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.
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.
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.
My 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.
I’m excited to share my newest project, ‘Road Trip 2015’, with you today. This year, I’m visiting and painting on location at 9 communities throughout Alberta, Saskatchewan and BC. The purpose? To explore the concept of creating meaning.
Meaning-making has a fluid, interconnected nature that fascinates me. A quote I found on my sister’s website – leewardclips.wordpress.com – speaks to this: “When you change the way you look at something; what you look at changes.” Deepak Chopra. And I’d add to that: when what you look at changes, it can further change the way you look at it… and so on. It’s never-ending and ever-changing. Love that.
I began this journey last month with visits to Vulcan, AB and Eastend, SK. The biggest insight I came away from these two trips was: Finding and sharing what has meaning to you, helps create meaning for others.
Vulcan, Alberta In Vulcan, I was invited to teach a workshop on Streetscapes to the ‘Nine in a Line’ Creative Art Society. Their studio (the Vulcan Art Studio) is located in the gorgeous Healy Heritage Art Center. The center is also home to Caelo, a haven of mouth-watering baking and home cooking owned and run by Kellie & Terry Hartle. (My painting above, ‘Best Seats in the House’ are of a cozy spot in Caelo.) Kellie has made Caelo a special gathering place. Her interior design skill has touched every corner; there are even ‘reader’ glasses of various strengths artfully placed for patrons to enjoy, so they can read while enjoying their meal. And at the end of my visit, Kellie packed up a date bar and banana loaf for my travels. I tried to make them last. But they were so heavenly, I gobbled both down in record time. After that luscious first bite, they didn’t stand a chance. Thank you Kellie! I can’t wait to visit again.
In Eastend, I was joined by fellow artist and Gallerist, Arlene Westen Evans. Arlene owns Evanescence Gallery in High River. We laughed, talked and painted for an entire week at the historic ‘Eaton’s House’. Eaton’s homes, were mail-ordered through the Eaton’s catalogue – piece by piece! Then they were built on the owner’s site. This particular one, is one of the last remaining in Alberta, and is now a guesthouse. Located at the Riverside Motel, it is run by Ed and Wendy Sanford. Ed and fellow Eastend resident, Steve Garamzeghy renovated it into a stunning character home. It was an artists’ dream to paint and stay at. On rainy days, I painted many interiors of the space. Below are two of my paintings from this trip:
I’ll be painting lots more from all my trips throughout the coming year. I’ve also submitted the project for consideration as an exhibition to one gallery, and possibly more as I continue.
For the upcoming month, I’m planning two more trips. I’m off to Jasper, then to Blairmore. I’ll be posting what I learn and paint during those trips, in a month or so. Hope to see you back again. Take care, Cheryl.
Good Monday morning to all my friends here! Am scurrying off to my studio this morning to continue getting ready for my first art show of the Christmas season. It’s this Sunday, Nov 23 at Cochrane Arts Central. I’ll be joined by artists Marla Blackwell, Jane Romanishko, Ingrid Vincent and Edith Vanderkloot. We’ll be serving refreshments and appetizers and will all be in attendance to visit with you. Cochrane Arts Central is located at 115 – 4th Ave West in Cochrane, AB. We hope you can join us for the afternoon to kick off to the holiday art season.
I’ll have a brand new selection of landscapes to share with you at this show. I’ve been working hard in my studio to expand my skills and learn more about myself as an artist. And my collection this fall reflects that. I’ve got paintings that set the scene of summer and spring, fall and winter alike,all with light and composition that I’ve taken careful thought and consideration to develop. Come help me celebrate my new beginning as a full-time artist.
Cochrane Arts Central is easy to find – Head northwest out of Calgary on Crowchild Trail to Cochrane. Once you arrive in Cochrane, turn left at the second set of lights. We’re just half a block down on the right-hand side. We’ll have signs at the intersection to help show you the way.
I captured this beautiful scene on a trip to Mexico last spring. We were fortunate to get a private tour of Cozumel while we were there. Our tour guide drove us all around the island and stopped at a variety of beautiful spots. This was on the east side of the island, if my memory serves. It was amazing to have such solitude amongst the vastness of nature. So grateful for the experience. I’ll be showing this painting for the first time on Sun, Nov 23 at the Cochrane Arts Central group art sale. Join us from 11-4 to see more of my new work.
Streetscapes in Oils and Acrylics Sun, Oct 26 – 10am-5pm
Streetscapes are often a subject matter that beginning art students avoid. It’s a shame, because they’re so much fun and allow artists to use a wide range of color not often seen in more natural environments like landscapes. In this one-day workshop, I’ll help you learn to simplify all that you see, and create a fun, urban scene in oils or acrylics.
What to bring: All your painting supplies (I will provide a list once you register, so you don’t forget anything!), and a good selection of urban-oriented photographs to choose from.
I’ll provide: painting cookies, coffee, tea, plus lots of encouragement, guidance and one-on-one instruction
Class Fee: $100. Class size: Max of 8 students.
Or, call Cheryl Peddie at 403-201-6532.
Visa, MC, Cheques, Cash welcome.
Update Sat Oct 17/2014: This Class is FULL – I have a waitlist available in case of any cancellations. Please call 403-201-6532. Thank you!!
22″ x 28″ Oil on Canvas
by Cheryl Peddie
So glad this snow is on my canvas, instead of in on our sidewalks!
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
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