3 min read

14: COVID blahs, geothermal colours, and the Faith in the Arts podcast

I have to be honest: I didn't really feel like putting this together tonight. I'm still feeling a bit of the "blahs" after having had COVID, along with the rest of my family. It was rougher for the adults than the kids, and my wife is still suffering from the annoying cough, but we're OK. We came out the other end. 🙂

Surprisingly, I have a few things to share too. I guess a month's a long time.

Things I've made

I actually really like this. I think it was subconsciously inspired by my trip to Taupo.

Colourful, abstract watercolour and fineliner work called Geothermal
Geothermal, watercolour and fineliner on paper
Pencil copy of a Cézanne self-portrait from 1880
Copy of a Cézanne self-portrait from 1880, pencil on paper
Blind-contour drawing of my youngest daughter in fineliner
Blind-contour drawing of my youngest daughter, fineliner on paper
Pencil drawing of a cat toy (stick with string tied to it) that one of my kids made
Drawing of a cat toy that one of my kids made, pencil on paper


I will need words.

—Colin McCahon

Crappy photos of cool things

Photo of an unusual Green Bay sunset
Unusual Green Bay sunset
Photo of a sunrise through our condensation-covered ranchshlider
Ranchslider sunrise - a new photo of a scene I've painted before

Faith in the Arts podcast!

  • This is awesome. Three people, including Marlita Hill, whose newsletter I found out about this podcast through, from different countries, artistic disciplines, and backgrounds discussing this subject in a deep, grounded, opinionated, and humorous(!) way. I've listened to a few other podcasts on the subject of art and faith, and although one or two of them are OK, they don't really pack a punch. This one already has. Just what I was looking for.

Other bits and pieces

  • Russian Landscape Painter Zufar Bikbov on the Plein Air Podcast. Fascinating interview. I hadn't really looked at Levitan or Repin paintings. Mind-blowing. And the education Russian painters had! No wonder they were so good!
  • The speed of God. This is awesome.
  • One massive canvas, ridiculous amounts of paint, three outdoor sessions, wild colour, and unrestrained brush abuse. It can only be Turner Vinson.
  • Pinball FX3: This playstation game reminded me how much I like pinball. The attention to detail is amazing; it feels remarkably like playing a real machine. I marvel at the amount of work and creativity that goes into real machines too: the concept, the design, the lighting, the music and sound effects, the artwork, the electromechanics... It must take a tonne of work and creativity to create a successful game. There's just something about the simplicity and physicality of pinball that I love. The playfields are so interesting to look at. I think many of them qualify as works of art.
  • I found the below plein-air and studio demo from Rachael McCampbell incredibly helpful. She's great at explaining what she's doing, and I picked up a tonne of tips. For example, looking for other places in your painting to use the current colour on your brush before you change it; rarely cleaning your brush while you're painting so that you (intentionally) dirty up the colours; and using things like a squeegee and paper towels to add lines and texture to your painting. It's long (1:49), and I did fast forward a bit in the later stages of the video, but I highly recommend it.