Autumn is a beautiful season most anywhere in the world. Cosy sweater weather, warm drinks by the fire, and awesome coloured leaves…what’s not to like?
I may be a bit biased but here in Northern Ontario, the fall colours in the bush go absolutely crazy with crimson reds merging with the brightest yellows producing shades of orange against the grey rocks. What a show!
The awesome splendour of fall colours in Northern Ontario
30″ x 40″ Acrylic
A friend of mine left a message on my Facebook page one day: “Cornelia, I need one of your paintings!”
So naturally, I called him and checked out his office space which had the most brightly painted walls I’ve ever seen. Marigold, bright yellows, reds and oranges! These guys really like fall colours.
The challenge was to paint a colourful fall scene that would compliment the colours and not get lost or overpower. Well, I have to admit, the painting looked perfect on a bright yellow wall.
I named this painting Autumn Symphony because it almost seems like the birch tree with its branches was standing like a conductor orchestrating this most magnificent symphony. If you’ve never been to Northern Ontario in the fall, you really should add it to your list of places to visit!
“I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields, that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, “Go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again.”
– Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass
12″ x 24″ acrylic
12” x 24” acrylic on canvas
I love nothing better than walking along a trail in the woods after a fresh snowfall. I love the way the snow covers everything like a soft blanket, leaving nothing uncovered. Only Mother Nature can be so meticulous and thorough. I love the way the snow crunches underfoot on an extremely cold crisp winter day. This is the winter of my youth, the northern Ontario winter.
Come March though, I know I’ll be longing for spring!
“Art washes away from the soul, the dust of everyday life”- Pablo Picasso
Wait For Me!
20″ x 24″acrylic
I’m taking a break from packing chaos and a home that has become a sea of boxes to share my most recent painting of some kayakers on Lake Huron which I’ve titled: “Wait For Me!”
The inspiration came from a photo a friend had shared a couple of years ago and I knew immediately when I saw it, that I would paint it one day.
My thought was to paint it as a tribute to Canada in celebration of this great country’s 150th.
It holds so much more meaning now, being so consumed with the anticipation and preparation of our upcoming move up north. Dreams of being near the lake—kayaking, swimming, painting, and fishing. Memories of a childhood growing up in beautiful Elliot Lake come flooding back. I can really say “I’m going home”.
I took my own advice on inspirations for paintings and looked no further than one of my grandsons. Carter is just over a year old in this painting where he is sitting in the grass and looking cute as he always does! A photo taken by his dad, Andy was just perfect to work from.
The Wedding Gift
Actually, I had yet another very strong motive: I needed a wedding gift for Carter’s parents, my daughter Kaylie and her husband Andy who had eloped a year ago. We were unprepared with a gift at that time, and I set my mind to present them with a painting in the future. I wasn’t sure what the subject would be though I had a strong desire to paint the little guy. I mean, he was just so darn cute! But would I be able to pull it off? My recent paintings have been mostly landscapes. What good is a portrait painting if the likeness is not there?
I began with his face since I knew the success of the painting depended on its’ true likeness. I struggled a bit here, painting the facial features over and over again. But persistence and patience paid off. Eventually, I saw the little guy’s face that I’ve come to know and love! My husband Kris confirmed it. Hurray! The rest of the painting would be easy from here. Days afterwards, I would head out to my studio and peer in at the painting in progress and seeing the likeness of the little guy, would bring a big smile to my face.
Grid Transfer Method
Here I’d like to share a good tip for enlarging a drawing or photo onto a larger canvas. I printed the photo and folded into quarters and then in quarters again. I also divided the canvas into the same number of sections, and then was able to sketch the outlines of the body onto the canvas. In this way, I was ensured of an accurate transfer. And of course I only resorted to this after several attempts at drawing freehand unsuccessfully!
A Time of Innocence
And now I know that I must also paint my other grandchildren. No problem there! They are all so incredibly sweet. What a joy it is to be a grandparent and watch these little ones grow. Though they don’t live nearby, I can feel a little closer to them while I’m painting them. What a good plan.
As Carter grows, I hope this painting will always trigger a memory of a time of innocence, when everything was new, and life was all a wonder to be explored.
Kaylie and Andy, I hope you enjoy this painting as much as I enjoyed painting it!
Heading to Calmer Waters – 16 x 20 Acrylic
I get a little homesick or should I say “cottage” sick standing back and looking at this painting. My sister Gabie and I often go kayaking on Lake Lauzon. When you round this point from the larger open part of the lake, you approach the bay where our family’s cottage is. And the water in the bay is always calmer.
If you look in the upper left, there is a boat house that belongs to the cottage. It is leaning now, because it’s support posts have shifted from upheavals from too many cold northern Ontario winters. It was built by my dad, back in a time when you were allowed to build over the water’s edge. The front end is rotting now too, so it will probably need new supports some day or perhaps it would have to be removed. It’s not really being used at all now. Well, I think it is home to a beaver at times when my sister doesn’t annoy him too much by shooing it away.
This painting also takes me to a time when I’m on vacation and spending time with family, when life slows down, and takes me to those calmer waters. It’s a nice memory.