Wednesday, June 9, 2010

New Commissions

Well, I'm back in Canada now! It's crazy to be back, everything looks new to me! I haven't seen Canada in almost a year, so it's like seeing it for the first time or something. I'm just getting ready to deliver a couple commissions to people this week, so I thought I'd show them to you.

"Steph Pregnant," oil on canvas, 21.5" x 18"

"Lew and Hélène West," oil on linen, 20" x 16"

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Florence is so Inspiring!

Here are some more of the paintings that I've done here in Florence. I did some of them as studies, to get a sense of how I liked a certain concepts before committing to doing large-scale versions, and some of them are final paintings.

Me joking around beside my self-portrait, "Who am I? The Performance of Everyday Life," oil on canvas, 80" x 50,"
at the exhibition here in Florence, "In Bocca al Lupo." Unfortunately I didn't get a chance to properly photograph this painting before shipping it back to Canada, but this gives you an idea of how it turned out, and I'll post a proper photo of it when I return home soon!

"Left and Leaving," oil on panel, 6" x 8"
This painting was done during a very difficult time in my life. It embodies the Buddhist philosophy that the way to contentment is to release the five cravings, which are sex, wealth, fame, lots of sleep, and fancy food. This is an image of me walking away from the five cravings, which are personified here as female water nymphs. I learned here in Florence that female figures are often used to represent abstract ideas and concepts, so I liked the idea of using them here to represent the five cravings. My sister, Jessica Gordon, was kind enough to pose for me for the water nymphs. The title is from the Winnipeg-based band, the Weakerthans, album name, which I was listening to a lot when I did this painting. This is a very small, painterly study. I am pleased with the overall effect, so I intend to paint it full-scale at a later date.

"Self-reflection," oil on panel, 6" x 8"
This is an idea that I had for a twist on the Narcissus theme awhile ago. It's me looking into the water and seeing my reflection. It's a small study to get an idea of how I liked it before moving onto a larger one. Although I do kind of like it, I actually think I found it to be a little "sweet" for my tastes, and probably won't be doing a larger version of it. Still, it was fun to do!

"Piedistallo," oil on panel, 14" x 6.5"
This is a painting that I did at the Bardini Museum here in Florence. It was so fun to go there and have the opportunity to paint pieces of their collection from life, so my friend Kevin Columbus and I went there regularly to paint together!

"Transformation," oil on panel, 7" x 4.5"
This is a self portrait of me holding a poppy. Poppies in art often represent sleeping or dying, so it expresses the way I’ve felt lately, and the title hints towards a change taking place within me. I may paint this painting full size in the future.