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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Painting in Texas with Nancy Medina

I entered the hotel breakfast room, and there she was, petite, sweet Nancy Medina! For seven years I have hoped to meet her in person one day and to paint with her. The visit was made possible by my very kind children, who lives in Katy, Texas. Of course we had a lovely meeting and then went off to the course venue, the quaint New Braunfells Art Society building.
From the moment Nancy steps in front of a class, her professionalism shines through. Everything around her is pristine and organised. She speaks clearly, gently repeating terms as she goes into her presentation. We get used to her special terms and way of expression. I can start painting now, and I still hear her voice: "Make it darker, make it darker!"
The first thing you learn is to divide the palette into transparent and opaque colours. Watching Nancy work, you gain respect for those background layers, the colours which will eventually shine through everything, bringing light and depth into a painting. What follows is an album of our painting workshop.
Blogger friends, social media friends and now meeting up in real life

All surfaces (and the floor) was filled with fresh flowers and lovely displays

This is the palette that Nancy starts out  with every morning.
 Look at the delightful opaques on the right which she pre-mixes!
They are used at the closing stages of the painting.

A display of  Nancy Medina DVD's for sale
Out of a blurry background of transparent colour, the daisies are born
Wonderful things happening before our eyes!
So appealing!

Nancy arranging flowers under the spotlight.

In a surprisingly short time, a completed masterpiece by Nancy Medina!

OK, Girl, it's your turn now!!!

NEXT TIME: PAINTING IN TEXAS (it sounds like: Walking in Memphis!)

And to end with: Here is a live-stream lesson with Nancy Medina that you can watch just now!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Hibiscus Flowers, Then and Now

In the 1990's I lectured a course "Flowers in Watercolour". I loved it and tried to make a painting a day. After we moved to the West Coast , a new interest developed, this unique area where I lived.  200 posts of paintings and stories that cover our stretch of coast.
And then one day...a person moves on or in my case: moves back! I am back with my first love of 25 years ago, namely flowers. In this post I look back at some of my hibiscus paintings. I will show a recent one first, and then visit the archives!

Fleeting Moments Hibiscus 2016
500mm x 400mm
Oil on canvas

700mm x 600mm
Acrylic on canvas board

This painting was made in the 80's and I now wish that I have kept it for myself.

Watercolour Hibiscus 1998
400 mm x 500mm
I have just noticed that I have always painted the pink hibiscus, which is my favourite. In future I will look out for some of the other colours. Here is a medley of photos from my collection:

This year, I have been thoroughly spoiled by my children in Texas, who invited me to spend three months in that lovely hot climate! In my next blog I will tell about the great opportunity that came my way: flower painting with Nancy Medina, my friend on the blogs and social media for a long time.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Painting Nasturtiums


I continue my series of posts on painting flowers, by looking at nasturtiums, showing older works as well as recent work. One can have these tiny bright flowers available at various times of the year and they grow most easily from seeds. Where I live in a nature reserve, they can easily take over the natural habitat, so I do not plant them, but go out to collect some from friends or in places where they grow wild.

In this post I show paintings done over the past few years. You will notice that I paint with the flowers close by to inspire me. One thing that I love to do, is work with 3 or 4 paintings to create sets.
A medley of small nasturtium paintings

A set like this can fill a colourless corner with light and brightness.
Contact me at to order sets


This is my latest nasturtium painting.

By using the blues in the background, the bright colours of the leaves,
 petals and buds are emphasized.
It also provides a clean contrast for the little Delft vase.

Hello New Year Nasturtiums
by Marie Theron
150mm x 210mm
5" x 8"
It is important to do sketches of your subject and to learn the parts of the flowers.

Where I sit at the moment, I look upon a wonderful large bush filled with hibiscus flowers. In my next post I will show new as well as past work on the subject of hibiscus.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Painting Poppies

Aren't they the most uplifting of flowers? In our warm country the vase life of poppies is not very long, but what joy they give, pushed into a jug or tumbler, as informal as possible. Where poppies are, there will be colour! 

We often had them as painting subjects in my watercolour courses. Once again, like with most flowers, I made sure that my students held a poppy in their spare hand while making the initial drawing. That is the only way one can discover the beautiful intricate folds of the petals, the splendid capsule form in the centre with stamen like the rays of the sun, and the grey-green stems.

Freshly picked poppies in various stages of popping open.
Photo: Marie Theron   ‪#‎artmatters‬
This design of "poppies blowing in the wind" appeared as a card in book stores during the 1990's
©Marie Theron 1991  ‪#‎artmatters‬

This is probably my oldest painting of poppies
©Marie Theron 1991  ‪#‎artmatters‬

Aquarelle pencils are such nice tools for getting the detail of poppies.
I enhanced the drawing with white designer's gouache.
©Marie Theron 1991  ‪#‎artmatters‬

A large watercolour 1993
©Marie Theron 1993  ‪#‎artmatters‬

Another large watercolour  1993
©Marie Theron 1993  ‪#‎artmatters‬
Noticing my poppies in watercolour, a friend gave me a commission to make an acrylic painting. It was a hit, and I stepped away from watercolours! I started the new era of 2000 as a painter and no longer as an art lecturer. I still love teaching, so please feel free to ask tips on anything. 

The painting that started my career in oils and acrylic painting  ‪#‎artmatters‬.
My Facebook Page is for you to ask any art-related question. Visit my FACEBOOK PAGE 

An apology: All the poppy paintings on my page has been sold. However, you may want to consider some lovely prints, available HERE, ON THE BLOG OF CAROL NELSON

Later this year I will attend a workshop with Nancy Medina in Texas. HAVE A LOOK AT THE VIBRANT POPPY PAINTING ON HER BLOG or THIS LOVELY SET BY NANCY

Thursday, August 27, 2015

My Long Relationship with the Painting of Flowers

Lecturing my course Flowers in Watercolour at Rust en Vrede, Durbanville (1990's)

In the last blog post, I showed some recent rose paintings that I have done. But at 71 years of age themes come round and round again. So today, I will  revisit the past to show more roses and other flowers I have done.

During the years 1991 to 1999, I taught a course in Flowers in Watercolour. I taught this in Wynberg, at Constantia, at the Parow Sport Centre and at Bellville Art Centre and Rust en Vrede, Durbanville and I also toured to Vredendal, Rustenburg and Durban teaching courses. When my old computer gave in and I lost my data base, there were already over 500 people who had received my tuition in watercolours and various crafts. Among my students there were 7 doctors/ dentists, a boy who afterwards had a long career as a South African rugby captain, the wife of a famous national rugby figure, a Miss South Africa runner-up and many entertaining and interesting students. 

Something I was very pleased with was the commission to design sunflower gift wrap and other products for a well known company. I also did cards for them.

A very good  and popular Afrikaans book "Aromaterapie" published by Van Schaiks, had me and my sister in collaboration. It was her academic nature and thorough knowledge and my watercolour paintings which made it a sought-after book during the heyday of aromatherapy.

I had a great disappointment when my book-to-be on watercolour was shelved due to government restrictions,,,it was a year reserved for the printing of school textbooks only.

These were some tidbits...the wind blows and one's personal history becomes insignificant and forgotten!  Next time I will show what I did with poppies, and how that actually led me away from watercolours in the end.

An illustration featuring roses from "AROMATERAPIE" by Maxie Cloete (1990's)
Sunflower gift wrap and products for Clifton Cards (1990's)

Large protea painting for my late husband's 50th birthday (1993)

Painting  Flowers in Durbanville (1990's)