Painting On The Fly

June 12, 2012

I’m now home from about six weeks of travel. The journey took me to Toronto, Ontario, Vancouver, British Columbia, Ferrara, Italy, and a wonderful ten days in Arkansas. Most of the journey involved exhibitions with my paintings but I painted lots while travelling as well.

Painting on the fly makes for some fun logistics. Finding art supplies is often an adventure. And managing canvases on a journey back to my studio is a primary need. Painting like this also means working in varying climatic conditions: the impact of humidity on the impact on drying time of water based paint is interesting.

Being in new locations brings insights and experiences that inevitably transcribe to the canvas. Sunlight, and shadows, vary so much from place to place. And the trees are different: where I live the trees are mostly poplars and their variations. In Arkansas I never saw an aspen. And what would Italy be without the cypress. Here’s an interesting link to images of many, many trees of the world to share just a little of what exists when one travels.

While I paint lots of trees, there are often other subjects within the theme. So reflect on how buildings differ in places like Toronto, Vancouver, Italy and Arkansas. In Italy I was especially drawn to people.

To paint when I travel means I may not see two dozen tourist highlights over seven days: it does mean I’ve engaged the places I’ve seen in very intimate ways.

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Jim Pescott is an international contemporary artist who lives and creates in Calgary, Alberta. His studio-gallery is available to view by appointment: please call 403-870-0591 or email paintwithdots@shaw.ca. Jim’s website is http://www.jimpescott.com

 

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Coffee Talk

April 3, 2012

Over coffee, at the kitchen table, Morse shared, “If someone can draw a rock they can draw anything.”

We weren’t talking about rocks and we weren’t talking about drawing but it didn’t seem to matter to Morse. He just thought it should be said.

Many years later, as we sat with our coffee, there were some rocks on the kitchen table and Morse was drawing them. I watched. Moments like this say so much about how lives happen. How many rocks in the garden do we see but decline the opportunity to spend time with them.

Morse never said why he waited so long but it was very clear drawing rocks had been on his mind for some time. The wonderful part is Morse finally gathered some rocks to nourish the artist he held within.

Do you know stories like this?

 

 

Old Cookie Jar

February 21, 2012

“I have this picture of a boy and his dog I really like. Can you paint it on an old clay cookie jar?”

While I wasn’t sure what my approach would be, I knew immediately I was excited about the project.

First, the opportunity to paint a boy and his dog felt so personal: I’ve been this “boy and his dog” many, many times in my life. And as I looked at the picture I remembered the soft looks of all those dogs who shared their lives with me.

Then, there was the old cookie jar. It was made by Medalta, an Alberta pottery maker located in what is now the Historic Clay District in Medicine Hat. Back in the 1940’s my grandfather worked at Medalta: who knows, maybe he handled this very jar. And as I held the old cookie jar, it seemed I could hear his voice.

There were many departures in my creative process as I painted the image on the clay surface. The experience held many blessings for this Calgary artist.

Boyandhisdog

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Jim Pescott is an international contemporary artist who lives and works in Calgary, Alberta. To contact Jim directly about his paintings, or a project you thik about, please phone 403-870-0591 or email him at paintwithdots@shaw.ca. His website is http:www.jimpescott.com

Trees Downtown

November 6, 2011

“Trees Downtown” is where trees, amidst the energies of concrete, vehicles, and people, ask for their lives to be witnessed. Evergreens huddle close to big walls: deciduous occupy solitary space like lamp posts.

Trees share selflessly and listening brings much to know while understanding may perhaps be another painting. Always, this depends on what the canvas seeks as I’m simply the messenger.

Downtown_trees

Reading Italian

May 13, 2011

I’ve been in Ferrara, Italy, for over a week (also managed a day in Florence). The primary reason for being here has been to follow my paintings to the successful “Here Now” exhibition that ends today. Then again, any reason to be in Italy is a good reason.

Otherwise, I’ve been walking the city streets: buildings, people and art and everywhere I see something to paint. I’ve also been absorbing the Italian language but as I’m mostly a visual person, a painter, the written word holds better with me (at least for now). Today I met up with some sculpture that allowed me to read over a shoulder. Much fun. Ciao!