Opus Daily Practice – day 8

Opus Daily Practice day 8. Today I decided to work on projects in progress than start a new one based on the prompt. Cold weather is allowing me to get a lot done. One bag finished. One hat finished. The maple leaf drawing is super close to finished, and the kayak drawing is in progress. […]

via Opus Daily Practice – Day 8 — Debra Hunter – Canadian photography, art and handmade

Opus Daily Practice – Day 4

Opus Daily Practice day 4. The prompt today was “melting”, which made me think of how the colors of a sunset melt together. The above drawing is still in progress, but it is a start. Speaking of “in progress”, The mini bag is progressing with a strap and toggles being the last two steps before […]

via Opus Daily Practice 2017 – Day 4 — Debra Hunter – Canadian photography, art and handmade

Another Printmaking Experiment

 2x4 wood cutI’ve decided instead of boring everyone with rants regarding the upcoming federal election, that I will instead bore you with some experimental art projects (LOL).

Today’s experiment is a scrap piece of 2×4 used for a wood cut for printmaking. I have no idea how this will print. I am hoping for a rustic feel, and maybe even some grain showing (like in the wax crayon test on the left). Maybe tomorrow I will print it. Sometimes you just have to have a play.







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Works in Progress, Finished and Things

It seems to have been another busy week that has whizzed past at break neck speed. A combination of trying to finish the order for Woods on Pender, working on Handmade in Canada, plus life, has made for a week of very late nights (well technically early mornings when you work until 3 am!).

blog painting wip_7718a

Work in progress. Acrylic on panel. 24″x24″.

I finally managed to put in a few hours painting the panel that I had started before Easter. It is still a work in progress but coming along. The piece measures 2 feet by 2 feet and continues with the Roe Islet theme. This theme seems to provide never ending material. A couple of weeks ago I shot several hundred reference images while walking the ever changing islet, including macros of spring lilies. Hopefully I will get a few of these images up on Island Home Blog sometime soon.

blog painting wipI work on panel differently to canvas in that I tend to prefer to work flat instead of on the wall easel. The upside to this is that it is a much more social way of working. Mark and I each choose our ends of the table, we turn on the “wireless”, he works on “something”, and I paint and argue with CBC radio (and their endless agendas). Sometimes it is BBC Radio 4. We fell into this habit out on the coast and it has now become a great way to spend an evening no matter where we are.

1_coffee press sweater 6x6_7642The order for Woods on Pender is complete. Knit, finished, blocked. I will do the packaging this evening and then the order will be ready to ship. The complete group of items can be viewed by clicking HERE. Each piece is completely unique except for the resort’s logo that is featured in the center panel.

blog planA few days ago I also tackled playing with cabin floor plans. We still don’t know exactly what insurance is going to do. If they can fix the situation it will be great as we won’t be without the use of our cabin for as long, but the reoccurring dreams of the cabin collapsing makes me wonder if the verdict is going to be that the cabin is a tear down. It has been full of water for so long. Common sense tells me that I need to consider all the options for how we may need to deal with this property

So in an effort to be proactive I started drafting floor plans. My goal is to shrink the actual foot print from that of our current cabin. I know this seems counter-intuitive considering the size of our family, but more land and less building makes sense to me when we are at the cabin. The plan above is the ground floor at 780 square feet, plus we would add an enclosed loft portion over part of the cabin to work as a bedroom/studio/study space. The portion not enclosed would become a covered balcony which will give lake views. We’ve learned from the house out on the island that big spaces with high ceilings are hard to heat when you aren’t there full time, so the goal is to scale it back and make heating the rooms, especially the bedrooms, easy.

We are also thinking of putting the water tank and pump in a separate utility building and going with on demand hot water. We are determined to never have another water disaster again.

I figure if we have plans of action in place for all the different outcomes that things will be less daunting when the time comes.

handmade in canada badgeHandmade in Canada is ticking along. We spoke with another interested artisan the other day. Hopefully in a few days I will have another maker’s profile to share.

Well off to package and paint. I have a chance to actually accomplish a few things this evening as the rest of the family sits in front of the hockey on T.V. …..or plays Minecraft.

( I may have been premature in thinking everyone would be firmly parked in front of the T.V. (A.K.A. “out of my way”). Interest is now lagging as the Canucks have scored twice. Hmmmmm.)

Black and Blue – a work-in-progress post

It’s been a while since I did a work in progress post so I thought I would share a play-by-play on an ink drawing/painting (you decide) from the other evening. I thought another “feel good” post was in order.

blog black and blue 1We start with the basic setup as captured on my iPhone. Ink, palette, heavy watercolor paper taped to a piece of panel, brush, water and the obligatory cup of tea. The iPad mini holds my all-in-one stash of images for art inspiration, plus Tune In Radio so I can listen to BBC 4 (I’ve mostly given up on CBC).

blog black and blue 2I start with very light blue ink to block in the distant horizon and the rocks in the foreground. This gives me a starting place.

blog black and blue 3Then come the trees. I resist getting caught up in the details and instead put down the basic shape.

blog black and blue 4I start to add some depth with a medium blue ink. It’s an interesting process working at this stage where the image is in monochrome, but it isn’t black and white.

blog black and blue 5From a medium blue to a full intensity blue the drawing/painting starts to come to life. It is a bit too Delft for my liking so I decide to work into the piece with some black.

blog bridges road in black and blue 2015 5x7 borderThe final image completed ( and photographed in the studio rather than with my phone). I think the blue and black work well together.

More details about this piece can be found on my other blog by clicking HERE.

If you are interested in seeing the location that inspired this piece, it can be viewed by clicking HERE.

Artwork by Debra Hunter








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Friday Night Painting

I thought I would share a little “in progress” of last nights watercolor and ink paintings.

blog painting 1I have been recently been working on small (5″x 7″) paintings on paper. It is fun to work on pieces that take only a short time to complete, and use inexpensive materials. There is also the added bonus that you don’t need a lot of room to work, so there is room at the end of the table for my husband to play board games with our sons while I paint.

I am working from images on the iPad; it works well having multiple images to flick through in search of inspiration.

blog painting 2I’ve taken to working on two images at a time, but using different approaches. I think it helps to expand how you see, paint and draw, especially when you are consciously trying to “not” do the same thing.

blog painting 3My choice was to do color on top in watercolor and ink only on the bottom piece.

blog painting 4Then the pieces made a quick trip down to the studio to be photographed.

The final pieces can be viewed by clicking here, they are on my website and blog www.debra-hunter.com . If you click on the images on the other site they tend to look the best.


Art by Debra Hunter








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Progression of a Painting

I though it might be fun to work through the progression of a painting I finished recently. With the majority of my paintings I use photographs I have taken as a starting point. Generally they are shot with painting specifically in mind. For this particular painting it was a photograph taken on Roe Islet on Pender Island (BC, Canada).

view through the trees photo_3512 aWorking from a photograph makes sense. A busy family with busy children does not mix well with working on location. Generally I shoot a ton of images, edit down the ones I want to paint from, and then I email them to my iPad. Working from the iPad has taken a bit of figuring out, I’ve been doing it for about 6 months. Overall I think it is a better way to work than from a flat photograph on paper. I find I don’t get as hung up on the details and feel I have more license to tweak things. I can also carry around the iPad to think about the next step. I will often shoot the “work in progress” on the iPad so that I can look at it too while plotting the next step. Interestingly my favorite photography images are rarely my favorite images for inspiration for a painting.

blog view through the trees inspiration 2014 4x6 borderWith this painting I decided to do an “inspiration” painting first. It is a small 4″x6″ acrylic on panel. I get bored with the idea of doing sketches, however the idea of a mini painting made sense. A small investment of time and materials gave me a sense of what I liked about the painting and what I would change. It also meant that by using the same materials (acrylic and panel) I knew exactly what I was working with color and technique.

blog view through the trees 2014 11x14The final painting evolved a little further as I worked from both the iPad and the 4×6 painting. The sky and water gained more interesting color combinations, the hills pushed back to create more distance, the leaves lightened up, the tree trunks got swoopier, and there were some nice pops of red. I really like the swoopy trunks and the reds; they will be making a return appearance in another painting for sure.

Even as I write this blog post I am discovering more. It is interesting looking at this progression as it is presented together here in the same format. I am seeing the value in doing the small painting first and how it helps make sense of the information, especially when there is a lot going on as is the case on the right hand side of the view. It is very interesting looking at these three images together.


Photography and art by Debra Hunter.

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