Betwixt and Between
Watercolor artwork and story by Ian Carter
I am a retired Architect who decided to return to painting in 2015. I paint abstract acrylic mixed media and representational watercolour paintings. Married with three children and three grandchildren. Was the Director of Planning and Design for EXPO 86. Won Architectural awards for planning and design. Travelled all over Europe, Japan, the Caribbean, Peru, Belize etc. Lived in Nigeria for three years designing hospitals, and university buildings. I live in UBC, Vancouver BC with my wife, Mary Ann. I have attended workshops in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, and Vancouver BC.
I have a studio named STUDIO5 in a gallery of about 15 minutes drive. My art is transitional in that I am always learning and love it! I belong to a en plein air painting group which meets every Tuesday in locations around British Columbia. This provides camaraderie, critical appraisal and fun. Seeing what other artists have painted is always a pleasure and the discussions that occur following at least three hours of painting while sharing lunch, is enlightening, engaging and exhilarating.
My challenges are impatience and needing to settle to style. I am always finding new challenges in acrylics and watercolours. I suppose my favourite subject matter in watercolour is the landscape and in particular, trees. Living in Vancouver in Spring is beautiful when I can paint en plein air the Magnolia and Cherry blossoms complemented by the light yellow-green of newly hatched leaves. Autumn is also a favourite where the oranges, reds, brown madder, dark greens, deep yellows and all colours of the darker rainbow are available. I only recently discovered Brown Madder and find it a most rewarding hue. I am challenged by the process of mixing colours, since I prefer mixing of blues and yellows for example, to make greens and not to buy every colour that appeals to me, but rather create appropriate mixes. Mixing of colours is an excitement all of its own.
I want to be exposed to all possible avenues of art, related to the application of watercolours including abstraction. I read a lot about painting processes and artists' lives. I watch videos by people like Thomas Schaller, Bob Burridge, Ian Roberts, Grahame Booth. Ian Roberts is an oil painter, but his discussions about compositions are very relevant to most art works. I have Books on Ann and John Blockley, and guides by John F. Carlson and Mitchell Albala.
I like the whole idea of the Watercolor Academy as a learning process. I learn from many artists. Watercolour is my prime medium. I love that it can create some remarkable explorations on my watercolour paper. Acknowledgement that I have talent yet need to learn more to develop and explore.
People should vote for me because I know from my experience my work is liked by many and purchased by many. I capture the essence of shadow, reflection and light. I love playing with colour. My abstract work has developed into a process of exploration where I am never sure what will happen - this is a revelation! It is a process of creation on canvas when the process is creation.
I want to win this Competition and I need your help!
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