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Monday, April 7, 2014

Porcelain Rabbits

There are lots of porcelain rabbits in the decor shops, and they seem to go with the renewed interest in French country-style decorating. My friend, Melissa, gave me a tiny white porcelain rabbit and I immediately saw the possibilities of this very plain form. It is as if a featureless rabbit is no longer the slave of "scale" and can easily appear gigantic when painted. Melissa also sent me the photo of the rows of porcelain rabbits, and we both thought that they looked scary. I suppose I can turn the idea into something threatening. Maybe it will be possible to move away from the "cute" label.

Three Giant Glass rabbits , 10" x 10" oil on wrapped canvas.

A tiny porcelain rabbit is the model for my 3 giants.
 I used a purple colour to work out the forms and volumes.

Friday, March 28, 2014

More White Rabbits

As I continue with my rabbit paintings, I still fight a battle between subtle, meaningful art and mere perceptive art. Mostly the bunnies turn out "cute". They are the ones painted from pets that I know and the family has owned. I moved away from the cute label when I started to paint the stone rabbits I have seen in a garden. I had these observations from Cathy Gatland:

 Yes, perhaps a little threatening, but also a little lost and vulnerable, not being able to see...and especially in the top one, the marks around the figure suggest other senses in full use - listening, sniffing, ready to act. 

Reading this, I think I have reached a more serious plane with the sculptural rabbits.

The following rabbits leave me very uncertain! Do they "say" something? This time I gave them eyes, hoping it would work out. Incidentally, the lines are all very straight, but the camera caused some extortion in the photos. The soft peach color and all the blues are true to the originals.

Rabbit with a Baroque design border 1

Rabbit with a Baroque design border 2

Sunday, March 9, 2014

The Pale Rabbits and an Easter Jigsaw Puzzle

Of course this rabbit theme is just too much fun, and I will explore more and more as time goes by. Here are two images that were inspired by old stone rabbits which I found on my cell phone, photographed in Pretoria a year or so ago, even before I started using rabbits as my source material.

I simply called them "lapin 1" and "lapin 2". As soon as I had published the photos on Facebook, I had a sale and was told by many people that these paintings were more atmospheric and meaningful than my paintings of the Peter/Snowball family.

"lapin 1" Oil on Canvas 10" x 10"

"lapin 2" Oil on Canvas 10" x 10"

The symbolic meaning of "rabbit" is regeneration. Of life, of spirit and of the seasons .
 Thus it is a chosen symbol for Easter
You can buy this gift, made from my artwork from or find it on Facebook 

Friday, February 28, 2014

We do not have bunnies...

No, we do not have rabbits on the West Coast of South Africa, but they have been seen on some farms away from the coast. But of course there is always "pretending". I painted Lola and Vanilla really big and then posed the painting in the garden.

I was very happy with the fast laying down of colours. This piece was painted alla prima in a single session. The secret of  painted or photographed animals, is to give lots of attention to the eyes.

Giant Lola and Vanilla 500mm x 500mm Water-soluble oil on stretched canvas.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Sprinkles and Raspberry

The good news is, that I am going to visit that lovely family of rabbits again. I hope to show photos of myself holding them in April.

Sprinkles and Raspberry 8 x 8 oil on boxed canvas
I am sure you wondered about the little "masked" rabbit, who played my "Joker" in The Circle of Life? Aptly named "Sprinkles" by my clever grandchildren, she shares the white of her mom, Snowball and the black of her dad, Peter. I used rough brush strokes here to avoid getting stuck with the detail. I am sure you love Raspberry too. In this photo of the two, Raspberry looks so very serene, while Sprinkles, the actress, pretends to be a cat:

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