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Blog: Our Bear River Adventure
Paintings: floradoehler.ca

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To be Continued………

Larry and I are very busy at Green Willow Studio creating our work, teaching classes. So busy in fact, that we’ve decided to split this site into two new art websites.

Mine is called Flora Doehler – visual artist and can be found at http://floradoehler.ca

Larry’s is Jewellery & Holloware by Larry Knox and is at http://larryknox.ca

The new sites are loaded with more and new photos of enamelled jewellery and paintings.

Flora & Larry

Posted in Bear River, Flora Doehler, Larry Knox, painting, silversmithing

Painting watercolour using a ‘Wet-in-Wet’ Technique

Last summer I made this time lapse video of painting a watercolour using a ‘wet-in-wet‘ approach. That means painting onto wet, cotton paper using wet paint!

Today I added a voice-over to the video. The sound isn’t great because I didn’t use a microphone – just the built in one in my imac. Still, if you crank up the sound, I think you’ll be able to hear it OK.

Working “wet-in-wet” is so intriguing because the dampness of the paper, which is made of cotton, creates a softness, a luminosity and an unpredictability as the paint colours mix together and change.

My inspiration came from a small monoprint I made using the watercolour on plexiglass technique that I’ve recently written about. I projected it onto a full sized watercolour sheet. Then I traced around the colours using a white oil pastel crayon and applying a lot of pressure on the paper. That line of oil or crayon will create a barrier for the watercolour and will work as a resist.

This monoprint was the inspiration for the larger piece.

I’d like to try it again now during winter while I wait for flowers to grow.Using a mechanical aid and working from an existing piece of art were departures for me – it kind of felt like cheating. What I learned from it is that I could focus on the actual painting because the colours and composition were already worked out.

Here is another example of enlarging a sketch onto watercolour paper. This is a sketch I made on location at Brier Island a few years ago.

painting

My on-location painting sketch.

You can see how much larger the new painting is.

Here is a very short video of the painting process. It works best if you paint watercolours from light to dark.

Why don’t you give it a try?  It’s interesting to work on a piece that is so much larger than the original.

Posted in artist tutorial, Flora Doehler, painting, painting tutorial, watercolour painting

Monoprinting with watercolours

This coming Saturday I’ll be teaching a workshop at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia on the techniques that I used in my pieces that are on display in the show. (The class is full and there is a waiting list!!)

Here is a video tutorial showing how to make a watercolour monoprint. It is so much fun to do …… give it a try!



Tradition
& Innovation-
an exhibit that invites the viewer to think about print-making as an
evolving art form- opens in the Community Room, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia Western
Branch, on January 5 and continues until February 26, 2012.  An opening reception will be held Saturday,
January 7, from 2 until 4 p.m.
Works are
from the two print shops in South West Nova Scotia: La Manivelle in Church Point,
where innovative, non-toxic methods are explored  and Th’YARC Print Shop in Yarmouth where
etching is a traditional technique often used.
Print
makers represented include Cecil Day, Ruth Rideout,  Denise Comeau, Bonnie Baker and others who
have worked at one or both of the studios over the past decade.
Four
workshops, tied to techniques in the show, will be given over the course of the
two-month exhibit.
Posted in art gallery, Flora Doehler, monoprinting, monoprinting tutorial

Tradition and Innovation – a printmaking show

Pink and Orange. Monoprint by Flora Doehler, 2011

Two of my pieces will be in a printmaking show that opens tomorrow (Saturday) at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia – Yarmouth branch!

I just finished them last week and framed them a few of days ago. The show includes work from printmakers at two South West Nova Scotia studios. One is in Yarmouth and the studio I use, Le Manivelle, is in the basement of Saint Anne’s University in Church Point.

Iris. Monoprint by Flora Doehler, 2011

This is the description of the show:

Tradition & Innovation – an exhibit that invites the viewer to think about print-making as an evolving art form- opens in the Community Room, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia Western Branch, on January 5 and continues until February 26, 2012.
The opening reception will be held Saturday, January 7, from 2 until 4 p.m.

Works are from the two print shops in South West Nova Scotia: La Manivelle in Church Point and Th’YARC Print Shop in Yarmouth.

Print makers represented include Cecil Day, Ruth Rideout, Denise Comeau, Bonnie Baker and others who have worked at one or both of the studios over the past decade.

Iris - detail

The title ‘Tradition & Innovation’ describes the way in which traditional print-making techniques are used as well as the evolution and discovery of new methods of creating images. At the exhibit, viewers will be introduced to a variety of techniques, some old, some recent, and some recent extensions of traditional methods.

Four workshops, tied to techniques in the show, will be given over the course of the two-month exhibit.

The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia Western Branch is located at 341 Main Street, Yarmouth; gallery entrance is from Alma Square.

Gallery hours: Thursday – Sunday . Noon – 5:00 p.m. Information: 902 749-2248

It’s VERY exciting to exhibit with accomplished artists and I’ll tell you all about it when I get back from the opening. I also want to share with you the technique I used.

Posted in art gallery, artist, Flora Doehler, monoprinting, watercolor, watercolour | Tagged , , ,

Blooming time for artist – Doehler works from life; channels nature with brush, paint and canvas

A very special Christmas surprise for me this year was opening the newspaper to read this article about my painting process. Thank you to Heather Killen and the Annapolis Spectator!
————————–

By Heather Killen
The Annapolis County
SPECTATOR
December 22, 2011

Sumachs in the 'front yard'.

To any painter who feels glum about that cramped studio space at a corner of the dining room table, or in the back bedroom – take heart. Flora Doehler has a perfectly good studio and most of the time she doesn’t use it.

This Bear River-based painter is now living her long-time dream. Her life is filled with art and flowers. Best of all, she has a beautiful art studio that she shares with her life partner and silversmith Larry Knox. Green Willow Studio is a nice space with lots of good light, yet Flora’s best paintings seem to happen in the yard.

Knox said he loves to watch her work because it’s seeing art in motion. Almost like a bellet of brushstrokes.

“It just happens”, he said “She’ll be walking and suddenly stop. Then the paints, the canvas, and the brushes disappear outside where she first saw the painting.”

Painting a still life in winter in the studio.

Studied in Toronto

Doehler studied fine arts and fine crafts at the Art Centre at Central Technical School in Toronto where she was introduced to painting, printmaking, and weaving. From there she went on to study painting in Berlin and found the German Expressionists. She became mesmerized by printmaking techniques of artists like Kathe Kollwitz and Wassily Kandinsky.

Until three years ago she lived mostly in Toronto where she worked as a librarian in the school system. An avid gardener, she dreamed of a time when she and Larry were able to pursue their art and life in the country.

These days she can paint whenever she likes with her oils, acrylic, and watercolour using whatever feels right to the time. Pften she works wet on wet, on a flat surface rather than an easel so the paint won’t run. Layer by layer she builds the form up, using sgraffito technique to scratch beyond the surface into the previous layers.

“I love colour and texture”, she said. “And being in the elements makes the whole process thrilling. I’m interacting with what I’m painting. I hear the birds around me and feel the moment.”

Inspired by one of many flower gardens.

Paints From Life

She will work from photographs, but says she prefers to paint from life. Completing a painting therefore can become a race against time and the elements. In some cases the paintings take years to complete as she waits until the scene emerges the following season.

“It is a great feeling to be present with a living flower and to sense the life force of it,” she writes in her blog. “When a painting is working for me, I get lost in it and I feel like I am channeling the essence of the object of my gaze.”

Green Willow Studio is part of the Bear River Working Artists’ Studio Tour. For more information visit http://greenwillow.ca or see them at 967 Riverview Road, Bear River. (902) 467-0553.

A 4' x 6' canvas in the sumachs.

Posted in acrylic painting, artist, Flora Doehler, flower painting, fluid acrylics, landscape, painting, plein air, sgraffito, sgraffito tutorial