During the fall i was looking at light that was putting on a real show. Weird pockets of light in shadows, and trees with dramatic light hitting them durring the sunset. My attention was especially caught by this one birch tree outside my girlfriends family's summer house, which is in the middle of the forest. Every day around the time the sun was going down behind the treetops, somehow this tree was illuminated by a beam of light, while the surrounding forest was in shadow. I even tried to understand exactly where the beam was coming through the forest behind me, but i never found it. So while we stayed at the house i walked out everyday around the same time to look at this tree. The light was so strong that it really seemed like the tree was glowing by itself. It actually cast a reflected light on the ground underneath it that was a little colder so the ground seemed to light up as well. So i tried to take a photo (which was really hard in itself) and then i've been trying to capture a sense of that lighting in this painting. I at least think i managed to capture some of the effect and feeling of the scene.
When it comes to the actual painting process this one was very much balancing the light and the darkness surrounding it. Too dark and the tree would be too strong against the background. Too light and the tree would loose it's power. If the birch tree was too abstract it would not feel stable and would be sort of floaty. I wanted it to have some weight, but on the other hand if it's too defined i would lose the feeling of the light. So i was going back and forth a lot on this one until i came pretty close to what i was going for.
Last winter i was traveling north from Umeå (the town in Sweden where i live) to a small place called Sikeå. It was a foggy day with a beautiful white light that reflected in the air. It was very nice and at one point a herd of white deer were walking next to us. I took a couple of photos and decided to make small paintings to remember the light.
Watercolour on watercolour paper. 25 x 18cm. The frame is 45 x 35cm
I call this painting "Letting go". It's an oil painting on illustration board and it's 35 x 28 cm. I started this painting with the purpose of just doing something fun, without putting too much thought into it it. But i actually found myself getting some kind of connection to it in the end.
What would you let go from the back of a flying turtle?
Last week i attended Nordsken, which is a pop culture convention. It was a lot of fun. I had a small art show among many other great artists where i showed original paintings, prints and some of the original art from my graphic novel Ellna. Here is a photo of a friend of mine helping me with setting things up for the show. It was fun, and i had a lot of fun with the set up. A very relaxed show.
I also had my book for sale during the convention and i was part of a panel discussion about myths and legends as part of the process for writing stories or graphic novels.
The week was amazing and i'm already looking forward to next year!
I've been traveling for a while now and haven't really been painting that much. But i did get some stuff at the local art supply store and i painted a little.
A painting i did while looking at my brother's beautiful photos. I wanted to work with positive forms over negative forms. I like the effect of the contrast between the dark shapes of the trees in the foreground against the light shapes of the forest in the background.
Watercolour on watercolour paper. 22,5 x 22 cm
Watercolour on watercolour paper. 22,5 x 22 cm
This is another painting i started as a demo for a class. I did not plan this other than i did a very loose sketch of the shed. I didn't use any photos. Instead i was showing how i can find the environment with abstract shapes that shows up when i drag the brush over the paper. The process is very reactionary. Reacting to what the paint is doing more than trying to control where it's going. So like an out of focus photo getting sharper i started defining shapes and forms in the textures that showed up by accident.
I did a watercolor sketch demo for a class today and thought i'd share it here. I did it in three layers. First a very transparent layer that's also called a ghost wash. Basically i painted the form of the mouse with just water. And within the wet form i then added paint with neutral colours. The first layer is just light and dark shapes within the form. Then when that layer was dry i came back over it with darker colours to start defining shadows and edges a little more, and then a third layer over that where i defined hard edges where i felt like i wanted them. Most of the sketch is still very loose, i just defined enough so that it felt like i wanted. Then i went over everything with a glaze but left some areas just to give it some life.