Björk in amethyst

12 January 2014

Björk in amethyst

watercolour, graphite, and acrylic on 30 cm x 40 cm paper

I was listening to a stellar mix, that a friend put together, of beautiful Björk songs, and felt absolutely inspired to paint this portrait. Vespertine is, without a doubt, my all-time favourite of her albums, so I wanted to capture the frost-sparkling, crystalline energy of the sound, while incorporating white swan feathers with delicacy and subtlety.

I'm definitely having a "violet" phase at the moment. I was drawn to keep the pallet simple and pure, keeping with amethyst and cold, pale blue hues.

Clermont-Ferrand, Centre Ville

09 January 2014

Clermont-Ferrand, Centre Ville
watercolour and graphite on A4 paper

The second painting in my series of local cityscapes...
Standing on the tram rails, I took this photo several years ago, on a rainy December afternoon. I really like the way the shop window light reflect onto the sidewalks, and the way the buildings curve around and disapear.

Jareth and Sarah

07 January 2014

Jareth and Sarah
(Labyrinth movie fan art)
watercolour, graphite, acrylic, and ink on A4 paper

"It's only forever, not long at all..."
This lyric had been stuck in my head for a few days, so I figured it was trying to tell me that some Labyrinth fan art needed to happen!

I made a friend of the western sky (portrait of Tori Amos)

04 January 2014

"I made a friend of the western sky (portrait of Tori Amos)"
watercolour and graphite on A4 paper
Inspired by the B-side, "Honey"
Happy 20th Anniversary to Amos' 2nd album, Under the Pink!

I've been aiming to make more dynamic shadows, so I went a bit out of my "comfort zone" with this piece, using a lot of violet and umber for the shadows, and trying to stay away from my go-to black.

I also tried to get a bit of a sfmuato effect, allowing the shading to stay soft, and letting some of the edges blend with / fade into the background. I really like how this worked, and I think it gives the painting a slightly dreamy look.

The colour palette comes from "the western sky", and my memories of the New Mexican landscape (where Amos recorded Under the Pink.)

Pretty Daisies (portrait of Tori Amos)

"Pretty Daisies (portrait of Tori Amos)"
watercolour and graphite on A4 paper

Happy 20th Anniversary to Under the Pink! (Amos' 2nd album)

This painting was inspired by the song "God" (the title comes from the lyrics.)
"God" was the first Tori song I ever heard. I was 13, and I had stayed up late to watch Mtv, when everyone else was asleep. I remember thinking, "Who is this?!! This song is awesome!"  It was love at first listen!

I bought Under the Pink the very next day (my first Tori album) and I remember rushing home to play it for my mom. We sat on the floor of her room, and listened to it over and over again... we were both hypnotised. I'll never forget what it felt like to hear Tori's music for the first time; the magic and awe of that moment always makes me misty-eyed and shivery when I think of it.

That summer, my mom and I went to the concert, in Cleveland, Ohio (my first Tori show.)
 Of course, I cried through the whole thing.

Falling in love with Under the Pink changed my life, in so many wonderful ways. She opened all sorts of spiritual and coming-of-age doors for me, and some of my most powerful personal mantras have come from her lyrics.

This album began my journey with Tori Amos' music... a journey that has lead me into all sorts of amazing, healing, and magical places, places both on the land and in the mind,  including places of self-understanding, self-empowerment, and endless inspiration. While on this journey, I've made some of the finest friends a person could ever have, friends who really connect, deep-down in the soul, just like the music, itself.

I cannot imagine my life without Under The Pink; she will always be my BFF. <3

"You make pretty daisies, pretty daisies, Love..."

"I gotta find, find, find why you always go when the wind blows..."

"God sometimes you just don't come through.
Do you need a woman to look after you?"

La Cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-l'Assomption de Clermont-Ferrand

The first painting of the new year!

" La Cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-l'Assomption de Clermont-Ferrand "
watercolour, graphite, and ink on A4 paper

This is the grand, gothic cathedral from my downtown. It's poised high on a hill top, with its black lavastone spires looming over the city like something out of Mordor... I love it!