Monday, September 7, 2020

Mrs. M's portrait in pastel by Kim Blair


Mrs. M.
(14"x11" pastel on gessoed wc paper)

When I saw the reference photo for this portrait on her daughter's instagram account I said to myself, "Here is a woman who exudes joie de vivre, it would be so much fun to paint her portrait!"

From start to finish it was pure joy... I was smiling the whole time.

Mrs. M. is the first adult portrait I have painted with teeth showing, so you can imagine I was a bit nervous. But her lovely warm smile made me feel confident that the portrait would turn out just fine.

My sister had the same unique feature of a space between her teeth, which could be one of the reasons I felt comfortable trying to replicate Mrs. M.'s beautiful smile.

;0)

(*If you received this blog post via email subscription the video will not be visible in your email. Please go directly to my art blog by clicking on the following link for kimblairartist.blogspot.com in order to view the short 2 minute video of the creation of this portrait.)

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Delivered... by Kim Blair



Matt and Jasper posing with their portraits

Instead of a curb side drop off I masked up and delivered Matt and The Cat to Matt and Jasper, staying long enough to help him hang the painting...a gift from his Aunt.

When Matt opened his door, there, in all his fluffy splendour was Jasper, who's size did not disappoint!

Jasper didn't need any coaxing to be included in the shot. Jumping onto Matt's lap he quickly arranging himself into a relaxed pose giving me a regal, confident gaze.
;0)

(As I mentioned in my previous posting of Matt and The Cat, selfies photos often create foreshortening issues which are translated into the portrait when one paints true to the reference photo. Selfies are rich reference sources for artists and offer the painter a fun perspective.)


Monday, August 3, 2020

Deann's portrait in pastel by Kim Blair





Deann Stein Hasinoff
(14"x11" pastel on gessoed paper)

I first met Deann, a fellow artist, in an abstract drawing class at the University of Alberta. Her artistic practice continues to focus on exploring abstraction through the use of digital technology. Using black and white digital drawings, along with photography, Deann creates thought provoking expressive art.

Each image is delicately rendered evoking the look and feel of a charcoal drawing. The power in each piece is subtle yet palpable, giving depth and strength to the work. 

Deann's upcoming exhibition, Catching Smoke, is a series of digital drawings working to give visual form to the anxiety she says she has experienced for most of her life. The theme of Deann's show is especially poignant during these unsettled times. 

The show will be held at Harcourt House, here in Edmonton.


(If the gallery is unable to open due to Covid 19 the exhibition will be virtual.)


Catching Smoke
Harcourt House
Art Incubator Gallery
August 21st - October 3rd, 2020
3rd Floor, 10215 - 112 Street
Edmonton, Alberta










*If you received this blog post via email subscription the video will not be visible in your email. Please go directly to my art blog by clicking on the following link for kimblairartist.blogspot.com in order to view the short 2 minute video of the creation of this portrait.






Monday, July 13, 2020

Loren's portrait in pastel by Kim Blair




Loren Marsden
(14"x11" pastel on paper)

Loren is a poet who has the ability to capture and hold your attention as soon as she starts delivering a poem.

I felt myself being drawn into many of the experiences she shared at the open mic evenings at the Stroll of Poets, where she has been a regular since 2018. Her poetry about riding on public transit offered up a fresh honest perspective and I often found myself cheering, laughing out loud, or both, by the end of her readings.

Recently, while catching up on her haiku poetry on FB, I came across a selfie she posted wearing a fabulous toque embellished with equally fabulous oversized metal button (I definitely have button envy) ;0)... and asked permission to paint her.








*If you received this blog post via email subscription the video will not be visible in your email. Please go directly to my art blog by clicking on the following link for kimblairartist.blogspot.com in order to view the short 2 minute video of the creation of this portrait.



Monday, June 22, 2020

Matt and the Cat ...portrait in pastel by Kim Blair





Matt and the Cat
(12.5"x19" wax pastel)


Matt and the Cat was painted from a selfie sent to me via Matt's aunt.

Jasper, the gorgeous cat draped across Matt's shoulders looks huge! I'm not sure if Jasper is a large cat, or it's the perspective of the photo playing tricks, but one thing is for sure, Jasper is a loving playful companion. 

Painting from selfies, can be a challenge because there is often a distortion of the features as people hold their heads down or up depending on how they are looking at the camera.
Add balancing a cat on your shoulders and the you can see how this might change things!
;0)


When I named this portrait, Matt and the Cat, it brought to mind the wonderful Dr. Seuss book The Cat in the Hat and the story of a mischievous cat who tries to entertain Sally and her brother one rainy day when they are confined to the house... hmmmmm sounds a bit like the past few months.

I wonder if Jasper is as mischievous as the cat in the book?






*If you received this blog post via email subscription the video will not be visible in your email. Please go directly to my art blog by clicking on the following link for kimblairartist.blogspot.com in order to view the short 2 minute video of the creation of this portrait.





Monday, June 15, 2020

Clare Balding's portrait in pastel by Kim Blair




Clare Balding
(14"x11" wax pastel)

I thoroughly enjoy watching the British portrait painting show Sky Arts 'Portrait Artist of the Year.'

Like so many programs they have been unable to film new episodes because of Covid 19. 
But luckily they created a live four hour FB portrait painting show, on Sundays, in which artist from around the world can participate by painting the guess celebrity sitter.

Last Sunday, June 7, the sitter was the British Broadcaster Clare Balding. I along with thousands of other artists participated.

Each week they place a montage of the portraits entered around the show title and it was a thrill to see my painting made it onto this page.

Below is a screen shot showing my portrait of Clare in the upper right just inside the white space of the title block.

The image on the screen may be small but my gratitude is huge.

Thank you Sky Arts!


    (My portrait of Clare Balding is the small rectangle    to the right of the last 't' in Portrait)




*If you received this blog post via email subscription the video will not be visible in your email. Please go directly to my art blog by clicking on the following link for kimblairartist.blogspot.com in order to view the short 2 minute video of the creation of this portrait.


Monday, June 8, 2020

Michael's portrait in pastel by Kim Blair



Michael
(14"x11" wax pastel on gessoed w.c. paper)

Social Media is proving to be a great source for reference photos.
I discovered Michael's selfie on Instagram and instantly (pun intended) wanted to paint him... thankfully he agreed. The bits of colour bouncing off his face gave the photo an interesting glow which I thought would be fun to try to suggest in the portrait.

It's no secret that I absolutely love colour so how could I possibly resist this deeply saturated analogous colour scheme! 



"Colour in a picture is like enthusiasm in life."
- Vincent Van Gogh






*If you received this blog post via email subscription the video will not be visible in your email. Please go directly to my art blog by clicking on the following link for kimblairartist.blogspot.com in order to view the short 2 minute video of the creation of this portrait.