Friday, 8 August 2014

Sunshine on my Shoulders

Sunflower collection. 
Demonstrations and ideas for new paintings

Its' really funny how painting a subject can bring back happy memories. Last week I demonstrated how I would approach painting sunflowers and before we knew it my workshops were taken over by glowing yellow paintings as sunflower compositions  burst into life during the session. It was a wonderful workshop because each one was completely unique with the individual personality of the artist creating. It was a very special session as sunshine certainly filled the room with both colour, enthusiasm and energy.

 In  Monets' Garden, France.

Whenever I paint sunflowers I always imagine I am in France as I loved living there, walking  along country lanes of sunflower fields which was magical. I also often think of the song " Sunshine on my Shoulders " by John Denver who I used to love listening to, and will admit I still do. His voice was so pure and calming. I used to play the guitar and often sang his beautiful songs. So much so that my wonderful husband surprised me with front row seats to see John Denver when he was in an open concert in Hong Kong. I couldn't believe it and was so excited. The venue would be amazing and we would be there, sat  so close watching and listening.  

The day before the concert a friend we hadn't seen for years was visiting Hong Kong and asked to meet up which we did. Over dinner that night we mentioned we were going to see John Denver the next day. Our friend was eager to come too although his younger wife had never heard of the singer, so not so enthusiastic. My  husband managed to get two more tickets for them but they were at the back of the auditorium. On the concert night we walked to our dream  seats in the front leaving our friend and his new wife at the back of the hall. We were right in the centre of the front row. Perfect! But we looked at each other and knew we couldn't do it. So my husband walked to the back of the hall and asked two very amazed ladies, sat by ou rfriends, if they would like to swap seats. They jumped at the opportunity to come to the front and we took their places at the back. I couldn't see very well but I heard every favourite song and it was such a magical night still. Looking back this is just one moment in time where my husband has thrown me by his kindness.

And so when I paint sunflowers I smile and think of that night.

The sun is shining and there will be sunshine on my shoulders while I paint outside today.

Smiling of course!

 Sunflower centre radiating into sunshine petals
Patterns for petals around teh centre have been created by the use of clingfilm.

Daniel Smith Hamsa Yellow Medium is gorgeous for these paintings and Saunders Waterford paper is a brilliant surface for my floral work


Thank you so much to everyone who has asked how my dog,Bailey, is.  He is recovering well and ate three small meals yesterday. We aren't out of the woods yet but he is  really doing well, going for short walks and enjoying cuddles!

Bailey eating eagerly yesterday!



Sue Bradley said...

Sunny sunflowers and a much sunnier Bailey! Everyone loves the flowers that were inspired by your workshop, Jean! Thanks for the much needed boost of enthusiasm. I think I must order some Hansa yellow! X

Jean Haines SWA, SFP said...

You are welcome Sue, it was so wonderful seeing you again and I am thrilled you enjoyed my workshop! Jean