New Landscapes was a sort of going away show for me. I had signed the contract for my overseas teaching job, and the flight had been scheduled. This would be my last art show for a long time. Canada has a strong history of landscape painting, and I wanted to head off on a distinctively Canadian note.
Y.O. Media Gallery had represented me since 2004, but it had recently closed it’s doors, and I was without a proper gallery. I managed to find a great space: a daycare centre. The large white walls were perfect for displaying art, and they wanted something colour to display. It was a perfect match.
I was trying to expand my skill-set, and I really wanted to emphasize the thickness of the paint gobs I was squeezing on to these. I picked up an air brush, because paint that has been spray-applied is perhaps the flattest and least-textural application technique. I thouht this would provide a nice contrast to the more painterly areas.
This was the very first painting in the New Landscapes Series.
I wanted to incorporate several of the techniques from my Urban Landscapes series into my landscape paintings. Playing with outline and negative space seemed like a good idea, and I am very happy with that cloud. I wanted the image to be fairly representation in the centre, but break apart into abstraction near the edges. I believe I achieved those qualities in this piece, so I was motivated to continue with this series.
I will always think of this painting as the highlight of this show. I’m really happy with how it turned out.
Victoria Fenninger gave me a bunch of tiny old wooden frames. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with them, I normally paint much larger than 6″ X 6″, but I stretched canvas over them and used the frames for this series. I took a more minimal approach to this series, and I think it paid off. There are a lot of landscape painters out there, but I haven’t seen any that paint like this.
I almost never use oil paint, but it’s always a good idea to try out an old technique in a new medium, so I gave it a shot.
I had a lot of small wood scraps left over from The Texture Series. I was planning on assembling them into a large support for an abstract painting, but something about painting landscapes on pieces of wood seemed oddly appropriate.