Photo Editing, HDR and all that stuff.


Digital photography has made photography so accessible that most of us can enjoy this creative experience. As a painter who works in a “painterly manner”… i.e. towards Impressionism, with lost edges and subtleties, I find the sharpness and colour intensity of much modern photography a bit over the top for my personal taste. But I can’t help being drawn to it and admire my husband’s crisp HDR images.

This photo is of Cape Tourville,  Freycinet Peninsula, Tasmania. Taken on a bright morning I used a polarising filter to reduce the glare and improve the blues, I decided to duplicate and edit the copy in Photoshop using levels to increase the intensity. Not sure which I prefer.

Please comment.

Cape Tourville adjustedCape Touville original

Simple art that makes you smile


I can’t help but smile the whole time I am creating these fun little works (approximately A4). They have been done with decorating children’s rooms in mind but they do bring a smile to the face of “senior children” too.

o      . girl umbrella       girl skipping       girl fishing

girl bunch flowers        boy kite dog          girl balloons tulips

girl balloons            boy garden            boy golf boy cricket

A walk in the rainforest…. Trowutta Arch, Tasmania’s Tarkine


It was a lovely spring day here in Tasmania today and we took our camper out for a run. Tarkine wilderness again, but this time not the coast. Still wonderful geology in the limestone karst formations and the most magnificent reflections in the water at Trowutta Arch. Along the way fungi, ferns, mosses, lichen and liverworts below a canopy which let streams of light through.

Along the temperate rainforest track. So many man ferns (Dicksonia Antartica)IMG_9079

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And “fairyland” magic in the micro world

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Then at the end of the walk we were rewarded with amazing reflections and limestone formations.

 


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Mixed media paintings… the playful artist


wilderness track

wilderness track

For those of us who like to play with art materials and explore new avenues without boundaries, mixed media is wonderful. Above, “Wilderness Track” is a large work painted in acrylic which was applied from very dilute, like watercolour, to thick impasto painted on with a palette knife. Pencils, oil pastel, soft pastel sumi ink and white pigment ink were all applied at various stages. The ground was an Art Spectrum Colorfix paper in a rich terracotta colour, hence the warm overall glow. The inspiration was a coastal walking track on Tasmania.s Tarkine coast. Walking between the towering angular rocks is amazing.

Raw

Raw

On one of the days over Easter 2015 when I was, with about 70 other artists,on Tasmania’s Tarkine Coast, I was taken on a 4WD expedition down past the sealed tracks. To get to such remote and wild places was unforgettable. It is the geology of the area that continually attracts me…. and of course the ever changing ocean and sky.This work is also painted on Colorfix paper, this time in a warm grey. After working with very wet acrylic paints and a spray bottle of water, I used  the side of the wet solid Sumi ink stick  and  a little liquid ink applied with a rigger brush to keep the stokes fluid and loose. Finally linear marks with charcoal and a touch of pastel completed the textural effects for which I was aiming.IMG_8994This third painting was about the intensity of the colour of the red lichen so it was started with oil paint stick and oil pastel on a very rough Fabriano watercolour paper. Light watercolour washes were applied to the sky and sea as a foil for the heavy texture of the rocks. Watercolour was also applied as glazes over the rocks, with the previously applied oil based media acting as a resist, thus retaining the intense colour.  Finally Sumi ink was added in three ways….. dragging the broad end of the wet stick across the paper, drawing some crevice lines directly with the wet stick, applying the ink using 2 brushes to direct flow for tonal areas, and varied ways of applying with a rigger brush. Wonderful textures resulted.  
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This small,  quick work was completed primarily with acrylic applied with a palette knife and fingers. Final touches were added with Sumi ink and a little oil pastel. It captures the drama and inspiring natural forms of this threatened wilderness area.

Winter days in the Studio…. “serious” painting, art play and quirky stuff


Winter is a time of runny noses, colds and ‘flu. But it is also a time to enjoy keeping warm inside, creating artworks without feeling guilty about all the time spent indoors.

I always keep busy creating but don’t photograph and post many of my works. Today I had a quick look around the studio, grabbed my most recent works and the i-pad and got photographing…… outdoors (it was a lovely clear afternoon).

Firstly, I intended to finish this acrylic on canvas………. I have added some of the seaweed but I want more texture in the front.

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I have asked a few friends what they think and, as expected, have had a few different responses. I have finally decided to go with what I originally thought (as I tend to do) …. I will add some sand from the location to give authentic texture, in addition to implied texture through spattering, dry brush, scumbling etc.

IMG_0095I take a few classes each week, usually in watercolour, and in the most recent we focused on tone while re-enforcing the importance of timing, and working with increasingly drier paint to achieve strength. We painted a winter snow scene in Sepia…. no other colours to distract….. purely tonal. Aiming for a sense of depth with softer distance and harder, stronger edges to the fore.

I have also been enjoying the colour and flow of dyes on silk, making more of my silk miniatures in a brooch which accompany my hand painted scarves. I have a couple of venues waiting for new stock of these and hope to get on top of putting some online on my handmade shop in the next few weeks. While taking photos of these I finally got around to taking a few pics showing some of the many ways these sets can be worn. I gave up trying to find a suitable willing model and used my dressmaking form and a head form (they were most co-operative). More ideas are posted on my Silk Watercolours blog (listed in my links)

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I have been asked by one venue to do some quirky, fun stuff… so that I did and, yes , it was fun. The card is from handmade paper (made at the last workshop I took at a local Tasmanian Regional Arts branch), and beautifully polished pebbles collected from local beaches. These my sister and I love picking up on beach walks when she visits, she takes them back to back to Victoria, tumbles them and posts some back to me for my STONE BIRD card creations. I spend ages playing with these beautifully smooth coloured stones to see what characters I can find.  Very meditative…. oh yes, that new thing “mindfulness”! The little watercolour and ink girl is just for fun…. colour and smiles.

IMG_0094                                              just for fun

Whenever I am in the studio for a few consecutive days I tend to experiment with something new. This time I  explored  a combination of a silk painting background under an encaustic artwork in a pendant. I am happy with the result … soft silk watercolour with the intensity and dimensionality of an abstract encaustic painting suggestive of a network.

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And last week I had a call from the local newspaper, The Advocate, asking about a forthcoming workshop I am taking at Tasmanian Regional Arts Sheffield on Making Little Boxes for trinkets, jewellery etc. They needed a pic so I gathered what I could find, made a couple of new boxes, put one of my handmade scarves in one and an encaustic pendant in another and sent them some images to play with (none of me with my red drippy “winter cold” nose and bloodshot eyes!)

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If ever I get artist’s block I just reach for a different medium…. my studio has everything at hand……. my most favourite place to relax, work and play. Such is the life af someone addicted to creating.

Back down to the Tarkine Coast…. more photos of the Tasmania I love.


I can’t get too much of this place. The weather is so changeable, the play of light fantastic. And the colours!!!! Lichen in reds, yellows, oranges, green and white.  Twisted tree trunks and mounds of green vegetation crouching in the wind. Energetic deep blue seas decorated with brilliant white foam.  And skies full of light then hidden by threatening clouds. A photographer’s delight.IMG_8858

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Colour magic, Sunset at the Beach, Tasmania


IMG_8512I can’t help myself…. a beach, especially one with a lovely mountain range as a backdrop, perfect weather, a camera and tripod, and an hour of down time. Turners Beach is only 5 minutes from home. The only thing I wonder is why I make myself so busy doing “things” that stop me form soaking this magic in more often. Dial Range is the backdrop. Near Ulverstone, Tasmania, Australia. I had fun experimenting with the camera settings this time…. some slower shutter to get that dreamy quality to the moving water. A few stopped down then I increased the exposure on the computer editor as they were too dark. This tended to increase the reds. No colour adjustments or digital enhancement other than this exposure adjustment on 2 or 3.  Canon EOS 600D

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