Category Archives: Art Blog

Urban Landscape Workshop At Swinton’s

This past weekend I gave an urban landscape at Swinton’s Art Supplies in Calgary.  Doug Swinton always does a great job of promotion so the class was full.  It was a great workshop!  I really felt good about what we accomplished and the results that the participants achieved.

Once again I was made aware of how grateful I am for having been a public school teacher where I learned the art of teaching.  It’s all about what the people get out of the workshop and I always go in with a lesson plan that facilitates their learning.

A New Twist On How To Paint Figures

I have developed a new and really exciting exercise to extend the lesson on doing figures.  It’s how to create a crowd of people.  I’m inspired by the scenes of the piazza in Italy where you have fabulous architecture and crowds of people.  I’m working on doing a studio version of this subject.  

For now, here is the demo painting that I did.

Rex Beanland, Piazza & People, watercolour, 8 x 7

Piazza & People

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the class with their versions.

Rex Beanland, Swinton Workshop, 2018

Piazzas & People

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I always ask students to send me copies if they finish their paintings.  Typically I don’t receive images but this time I did.

Here is Tamara’s painting.

Rex Beanland, Swinton Workshop, 2018

Tamara’s Piazza & people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the main demo I did Jasper Ave because it just offers so many wonderful teaching opportunities and it is such a bold, vibrant painting.

Main Demo – Jasper Ave

Unfortunately, I forgot to take a photo of my demo at the end of the workshop but here is the completed painting.

Rex Beanland, Jasper Ave (Swinton 2018), watercolour, 15 x 20

Jasper Ave

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the class with their version in progress.

 

Rex Beanland, Swinton Workshop, 2018

The Class With Jasper Ave (in progress)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s always so inspiring when the participants discover that they can create bold, vibrant and colourful paintings.

Two people sent me their finished paintings.  Great work.

Rex Beanland, Swinton Workshop 2018

Chris’s Jasper

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Swinton Workshop 2018

Tamara’s Jasper

How Bold Can You Go With Watercolour

I just love this photo.  One participant, Robyn, really pushed the limits of watercolour.  

Rex Beanland, Swinton Workshop, 2018

Thick paint!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What a great way to spend a weekend with this wonderful group of enthusiastic watercolourists!

Comments

I was also very moved by a couple of the comments that were emailed to me after the workshop.

Thank you Rex for an incredibly informative weekend.  I’ve taken numerous workshops and never have I felt more fulfilled afterward.  Your professionalism, humour and grace are something I will never forget. I will be watching for the next available opportunity to paint with you again. Please do add me to your mailing list.
With Gratitude

Hi Rex
I really enjoyed your workshop. Talk about learning a lot of techniques in a short time! I’ll keep an eye out for future workshops…

Anyway, my finished painting follows. Much to learn, but much that I can use with my own sketches immediately. Thanks again…

Lethbridge Workshop

I had the great experience of teaching a workshop in Lethbridge, Sept 20 – 23 for the Lethbridge Artist Club.  I thoroughly enjoy working with artists who are enthusiastic and want to learn more about watercolour such as the people I met in Lethbridge.

In this workshop we had the mix I enjoy: some people brand new to watercolour painting along with some very experienced painters.

The Benefit Of Using Little Lessons & Practices 

I am, by now, completely convinced that participants get the most out of a workshop when we take the time to study and practice the little skills by themselves. When we do this it allows the people to focus on one little thing at a time in a stress free, fun manner. Secondly when we come to do the full demo painting everyone has already practiced all the elements that they will meet in the painting.  I have always used lessons on how to paint figures and how to draw and paint cars.   I’m in the process of developing a new lesson on painting a crowd, in particular a crowd  on a piazza.  Here are the participants with their work.

Rex Beanland, Lethbridge Workshop

People practice 1

Rex Beanland, Lethbridge Workshop

People practice 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m still working out the kinks in this activity but here are my examples.  I love them and I feel that there is a very valuable lesson contained in this subject.  This first one is the one I did at home before the workshop.

Rex Beanland, Crowd Practice 1, watercolour, 5 x 13

Crowd Practice 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is the demo I did in class.

Rex Beanland, Crowd Demo, watercolour, 8 x 12

Crowd Demo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And finally, this is one I did back at the hotel after class just for fun.

Rex Beanland, Crowd Practice, watercolour, 6 x 13

Crowd Example 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think that this subject is worthy of a full sized studio painting.

My Full Demo Painting

I chose the Jasper Ave painting for my demo. It’s a great choice because it teaches some very valuable lessons about colour and value.  It also has a very nice arrangement of cars and people.  I like a painting to tell a story and for me the story of this painting is ‘into the mystery

Here is my demo as it was at the end of the workshop.

Rex Beanland, Mr Cool Surveys The Avenue, watercolour, 15 x 20

Demo at the end of the workshop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are the student examples.  They are all works in progress.  What really pleases me is how everyone is able to achieve bold, colourful washes.  Many watercolourists struggle for many years to achieve results like this.  It’s always enjoyable hearing the oohs and ahhs when people first see how boldly the colours are applied particularly the alizarin crimson.

Rex Beanland, Lethbridge Workshop

Student Paintings (Works In Progress)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the demo as I finished it at home.  I named it for the figure in sunglasses.

Rex Beanland, Mr Cool Surveys The Avenue, watercolour, 15 x 20

Mr Cool Surveys The Avenue

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This was my first time in Lethbridge and the weekend was a whole lot of fun.  Thanks to everyone for their participation.

Rex Beanland, Lethbridge Workshop

A Great Bunch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Little Something Extra

I was very grateful to have just received this feedback.

“Thank you so much for our best class ever!”

Workshop In Gibsons Landing

Long live the Beachcombers!

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

The Persephone

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Before I begin I must say that there were so many aspects to this workshop.  There was the workshop but also the fabulous location.  Therefore I have actually created 2 posts.  This one below covers the workshop.  This second one is about the experience of being in Gibson’s and some unique experiences we had there.)

First . . . the workshop . . .

Watching that iconic Canadian TV show was my introduction to the spectacular landscape of the Sunshine Coast of BC.  I fell in love with it and it has called to me ever since so I was thrilled to be asked to teach a workshop there this August.

I had such high expectations of what Gibsons would be like and I’m happy to say that they were exceeded. 

First of all it was my first 5 day workshop. I must admit that I wondered how that would work out.  (Hint:  it worked out beautifully).

It began with a meet the artist evening at Phyllis’s beautiful home.

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Official meet the artist evening

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was thrilled that the workshop was full with a waiting list.  There were 15 participants.

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Students in action 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Students and projector

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They were a wonderful group to work with – enthusiastic, friendly and so positive.  On the first day we were in many ways like a group of individuals.  By the end of the workshop we were a real group, supporting and encouraging each other.  They also laughed at nearly all my jokes.

I was inspired by how much we were able to achieve.  

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

People Wall

 

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Car Wall

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Wall Of Fame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My experiences at this and other workshops completely confirms my belief that you achieve maximum learning by breaking the big goal (a full painting) into little, easy-to-master steps.  Then  it’s easy to master each skill separately in a stress free way.  Then when we come to do the full paintings we have already practiced all the skills.  I have devised little lessons and practices on  people, cars, value and watercolour washes.

The Demos

I often use the same paintings at  different workshops.  I choose paintings that have a lot of teaching points so the  participants can get the most out of the workshop.  I also choose paintings that have something special in terms of colour, composition or value.

Here is my first demo of Kensington Market. This is the painting that most closely follows a traditional urban landscape method.  It’s also a chance to play with some bright colours.

Rex Beanland, Kensington Market, watercolour, 15 x 20

Kensington Market

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next was Jasper Ave which illustrates how to dramatically simplify the subject and to completely change the colour and mood.

Rex Beanland, Jasper Ave, watercolour, 15 x 20

Jasper Ave

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These two photos show the students early stages of the Jasper Ave painting.  It’s really quite something to have such success with bright, vibrant and bold colour.  It’s very common for watercolourists to struggle with these concepts.  No one at this workshop  struggled with them.

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Student Jasper Ave 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Student Jasper Ave 2

 

My Official Assistant

By an incredible stroke of luck Susan was able to participate in the workshop as my official assistant.  Of course she became much more than that.  She helped people with their paintings and generally made everyone feel glad to be there. She also organized a final day luncheon and had us all sharing our experiences from the week.

She also had the chance to do her own paintings.

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Susan’s Kensington

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Susan’s Jasper Ave

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Third Demo

We completed 2 paintings  but did not have enough time to finish the third one – a really neat perspective on Winnipeg.  I said I would post the various stages as I finished my painting at home.

Rex Beanland, Winnipeg From The 32nd Floor, watercolour, 15 x 20

Winnipeg at the end of the workshop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I felt the background was too much cobalt blue and also didn’t connect with the centre of interest.  So I added a couple more washes to make the blues more neutral and to add more orange and red.

Rex Beanland, Winnipeg From The 32nd Floor, watercolour, 15 x 20

Change the background

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next I removed the masking and began adding detail.

Rex Beanland, Winnipeg From The 32nd Floor, watercolour, 15 x 20

Begin the detail

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The finished version.

Rex Beanland, Winnipeg From The 32nd Floor, watercolour, 15 x 20

Winnipeg From The 32nd Floor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One student finished her version of this painting and sent me a copy.

 

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Corinne’s Winnipeg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was humbled by some of the feedback I received especially where it concerned the way I structure and teach a workshop. One lady said of all the many, workshops she had taken this was the first time she had actually received instruction. That moved me.

It was a wonderful group, a powerful experience and a fabulous location.

Here are the people who made the week so special.

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Class Photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Many thanks to everyone for a wonderful week!

And Besides The Gibson’s Workshop . . .

This is the second part of our experience at the Gibson’s workshop.  This one covers everything besides the workshop.  The post about the workshop is available here.

Some Scenes From  Gibson’s Landing

Rex Beanland, Gibson's Landing, BC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Gibson's Landing, BC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Gibson's Landing, BC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Gibson's Landing, BC

Rex Beanland, Gibson's Landing, BC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Special Event

While we were in Gibsons they were filming a Hallmark Movie called “Carousel Christmas’.  The movie will be on the Hallmark channel probably by Christmas.

It was amazing as they transformed Gibson’s in the summer into a winter scene.  Here are some shots of the filming. When went down to the dock after the workshop to get these shots the temperature was 34 degrees C.  The extras were dressed in sweaters, coats and scarves.  By the magic of movies when people see the movie in December it will appear to be like winter instead of a sweltering summer day.

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Extras in 34 degrees C

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They brought in truck loads of chipped ice. Working with this might have been the best job on this day.

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Snow Truck

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They made the dock look like it was covered in snow but they had to replace it frequently because it was so hot.  You see from this photo that life went on right  around the filming.  People still walked up and down the dock and at various times there were quite a few people hanging over the railing to watch the show.

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Extras and snow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Filming a night scene.

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Shooting movie at night

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We got talking to one of the crew and we hit it off so he took us down the stairs to the set.  We were just a few feet away from the action as the 2 lead actors hit their marks.  We would be just behind the camera that you see at the bottom.  Our new friend  got us through security by saying we were his aunt and uncle.  What an experience!!!

Rex Beanland, Gibsons Workshop

Filming at night

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Because of Susan and my work with video for many years we are very interested in the movie making process.  So when we left the shoot the only comment I could make is, “This is unbelieveable!” 

A New Painting Done In Gibson’s

Just to finish this post off.  I also completed one painting just for my own enjoyment, a scene from the harbour.

Rex Beanland, All Quiet In Gibson's Harbour, watercolour, 14 x 18

All Quiet In Gibson’s Harbour

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So not only was the workshop an unforgettable experience there were all these other things that were so special.  

I’m using the word a ‘magical‘ to describe our experience in Gibson’s and I think it’s the right word.

Workshop In Beautiful Whistler

This August I was given the tremendous opportunity of teaching a workshop in beautiful Whistler, BC.  It was Susan and my first time there.

The workshop took place in a building that is devoted to art. It is surely one of the most beautiful locations I’ve ever been to, right on Alta Lake.  Here is the scene from the deck.

Rex Beanland, Whistler Workshop

The Workshop Location

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve learned that there is a tremendous benefit to taking time to play and practice the basics of watercolour before we jump into the ‘big’ painting.  I’ve also designed a number of little exercises that introduce the elements of the urban landscape in a fun and stress free way.  So now in my workshops we take the first day to do do these activities.  Stress free, lots of fun but full of learning.  When we start the actual demo everyone is already familiar with everything they are going to paint.  One of the things we practice is how to draw and paint cars.  Here are the student samples as well as my own.

Rex Beanland, Whistler Workshop

Car Scenes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Whistler Workshop

Rex’s Car

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was a really neat experience because some of the participants were very new to watercolour.  I have found that with new comers when they master the little things in these practice exercises they can progress tremendously quickly.

The main demo I did was a scene of Jasper Ave in Edmonton.  It uses the elements of the actual scene but takes them in a completely different direction. Here is the original photo.

Rex Beanland, Whistler Workshop

Jasper Ave

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Because none of us got the painting finished I said I would illustrate the steps I took to complete my painting.

First, here is my painting at the end of the workshop.

Rex Beanland, Jasper Ave at end of workshop, watercolour, 15 x 20

Jasper Ave at end of workshop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I looked at it back in my studio I felt that it needed more strength (more value).  So here is the second stage.

Rex Beanland, Jasper Ave second stage, watercolour, 15 x 20

Jasper Ave second stage

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If I had accomplished this value with my first wash it would have had greater luminance but for  all that it’s not bad and I feel that the value is much more what I wanted.

Then here is the finished painting.

Rex Beanland, Jasper Ave Final, watercolour, 15 x 20

Jasper Ave

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m very happy with this.  I’m also very happy with the student examples.  Even though they really just got started you can see how vibrant and colourful they are.  This strength is something that most beginning watercolourists really struggle to achieve.

Rex Beanland, Whistler Workshop

Student version (WIP)

Rex Beanland, Whistler Workshop

Student Sample 2 (WIP)

Rex Beanland, Whistler Workshop

Student Example 3

Rex Beanland, Whistler Workshop

Student Example 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One student did finish her painting and sent me a copy.

Rex Beanland, Whistler Workshop

Student Example Finished

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was more than pleased with how much everyone learned.  It was a wonderful group, enthusiastic, generous and friendly.

Rex Beanland, Whistler Class Photo,

Class Photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was so pleased to be invited to teach in Whistler and so  pleased to meet everyone.  I’m finding that the most satisfying part of the workshop is the connection that is made with the participants.

Happy painting in the future to all.

 

Putting The Urban Landscape Into Perspective

I’ve become very interested in the perspective of looking down on buildings. It’s interesting mainly because it’s a different way to look at things and therefore it takes us a little out of our comfort zone painting-wise.

This is the view from my mother-in-law’s 32nd floor apartment in Winnipeg.  

Rex Beanland, Winnipeg From The 32nd Floor, watercolour, 16 x 20

Winnipeg From The 32nd Floor

What Makes This Painting Interesting

I’m still playing with this subject to work out all the kinks but I think it’s worth the effort.  It presents a number of challenges but also a number of rewards.  One interesting element is the  perspective of looking down which by itself makes this an interesting subject.  Another thing that makes it interesting is that it includes some experimental watercolour techniques that give it a special look.  In this case the buildings in the background were put in using lots of water and lots of letting the paint do it’s own thing.

Also, the centre of interest is really strong.  The centre of interest consists of the the dark shadow on the road and all the people and cars near the sidewalk.

Painting and drawing this perspective was a great challenge but it offers great rewards. I plan to continue exploring this subject.

Presentation Of My Painting At The Calgary Stampede

I received one of the biggest honours of my art career this year.  I was commissioned to do the official sponsorship painting.  The theme was The Calgary Stampede, Community Spirit, Community Involvement.  Copies will be made and given to all the major sponsors.  

It was are real challenge for me because I’m not really a western artist and this was the first time I have ever painted horses.  I’m very pleased because I think they look like horses.  It’s also quite large for a watercolour, 24 x 36.

Rex Beanland, Calgary Stampede, Community Spirit, Community Involvement, watercolour 24 x 36

Calgary Stampede, Community Spirit, Community Involvement

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There was an official presentation of the painting in a very exclusive saloon for the sponsors.  Everything was absolutely first class and as the official artist, my wife, Susan and I were treated like royalty.  Wonderful dinner and front row seats to the chuckwagon races and the Grandstand Show.  A night to remember and as I mentioned a great honour.

The painting was officially unveiled and there was a lot of interest in it.  I was particularly pleased because many people there were real horse people and they all OK’d my efforts.

 

Rex Beanland, With Vice Chair, Dana Peers and CEO, Warren Connell, Stampede Presentation

With Vice Chair, Dana Peers and CEO, Warren Connell

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, With Dana Peers, Vice Chair of Calgary Stampede, Stampede Presentation

With Dana Peers, Vice Chair of Calgary Stampede

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Unveiling The Painting, Stampede Presentation

Unveiling The Painting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, People Take Photos, Stampede Presentation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, There was a lot of interest in the painting, Stampede Presentation, Stampede Presentation

There was a lot of interest in the painting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Some of the wives were very interested in art, Stampede Presentation

Some of the wives were very interested in art

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I no idea years ago when I started painting that there would be such pleasant surprises in store.

Many thanks to the Calgary Stampede.

Plein Air Paintings From Trip To Whitehorse

I recently posted about our wonderful RV trip to Whitehorse.  I still look back with great appreciation for that trip.  As well as going there to experience that area of Canada which I had never seen before it was a painting trip and a very productive one!

Here are some of the paintings that were done on the trip.

Jasper as mentioned previously was a real surprise.

Rex Beanland, Jasper 1, watercolour, 11 x 14

Jasper 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Jasper 2, watercolour, 11 x 14

Jasper 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My favourite RV camp was right in the centre of Grande Prairie on the reservoir. These 2 works were done just beside our campsite.

Rex Beanland, Sunrise, Grande Prairie, watercolour, 11 x 15

Sunrise, Grande Prairie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Early Morning Grande Prairie, watercolour, 11 x 15

Early Morning Grande Prairie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One time when we pulled off the highway and just followed a dirt road we discovered this scene which was very different for me but  a lot of fun to paint.

 

Rex Beanland, Fort Nelson Creek, watercolour, 11 x 14

Fort Nelson Creek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I spent 1 day painting on the streets of Whitehorse.

 

Rex Beanland, Downtown Whitehorse, watercolour, 11 x 15

Downtown Whitehorse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This  last painting was not done plein air but from a photo back in the studio.  Interestingly it was done in a style that I use for transparent portraits ie lots of light glazes.  The rocks on the left probably have 10 glazes as does the water.  This approach gives it a great sense of depth.

 

Rex Beanland, Athabaska Falls, watercolour, 18 x 14

Athabaska Falls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One real gift that comes from being an artist is the ability to travel – with purpose.  The purpose being to paint.  It gives much greater significance to everything that is seen.  I can’t wait to got back ‘Up North’ again!

North To Whitehorse

In May we took a 10 day one way RV trip to Whitehorse.  I’ve always wanted to go north and this is the furthest that I’ve been.

It was a painting trip for both of us.  RV’s are fabulous for painting since you can stop anywhere and you can paint inside or out but you also have your home right with you so there is no rush to finish. Of all the sights we saw I would have to say that the most surprising to me were in Jasper National Park.  I’ve never been to this park before but it has excellent painting subjects.  This scene was at a roadside turnout about 45 minutes north of Lake Louise.

Rex Beanland, Mountain In Jasper & My Painting

Mountain In Jasper & My Painting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This view was 10 minutes further up the highway.  I loved the colour of these mountains.  They seemed to be drenched in violets and blues my favourite colour combination.

Rex Beanland, Another Mountain In Jasper

Another Mountain In Jasper

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just before getting to the town of Jasper we stopped at Athabaska Falls.  I don’t know how I had missed hearing of this place.  It’s a powerful and dramatic location not only with the falls but the many fascinating trails through the rocks.

Rex Beanland, Athabaska Falls

Athabaska Falls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Susan & Me At Athabaska Falls

Susan & Me At Athabaska Falls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The next surprise for me was Grande Prairie.  Partially because it’s the largest city in the north and partially because we stayed at a RV park right beside the reservoir which offered this stunning view early the next morning.

 

Rex Beanland, Sunrise, Grande Prairie

Sunrise, Grande Prairie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We enjoyed being there so much that we set up and painted all morning.

Rex Beanland, Painting in Grande Prairie

Painting in Grande Prairie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From there we got on the Alaska Highway and at the northern tip of BC we came across another unexpected treat.  In the middle of nowhere is the Liard Hotsprings, a beautiful, natural hotspring.  Due to it’s popularity they have a provincial park campground right there.  The water bubbles up from the ground at one end of this pool (you can just see the rocks that surround it on the right) and as you get closer to the source the water gets VERY, VERY, dangerously hot but there are also some small cool streams that make the water warm but lovely.  It was so neat to have the dirt banks and the vegetation right on the water.

Rex Beanland, Laird Hotsprings

Laird Hotsprings

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We saw signs on the highway saying watch out for wild buffalo but we mocked them thinking that there are no wild buffalo.  We discovered that there are many of them and they love the side of the highway.  We were calling them bison but have been informed that they are actuallly Wood Buffalo.

Rex Beanland, Wood Buffalo Herd

Wood Buffalo Herd

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rex Beanland, Wood Buffalo & Me

Wood Buffalo & Me

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve never seen buffalo play before but this 30 second video clip shows that they have a lot of fun.

 

Wood Bison At Play from Rex Beanland on Vimeo.

 

 

Finally into the Yukon.

Rex Beanland, Welcome to Yukon Rex & Susan

Welcome to Yukon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are about 38,000 people in the entire Yukon and 28,000 live in Whitehorse so there are really no other large towns and people are very spread out.  One of the larger places is Watson Lake (pop about 1000).  It’s famous for it’s sign forest.

Rex Beanland, Watson Lake Sign Forest

Watson Lake Sign Forest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally we reached Whitehorse which is a lovely town.  In many ways it seems like any other small town but there is this neat feeling that you are very far north.

Rex Beanland, Painting In Downtown Whitehorse

Painting In Downtown Whitehorse

 

 

Rex Beanland, SS Klondike

SS Klondike, Whitehorse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My new friend Charlene holding my painting.

Rex Beanland, Charlene & My Painting

Charlene & My Painting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was a great trip. It was very interesting to me because whenever I have heard people talk about going to the arctic circle or beyond they always say there is something special, almost spiritual about it and I must admit that I felt something being in Whitehorse.  It affected me so much that I have become somewhat obsessed with the idea of returning to go all the way to Tuktoyaktuk.  Susan has no interest in that trip but who knows it may happen.

Transparent Watercolour Portrait Workshop

Another great weekend at the Leighton Centre for my Transparent Watercolour Portrait Workshop.  I really love spending a weekend with a group of people who are eager to learn. This was a group like that . . . plus there aren’t many places as beautiful as the Leighton Centre.

One thing that I continue to learn is how useful and enjoyable it is to do little practices before getting down to the serious business of doing a complete painting.  It’s liberating as well as so very useful to practice the various skills separately before putting them together in a painting.  

Here is the first little practice we did.  It’s easy to create this very attractive painting but it includes some valuable skills in particular the ability to soften edges.

Rex Beanland, students' bridesmaids, watercolour

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The next little practice incorporates all the skills that go into the full portrait but in a small, easier study.

Rex Beanland, Student samples

Eye samples

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is the demo I did as it was at the end of the workshop.

Rex Beanland, Quizzical at end of workshop, watercolour, 18 x 14

Quizzical at end of workshop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I got it home I felt that the extra hair on the left was too much so my trusty toothbrush took care of that.  

Rex Beanland, Quizzical. watercolour, 18 x 14

Quizzical

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was definitely a fun weekend and once again made me realize how much I enjoy teaching.  The experience is also made better when you have a great group like this one.

Rex Beanland, Class Photo, Portrait Workshop

Class Photo