Since I moved back to New Zealand almost two years ago, I've been intrigued with the ever-changing landscape that I see out my south-west facing windows. I live in the Bay of Islands - which is on the east coast of the northern part of the North Island. I think the distant hills I am seeing are across the Waikare Inlet on the Russell Peninsula, but regardless, the hills and sky never look the same. This is a quick little oil of the view, painted plein air from my bedroom window. I'd like to paint a series of oils from the same spot to show how different the view is from day to day. This is the first - and perhaps the last. We'll see!
New Zealand has a wonderful little native owl called Ruru, also known as Morepork. At night, in areas of farmland and native bush, you'll hear Ruru calling back and forth to each other, along with the occasional screech of the possum - and in my part of New Zealand, you will also hear the nocturnal call of the Kiwi.
Eva is my fourteen year old granddaughter. This is her second painting in her World Challenge Project. She is selling her watercolors to earn money for an adventure expedition to Cambodia and Laos next year. While there, she and other students will be working on humanitarian projects such as teaching English and building water systems.
Ruru is painted on handmade watercolor paper and is matted with a single mat. The image is 4.5" x 2.5" and is in a 7" x 5" single acid-free mat which will fit a standard size frame.
My fourteen year old granddaughter, Eva, has been drawing for years and working in watercolor since she was twelve. Eva has committed to an international trip with World Travel Adventure Expeditions and will be traveling to Cambodia and Laos. While there, she will visit local communities, trek through native jungles and work on projects for native villages. She and other students will be installing clean water systems, working on building projects and and teaching English. Eva is responsible for raising all of her travel, lodging and food costs. What better way for her to raise money than with her art?
I offered to help Eva by posting her paintings here on my blog, making them available to those of you who have been collecting my work for years. You may have also purchased some of her Dad's paintings (my illustrator son, Shane). Shane and family also live in New Zealand.
This is Eva's small and delicate little watercolor of a New Zealand native tui in a kowhai tree. It is painted on handmade watercolor paper and is matted with a single mat. The image is 4.5" x 2.5" and is in a 7" x 5" single acid-free mat which will fit a standard size frame.
Eva's World Challenge Project #1
New Zealand Tui
4.5" x 2.5" image 7" x 5" mat size
US$ 20.00 plus $5 mailing charge
I always like to do paintings in pairs, so this is another cute piece to go with last week's Sweet Bun'. Tilly is also 7" x 7" and is framed the identically to Sweet Bun. My neighbor has three free-range chooks (New Zealand slang for chicken) who occasionally come to visit me. They inspired the painting.
I try to resist painting cute since I switched to oil, but every now and then I can't resist painting a bunny. And as it is cute subject matter I might as well go all out and give it a cute title; Sweet Bun. This is actually a New Zealand rabbit, which I believe is an introduced-from-England species. But I shortened the nose and lengthened the ears a bit and voila - I have a Cottontail!
Once again, I don't have the name of this boat so it is titled Lively Water. The winter storms in my part of New Zealand must be inspiring the lively water in the last three little boat paintings. But I like what can be done with color and composition on big waves. These last three oils are inspiring me to paint some larger pieces for my galleries and shows. Stay tuned!
The Boats of Opua - Lively Water
8" x 6" oil on panel, unframed
This little painting has been donated as a fund raiser for my town of Opua.
I was going through my stack of small boards to do another piece for my ongoing project, The Boats of Opua, and found this small painting from my previous bird study project. It wasn't quite finished but a few brush strokes and it's done. And it's #300! Hard to believe I've painted so many of these little guys. It has been fun and I've learned a lot.
This is the 14th little oil in my Boats of Opua series. Like the others, it is an 8" x 6" oil on gessoed panel. One of the reasons I'm doing this project is to figure out how to simplify water. I want to paint the feel of the water without the detail. For me, doing a repetitive project such as this, helps me understand the subject matter.
I haven't worked on my Boats of Opua project for a while. I plan to do thirty so I've got many more little boats to paint. This is number thirteen and as I couldn't see a name, it is simply titled, Red Boat. Regattas are held at the local yacht club, just a mile or two from my house, so there's no shortage of painting motifs for the project.