Thursday, April 30, 2009

Pink Flock, by Canadian Artist Kim Blair

I heard while I was on Salt Spring Island, off the BC coast, that they are about 4 weeks late in the growing season.   There were tulips and daffodils, but too early for iris.  It was wonderful to see some colour in the gardens... and when I saw this grouping of pink tulips I snapped a number of photos for painting reference.  I think I looked like a desperate tourist.

The locals probably thought I resembled a blood hound with my camera lens, sniffing out any and every spring flower I could find. 

16x12, oil on canvas. (ready to hang in about a week or so)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Two Heads

I am back to my daily painting routine today.  Had some time off to get some wonderful spring flower photos and beach shots etc., from Salt Spring Island, one of the Gulf Islands off the coast of BC, here in Canada.  So today I am posting a garlic painting that I painted and sold last week.

Now I will download all the wonderful photos I took on the island and start some new paintings... see you tomorrow with a spring theme.

Don't forget to eat your garlic!

8x10, oil on canvas. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Open Wide and Lemon Pepper

When I sliced open this pepper it seemed to be yawning which made the seeds look like teeth... sort of like a Jack O Lantern.  I am taking a Raw Food nutrition class.  Very interesting information regarding eating more of our vegetables and fruits in their natural, raw state to preserve the digestive enzymes which are present in natural food to aid digestion.  More salads, dips and spreads made in the food processor rather than cooking everything, which depletes most of the nutrients.   Painting my veggies before eating them doesn't deplete any nutrients either.  That is a good thing, as Martha would say.
My husband and I use quite a bit of lemon in our cooking... it creates the taste of salt without actually using salt.  Try it next time you make some homemade pasta sauce.
Have a look on the back of a jar of regular store bought pasta sauce under the nutrition list and you will be shocked at how much sodium one serving contains.  (The same goes for canned soup and vegetables).  And we wonder why there are so many hypertension issues in North America...

I will not be posting now until the middle of next week,  so I have posted 2 pieces today.  But I will still have time to check my emails...  so let me know if you want either of these nutritious veggie paintings.

each, one is 10x8 and the other one is 8x10 (needs some drying time)

Aladdin's Lamp

Garlic is so yummy... and flavourful.  But it was frowned upon by foodie snobs in America until the first quarter of the twentieth century.  By 1940 America had embraced garlic, finally recognizing its seasoning value, but before that is was used only in ethnic cooking.

When I positioned these two garlic cloves for my painting I noted how the larger clove resembled an exotic persian lamp or shoe... Aladdin's Lamp.  This description comes closer to its heritage of dating back 6,000 years to Central Asia, than to one of its slang names in the early 20 century in America, Bronx Vanilla. 

 8x10 oil on canvas, (not quite dry) 

Monday, April 20, 2009

Lime Light

Limes (like the mango) are native to Southeast Asia.  They are most prominent in tropical regions, while lemons are the major acid citrus fruits in the subtropics.  Although limes will ripen to an orange colour if left on the tree, they are always picked green.  In the past, the British navy harvested limes from India and  Southeast Asia to supplement their sailors' rations to help prevent scurvy.

I would like to think that hanging this lime painting in your home might help to prevent boredom by bringing a little bit of Lime Light to your Life... a ration of visual vitamin C

8x10 oil on canvas, (needs a bit more drying time before harvesting...)

Friday, April 17, 2009


As you can see I have already been enjoying a few slices off this mango.  My information source said that the mango originated in South East Asia, where it has been grown for over 4,000 years.  Mango trees are evergreens that will grow to 60 feet tall; and today there are over 1,000 different varieties of mangos throughout the world.

Mangos are said to be high in fiber, but low in calories... funny, that's just like my paintings!


8x10 oil on canvas (still wet, but let me know if you want me to save you this piece)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Chorus Line

Last painting in this radish series. I bobbed their leaves like a short hair cut for this painting. They lined up nicely... their long wispy roots kicking high, like a chorus line. Placing them on the diagonal adds to the feeling of motion...
A grouping of these radish paintings would make a tasteful showing...

8x10 oil on canvas (needs some dying time)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Old World Charm

Yes, I am on a radish series. When you are inspired by something it is a good idea to explore the theme... see where it takes you. Cultivate your muse... harvest all you can... enjoy the fruits (or roots) of your labour. Ok, Ok (I can hear you saying under your breath) enough with the gardening language. I'll try to be more down to earth... Yikes! 'Till tomorrow ... Kim.

10x8, oil on canvas (needs some drying time)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Don't you love those wispy root ends on radishes?  Honestly, I did not notice how gorgeous these radishes were when I purchased them...  I was in a hurry to buy a few salad ingredients and get home.  When it came time to use them over the weekend, I pulled one out of the bunch and couldn't believe my good fortune.  Fresh leaves (no slime), varied tones of red skin on  a plump bulbous root, and to top it all off they all had these long, wispy, root ends... so I saved a few of them for painting.  Simple pleasures certainly make my day.  What makes your day?

oil on canvas (needs some drying time, after all who likes slimy leaves?)

Monday, April 13, 2009


The garden club I belong to had an interesting guest speaker at our last meeting.  Suzanne spoke on Biodynamic gardening which uses the moon and phases of the planets to plant and harvest by.  The calendar she brought to our meeting lists all the phases of the moon (and more) along with the best days to plant according to whether you are planting leaf, root, flower, or fruit baring plants.  She told us that she has follows the basic planting cycle principle and that the results are amazing.  (Just think about the moon and tide cycles...)  I am going to try planting some seeds using the dates and times prescribed...  using the calendar I purchased from her. You can use the information to help with your transplanting too... since the greenhouses may not use this knowledge when they first planted their seeds.  We all like to have a great crop... whether flowers or radishes.  If you want to plant radish seeds (or other root veggies) a couple of dates and times to try are... Saturday April 18 from 4 am all the way to Sunday April 19 till about 3:30 pm., or Sunday April 26 from 8 am to Monday April 27 till 1:30 pm.  Happy Planting!

8x10, oil painting, (painted during a root cycle, without even knowing it!)

Friday, April 10, 2009


Here is one of those red peppers from yesterday... the reflections creating a mosaic affect on the tin foil.  This little number would look fabulous in a black and white kitchen... and that is exactly where it will be hung!

8x10, oil on canvas

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Peppermint Pink

Looking like two scoops of peppermint pink ice cream these tulips fill the canvas... the creamy pink ruffled tips on the petals resemble those wonderful drippy edges of the ice cream perched on a cone.  A perfect treat to celebrate spring, or summer, or birthdays or...    ice cream goes with almost every occasion.  Make mine home-made, like these tulips... pure and simple.

8x10 oil on canvas (needs to dry a bit longer) 

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Neon Red

The Italian Centre here in Edmonton often have this variety of red pepper for sale.  Especially around the September long weekend when they set out a large display of them for customers to select from.  Mounds of red, orange, yellow and some slightly variegated peppers looking like they were created for a Tim Burton film...  some more twisted and lumpy than others.  When I was there last fall I was sorting through this pile of peppers, when a woman beside me, who was also selecting her own assortment of peppers confided how she takes them home and strings them together to hang so that they dry for future use.  I told her that I was taking mine home to paint.  She stopped sorting and looked at me without saying a word and then kept on sorting...  I guess she never thought about peppers as art... I smiled to myself and left with my bag of inspiration...  she left with her bag of food.

8x10 oil on canvas (still drying)

Monday, April 6, 2009

Red Joy

A single flower can often make more of a statement than a whole bouquet.  Please don't think that I am against bouquets... I love flowers, all varieties.  Some of you may not know that I was a florist for 20 years, which may be one of the reasons that I am so intrigued with painting flowers.   Once again the analogy seems to come around to comparing everything to people... getting to know a single bloom by taking the time to appreciate it as a whole and then setting aside some time to learn more about what makes it unique is so fulfilling.  A quick look shows its shape, colour,  and texture; but when you take quality time with the bloom you begin to see and understand more...  The little imperfections and quirky traits give it character.  It's like having the chance to talk with one person at a party.  The party can be quite a bit of fun but sometimes you come away wishing you had taken the time to talk with some of the guests on an individual bases... so that you could appreciate them on a deeper level.

Don't think that Red Joy is just another wall flower... 

8x10 oil on canvas ( needs some drying time, but let me know if you want her at your next party)

Friday, April 3, 2009

Purple Parade

I am looking forward to Iris season. The time of year when you start to see these colourful displays parading around gardens. Iris aren't shy. Their blossoms look delicate and frail yet they are more than happy to flutter and swirl in the breeze showing off their curves to every passerby. I often feel like the paparazzi when I take my camera out with me for a walk... hunting for a prize shot of these gorgeous specimens. Lucky for me they all seem to like the red carpet treatment and wait patiently for me to snap their best side.


12x24 inches, oil on canvas (just painted yesterday, needs some drying time...send me an email and we can work out the details)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Turkish Delight

Tulips originated in Turkey over 1000 years ago. During the 17th century they were highly prized and costly, in Europe. The Netherlands became enamoured with the tulip and we have come to think of the tulip as originating from Holland. During a trip to Holland many years ago we went to the famous Kukenhoff Gardens (best time is April and early may depending on the weather)to see their fabulous tulip (and other spring bulbs) gardens. I am not kidding when I say that most of the tulip flowers were huge... each petal was the size of my hand and when added up to the usual 6 petaled tulip that makes for one gigantic flower head!

The petals of the two tulips in this painting are much larger than my hand... but of course that is because this painting is 22x30 inches... Imagine the statement this piece will make on your wall.

22x30 inches, oil on canvas. (needs a couple of weeks to dry enough to take home, but I guarantee they won't wilt... )

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


 Poppies seem to be a very popular flower and I have had many requests for larger paintings.  I will be painting a mix of sizes to post so please let me know if there is a particular flower, object, colour,  or size you are looking for and I will add it to my own list of creative ideas.  I treasure this list and look at it each day to see which idea jumps out at me to paint.  Sometimes things don't seem to work... and at the end of the day I have to wipe the canvas clean and start again.  We all have those days... mine was yesterday.
Today I have posted this Scarlet red poppy painting, 12x24 inches, that I love, but is already sold.  I know it may seem like a tease to some of you looking for a similar painting to buy... but there will be more...
Don't forget to click on my paintings to bring up a larger version so that you can see the texture and thickness of the paint.  Go back to my blog (click on my highlighted name below this posting for a quick link to my blog) and click on each painting and it will enlarge on your screen so that you can see the paint and  brush details...  the Van Goghness of the work.