|oil painting in progress|
click to enlarge
I have a sister who lives on Vancouver Island. About 3 years ago, I was flying out to visit with her, and was seated next to a gentleman named Rick Paradie. We struck up a conversation, and found we had photography in common. Rick was actually interested in information on setting up a website for his photography, some of which he was able to show me on his camera. As you can imagine, the plane ride went by very quickly. Since that time, Rick and I have been in touch every so often, and he is working on that website even as we speak.
Early this summer, Rick was visiting with a friend close to Edmonton as a stop-over in a trip to Ontario. He borrowed a car, and drove the couple of hours to our place just to visit with my husband and me, AND to give me some of his best photos so that I could paint them. How special is that!!!
Three of the photos I chose to download were of a grizzly bear, which Rick had taken at a zoo. In this photo, the bear has his head resting on a log, and he has his little tongue sticking out. His fur is wet, and "ropey" from the downpour of rain which had just finished when Rick took the photo.
I had begun this work which is 20" x 24" when I received a couple of commissions. So, the bear was put on hold while I completed those. I was about to get back to him, when I was contacted about doing a commission of a bear - specifically a grizzly bear. The collector emailed me some potential ideas for the work, then came to my studio to discuss the commission. When she saw the underpainting of this guy, she decided this was the piece she wanted to commission. I love it when people can see beyond the "ugly" stage and envision the end painting. So now, this bear is a commission. I've done a bit more on him, and you can begin to see the ropey fur on the top of his head. We are gone for a few days next week for a sibling vacation, but as soon as I get back, I can hardly wait to get busy on this painting again. It's going to be a lot of fun to complete.