Tuesday, December 14, 2010

How to Deal with a Messy House AND be a Productive Artist in 5 Easy Steps.

  1. Throw a rug over it...then go back to your easel.
  2. Create pathways through all the crap...then go back to your easel.
  3. Tell the kids if they don't clean the house, Santa won't come...then go back to your easel.
  4. Move out to the shed...and take your easel with you.
  5. Your better half cracks it big time so you start cleaning the house together...then after 5 minutes sneak back out to the shed.
Whala, you end up with a clean house AND you've been super productive, nothing to it!!

Finished Piece
Look Ma, No Hands, oil on board, 30 x 30cm (12x12in)
Copyright2010 Holly Hartwell


If you wish to purchase this piece click here.

Did you know...
I own a $100 AUD paintbrush. It's a No. 26 Da Vinci black sable. Mmmm, black sable, it even sounds cool doesn't it!

What is the most expensive art supply purchase you have ever made??

Thursday, December 9, 2010

6 Reasons Why Working in a Studio the Size of an Aeroplane Toilet is not all Bad.

My 'Studio' set-up in the corner of our lounge room!
  1. You realise you can produce work ANYWHERE!
  2. Smaller works = more artwork, reduced costs such as framing and paint.
  3. You become more efficient e.g. taking photos of your still life set-up instead of leaving it set-up for the kids to destroy, painting straight from your computer screen.
  4. In some cases increased exposure. My little set-up is close to the front door, the first thing anyone sees when they walk in the door is my latest creation.
  5. In some cases, if your set-up is in your main living area such as mine, it's always in sight so if I'm washing dishes or cleaning in the living room an occasional glance can often reveal errors that I hadn't noticed before.
  6. Close to the kitchen - easy access to copious amounts of coffee.
One major disadvantage to working in a small space... when the dog farts you've got nowhere to run!

First layer of new painting.

Look Ma, No Hands, unfinished
Copyright2010 Holly Hartwell

I'm really having fun with this one, the nice bright reds make a nice change. I'll continue to work on it over the weekend.
In order to make my blog more interesting I'm adding a new addition called 'Did You Know'. Little snippets of useful (or useless) information about painting that you may/may not know.

Did You Know...
It takes 3-6 months for an average oil painting to cease contracting and expanding before it dries completely. It was common practice not-so-long-ago to wait an entire year!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Want to get the Perfect Gift this Xmas?

Yes, that's right folks, the website is up and running with credit card/paypal facilities for your purchasing convenience. Buy direct from the artist and SAVE $$$.

View available work here.

New Work

Tomato II, oil on board, 20 x 20cm
Copyright2010 Holly Hartwell

To purchase this painting, go to my website.

I'm hanging to do some larger and more complicated works and will be working on sketching out a new series over the Christmas break.

We've had a LOT of rain here over the past week and the local dam rose 10%!!

We took the kids for a drive on Sunday to check it out. Many of the roads that had been closed the day before had cleared and we we're able to drive around safely. The landscape has totally changed and looks a lot greener than it has in years which is great!

Enjoy the website. xxx

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Last Chance to See 'Art on the Range' Exhibition

Rusty Frame acrylic
Copyright2010 Anne Gilbert

Yet again Crookwell has shown us just how strong our little art community is with over 70 artists, both local and from surrounding areas, submitting works for the annual Art On The Range exhibition. The standard of work this year was some of the best I've seen and once again the Crookwell Arts Council have done an amazing job of organising the event.

Joker, Drama Queen & Sleeping Beauty
mixed sculpture
Copyright2010 Hank Spirek

Opening night was well attended with the Food on the Range local produce table a huge hit. My kids particularly liked the selection of baked potatoes from local grower Gary Cadwell.

Blue and White oils on canvas
Copyright2010 Lesley Gartrell

Soft Shade wood sculptural light
Copyright2010 Peter Collins

Beckoning of the Poplars
acrylic on canvas board
Copyright2010 Sally Wilson

Art on the Range
is open for its last days 10-3pm Sat. 4th & Sun 5th Dec.
If you happen to be in the area, call into Memorial Hall on Denison Street, Crookwell, NSW, Australia. I promise you won't be disappointed.

Friday, December 3, 2010

How to Make the Right Brushstroke Every Time.

It used to happen all the time. I’d look at a fantastic painting and wonder just how they got the paint to come off the brush in just the right way? A single brushstroke and BAM, behold a fabulous painting!

Today I’m reviewing a book that I actually bought years ago but has given me so much guidance and taken my brush skills to a whole new level that I’m ashamed I’ve kept it a secret for so long.

Brushwork Essentials by Mark Christopher Weber.

Purchase direct at www.markchristopherweber.com or at any great online book sellers.

Seriously, if you think your brushwork needs some TLC, just buy it!

As well as being a great artist, his knowledge of brushstroke technique is invaluable. Now you might be saying to yourself ‘How hard is it to pick up some paint and put it on a canvas?’ If I had of been taught just HALF of these techniques when I was at art school, I would be strokes ahead. And not just in my golf game!

Mark uses water soluble oil paints for all his painting demonstrations but obviously the techniques would apply to any painting mediums. Some of the topics covered are:

  • 1. What to look for when purchasing a brush
  • 2. Brush care
  • 3. Brush shaping and paint loading
  • 4. Brush angle and pressure
  • 5. How to avoid paint ridges
  • 6. Blending variations and rendering careful detail
  • 7. Numerous demonstrations on still life’s, landscapes and the figure.

The mastery and skill shown in Marks paintings is testament to a thorough understanding of a paintbrush’s potential. And the worn and torn book cover on my copy of Brushwork Essentials is testament to how much I rely on these basic but much under-estimated skills.

And Now For My Latest Piece...

Piggy oil on board 20x20cm

©2010 Holly Hartwell

Lots of smooth surfaces in this one, a real challenge... which is why I paint really!!
If you wish to purchase, please e-mail. Thank You.