My method

As for my method… I work from photographs. I have tried keeping a sketchbook, doing working drawings and preliminary paintings on canvas, but those things don’t work for me. My field photos (taken with my trusty Nikon FM2) record what I found interesting and serve to jar my memory. I draw loosely, directly on the canvas, with thinned paint and a brush, and in the process of mixing and applying paint the paintings take on a life of their own. For this series, most of the iceberg photos are from my 20-year collection, mostly taken along the Avalon peninsula. The bird’s-eye-views come from the archives at Provincial Aerospace, the company that does observation for Environment Canada and the offshore oil rigs. Friends who have photos have generously offered them to me, and I’ve found a few on the internet. The photos get cropped, reversed, changed in scale or colour in the painting process; sometimes an iceberg is moved to a different coast or sent to sea to make the painting work. I love the bird’s-eye views. Early in my career, I did a series of still life drawings and paintings from objects (often fruit on a plate or in a bowl) which were placed on the floor by my feet because I didn’t have a table in my studio. Periodically I go back to that set-up. The slight feeling of vertigo, the out-of-kilter-ness of seeing something on the wall that should be down, is interesting to me. Off to walk the dogs and greet the...
Jumping in…

Jumping in…

I set up this account in July, thinking summer would be the perfect time to ease myself into the world of blogging. I didn’t anticipate the anxiety making the first post would create. I am seldom daunted by the presence of a blank canvas, but this blank rectangle on the computer screen had me stymied. I have procrastinated very well for these past four months, and, now that November is here, I realize that if I don’t just post SOMETHING I will NEVER start. So here I am! I have been painting icebergs this year. They come from far away and no one is driving them. They are huge clumps of ice whose final transformation we sometimes get to see from shore, after they have travelled thousands of miles. Sometimes they appear in herds and float south along the shore like a parade of animals; sometimes I strain my eyes toward a tiny reflective speck on the distant horizon only to realize that it’s just a transport ship. Like the fog in Newfoundland, icebergs are an unpredictable and mysterious presence. Here are some of my efforts to date. I feel a bit adrift, as if I were sending a message in a bottle out into the ether. Anyone out...

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