This Oil Painting on Canvas was done as a Portrait Commission for the subject’s 70th Birthday in 2017. It was commissioned as a surprise by his brother and was very bravely unveiled at Ian’s 70th Birthday Party in front of many of his friends before he had seen it! I feel very honoured to have been a part of this special celebration. I completed this Portrait from September to November 2016 working from photographic references. I really enjoyed painting this Portrait and I find that changing my subjects and mediums helps to improve my understanding and ability with different materials and techniques. I am very happy with the outcome of this portrait and tried to use new techniques and glaze mediums on it.
This is a view of an Alley that can be seen from my flat in Nangang, Taipei City that I have wanted to paint for a while. I find the combinations of colours and angles very interesting and it seems to shine or glow out of the darkness of its’ surroundings. There are also many different shades and shadows cast across the scene that add to it’s attraction for me. Every time I look out of the window it catches my eye because there seems to be so much going on in such a small area. I painted it from my balcony and used very thin layers of Acrylic Paint to build it up, giving it the soft almost blurry effect. I avoided redefining the edges to keep this softer focus as I wanted to try something different from my previous works.
This picture was inspired by the sun setting over Taipei City one Sunday afternoon. It was drawn from my balcony and started as an attempt to capture the beautiful colours of the setting sun in the sky before they disappeared into the night. As I drew the grey silhouettes of the skyline I wanted to add something that would contrast with these colours. Taipei City is an ever-growing fast paced city and there is always something new being built. The three buildings in progress were just a few of the many ongoing projects that I could see on the skyline. In mankind’s never ending quest for development, it could be asked when will it be enough?
This is a view of the Yang Ming Mountain range in Taipei City, Taiwan. I drew it from the balcony of my flat on a bright sunny day just before sunset. The mountains were very clear on this day and the colours and shadows were changing as the sun started to set adding more warm oranges into the mix. The sky was very clear with just a few clouds floating by. I like to experiment with different mediums and try to learn the unique qualities of each of them. I find pastels are good for blending colours but can also give a heavier effect if left raw and unblended.
My wife and I woke up early to see the sunrise on the lake on this day, as you can see, there wasn’t one! It was a very cold and misty morning and the fog cut down the visibility so much that we couldn’t see across the lake. What we could see still looked very beautiful as the fog gave it a mysterious feeling, making the mountains appear and disappear into the mist. You can see a fishing platform with a small hut and a winch in the water, there are many of these platforms around this beautiful lake.
This is an evening view across Sun Moon Lake from the Lea Lea Hotel in Ita Thao Village towards the main town. The lights of the distant buildings on the opposite side of the lake were reflecting and dancing across the surface of the water, almost reaching across the whole length of the lake. The reflections were being disturbed by movements in the water temporarily breaking them up and adding to the dancing effect. I feel Oil Pastels are a good medium to try to capture this kind of Impressionistic scene without too much attention to fine detail.
This drawing was done on a recent trip to Sun Moon Lake with family. The lake is very beautiful and at night the neon lights of this Pagoda on the dockside were reflecting and shimmering across the water. I used Oil Pastels for this piece as I like the effects you can achieve by rubbing and blending the colours and also it is an very immediate medium that can allow for speedy execution.