Last day of 2019

It is the last day of 2019, and among other things, I’ve spent some of it doing something that will hopefully put smiles on faces in the new year.

I did some more work on this commissioned piece for the Rotary Club’s 200th anniversary. They have chosen The Great Gatsby as their theme to celebrate this significant milestone. Seeing this finished will bring a smile to my face and hopefully theirs!

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I added the finishing touches to this painting. This is the first painting of a series of three. These paintings will be great for a beach shack.

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The title of this painting is: Holding Hands II

My new Sailor Fude pen arrived today.  I couldn’t wait to try it, so out I went and drew this house.  I should have set myself up on the footpath (sidewalk) but I couldn’t motivate myself. The steering wheel really got in the way. I couldn’t really get the hang of making different line thicknesses with the pen but with a bit more practice, I should be able to.

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First drawing with new Fude pen

Once again, I got the right side of house’s perspective wrong…. but I’m happy with the liveliness of the picture.

Happy New Year everybody! I hope 2020 provides the world with a lot of things to smile about.

Salamanca Market Dec 28, 2019

Hobart is buzzing today. While writing, I looked out my window, and what did I see??… none other than three Sydney to Hobart yachts coming in.
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Yachts racing the Sydney to Hobart Yacht race coming into the Derwent River late in the afternoon on Dec 28th.
Comanche claimed the 2019 line honours at 7:30 this morning, in the 75th Sydney to Hobart yacht race, for the third time in five years.
 
The week-long event of the Taste of Tasmania opened its doors today, the Marion Bay Falls Festival starts tomorrow and a cruise ship is coming in tomorrow. On Monday, the temperature is forecasted to reach 40 degrees Celsius. That is crazy! I’m glad to hear that there will be free drink stations and misting tents at the Falls Festival to try to help people not fall victim to heat stroke.
 
It was hot and busy at the Pj Paintings stall today. A “Lazy Days” pouch, the size of a pencil case, is going to Hong Kong. A young lady from Canberra is taking back with her A-4 sized prints: “Hair Accessories”, “The Bun” and “Poppy Fields”.
 
A couple from Canada, living outside of Toronto, will be returning with “Hanging Out” and “Christmas Siesta” prints. They have a collection of Christmas pictures that come out each year for Christmas and Christmas Siesta is going to join this yearly tradition.
 
A family visiting from the UK, bought an original painting of a platypus, painted on paper made 100% with recycled cotton rags, to give to their 30 something year old daughter, living in the UK, who visited Tasmania about five years ago.
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Proud grandparents, from Perth, bought an A-3 sized “Duck Crossing” print for their first grandchild. A mother and daughter, whose husband is sailing the Sydney to Hobart yacht race, expected to arrive tomorrow morning at approximately 9 am, bought an A-3 sized print of “The Three Amigos”.
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The Three Amigos
 
“Scarlet robins” and “Lazy Days” tote bags are going back to Arizona, USA. They’ve been caravanning all over the USA. They’re leaving Australia in a few weeks to return to Arizona and when the summer months arrive they are driving to Oregon.
A visitor from China bought an “All Ears” print for her four year old daughter who sings. She wants to encourage her to keep singing and she thinks that “All Ears” will help. I didn’t bring enough “All Ears” prints to the market because they all sold! Later in the day, somebody asked for an A-4 size and I couldn’t accommodate their request because they have been too popular today.
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All Ears
 
A lady visiting from Singapore, bought a framed print titled, “DefendConserveProtect”. It was painted for 2018’s Sea Shepherd’s fund raising event. I’ve written the words Defend, Conserve and Protect into this painting.
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DefendConserveProtect
 
A couple from Western Australia bought two originals; one untitled and the named original “Ancient”. I forgot to take a photo of “Ancient” after I painted it!
 
The most popular prints today were the ones that featured images from the Sleepy head series. Prints from the Cheer ‘em Up series, “Family Outing”, “The Bun” & “Hair Accessories” and the whales were popular today too.
 
I better start unpacking the car now. Groan…
 
A thought to ponder: “The best artists know what to leave out” ― Charles de Lint. How true! and a lot easier to say than do. It is a skill most artists strive for.
 
Wishing everybody a Happy New Year,
from Pj Paintings, stall #30 at Salamanca Market, Tasmania
P.S. Tote bags, pouches & prints are available at http://www.pjpaintings.com

A Bolder Love Affair

Walking on Kunyani, the Aboriginal name for Mt. Wellington in Hobart, Tasmania, for me, is like meandering through an art gallery. For some, the highlight of kunyani is scaling the organ pipes or the spectacular views but for me it is kunyani’s sculptural boulders, proud, bold and sculpted by centuries of weather.

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A blossoming eucalyptus on kunyani
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my quick sketch of a clump of boulders
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a field of boulders, one of many on kunyani
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Me at the Municipality Cairn, the intersection point of three municipalities: Hobart, Glenorchy and Kingborough

An earlier painting of kunyani boulders.

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I introduced water colour painting, adding salt while the paint is still damp to create a grainy look and using a cotton bud and methylated spirits to create a lichen appearance on kunyani boulders to the Men’s Maximum and Medium Security inmates at Risdon Prison. I told them that nobody can say that you’ve drawn a rock wrong, to help them move out of their comfort zone and give painting a try…. and they did…

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lichen growing on a kunyani boulder

… including giving writing poems a go. They were really pleased with their efforts. For the poetry writing, I asked them to write five words (nouns) about kunyani and then put some describing words (adjectives) around those words and then ta-da! – poems emerged effortlessly.

dipped in rust, proud large boulders

stunted bendy trees cling onto rocks

tweeting birds diving

buzzing insects darting

snow, sparkling white

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… and who put a whale on the mountain!!?!?

I hope that one day you can experience the kunyani magic.

Warm regards, from PJ Paintings

18 York Street

I’m trying to stick to my goal of drawing Bellerive houses. I postponed venturing out onto the footpath (sidewalk) until later in the evening on the 24th of December to avoid all the foot traffic from the Hurricanes Big Bash game against the Melbourne Renegades at the Blundstone Oval, which by the way, the Tasmania Hurricanes were the winners. 🙂 Often, I’m at the oval watching the game but not this time because my cricket-bud is overseas visiting England.

Anyways, I settled myself on my stool, and no sooner than after drawing my first couple lines, a car, towing a boat, pulled up just behind me, which entailed a lot of unpacking, unloading a dog and consequently dog-barking activity. Eventually, the dog was brought inside because it was not happy with me sitting in front of its house and wasn’t about to stop trying to communicate this to me.

After all the Lamy pen bleeding debacle with my last drawing,

this time I tried a different approach and drew some initial lines with a water colour pencil and then inked it with an Artline pen. Using an Artline pen is nowhere near the pleasure of using an ink nibbed pen. I might give myself a belated Christmas present and order a Fude pen (a Liz Steel, Australian urban sketcher guru, recommendation).  I’m not very happy with this drawing (got the side perspective wrong again) but it is part of my skill-development journey, whether I like it or not. Also, Liz Steel says that one of the most common mistakes people make is draw too much roof. I concur.

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an imperfect drawing of 18 York Street, Bellerive, Tasmania

I hope you’ve had a pleasant day digesting and working off Christmas lunches or dinners, or both.

York Street, I’ll be back!

Salamanca Market Dec 21, 2019

Today’s market was hosted under sunny, blue skies. It was a hectic day with prints, framed artwork and tote bags trotting off to various places around the globe.
 
A lady from New Zealand bought a “Helping Hands” print. She paints birds too but didn’t have her business card with her. I wanted to see her art too.
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Helping Hands
 
A couple from Somerset, Tasmania, bought two original paintings titled: “Holding Hands” and “Mesmerised”.
A lady bought my urban sketch that I did while parked on the main street in Kempton of a house and “Big Hill”. It’s going to Mackay, Queensland.
An original painting of a Yellow-tailed black cockatoo was purchased by a young couple living in Dromedary, Tasmania.
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a yellow-tailed black cockatoo

 

The original painting titled “Breakable” sold today too.
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A family from French Polynesia, purchased some greeting cards and an A-4 sized print of “Hoo, Hoo, Hoo Merry Christmas!” They’re originally from France and have been working and living in French Polynesia for three years. It was fun conversing in French with them.
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Hoo, Hoo, Hoo Merry Christmas!
 
A young Annabelle, from Chicago, USA, purchased with her own money an A-5 sized print titled “Sea Life”. A Byron Bay couple bought an A-4 sized print of “Family Outing” for their young son. A “Hanging Out” print is going to Spain with a couple who spoke very little English.
“Emu Boogie” and “Rising Above It” is going back to New York, USA, where they live. I told them that New York is on my bucket list. They said that they didn’t think it was as nice as Tasmania.
 
A young family purchased a framed print of Who, Who, Who are You? III to hang up in her office in Port Macquarie, NSW. She is a General Practitioner (GP). It should help to cheer up some patients.
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Who, who, Who are You? III
 
The most popular prints today were the ones that featured images from the Sleepy head series. The wombats were very popular today, along with the owls and whales.
 
A thought to ponder: “Art and love are the same thing: It’s the process of seeing yourself in things that are not you.” ― Chuck Klosterman
 
Wishing everybody a very happy festive season, however you are celebrating it this year. May it be memorable and warm your hearts,
from Pj Paintings, stall #30 at Salamanca Market, Tasmania
Pjpaintings prints and tote bags are available at http://www.pjpaintings.com

Settle down, Lamy!

This year, our new CEO decided to increase our parking fees from zero dollars per year to $1500 per year. Consequently, I decided to park and walk to work.  There are a few free parking places along some of the streets on the Glebe in Hobart, Tasmania but you have to be early to get them. Consequently, I find myself arriving at work ridiculously early, a few minutes after 7 am! I decided that I should try to smell the roses and draw on my way to work. A lofty idea but it’s turned out to be more difficult for me to do than I thought. But this morning, I did stop and smell some roses and drew this house on Shoobridge Street.

Because there was little planning involved, I did the drawing while standing, which adds to the difficulty, the sun was shining at a low, diagonal angle so I drew the house straight-on (so I could see!!) and I only had my Lamy pen on hand.

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Initial lines done in watercolour pencil and then inked with a Lamy pen. The lack of any visible roof does help convey that I was looking up at this house, despite not getting the perspective correct. 

I wish Lamy ink didn’t bleed so much.  A little bleed is nice but too much is not. In other words, settle down, Lamy! As soon as water touches it, it turns the area inky.

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Detail lost due to Lamy pen bleed

The perspective was particularly challenging and my picture doesn’t convey how much I was looking up at the house but hopefully it has captured the essence of  one of many Hobart’s charming houses. I’ll keep trying.

Cheers and thanks for visiting.

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Once loved…

Around the world, it’s a familiar story. Older houses, full of character, that are purchased and/or inherited by the next generation, are being bulldozed down and replaced by sterile lots of four, eight or more units. Historic houses are disappearing at the rate of knots, and with them, the charm of neighbourhoods.

I live in Bellerive, Tasmania, where there are many gorgeous houses with iron laced verandahs and decorative facades. When I was walking and admiring the houses in my neighbourhood, I saw a very senior lady using a walker to slowly make her way around her large yard. I thought to myself, whoever inherits this will probably knock it down and sadly replace it with twelve units. At that moment, I decided I should try to capture these houses on paper before they disappear. I’ll be posting my  drawings here if you’d like to follow my progress with this project – Houses of Bellerive.

Today’s house is this one that I found on York Street. Judging from the carefully chosen and painted colour scheme, this house was once loved.

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I started the drawing with a Copic grey texta and then added ink and paint to some of the house for the focus to be on the care this house once had, evidenced by the carefully painted pink, burgundy and green front of the house.
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House on York Street, Bellerive that I drew today

Take care, from Pj Paintings

Salamanca Market Dec 14, 2019

Early this morning, the alarm rang out loudly and rudely, with the relentless noise persuading me to reluctantly horizontally roll myself out of bed. I then peered through the curtains. The wind was howling and I couldn’t see the other side of the river. It looked like a winter’s day when it should be looking like a blue-sky, sunny day, seeing as we are in summer. Thankfully there was no wind when I arrived at Salamanca Place but there was rain.
It was another busy day with tote bags, original paintings and absolutely heaps of A-5 sized prints trotting off to various locations. At the very end of the day, while I was packing up, Gabriella from Mexico bought A-5 sized prints “Nap time” and “What the Devil!?” and a young couple from Germany purchased “Spiky Bunk beds” and “Hanging Out”. I explained the play on words (meaning) of ‘what the devil’. She hadn’t heard of it so the rather clever title was being lost on her. I had another German couple buy five A-5 prints to take with them: “Glamour Girls”, “Devilish Siesta”, “Christmas Siesta”, “Scarlet Robins” and “All Ears”.
A couple visiting from Edmonton, Canada purchased A-5 sized prints: “Hayride” and “Who says emus can’t fly!?”.
A lady visiting from the Shetland Islands, above Scotland, will be travelling back home with a “Spiky Bunk Beds” print.
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Spiky Bunk Beds

 

A young man, consulting with his mother, settled on buying “All Ears” for a 17 year old girl that plays the clarinet. The decision was whittled down to either “All Ears” or “39 keys of Life” and “All Ears” came out as the winner.
A mother and daughter bought “Christmas Siesta” and “Hanging Out” prints. They are from Alaska, USA. The daughter is studying at a university in Perth, WA. They were happy to be here escaping today’s forecasted 50 degree Celsius temperature. The mother was saying it was 41 degrees before they left and that was difficult enough to cope with.
A young Melburnian family are taking back “Hanging Out” and “Spiky Bunk Beds” prints. They are originally from New Brunswick, Canada. He’s a biologist and got a job in Melbourne, so the whole family are living there right now.
A few original paintings sold today too. A painting of Cyclamen flowers is destined for Singapore, “Treasure” is going to Alabama, USA, “Misfit” is also going to the USA and “Tasty” and “Sling” is staying in Hobart. (I forgot to take a photo of the finished “Tasty” and “Treasure” pictures). The lady, who bought “Tasty” and “Sling”, also bought five different tote bags to take with her to Romania to give as gifts. She will be visiting her mother, extended family and friends there.
I hope that a framed A-3 sized “Afternoon Siesta” print will have a safe journey to California, USA. He’s hoping that they will let him take it as carry-on.
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Afternoon Siesta
The most popular prints today were the ones that featured images from the Sleepy head series. The wombats and echidnas in hammocks absolutely blitzed it today.
A thought to ponder: “Art matters because your imagination can change the world.” Neil Gaiman.
Wishing you an awesome and creative upcoming week,
from Pj Paintings, stall #30 at Salamanca Market, Tasmania
P.S. Tote bags & pouches are available at http://www.pjpaintings.com

Sketching in Bellerive

I met up with Hobart’s small urban sketching group this morning on the sunny Eastern Shore of Hobart, in Bellerive at the Blundstone Oval.

I settled in to draw this quaint house directly across the street from the Blundstone Oval.

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My morning’s sketch

I want to loosen up my drawings, so I went started straight in with a thick grey texta.

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Apologies for the photo of loose grey texta initial drawing. The sun was very bright and in the shade it wasn’t quite bright enough for the photo.

To add some detail, I inked over the drawing and then painted the entirety outside. I’m starting to do that more often, so I must be speeding up!

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Bellerive house with kunyani/Mt Wellington in the background

We finished our sketch-meet with a well deserved cuppa at the Hurricane Cafe.

Cheers and thanks for visiting.