Just Plein Fun

Up until 2014 much of my artistic practice revolved around still life, urban scenes, floral and interiors. However at that point, my focus took a radical turn. I’ve turned into a devoted landscape painter because I learned to paint ‘en plein air’.  For newbies, ‘plein air’ basically means painting outside from life. I began painting plein air by taking a workshop in Jasper from artist Liz Wiltzen. After that I was hooked.

I’d tried painting landscape from photos for years. But I never was able to achieve what I was hoping. My colours were always off and nothing I created felt ‘real’. I wrote the genre off, thinking I just wasn’t a landscape painter. Was I wrong. Once I began painting outside, away from photos, I could actually see the real colours I was trying to capture. And even better, I was part of that image – it was all around me. I could see, hear, taste, smell and feel everything. What a difference. Now I can’t imagine working exclusively from a photo because it’s far too limiting. Below are a few of my most recent plein air works – I hope you enjoy.

PS – If you’re an artist and would like to take a plein air workshop from me, visit my Workshops page. I have a class lined up for the end of July in Calgary. I hope you can join me.

 

 

 

New! The Painted House

The latest genre I’ve been enjoying painting is ‘street scenes’, aka (to the artsy set) – ‘urban landscapes’. My passion for them started in 2015, when I painted a series of street scenes in small towns around Alberta. My year culminated when I painted a collection featuring Calgary’s neighborhood of Sunnyside. The collection was a great success at my end-of-year showing at ‘Framed on Fifth’ Art Gallery. This summer, I’ve been creating a collection of urban paintings of the town of High River, just south of Calgary.

An Interesting Turn of Events

Once I looked at both collections as a whole, it became clear that my paintings weren’t completely as I’d expected. (You’d think I’d have been more conscious of this shift as I was actually painting…but I wasn’t. Such is the life of an artist!) I’d thought I would be painting broader scenes filled with lots of buildings, people and ‘busy-ness’. However, most of the paintings I had created were of individual homes and businesses.

Yet for some reason, instead scolding myself for venturing so far off course (as I’d normally do) I realized I hadn’t made a mistake. These paintings were exactly as they should be. They weren’t street scenes at all – they were portraits!

As portraits, the collection of work suddenly makes sense. I have always been drawn to more intimate subject matter, with a shorter depth of field and design that minimizes distracting backgrounds. Seeing the paintings as portraits enabled me to see the next step I needed to take…

‘The Painted House’ is born

This next step is to offer custom home or business portraits. And so I’ve created ‘The Painted House – Custom Home and Business Portraits’. I adapted the name from the Victorian and Edwardian houses called ‘Painted Ladies’. These homes were painted in multiple colours to enhance their architecture. I adore character architecture and colour is an important key in my artistic style, so the name suited both me and my art.

If this sounds interesting, please read more about my process and how you can order your own Painted House here.

Hazy Days of Spring

HazyDaysofSpring

My newest painting is fresh off the easel. ‘Hazy Days of Spring’ grew from my obsession with painting the earliest spring greens I could find. I spent weeks going out to paint ‘plein air’ (ie in the outdoors on location) trying to catch those first soft green leaves. They looked like a soft haze over the treetops. Just a whisper of green – so delicate and lovely.

We had a particularly early spring this year in the foothills, so I got an early start to plein air season! I was delighted to catch those first days of hazy spring greens, and this is one of the resulting studio pieces from the images and paint sketches I developed.

I painted ‘Hazy Days’ on birch panel. I first coated it with multiple layers of gesso to create a good tooth for the oil paint, and for longevity. This is a new surface for my larger work. I often paint on panel when working plein air, so I thought I’d try it for my studio pieces also. It enabled me to create a wide variety of edges, strokes and finishes. Plus, its sturdiness held up to my scribbles and any kind of strength of brush stroke I threw at it. A beautifully versatile surface which enabled me to keep a loose feel, despite the larger size.

Here are a couple of details…

WET PAINTING SALE
If you’re interested in taking this painting home, it’s available today for a special one-day price. Click here for details.

Thanks very much for visiting,

Cheryl Peddie

The ‘Sunnyside’ of the Street – Artist Opening coming up

SunnysideShow-FoFMy newest solo show, The ‘Sunnyside’ of the Street’ is coming quickly. Please join me at my artist opening on Thurs Dec 3, from 6-9pm at Framed on Fifth, 1207 – 5 Ave NW in Calgary.

I’ll be featuring a new collection of paintings from the neighborhood of Sunnyside and Hillhurst at the show. I am  inspired by these heritage neighborhoods in our city. Their smaller yet lovingly cared for homes and gardens speak to me of the importance of simplicity and moderation. A time when we had front porch verandahs – because visiting with neighbors meant more than how many square feet our homes measured. Double car driveways and garages weren’t considered a necessity because we could walk most places we needed to go.

So join me for a little nostalgia, some penny candy, a cool beverage and some socializing. I’d love to see you and get caught up before the holiday season swings into gear. Thanks for stopping by; hope to see you on Dec 3. Best, Cheryl.

Early Snow

Early Snow
Early Snow – 22″ x 28″ Oil by Cheryl Peddie

Early Snow
22″ x 28″ Oil on Canvas
by Cheryl Peddie

So glad this snow is on my canvas, instead of in on our sidewalks!

Special Event!
I will be painting live, from 12-4 pm at the:
‘High River High Tea’
Monday, May 19th
Evanescence Art Gallery
61 8 Ave SE, High River, AB
403-652-2512
Refreshments • Door prize • Fashion Show
Admission by donation

In order to attend, you must RSVP!
Tickets can be purchased in person, over the

phone or by email with a credit card prior to May 17.
403-652-2512 or evanescencegallery[at]gmail[dot]com

White house by the ocean in Nova Scotia

Little Gems

White house by the ocean in Nova Scotia
Little House, Big Ocean – 6″x8″ oil on canvas board
Fence line in the prairies of Saskatchewan
Down the Line – 6″x8″ oil on canvas board

Trees and fall colors of leaves
‘Tangled – Illusion’ 6″x8″ oil on canvas board
Tree and fence post
Little Tree – 4″x4″ oil on galleria canvas
Trees in the summer by the river
Summertime in Calgary. Trees and grasses on the riverside of the Bow River.

 

Scene of river, trees and fields in corals, blues and greens
Love those Corals – 6″x8″ oil on canvas board
Flowers in a pasture by the foothills
Wildflowers – 6″x8″ – oil on canvas board

 

SK winter scene of trees, roads and prairies
Winter Roads – 6″x8″ oil on canvas board

Oh my gosh how can two months have passed, since I last posted!? Well, at least I’ve been busy in my studio. After working hard to be braver and paint on big canvasses, I decided to reward myself by beginning ‘Morning Exercises’. These are wee canvasses, about 6″x8″-ish that I paint when I first sit down at my easel for the day. I’d like to say they really all happen in the morning, but often they’re afternoon or evening exercises! But that’s ok. The point is that I get in there and get the brushes moving!

So, here’s an assortment of the little pieces I’ve worked on in the last 2 months. Initially, I thought these would become canvasses with which I could relax and paint scenes with techniques I feel confident in. Interestingly, they’ve become a venue for me to push my boundaries. And you know what? It’s just as relaxing! Maybe even more so. The small size is un-daunting and I approach them with the mindset of ‘no matter what comes out on this canvas, it’s totally ok’. And I’m finding I’m doing my best, most creative work with them. Looking forward to where these little gems will take me.

Thanks for reading. All my best,
Cheryl