the curve of his back.