Sunday Morning

 Inspired by Dashin’s post SUNDAY THOUGHT and last evening’s walk.


 Sunday Morning

A raven speaks of valley news while small birds warble their fragments of gossip.

Sweet, warm air rides the sun in through the studio window.

My coffee cools.

Best of Sunday too you!

Sprout question: What is your Sunday Thought?

STUDY OF BLUE  solo exhibition opens Thursday June 30, 2011.

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

FromMayne Island,British Columbia,Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

Apple Blossom Special

I am so close to, but not quite, finished my last painting KEEPING WATCH of the 15 that will be in my solo exhibition, STUDY OF BLUE, opening June 30, 2011. You are going to have to wait – maybe Friday, depending on how my week goes.

To sustain you until then, I have some lovely apple blossom photographs.

and another….

and another….

and another….

until finally, they are dancing on the branch….

(image may be purchased here)

By the way, I had the most amazing Friday the 13th. Two of my original oil paintings were sold in pre-sales and will be off to new homes July 27, 2011 at the close of my upcoming show.

ORANGE SEA will be off to a collector  in Victoria, B.C. Canada.

HEAVY CLOUD will be off to a collector in the United States.

May the pieces enrich and bless their new owner’s lives for years to come.

Friday must be one of my good luck kinds of days!

This now means that three of the fifteen paintings to be shown are already sold. A very good beginning – don’t you think?

STUDY OF BLUE  solo exhibition opens Thursday June 30, 2011.

Sprout question: If you could choose anyone of the STUDY OF BLUE paintings to hang on your wall which would it be and why?

(and please don’t say the one I haven’t finished yet, it just might hurt my feelings)

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

AUTUMN BOUNTY and COURTNEY IN THE MOONLIGHT by Sue Wiebe

As promised here are two more original oil paintings on canvas by artist Sue Wiebe.

Learning and practicing how to create depth and shadow is an ongoing process for most of us that apply paint to canvas or paper. COURTNEY IN THE MOONLIGHT provides a direct work out for this artistic muscle.

COURTNEY IN THE MOONLIGHT, 12 X 16 inch original oil painting, by Sue Wiebe

Well done Sue! Exquisite!

Sue painted this next oil painting, AUTUMN BOUNTY, during the time that she was working on WATCHING, the painting of the cougar.  There are only so many hours an artist can paint fur before there is an unrelenting desire to break free. This painting certainly does this in spades.

AUTUMN BOUNTY, 11 by 14 inch original oil painting on canvas, by Sue Wiebe.

I have AUTUMN BOUNTY as my laptop background at the moment and smile every time I sit down to do some work.

Sue, thank you for being our feature artist this week. It is always a pleasure to have you here at Creative Potager. I look forward to seeing your work in person in a week from now. There is nothing like a studio walk and a face-to-face viewing.

Sprout question: What creative muscle are you exercising at the moment?

STUDY OF BLUE  solo exhibition opens Thursday June 30, 2011.

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

FromMayne Island,British Columbia,Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

WATCHING original oil painting of a cougar by Sue Wiebe

I have a treat for us today with a feature post and a painting by another artist. I hope you enjoy the adventure.

Do you ever get that feeling that you are being watched? Then you turn around, slowly, and sure enough you are being stalked? In this case, artist Sue Wiebe’s daughter, Courtney, found that it was a cougar and was able to take a photograph of it that Sue used as a reference for her original oil painting WATCHING.

Fortunately for us, Sue took some photographs of her painting in progress. We will start with a look at the underpainting.

Next we see the painting building and coming alive.

In the finished work it feels like the cougar is ready to spring from her hiding spot under the edge of the log – those ears slightly flattened, attentive, watching.

WATCHING 20 X 30 inch original oil painting by Sue Wiebe.

I asked Sue if she could tell us about her experience of painting this incredible painting:

It is the biggest oil on canvas I have done so far.  It taught me to painting standing up so I had a better range of motion.  But the truth of the matter is, I think, the name says it all.  The cougar watched me through the whole painting.  I would set her aside, sometimes for long periods of time, as other aspects in life needed to be attended to or I puzzled over achieving the effect I wanted, but she was always watching and waiting.  Sometimes, even demanding, that I take the time to finish.  She is finished, and yet, she watches.

If you remember from time to time over the winter Sue would comment on Creative Potager about the hours it was taking to paint fur. Well now you know the rest of the story.

Sue has been featured on Creative Potager in the past but for those of you who didn’t know she is my sister. Painting is something that we share with equal passion. On Friday I have two more of her paintings that I will post for you to see. They are a still life with the most stunning shades of orange AUTUMN BOUNTY and a limited palette painting called COURTNEY IN THE MOONLIGHT.

Sprout question: What is a creative passion you share with a sibling or other family member?

STUDY OF BLUE  solo exhibition opens Thursday June 27, 2011.

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

FromMayne Island,British Columbia,Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

Checking on the Rhubarb

Sunday. Morning comes early now. I’m sitting in the studio loft ….  restless and wanting to be outside. It froze in the bottom of the valley last night. Maybe we should go check on the rhubarb I transplanted. What do you think? Yes? I thought so. You had better put on a sturdy pair of shoes. We are climbing down the 81 steps of the-stairway-to-heaven. Oh! A jacket too – it is still a bit nippy, even if the sun is coming over the hill.

Well look at that! The sheep are out.

It is awfully nice down here by the pond.

I am guessing our company thinks so too.

This field and the sheep we are looking at over the fence belong to Joyce Kallweit of Meadowmist Farm. She does farm tours. If you are ever on Mayne Island, I recommend you stop by. I promise to wave if you give a shout up.

Her barn looks particularly inviting through the trees this morning.

Now where did I poke that rhubarb in the ground? Hum. Let’s see. Ah, there it is.

Not too bad for a young plant. It seems to be coming along. I can see the deer have eaten three of the leaves off. Looks like I will need to fence it until it gets established.

Just about time to climb back up those stairs and get to work turning the garden over.

We had a couple of big alder taken down near the bottom right. It was necessary because it was rotting out and a new fence was going in to keep these babies contained.

I guess that is about it. Up we go. Time to go to work.

I started this yesterday. I like to do it by hand with a shovel. My planning is much like when I paint. This is the underpainting of my garden. There is no drawing or sketch for reference. I just pick up the shovel and dig in.

A few hours later you can see we have made some headway. This week, my painting is going to have some competition. I just have to get those peas and the greens planted. But I do have a painting in mind for a 24 X 36 canvas. It will happen.

Before we leave… let’s sneak up on some of those tulips over there.

Sprout question: What is the rhubarb in your creative week?

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

FromMayne Island,British Columbia,Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

Impermanence

I share with you these pears dancing in the light of the sun coming through the window. But they are no longer there. We ate them. They were delicious. The photograph is history like all photographs has captured history.

(image may be viewed and purchased here)

Impermanence is difficult concept to viscerally accept. My limited understanding comes from Buddhist practices but it is an idea that has fascinated me since I was a small child and realized that turning of the earth gave me a glimpse of visually watching the passage of time. In fact, it is fair to say that expression of impermanence is a strong underpinning in most of my paintings and much of my reflective writing.  The Buddhist notion of impermanence is that all of conditioned existence, without exception, is in a constant state of flux. Here a section on the subject from wikipedia:

According to the impermanence doctrine, human life embodies this flux in the aging process, the cycle of birth and rebirth (samsara), and in any experience of loss. This is applicable to all beings and their environs including devas (mortal gods). The Buddha taught that because conditioned phenomena are impermanent, attachment to them becomes the cause for future suffering (dukkha).

Conditioned phenomena can also be referred to as compounded, constructed, or fabricated. This is in contrast to the unconditioned, uncompounded and unfabricated nirvana, the reality that knows no change, decay or death.

Impermanence is intimately associated with the doctrine of anatta, according to which things have no fixed nature, essence, or self.

Though I do meditate and go to the odd meditation retreat, I am not a practicing Buddhist. But there are times when I find that the Buddhist doctrine resonates and helps me to live a better life – with less suffering. Such a time is when the hard drive of my computer crashes beyond recovery. Some things were lost. Some things have been found in other places. I wasn’t and I am not particularly worried or grieving about any of these things.

What did strike me in a new way was the concept of impermanence. It was like I had been accumulating this understanding for years and all of a sudden I had a glimpse of it – just for a few days and even then only for a few hours at a time. I was able to experience impermanence beyond what my brain had constructed … it was tangible in the cells of my body, the earthquakes in Japan, David’s stroke, the birth of my grandchildren, the lines on the backs of my hand, and the daffodils in the woods.

(image may be viewed and purchased here)


This wasn’t a sense of peace and ease I was experiencing – I was terrified. My experience of the world, through my five senses, was no more permanent than the passing light between the trees. I was borrowing these experiences and stretching their presence through memory, writing, painting and collecting data on my hard drive. My thoughts go to Atlantis, the Egyptian pyramids, the ancient Greek poet Sappho – all passing moments in time with just a few fragments left visible through story, crumbling earth and fragments of poetry.  I grasp that my existence, my being, and my experiences are all expressions of impermanence. For a few moments, okay hours, it was hard not to hyperventilate and go screaming naked through the woods.

But after awhile I concluded, nothing had changed. These things were the same before I looked them squarely in the eye. My knowing did not chance impermanence – only my experience of impermanence.

(image may be viewed and purchased here)

This week I shall work on another painting. I shall do it with conscious awareness of my impermanence and its impermanence.

Sprout question: How does impermanence express itself in your creativity?

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

FIR TREE original oil paintings by Terrill Welch

This week my hard drive crashed and it is not recoverable. Fortunately, most things were backed up and my photographs were on an external hard drive and most of them are backed up again on flash drives. I lost a few images but not many. Lucky! However, I did lose all my newer email addresses so if you have exchanged emails with me in the past year, and would like to continue to be in touch, drop a line and I will add you to my address book.  Somehow this all seems to be less of an issue now that we have facebook, twitter and such. I might even be persuaded to pick up the phone 🙂

I plan to write a more about this experience on Monday in a post called “impermanence.”

Now, let’s have a look at this week’s painting. I started out just going to paint a few edges but these two small canvases had a ground on them and were sitting beside the easel. Well I looked at the edges of another painting and I looked back at the two canvases. The 8 X 8 inch pair just had to be done.

I knew what I wanted to paint. We have been getting a lot of evening sun here with glorious gold light hitting the trees just before it leaves us for dusk.

Starting from “ground.”

A ground is different from a underpainting even though it may be the same colour. With a ground there is just a layer of paint that is put down with no intended painting blocked in or even in mind. Yes, I dislike wasting paint so these canvases were just too close to the last underpainting I was doing and they were grounded 😉

The painting took shape quickly.

I didn’t stop again until close to finishing.

When hung, the two paintings would be separated by a couple inches – I think, maybe more. Or they could be hung like this ….

This side by side is possibly my favourite.

Here they are trimmed up pretty with no distractions.

FIR TREE SKY original oil painting by Terrill Welch

FIR TREE POND original oil painting by Terrill Welch

I haven’t had a chance to decide if I will sell them separately or only as a pair. What do you think? Should they be kept together or be allowed to go into the world separately and be a surprise to some unsuspecting buyer that there is another half to their painting?

These paintings will be part of my upcoming solo show “Study of Blue” opening June 30, 2011 at the Oceanwood Resort here on Mayne Island.

UPDATE: FIR TREE SKY has been SOLD at the opening on June 30, 2011. FIR TREE POND has been SOLD to a separate buyer at the close of the show on July 27, 2011.

Sprout question: What keeps you rolling through unexpected events with ease?

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch Online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

A walk to the blossom tree

The sun had slid into home base just add of dusk. We decided that a walk would do us good. Besides, there is a neighbour’s tree I want to photograph while it is in bloom.

On the way, David spies these bird houses in the sun. I am smitten with their brightness against that aging wood of the building.

We must walk quickly now as the sun is already catching treetops between the shadows.

Ah, there it is.

We are a little late but it is still lovely. What a lot of blossoms!

Let’s see if we can find just a few for a close up.

Great fun. A little closer maybe?

Oh yes — one of my blossom photos is being used for the poster of Cherry Blossom Festival in Abbotsford British Columbia. This city of about 120 thousand is hosting a sister-city project to raise funds for Japanese relief. I am honoured that they requested my photograph to promote the event.

(view or purchase the photo in this poster here.)

There is a little credit running along the right side of the photo that has me grinning every  time I notice it 🙂

My intention this week is to paint the edges of my paintings that are already finished. I moved the rhubarb to a sunnier location yesterday and while I was out there I saw a few other things I want to get started on. This musing time – as I am doing these things I will decide on my next big painting.

If you get a chance, stop by my new Online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

I wish you a blooming good time this week.

Sprout question: What is blooming in your creative garden?

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

SALISH SEA 4 original oil painting by Terrill Welch

I am introducing the painting process of SALISH SEA 4 with a quote from Elizabeth Rosner’s book Blue Nude published in 2006:

It was what he admired about Bonnard, or at least what he loved about the famous stories in which Bonnard was applying paint to works already hanging in other people’s houses. Something about never letting go, always feeling there was one more stroke to be added, one more note of the Unfinished Symphony. As if even death wouldn’t be the ultimate form of completion but just another stop along the way.

(p. 58)

The underpainting that is the foundation of this 24 X 48 inch canvas was included in Monday’s post “The Breath of Stones.” There are 10 images in today’s post capturing the beginning to end… if there is one… of creating SALISH SEA 4. I will make an effort to be brief but there seems to be much to say.

They are a little hard to see but the top right paints are French Ultramarine blue and Viridian. These two colours will play prominently in the development of today’s painting. I sometimes use my own photographs for painting reference but I am not known to “paint” a photograph. I often take several reference images for paintings — similar to how artists used to sketch and then use these as reference for developing a painting when they got back to the studio. Though sometimes a painting may be close to the reference image, the photographs are meant to influence and guide but to not to be copied. Otherwise, I might as well keep the photograph and print it on canvas …. and sometimes I do just that!

Are you ready? She’s a bit bright but here we go …

A gray beginning and it doesn’t look like much yet.

I am using mostly a 2 inch brush here. My aim is to keep the painting loose and flowing. The small palette knife you see there is just being used for mixing. Now to add a little teal blue.

Working for a long while and equally using a #10 brush, along with my 2 inch brush,  I get basic elements of the painting in place.

A part of me wanted to pause right here and not go any further. But after a break I decided to keep working.

Picking up the large 2 inch brush again I whisk paint onto the canvas in big strokes. The sea is rolling in and I am riding each wave. If you remember my challenge was to bring the viewer into the painting from the top left and move their eye forward and down to the bottom right. See at the end if you think I have succeeded.

I have started working with three different large palette knives to build up selected texture. Then I add some highlights but the painting is saturated. There is a glare from bright sunlight and my body and being are tired.

It is time to stop – for now.

Over the next two days I spend a few hours adding a stroke here and there. I brighten up areas that have become muted from painting wet on wet. Mostly, I observe, feel, breathe and let it be.

Then on Thursday morning I started in early painting and had it finished in a couple of hours.

Well, almost… I think!

SALISH SEA 4, a 24 X 48 inch cotton canvas original oil painting by Terrill Welch. This painting will be shown as part of solo summer exhibition opening at the end of June. If you are interested in purchasing in advance of the show please contact me directly via email at tawelch AT shaw DOT ca .

This is one painting dear readers, that I suspect more than one of you will be completely enamored with an earlier version. But that is how it goes when you are privy to the creative process of a painter.

I dedicate this painting to French Impressionist painter Pierre Bonnard (1867-1947) who also favoured using violet in some of his painting.

SALISH SEA 4 is definitely another stop along my way.

Sprout question: How is your creativity just another stop along the way?

Happy April fools day and best of the weekend to you!

News Flash: Introducing Terrill Welch’s Online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com (okay it is a small flash… there is still a lot of inventory to enter but it would be great to hear what you think)

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

When the Sun Comes Out

First, thank you everyone who zipped, shone light, sent energy and prayers to Josie this week. I believed she has turned the corner and is on the mend. Whaaaahoooo!

The week started out with much reorganizing to make room to paint my 24 X 48 inch cotton canvas.

The composition has been adjusted somewhat but the reference photograph you see of  “stones throw” with the canvas is the one I am using for this next painting. There will be much less sky for sure. It will be challenge because the movement is from the far outer top left moving forward across the canvas to the near bottom right – towards the viewer. I am excited to see if I can make it work.

Then something happened. There was this unusual yellow glow in the sky on Tuesday morning. I was pretty sure it was the sun but I couldn’t be positive because that brilliant addition overhead hadn’t been seen in these parts for quite some time. Well, nothing would do but we had to go down to the beach and check it out. On the way we stopped to check out the field of daffodils.

They were almost open but if we check back to last year on March 11th they were already in full flower long before this time last year. However, they are coming along just the same. This sun will certainly help.

Now let’s go to the beach. Wow! The tide is way out.

David went to stroll along the shore while I clambered over the sandstone reef. I found some beautiful barnacles, mussels and snails.

(the image “BARNACLES, MUSSELS AND SNAILS” may be purchased here.)

I liked this image so much it is my desktop background right now. There were lots of oysters too but I didn’t photograph them – muddy gray looking critters.

I can never get enough of the contrast of sandstone and blue sky. Sigh!

But this is show stopper for me. I was just sitting on the rocks relaxing before heading home when I turned my head back to the sea and this is what I saw…

(the image “VESSEL” may be purchased here.)

The natural abstract beauty had me exclaiming “Yes!” before I could even get my camera out of its case. Martha Marshall this one was captured because of you and your consistent influence on my understanding of abstract design. Thank you!

I did finally get back to my canvas and the underpainting is now ready for a good run of painting next week.

Have a great weekend and I hope you find some sun!

Sprout question: What is the most outrageous creative adventure you have ever blamed on the sun?

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada