I Spy……. a Bear!

… and a mouse, elephant and moose!

A mass teddy bear hunt is under way around the world to help distract the millions of children locked down because of the coronavirus pandemic. Stuffed toys are being placed in windows to give children a fun and safe activity while walking around neighbourhoods with their parents/carers.

Here’s my contribution to the movement…

window bearssml
My bear, elephant, mouse and moose collection

The grey, green and cream teddy bears are ones that I made before I knew I liked to paint. The three other bears are from Canada. The mouse I fell in love with in my travels on the mainland of Australia. The moose is from Sweden. My son worked three years in Ethiopia and gave me the handmade knitted elephant from Ethiopia. I also added a painting I did of my handmade Christmas teddy bear.

Another act prompted by the Coronavirus Pandemic is that for the month of April, I’ve removed all shipping costs for website orders made in Australia. I have different sized quality prints, some original paintings, tote bags, zipper pouches and greeting cards available at http://www.pjpaintings.com.

I hope my paintings and the window scene brings a smile to many faces.

Take care and thanks for the visit.

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.

York Street241219
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 Nov 23, 2019

It was blue and sunny skies for today’s market. An expectant mother, from Orange, NSW, bought an A-3 sized print of “Afternoon Siesta” for the baby’s room.  A young lady, originally from Wisconsin, USA, doing a university degree in Colorado, currently visiting family in Singapore bought nine greeting cards to send back to family and friends in the US and Singapore.

An older lady, who lives in Snug, Tasmania, and her daughter, visiting from Zurich, Switzerland, purchased “Who, Who, Who are You? II”. Another local Tasmanian, bought for her friend’s eight and ten year old sons, a “Devilish Siesta” and “Spiky Bunk Beds” print. Her friend, who is teaching at the University of Tasmania, is now going to be teaching at a university in Nova Scotia, Canada.  That’s a big move.

Two visitors from Taiwan bought an original painting of a kangaroo for their mother. An original platypus and a husky wombat painting also went today, along with a lot of tote bags, pouches and greeting cards.

Original Kangaroo painting

The most popular prints today were the wombats from the Sleepy head series.

A thought to ponder: “Art is the expression of the profoundest thoughts in the simplest way”, Albert Einstein

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

Salamanca Market Nov 16, 2019

The wind made it challenging at the markets, today. A young lady introduced herself to me as the daughter of the lady who commissioned “Joyride” to give as a surprise for her husband’s birthday. She told me that her parents love the painting and it is hanging up in their kitchen. She bought a “Joyride” print.
Italian JoyridesmlxPNG

Then another lady introduced herself to me, that she had bought the original painting titled “The Bun” (I was able to introduce both to each other – original PJ Painting owners). Apparently, everybody that visits her house comment about it when they come in, as it is in direct view hanging above the fireplace. She has a collection of sea urchins underneath it. Her friend from Georgia, USA, who was accompanying her, bought a “The Bun” greeting card and a wombat print.

The Bun A3 Csml
“The Bun” greeting card
An Aussie, who is living in Calgary, Canada (for 32 years now) bought some greeting cards. She met her husband in Australia. He worked on oil rigs. Her daughter is now living in Sydney and she thinks the call of Australia is calling her son too.
A Swedish couple bought “Hanging Out” and a Great Aunt from the UK, bought her two week old great-nephew, Theodore, a “Christmas Siesta” print.
A lady, from Zimbabwe, who visited the stall a few times during the day, bought some greeting cards and A-5 sized prints.
The most popular prints today were the wombats from the Sleepy head series.
A thought to ponder: “I shut my eyes in order to see”, Paul Gauguin
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

Oliver on the Island

I loved the two sessions I did with urban sketcher guru, Oliver Hoesser in Vancouver on Granville Island. The sessions helped clarify some uncertainties and questions I had about ‘what is urban sketching?’ and he imparted great strategies to help with composition. Here is part two of what the stand outs were for me:

Part Two

3. Fusing elements. Part of Contour lines of objects needs to be open so that they can be merged together. Oliver showed an example of two buildings that he drew merged together, making it look like it is one building at first glance.
4.  Feel free to vary size relationships to create a more interesting picture. He showed an example from his sketch book, where an expressive, angry looking Italian statue was drawn much bigger than the domed buildings behind it. It was very effective.
I drew a tiny toy dinosaur much bigger than it was in reality and made the water bottle smaller than the dinosaur, which I can assure you, this was not the case. The picture is nothing to write home about, and was drawn in 3 minutes, but adding the square border around it, really helped make it pop. I quite like it now, which brings me to the number 5 take away.
PJ Paintings dinosaur
5.  Try to have three sides of a picture touching an edge of the page or draw a line around it, as I did above.  Also, try to have an empty area where not much is happening to create a resting space for the eyes.
6. Translate sounds into words
PJ Paintings Billie Jean

The class took place in the Opus Art Supplies store.  This is another contour drawing that I did and while I was drawing Michael Jackson’s ‘Billie Jean’ song was in the background. I thought I could draw speech bubbles for some of the brushes “I am the one”.

7. Use a grey texta for shadows

I haven’t used big grey felt pens before and loved it. I think it has terrific potential for urban sketching Australian buildings and putting in shadows under verandas and iron lace. I think it will be easier to mark out shadows with felt pen, rather than paint and you can paint over the grey.

PJ Paintingspaintbrush

8. Put darkest dark against the lightest light rule was also re-visited.

9. Light bulb moment I knew this one but I still felt a little uneasy, or that I wasn’t doing “true urban sketching”, when I wasn’t doing the painting part of the picture on site too.  Oliver said that he draws on site but paints his pictures at home. To hear this feels liberating!

PJ Paintings 1
My unfinished urban sketch of some of signs and sculptures I saw at Granville Island
PJ Paintings 2
Large sculpture at Granville Island, Vancouver

Thanks Oliver, for the great classes about urban sketching!

Giving it a crack in Porto

With my $10 notebook, Artline black pen, small set of watercolour paints and tiny paintbrush, I set out into Porto determined to have a crack at drawing more ridiculously challenging buildings.


The first building I attempted to draw was the Clerigos Tower.  I sat on the cement and my bottom got too sore to continue the drawing, and I was getting lost in the detail.  For me, to be able to achieve a better end-result, I would have to draw this building several times to simplify and eliminate elements.

Clerigos Tower
One of the first baroque churches in Portugal.  Construction commenced in 1732 and was finished in 1750. 
Photo taken from where I drew the Clerigos Tower.  The tower is 75.6 metres high and has 240 steps to reach the top, where you have a 360 degree view of the city of Porto.

Next, I drew some of this building named Conselho Regional do Porto.

Conselho Regional do Porto

Porto building
Photo of the Conselho Regional do Porto taken from where I was sitting to do the drawing.

Then I had a crack at drawing the Centro Portugues de Fotografia. A tour group decided that it would be a good meeting spot to gather right in front of me.  I had to crane my neck and then wait for them to move along as the group started to grow as more and more people arrived.

Centro Portugues de Fotografia
photograph museum
My view of the Museum of Photography

It’s day nine in Portugal and I’ve  done 19 sketches so far.  That’s the most I’ve ever done travelling.  Also, I have rarely painted outside but I have on this trip. I try to ignore the excuses that I could so easily agree with: there’s not enough time to do be able to do it justice, you’ll hardly get any of it drawn, you won’t have time to add paint, it’s going to be a bad drawing, you’ll rush and the perspective will be all wrong and more of the same.  Most of the drawings/paintings that I’ve done, I’ve had to do in a short space of time, 20-30 minutes, and because of limited time, I haven’t been able to do whole buildings, but I’m giving it a crack and as a result I’m starting to build quite a collection of drawings.

Thanks for visiting and allowing me to share some of Portugal’s awesome buildings with you.

18 + 33 + 10 + 20 = 81

Well, I didn’t reach 100.  A few unexpected things arose on Friday (day 5) but I drew more people this year than the previous two other attempts of OneWeek100People challenge.

On Thursday, I drew people-sketches at an evening art group.

I actually caught a lot of likeness of the real person with this drawing

Too bad I didn’t draw this picture lower on the page to avoid the spectacles I had drawn earlier.  Please ignore the spectacles on her head, they’re not supposed to be there.  This was a tough perspective.  It was a wrestle between the brain and the eye and I think the eye got the upper hand in this case.

A challenging perspective to draw

More drawings of this artist drawing.

Then we had a coffee break.  One person started doing some stretching exercises (bottom image on page).


Drawings of an artist at work.



… and that’s it.  I drew a total of 81 people sketches in four days.

I hope everybody is having a lovely weekend.  Thanks for stopping by.

PjPaintings at Salamanca Market March 10, 2018

The final cruise ship visiting Hobart on a Saturday for the 2018 season arrived in the morning. Many cruise ship passengers bought greeting cards. They are unique and easy to fit into suitcases. A local Hobartian bought pjpaintings greeting cards for the same reason to take with her on her trip to Ireland next month.

Early in the morning, a mother and daughter from Belarus visited the stall. I think that is a first, but maybe not. I also had a former student from the Return to Study course that I teach, who is now doing an Enrolled Nursing course, stop by. Hearing that she is doing well with her studies provides me with great job satisfaction, a sense of pride and so much happiness for her that she is on her way to fulfilling her dream.

I had a couple from San Francisco, USA buy a “Duck Crossing” and “Family Outing” print. Then I had grandparents from Melbourne buy the exact same two prints for a child’s nursery at their house.

I had a couple on a bus tour of Tasmania, with Salamanca Market being their last stop, buy an A-3 sized “Hayride” print. (The limited edition print run of 100/100 of the A-4 size has SOLD out.) They live on a bush property in Queensland. Another couple, from New Zealand, also bought “Hayride”. They said they had a ‘hobby farm’. I’m not sure if 200 acres is a hobby farm?? That sounds rather large to me.


The last A-4 sized print of “Salamanca Fresh” sold today. This print is now only available in the bigger sizes. It went to the Gold Coast, Queensland.

salamanca freshsmlPNG
Salmanca Fresh

A gentleman bought “Under My Red Umbrella” and as he was leaving the stall, said that he thinks he, ‘could get a kiss for that’. Ahh, the hidden agendas… 

Under My Red Umbrella

A lady here from the USA, doing a watercolour plein air course taught by David Taylor, said that she is playing hooky today and shopping at Salamanca Market instead. She purchased three prints for her children, one going to Minneapolis, the other two to North Dakota and Arizona.

One young lady from Brisbane bought “Suspended”. She swam with humpback whales in Tonga. A Norwegian lady bought several prints to give to her children living in Oslo, Bergen and Trondheim, Norway.


A group of motorcyclists, touring Tasmania, bought “Joy ride!” for one of their mates, who rides a Ducati, 50th’s birthday. Yesterday, they rode to Cockle Creek, Tasmania. A lady from Perth, WA, who said that she likes unique art, bought “Story time” and “Hayride”.
A couple from Taree, NSW, who do creative and unique framing, bought some cards to frame. He showed me how he had framed four cards that they bought when they visited the outback. He mounted an opal in the middle. It was stunning quality framing. It looked really good. They said that they would try to find some special Tasmanian object to mount in the middle of this collection of cards.

Italian JoyridesmlxPNG
Joy ride!

This week’s most popular print is: Duck Crossing

A thought to ponder: “I dream my painting and I paint my dream.” ― Vincent van Gogh. A lot of my ideas come during the night. I don’t think too many from dreams, but when I can’t sleep, I think of many ideas and some concepts evolve when I’m in the in-between state of awake and asleep.

P.S. My website is still down because it has been hacked. It should be back up in a next week.

Take care and I hope that you take a line for a walk,
from the Pjpaintings stall #30 at Salamanca Market.

PjPaintings at Salamanca Market March 10, 2018

Pjpaintings website

If you were looking for my website and ended up here it is because I had to take down my website.  It has been hacked virtually every other day this month and it is just too compromised to leave it up.  So, a brand new website is on its way.  In the meantime, if you’d like to order a print, please contact me through email (pjpaintings@gmail.com), Facebook or the comments feature here.  All images displayed in the Salamanca Market Diary category are available for purchase.

Thanks so much!

PjPaintings at Salamanca Market September 9, 2017

The temperature wasn’t too bad today.  I wore two layers rather than the three layers of everything Tasmanian winter weather often demands.  The majority of today’s market goers were wearing jackets, coats and beanies but obviously not everybody feels the cold as there was a woman wearing a sleeveless summer’s dress with a great big red flower in her hair.

The stall on one side of me, the Little Lissa Loo stall, has a manikin to display one of the many awesome dresses made by the stall holder.  There was a little boy that was about two years old and he was mesmerized by it.  He squatted down to look at it at eye level, lifted the rim of the hat, held its hand, gently moved it around, patted its arm and feet. It was very cute to watch.

Little Lissa Loo
Little Lissa Loo’s manikin

A young lady, doing her Honours Degree at the University of Tasmania’s Music Conservatory, and her sister visiting from Melbourne, stopped at the pjpaintings stall.  The tango dancing emus caught her eye as she plays the double base for a Tango group.   She also plays in the Canberra Orchestra and sometimes the Melbourne Orchestra.  Her sister sings.  They looked like they were having a lovely time together and took a “Two to Tango” print for their Tasmanian souvenir.

Two to Tangoxsml
Two to Tango – a limited edition print of one of my paintings available at http://www.pjpaintings.com  Because I paint with watercolours, I firstly masked out the emus and painted the background.  I then tore and pasted a bunch of treble clefs on the dress and then finished the painting.

A “Helping Hands” postcard, from the Cheer ‘em Up series, is going to Germany, to a sister whose name means ‘bird’.   “The Supremes” is going to cheer somebody who’s in the hospital recovering from a cracked spine.  She cracked it while sweeping! and hence, the diagnosis of osteoporosis.  Apparently she is a beautiful singer and sings in the shower at the hospital.

Helping Handssml
Helping Hands
The Supremes – these dresses also have received the treble clef treatment 

I met a couple who had bought an A-1 sized print (a very BIG print) of “Poppy Fields” in Melbourne.  I find it very special, and a real sense of joy, to meet people who are living with my art.  They really enjoy the vibrancy the red brings to their lounge room.  They are taking home a small “Who says emus can’t fly?!” print of emus riding a motorcycle and one is wearing a bright red dress.

Poppy fieldxsml
Poppy Fields – now only available in A-4, A-2 or A-1 size.  The A-3 limited edition size has sold out.  This painting I did for an art exhibition titled “Fearless Fabric”.  It was a requirement to integrate fabric into the painting.  I pasted fabric just below the house and in other parts of the painting.  The fabric has diagonal lines on it, which makes it a little easier to spot, but it’s still challenging to see!

A lady from Newcastle, NSW stopped by and purchased “Who, Who, Who are You? II for a friend, for no special reason other than for being a friend, which is special enough of a reason.

White Faced Scops Owls xsml
Who, Who, Who are You? II

A mother and daughter from Melbourne stopped by and are taking back with them some prints of owls and so is somebody else from Perth, W.A.  A man from Scotland, who used to own a mini, bought “Family Outing”.

Family Outing I
Family Outing

Today’s best seller was: Who, Who, Who are You? II

A thought to ponder:  “Self-consciousness is the enemy of all art, be it acting, writing, painting, or living itself, which is the greatest art of all.” ― Ray Bradbury

Thanks for reading and wishing you many happy, creative moments, from the Pjpaintings stall #30 at Salamanca Market!  🙂