Sunday, December 21, 2008

On The Hill (25x25x$25)

On The Hill
Acrylic on Linen Canvas 3.5"x2.5"
All small works are on unstretched Canvas, but come with a margin of 1" of Canvas all around for easy mounting and/or stretching.
$25.00 Shipping included.

Snowmageddon II The sequal is on now and we will go through another one on Tuesday. It's getting old fast. I didn't dig out at all today. To heck with it. I figure I might as well let it finish first. All this, and we may not even have a white Christmas. Seems we will go up to +5 Degrees Celcious on the 24th which should melt the majority of this stuff away! Winter without snow... What a concept. Here is what it could look like!

You will be able to view all 25 works on Maraya Galleries. If you would like one, please click on the Buy Now Button, or contact Maraya Galleries.Here is the painting in a frame (not included of course :) )

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Salmon Arms II

Two summers ago, on a business trip to the BC interior, I had the pleasure of spending a night in Salmon Arms. At the time, I did a lousy watercolour of the view of the lake from the wharf near the Prestige Inn. Although the day was hazy, I made the mistake of placing my board in full sun and the colours came out horrible. In the glaring light of the sun, the colours sparkled with blues and subtle browns, but once indoors, the painting looked horrid. Everything was muddy and drab.

For the past 16 months the painting sat in the growing pile of failures. My growing Tower of London, - or to use a contemporary image - the Guantanamo of my short falls. This week, feeling tired, but wanting to work out a few business frustrations in my mind, I pulled it out and decided to work it over with Oil Pastels. A few hours, and a quick critique from my most trusted and hardest critic later, this emerged.

As much as I love working in watercolours, I am beginning to favour opaque media such as pastels and Acrylics. I haven't touched my Oil paints yet for fear of an asthma reaction, but I would like to get them out eventually. Maybe when the weather gets better in a few months and I can take them outside. For now, I think I will be digging through the pile of failures and trying to save a few.

Salmon Arms, Oil Pastel over Watercolour on Fabriano 140lb Rough paper, 9"x12"

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Cottage View

It's that time of year again. The colours have changed and the bright reds and yellows are giving way to browns and gold. Soon the trees will be bare and the first snow flakes will start silently coming down.
I have not been using Oil Pastels lately. having the studio has allowed me to spread my stuff and finally be able to take out my Acrylic paints. I have been enjoying these a lot. But today I wanted to revisit the Oil Pastels. Especially with this subject matter, it cried out for Oil Pastels, and I was happy to oblige. There is a certain freedom in not being hooked to one medium. One is free to chose the medium that best suites the occasion!
I am not sure what to make of this one. I usually don't like my work when it is done, and then learn to enjoy it as I grow further from it emotionally. I don't know if that makes sense!

8"x10",Oil Pastel on Paper

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Nocturne - Waiting for Day Break (Revisted)

I have not had a lot of free time to practice my art lately, but I finally got some time this weekend and I went straight to this little painting and reworked it. The fact is that because I come to Acrylic from Watercolour, I tend to place the paint on the canvas in a thin layer when using a brush. I needed to make the painting richer and I also needed to work on the overall image some more.
Nocturne - Waiting for Day Break, Acrylic on Canvas Panel, 5"x7".

I love working in Acrylic paint. It allows me to build up my work and accommodates my life interruptions without punishing me like Watercolour does.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Nocturne - Waiting for Day Break

I couldn't sleep too well last night and ended giving up at about 5:30am. So I went down to my studio and finished this one. I have been studying Whistler's nocturne paintings, (some of the best I have ever seen) and I decided to do these two to see what I had learned. I am rather satisfied with this small 5"x7" (waiting for Day Break). The little one 3.5"x2.5" (Night Fishing) was a warm-up. It has a bit too much colour and no subtlety. Sort of how one feels when one stumbles out of bed too early in the morning!

Nocturne - Waiting for Day Break, Acrylic on Canvas Panel, 5"x7".

Nocturne - Night Fishing, Acrylic on Canvas, 3.5"x2.5".

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Edge Of Urban

I don't know what to make of this knife painting. I like it. I really enjoyed doing it, but no one around me seems to agree. So I guess I will leave it to you all to tell me what you think. I have put this one on eBay as well. Perhaps because I struggled with it so much I care so much about it? Perhaps it is the theme?

On my way to work each morning, on Hwy401 between Mississauga Rd and Mavis, there is a stretch of farm land on both sides of a bridge that stand there defying the urban spread. At the edge of this farm, the houses from the most recent development stand atop a small cliff eyeing the farm with malice. This is the first of a series that I intend to do of that farm and the urban siege that is around it. For what it is worth, here it is. Enjoy!

Edge of Urban, Acrylic on Canvas Board 5"x7"


Saturday, September 13, 2008

Sailing; closing out the summer

Summer is drawing to a close up here and soon the colours of the leaves will start changing. That will herald another phase of painting and the colours in the palette will shift ever so subtly to the warm fall ones. For now though, one more painting to celebrate the summer with all its yellows and blues.

Whenever I can, I am enjoying knife painting. It keeps you honest and incapable of fussing with the details. Something I really enjoy avoiding and love when my viewers can see more details than I know I have put in there. That is when you know that the painting works because the viewer has engaged actively in viewing it.

Sailing, 9"x7" Acrylic on Canvas board. © Fawzan Barrage 2008

Friday, September 05, 2008

Studying with Claude Monet

I have been searching for a good teacher or book to help me explore the many secrets of colour in art. There are many worth while books to review. Some are very good, but for the past week I have been learning from one of the best.

I am a big fan of Athenaeum. The site is a virtual museum of fine arts with thousands of paintings in generous size available for download to study and learn from. For the past week I have been spending time with Claude, and he has taken me on an incredible journey through colour. I can't explain it all... rather it would take me a book to do so, but let me just share with you what I have been studying and you, I am sure will draw your own lessons if you take the time to learn.

Here is one set of paintings done by Claude Monet of the Rouen Cathedral. Everyone is a masterpiece, and everyone is a book about colour Harmony all by itself. Enjoy the ride!

Here is what I do with these: Take each painting into your Photoshop and pick-up the eye dropper tool. Now pass that tool over the painting and see all the colours that make up the painting.

Now: What is the harmony? What are the dominant colours? How did Monet use them? How can you use them? Why do they work? Are they all true to colour harmony theory???

The most interesting thing that I got from these lessons is that blue may be the opposite of orange, and most people would tell you to put them together to get a vivid contrast, but blue and yellow make a much more vivid and vibrant contrast than blue and orange. Purple and yellow are opposites, and they should be strongest at pulling each other out, but purple and orange have a much stronger pull together than purple and yellow. What can you see? What lessons can you add?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Istanbul - Colour corrected

I just had to re-photograph this painting. The colours are very subtle and I had to work on it several times in PS to get it right. This time it looks just right on my screen. The yellow is a bit stronger than it shows in the actual painting, but the rest is just right.

Istanbul, 12"x9", Acrylic on Canvas board.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Solitary Lookout

This knife painting was a true pleasure to work on. The colours again are not right in the computer image, but somehow I am having a very hard time translating the subtle colours that I am deliciously making to the bits and bites of the computer digital world. Perhaps I will try to rephotograph this one and the one of Istanbul again this week. I really want you to enjoy the paintings as they really are.

For now, I hope you can appreciate this one as it is until I can fix the colours on the screen.

Solitary Lookout, 5"x7" Acrylic on canvas board

Sunday, August 24, 2008


This one took me about 2 weeks to finish. The photo does not do it justice. The colours are too subtle to capture in a photo, but I tried my best to work in PS to get as close as possible to the real colours.
Istanbul, 12"x9", Acrylic on Canvas board.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Coming Home

Another midnight ACEO with a nautical theme. I enjoy doing these and I love selling them on Ebay.
Coming Home, ACEO, 3.5"x2.5", Watercolour on 140lbs. watercolour paper

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Midnight Sail Watercolor ACEO

Just a small ACEO to close out the weekend. I call this Midnight Sail. I enjoy doing aceos when I am not up to a full painting. They are usually delightful to paint with accidents almost always making the mark for better or worse. That makes them very organic and loose .

I placed this one on Ebay. Frankly ACEOs are the only thing that one should put up on Ebay. They are cheap enough for everyone to own and hopefully it develops the buyers into art patrons. It also is an excellent way to introduce the Ebayer to the artist and his/her work with the hope that once they by an ACEO and like it, they may buy a larger work from the artist. anyway here it is:

Midnight Sail ACEO 3.5"x2.5" Watercolour on watercolour paper

After The Rain - revisited

My web-friends at Wet Canvas were kind enough to point out the jarring streight line in the foreground. They were right of course and this morning I made some changes to the painting and I believe it is even better. I extended the tree shadows into the grassy area and made some shadow areas in the foreground of the grass as well to spread the darks. Here it is finally done... I believe :)

After The Rain: 9"x12" Watercolour on Watercolour Paper

Saturday, July 26, 2008

After The Rain

This is the first time in a very long time that I have had the chance to work on a single painting all day. It took my mind off of the fact that my family is away, and I think - if I may say so myself - I did well today.

We had a huge thunderstorm and I had to huddle in the car while it passed, but then because of that, the painting changed quit a bit with the break in the clouds and the vivid colours of wet nature.

After The Rain: 9"x12" Watercolour on Watercolour Paper

I am very satisfied with this one. The colours are even nicer than what you can see on the screen. I tried very hard to PS the colours to make them match, but this is as close as I can get.

Hope you all agree with me!

Thursday, July 03, 2008


Yes I am still alive. Yes I am still painting. Better yet, now I have a bo-ni-fied studio to work from and I am re-visiting acrylics and oil soon. But for now, a little 4x6 that I did on a recent trip to Edmonton.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Kelwona, Mission Hill Sketches

Kelowna, West Bank from the Mission Hill Winery
Pencil and water on Paper 4"x6"
I spent a couple of days on business in Kelowna, BC. The area is as beautiful as BC gets! While I didn't have any time to do any painting, I managed to sketch a few pen and pencil works worth sharing.

Kelowna, Mission Hill Winery Ink and water on Paper 4"x6"

Incidentally, if you follow my sketches, you know I like to wet my ink and usually use water-soluble graphite pencils as well. I didn't have my water-soluble graphites with me. All I had was a golf pencil (the tiny ones used to track scores on the golf course). Guess what? I just discovered that these are the cheapest water-soluble pencils around!!! So much for the expensive Derwents!! I know where to get my next stash!!

Kelowna, Looking North Ink and water on Paper 4"x6"

Sunday, May 04, 2008

A few sketches

Watercolour on Paper.

Today I couldn't really get into painting at all. First we were busy getting things done, and then I just was too tried to start something grand. So I did these 5 thumb-nail sketches. These are more like doodles in colour. Nothing too exciting just wanted to share what I did that's all :)

Watercolour on Paper

Garden Corner - Pen sketch

Spent a few days in Winnipeg last week. Depressing place. We lived there over 4 years ago and I haven't visited since. Nothing had changed. If a city could be going through a clinical depression, this would be the best example of it. Sad and with no hope to rise above mediocracy.

Garden Corner, Ink on Paper.

Speaking of mediocracy, here is a sketch I did no the plane. Nothing much, just a picture to go with a post :)

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Three Sketches

It has been a long time since I posted my pen and pencil sketches to this blog. I looked back through my sketch book and chose three to share with you today.

The first one was done today at a neighborhood park. It is a loose pen drawing of the park with the houses surrounding it.

The second one was done a few weeks ago with charcoal, and a few pastels. An experiment really since I have never used dry pastels before. Turns out I shouldn't use them as they aggravate my asthma and I really don't need that

The third one is a water soluble graphite pencil drawing. It is very simple but I love it.

After Neda's terrible experience last week, I have decided to keep my images very small and nothing larger quality than 96dpi. Sorry, but I really don't want to find these images on photobacket for sale. I have encoded the images with my meta data, but the reality is they are out there and anyone who can't appreciate the propriety of the art work can take them (steal them that is). I know I am not Picasso. My work is not worth much I agree, but it is my work and it is worth it to me so here is the deal. If you really like something and want a larger image, drop me an email. I would love to share, but just not with the whole wide world of coffee mug printers out there :)

Of course you can also ask Rima for these originals (not these in this post they are not great). Everything that is on this blog can be yours for a reasonable price :)

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Meadows in Oil Pastels

I guess when the spell is broken the art comes gushing! LOL. No I don't want to set this one up as anything more than a sketch and a sort of art stretching exercises. Here it is then a 3" x 5" entitled Meadows and a look forward to spring!

On eBay

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Mina Sleeping + Tagged

I have been tagged by my lovely wife. The rules of the tag are:

Pick up the nearest book of 123 pages or more. (No cheating!)
Find Page 123.Find the first 5 sentences.Post the next 3 sentences.Tag 5 people.

I won't tag 5 people, but here are the three sentences:

"The lady had no idea where she was, but she quickly gathered from their mode of living that the people she was staying with were Christians, and she could see little purpose, even if she had known her whereabouts, in revealing her identity. From the way Pericone was behaving, she knew that sooner or later, whether she liked it or not, she would be compelled to let him have his way with her, but meanwhile she was proudly resolved to turn a blind eye to her sorrowful predicament. To the three surviving members of her female retinue, she gave instructions that they should never disclose their identity to anyone until such time as they were in a position that offered them a clear prospect of freedom."

"The Decameron", Giovanni Boccaccio.