This Oil Pastel on Black Paper drawing was done “en plein air” on the banks of Lake Te Anau. It was drawn as the sun set after I had finished the Sailboat picture, but from a slightly different location. I always enjoy trying to capture the last rays of sunlight as the sky turns dark and night arrives. I love the feeling created by the contrast and impermanence of the changing light and dark colours that appear at this time of day.
This Oil Pastel on Black Paper drawing was done “en plein air” on the banks of Lake Te Anau. It was drawn during the late afternoon after a day of hiking, as the sun was getting lower and lighting up the lake. Whilst looking for a subject and location by the Lake I noticed this sailboat and wanted to capture the way the shape broke up the sunlight on the water. I set up my Easel by the Lake and drew it as the sun was getting lower, although it was unbelievably bright! I learnt that in the future I shouldn’t set up to draw facing directly into the sunlight, as after a while I had to hide behind a tree to get a break from the overwhelming brightness and to let my eyes re-adjust! As with many “en plein air” drawing occasions I had the chance to chat with a lot of interested passers by as I was doing this picture.
This Oil Pastel on Black Paper drawing was the view from our balcony in Room 141 at the Hermitage Hotel, Mount Cook, N.Z. I drew it “en plein air” during the late afternoon after a day of hiking, as the sun was getting lower and lighting up the peak of Mount Cook as the valleys became darker. The snow covered peaks and rock would glow with warmth as the final rays of sunlight illuminated them. This is a very beautiful part of the world and my wife and I love driving through the N.Z. countryside as it is so natural and relaxing. This particular area of Mount Cook Village is at the end of long winding country road, through spectacular scenery and is the gateway to many hiking trails and Glaciers, incredible!
This painting is a commissioned piece that I was very fortunate to get through my good friends at the RedRoom in Taipei City, Taiwan. It is part of a 12 artpiece Mural project that has been installed in a newly built Apartment building on Zhongshan North Road in Taipei City. The brief for the project was to highlight the role of Zhongshan North Road in the history of Taipei City and to include the image of the Taiwan magpie into the piece. We all had to create proposals along these themes and submit sketches showing roughly how the idea would be represented. I was very excited about this project as I really wanted to work on a bigger scale and have always felt a special connection to Zhongshan North Road due to a skatepark being there when I first came to Taiwan in 2001. I originally proposed three different ideas and 6 different sketches because the project really got me thinking and excited and I really wanted to be a part of it. Luckily, one of my ideas was chosen to be part of the project and I was delighted!
The scale of the piece is a total of 196 x 196cm, made up of 4 canvases each 98 x 98 cm.
My idea for this piece was to show a streetscene with the actual Ju Lang Apartment Building in the foreground viewed from an elevated viewpoint. I wanted to create a time-lapse style effect of the passing vehicle lights to suggest the passing of time and to reference how the new Ju Lang Apartment Building is adding a future chapter to the long history of Zhongshan North Road. With the elevated viewpoint I was able to include some of the famous nearby landmarks and also the Keelung and Tamshui Rivers which were historically the main trade route into the city. I also included the Grand Hotel and Yang Ming Mountain range and tried to show a soft dusky sky over the city. It was definitely a challenge to work on such a large scale and within quite a tight timeframe, but it was also an incredibly enjoyable time and project that I feel very proud and honoured to have been a part of.
Thank you to everyone at the RedRoom for this opportunity! We have all created a very varied, interesting and high quality project!
Here is a link to the RedRoom page about the project where you can see all the artworks and a short video.
This Oil Pastel on Brown Paper drawing is one of a pair that were drawn “en plein air” in the foothills of San Jose, California during the late afternoon as the sun was beginning to set. They were drawn near the same location as my Ink drawings of trees and shadows. After the Ink drawings I wanted to go back and try to capture the beautiful afternoon colours of the countryside. I hiked to this spot and set up my easel facing towards Santa Theresa as I could see many beautiful colours in the hills and mountains. As with the San Jose sunset pictures, I would sing as I was drawing just in case any wild visitors were sneaking around and to let them know I was there!