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Monday, March 18, 2019

Oil painting lesson with Gregory Smith

The last session. 

I changed background to make it more truthful. 
The bottles at both sides looked dead, so, I put loads of French Ultramarine, fine-tuning their shapes, without losing forms. 
I fixed a book and a water pitcher, focusing on their subtle tonal shift. The latter’s spout needed revisiting. 
And, I changed the foreground. 
Greg put a very light shadow on the top of the book, that was a revelation. I didn’t see it. 

Well, it’s been very fruitful 4 weeks working on this project. I’m happy with this one. The title is ‘Kind of Blue’. My favourite jazz album. 


Oil on panel. 16x20 in. 

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Plein Air Oil Painting

I took a bike ride this afternoon. 
There’s a lovely footpath along Plenty River Trail from North Eastern Horse & Pony Club at Banyule Flats Reserve in Viewbank. 

This pochade box is 9x6 inch handcrafted in Australia by Leon Holmes. The best pochade box ever. 



This one is a quick sketch. The canvas is oil primed linen, a leftover from art supply shop. Very different feel to it. I liked it a lot. The problem is, they’re very expensive. 
I spent 1 hour. 


Oil on canvas. 8x6 in. 

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Sunday, March 17, 2019

Plein Air Oil Painting

I drove to Flinders Blowhole Lookout this morning. I jus keep coming back. 
I decided to be a bit braver and set up my easel here. 





Fortunately it wasn’t windy. I just loved this view. Although there was no shade, I managed to finish it. 
I spent 2 hours. 


Oil on canvas. 14x18 in. 


Then I walked down stairs and set up pochade box here. This one is 12x9 inch box handcrafted in Australia by Leon Holmes. The best pochade box ever. 
His website is here.




I’ve found painting waves very difficult. I do think I need more practice. 
I spent 1.5 hours. 


Oil on canvas. 12x8 in. 

Another glorious day. 

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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

RBG - documentary

Recommended by my client. 

I’ve had absolutely no idea about Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Supreme Court Justice, let alone her  remarkable achievements in America. 
Superbly produced, this film teaches us a lot about gender equality, legal system, family, love.... 
You should watch this. 


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Plein Air Oil Painting

I took a bike ride this afternoon. 
There’s a lovely footpath along Plenty River Trail from North Eastern Horse & Pony Club at Banyule Flats Reserve in Viewbank. 



It was very peaceful. I spent 1.5 hours. 

Oil on canvas. 9x6in 
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Monday, March 11, 2019

Oil painting lesson with Gregory Smith

The third session. 

This one is getting very deep. Very fascinating discussion with Greg continues with regards to the nature of tones and colours. 
I tried to fine-tune tonal relationships of each object. 


Work in progress. 
Oil on panel. 16x20 in. 

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Plein Air Oil Painting

I drove to Ivanhoe this afternoon. 

I bought a pochade box recently. Handcrafted in Australia by Leon Holmes. 
The link is here
The best pochade box ever! 
It carries two wet panels and very light. Tripod is attached at back (lid), therefore panel won’t wobble when painting, like all others tend to do. Very ingenious design. 





I had lots of fun painting this little one. 
I spent 1.5 hours. 


Oil on panel. 9x6 in. 

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Sunday, March 10, 2019

Plein Air Oil Painting

I drove to Flinders Blowhole Lookout in Mornington Peninsula National Park this morning. 

Actually, I first went to Cape Schanck but it was too busy and couldn’t find a car park, maybe because of a long weekend. 




Although it was cloudy and windy, I had a great time painting this one. I tried not to do details, well, it was very atmospheric. 
I spent 2 hours. 


Oil on canvas. 14x18 in. 


Then, I decided to do a small study of waves at the shore. 




Wind got unbearable, but I managed to finish this one. Lovely place. 
I spent 1.5 hours. 


Oil on canvas. 12x8 in. 

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Wednesday, March 06, 2019

‘Into the Woods’ at Ivanhoe Grammar Ridgeway Campus

After work, I went to see this production. 

I have clients whose children are taking part in this work by Stephen Sondheim, and we were talking about this. I love going to theatre, so, I was very looking forward to it. 

I was blown away!
Well, I had never been to see a play/musical performed by high school students. It’s a very complicated story with multiple subplots. 
The scale of production is very big with large number of actors, production staff and musicians. 
I also loved costumes, beautifully done. I’m assuming they were all done by students. Incredible. 

Actors on stage were all brilliant. I’m no expert, but they did a great job. They all seemed to be so confident and comfortable. And what a voice! Beautiful sopranos by girls and tenors by boys. Very clear and articulate as well. 

I’ve been to many musicals when working in London and some here in Melbourne, but, I’d say this one is probably one of the best I’ve ever seen. And they are high school students!

The theatre was packed with lots of great vibes. Go and see this wonderful musical. 
I highly recommend. 


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Monday, March 04, 2019

Oil painting lesson with Gregory Smith

This is the secon session. 
I’m struggling with this project, seeing very subtle tonal changes and render them on the canvas. 

Greg talked about edges and their effects on tones/colours. It’s very deep and complicated stuff. 


Work in progress. 
Oil on panel. 16x20 in. 

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Sunday, March 03, 2019

Oil painting at LastPeek Studio

I went to my favourite studio in Thornbury this afternoon. 
We had Madeline today as the Queen of Egypt. 
Frank did a fantastic job creating a head gear. 

I think it’s getting there but run out of time. 


Unfinished 
Oil on canvas. 14x18 in. 

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Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Plein Air Oil Painting

I drove to Flinders Blowhole in Mornington Peninsula National Park this afternoon. 
This place has become my favourite ‘retreat’ in this summer. 

It was very cloudy and tide is very low, so I decided to start a small painting as a study of waves. 




Actually I really enjoyed this one, although the foreground is a bit dodgy. I spent 1.5 hours. 


Oil on canvas. 12x8 in. 


Then gradually the sky started to open as I had hoped. After quick lunch. I set up my easel here. The similar viewpoint as the one I did about a couple of weeks ago. 




Observing waves is a fascinating exercise, let alone painting them. Tone, colour and form constantly change. I think this is better than the last one. I spent 2.5 hours. 


Oil on canvas. 14x18 in. 

It was very peaceful, hardly anyone was around. Gorgeous sunset. 


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Monday, February 25, 2019

Oil painting lesson with Gregory Smith

I had a new subject today. 




I had a great discussion with Greg about ‘What is the nature of colour? What is it? What is visual reality? etc “
Well, it’s all about “tone, then, temperature”. 


Work in progress. 
Oil on panel. 16x20 in. 


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Sunday, February 24, 2019

Paint Out Day

Victorian Artists Society organises plein air painting session once a month. I drove to Woodlands Historic Homestead near Melbourne Airport this morning. 
I’ve been here many times, one of my favourite places; fascinating history and beautiful scenery. 

I set up my easel here, this is at the back of the Homestead. 




I thoroughly enjoyed this one. Perspectives are always tricky. There’s Tim painting at back. Can you see?
I spent 3 hours. 


Oil on canvas. 14x18 in. 


Well, while I went to bathroom, a sudden gust of wind smashed my painting onto the ground 😱😱😨😨



Never mind, it’s always great to see familiar faces. 

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Monday, February 18, 2019

Oil painting lesson with Gregory Smith

The final session. 
I started today by refining her ear. There’s lot of warmth in this area, Light Red is always a good one to do that. 
I changed hair at from a bit. Greg mentioned that highlights from her nose can’t go right up to her fringe. This is such a small thing but I didn’t notice it. 

Then I did some work on her ear ring, and shift overall skin tone towards warmer by using Cad Red and Alizarin. Be very careful though. 

The biggest challenge is her eye. The shadow was too dark. I first put Burnt Sienna as eye liner, then Raw Umber. Her eye started to pop up. Then very carefully put highlight in her eye. 

Finally I readjust her lips. Highlight on her lip wasn’t at the right place. 

Well, that’s it. It’s so much fun whe we have such a lovely model as Matilda. We’re all very grateful to her. 
I cut her hair last December, and finally she’s allowed to get another haircut. I’ll see her this Saturday. 


Unfinished 
Oil on canvas panel. 16x20 in. 


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