Sunday, 31 July 2016

Art on a Mission

Indian Arm, original painting by Tatjana Mirkov-Popovicki

Sometimes art finds a permanent home, sometimes it doesn't. And sometimes it goes on a mission. There are opportunities to lend an image to accompany all sorts of initiatives and the trick is to select those that will compliment the art and contribute to something that we enjoy or care about. Over the past years I've had my art on a wine label, on a mural, on a calendar of a non-profit art organization, on the cover of a poetry book, and even on a quilt!

The latest feature is on a mission of saving lives. Yep, it's hard to believe but it's true.

Can art save lives? I suppose a huge painting could be used as a flotation device. No? Well, there is still a way it can help.

Did you know that the Coquitlam Search and Rescue team of volunteers is responsible for an area of over 1700km², including some of the most rugged and inaccessible terrain in southwestern BC? They respond to an average of 35 incidents a year.  What they do isn't for the faint of heart. Here is a pic of my hubby (who is a Coquitlam SAR member), dangling from a helicopter.

Despite husbands hanging from helicopters, it's a great cause to support!

I am proud that my painting Indian Arm is featured on the Coquitlam SAR team's greeting cards. If you make a charitable donation to this group, you will get one too as a token of appreciation.

And now, back to making paintings, I'll leave saving of lives to those who know what they are doing. Here is a sneak peak of what's on the easel.

Work in progress - Larch Valley, 30x40, acrylic painting by Tatjana Mirkov-Popovicki

The summer is in the full swing around here. It's hard to stay in the studio long enough to finish a large painting, so it's taking longer than usual, but I am enjoying the process nevertheless.

Happy painting or sketching or just enjoying summer, whatever you prefer!


Friday, 15 July 2016

Harmony Trail

Harmony Trail, 16x20, acrylic painting by Tatjana Mirkov-Popovicki

It all begins on a hiking trail. This was in 2014, Whistler, BC, Harmony Trail.

Some of us start by studying the map, others just go...

Stunning views everywhere! My camera is my best friend - except for my real best friend who's walking ahead of me in the picture above.

Two years later, I am scheduled to paint for a day in the beautiful Crystal Lodge Art Gallery in Whistler. What to paint? I remember the Harmony Trail hike and run to my photo archive. Where are those sunny meadows, those brilliant greens, yellows and pinks that I remember?

To my dismay, this is what the "cold eye of the camera" recalls:

How dull! How uninspiring! So I crop, I adjust, and with help of technology, I recreate what's in my memory. Now that's more like it!

A little bit of prep in the studio won't hurt - a quick sketch to work out the composition, and a purple value study. Why purple? Why not? Dioxazine Purple is a nice dark transparent pigment that gives you interesting chromatic darks when glazed or scumbled over with other colors.

So I pack up and head to Whistler on a scorching Sunday, grateful for the serenity and shade of the gallery walls, plus for the inspiration of all the beautiful artwork that surrounds me. I relax and get to work.

Like most people, when I paint I am completely engrossed in my work, thinking that no harm can come to me in this safe place of art worship,

But one should always keep in mind that an enthusiastic galerina with a smart phone never sleeps, Before you know it, your are caught on camera and posted on the Facebook.

Luckily, there's plenty of goodies to see in the clip aside from the stunned artist. The gallery is gorgeous so I try to think of that when I see the counter with 1K views (yikes!).

Facebook video clip from The Crystel Lodge Art Gallery with the stunned me in it

The time passes quickly in the company of art and it's always nice to have something to show at the end of the day. I was glad to add a piece to the gallery collection which earned a wide smile and a hug from the lovely galerina Penny Eder. 

The Harmony Trail painting is now in The Crystal Lodge Art Gallery in Whistler, awaiting its permanent home. It's a record of a perfect day in Whistler!

Art can emerge from life or from memory. I never know what those muses are up to until the next idea pops up. 

Happy painting!