Wednesday, May 18, 2016

The "Series"








This is a successful attempt at the elusive "series" concept.  I always find it difficult to stay in a particular style or zone when painting so this time I pretty much worked on all 6 at once.  This works for me!!! I've finally found the answer. This series consists of 2 @ 30" x 30", 2 @ 16" x 16" and 2 @ 12" x 12".

The only problem is that I am now working larger (36" x 48") and space is very limited.  I can see a re-organization project of my little 'studio' space, which is a portion of a family room type area.  I'm going to need to figure out a way to get the panels up on the wall to work on as there is no room for multiple easels.   I need a heated garage!!!


Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Commissions



This painting, "Quintessence" was finished yesterday after a few weeks of stressful work trying to get it right.  The request was for a painting similar to one that had previously sold, only in pinks and yellows.  The last time I completed a commission piece was many years ago when I was working in watercolours and in a realistic manner.  Mixed media and acrylic in a non-representational style is another story.

This was quite the challenge for me. In trying to mix pinks, I was arriving at bubble-gum colours which made me very unhappy.  On the third attempt, I decided to work on 2 canvases at the same time and in colours that I like. The result was a 'letting go' of expectations and working on 2 at once was a very liberating experience too.  I was able to paint in my usual intuitive manner and the painting progressed quickly to my satisfaction and the second one is also coming along nicely.

I was very nervous when emailing the photo of my finished piece to the gallery where the commission was requested. The last thing I wanted to hear was that it was not acceptable to the gallery or client. I was prepared for,  and hoping for,  only minor tweaks  before varnishing and delivering.

To my delight, the gallery and clients were very pleased and all that was requested was for me to give it a name!

New experiences, though stressful, are such a thrill when there is a positive outcome! I have learned a lot about working on commissions and myself as well.  All that I needed to do was trust my instincts and inner voice and paint like I always do. In worrying every step of the way about whether the client would like this or that I put a muzzle on myself stifling my creativity totally.

Lesson learned!  Now to finish the second one for myself!

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Productive Painting Time


                                         
                                           "Mind Games"

Summer weather is still here - the garden is calling to me BUT so is painting!  This 12" x 12" x 1.5" painting came together rather quickly for a change.  It is a relief to get a little one that I like in the middle of struggling with a large canvas - 36" x 48" x 1.5" and 3 works on paper to go with it.

The large one and companions are beginning to take shape and my mind is in the right place to tackle that big project.  My paintings are intuitive and emotional and a fairly clear head is needed to work out the puzzle that this kind of painting is!

A little diversion is sometimes needed - this painting was diversion #1 and a thorough house cleaning today was diversion #2.

Tomorrow it is Onward with the Brushes!!!!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

"Huggie Bears"



I've been busy this past month or two enjoying summer weather, gardening, visiting with friends and family and creating!

These little bears are something new for me - amigurumi crochet bears. I am making them and donating them to CHEO - Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario.  I love to keep busy and these are fun to make.  They are given to children in need of some extra comfort by volunteers at CHEO. These bears are a good size for a small child up to a teenager and are very soft and cuddly.  I'm hoping they will help some kids get through tough times.




Saturday, July 25, 2015

Celebration

I am mourning the loss of a very dear friend who has left this world suddenly and way too soon.
We shared a mutual love of gardening, nature and art and she will be greatly missed by all who knew her beautiful smile,  sparkling personality, kindness and compassion.

I am titling this new painting "Celebration".  It is a joyous, colourful piece and it is a tribute to my wonderful friend and her sunny disposition and outlook on life.


Sunday, May 31, 2015

Distractions


This is the result of over two weeks of painting away at this 30" x 30" canvas. A thick coat of Gesso over layers and layers of collage and paint and many, many hours of trying to work.

I love my home studio space but the open concept with no door is not working for me.  My dear
husband means well but doesn't understand the mindset of an artist working on a non-representational intuitive painting.  Constant interruptions and noise has made me think too much about something that should have no thinking whatsoever.  Impossible to do without peace and quiet.

My only solution is to buy some noise reduction headphones as my frustration level has come to a breaking point.  I now understand why studio space away from home is important. Not going to happen so I just need to relax and find a solution.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Perseverance



The title of this painting is "Patience" and it sums up my attitude towards my painting experience.

I have been on a journey of learning and discovery for 26 years now. It all started with classes in drawing, life drawing, graphic design, illustration and layout, black and white photography and development, oil painting, pastel painting, watercolour painting, intaglio and relief printmaking and various mixed media techniques and workshops.

Along the way I've been involved with many art organizations, co-op art galleries, outdoor and indoor art shows and a few studio tours.  My paintings have been shown in many small art galleries and gift shops in Ottawa and other towns and cities in Eastern Ontario.

Recently I have had the good fortune to be asked by the owner of a major fine art gallery here in Ottawa, Koyman Galleries, to show my work.  I am now a 'gallery artist' and have a permanent display space in this beautiful venue.  My challenge now is to create more artwork in 'my style' on larger canvases. Here's hoping 'Joe Public' will like what he sees enough to buy my work.

In general, I think creative people have to build a hard shell against negativity for what they do and why they do it. Pursuing a subject for the simple love of learning and enjoyment of the process is what is important to me and I want to keep that freshness of attitude in my mind going forward in this new direction.

Heather Assaf
Koyman Galleries