Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Happy Holidays! ( also new painting )

Best wishes for the holiday season from the studio, for whatever particular flavour you're celebrating.

Here's the new painting I just finished:

Best wishes,



Saturday, December 20, 2014

New painting finished: Parka people - ontheeasel


This one will be in my show in Toronto in February. I'm not sure I'll have time to post properly processed photos of it before then, though, so this iPad photo will have to do for now.





Saturday, December 6, 2014

Parka people - workinprogress

The 2 central panels are done. :)

Now on to the more abstract background!

Here's the whole piece at an earlier stage:



Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Undertexting - Show coming up in February

It'll be at the Elaine Fleck Gallery in Toronto, and it'll be all new paintings done in my new 'undertexting' style. (I don't know if that's the name for it or not, but it's what I'm going with for now)

I've been working hard to force myself out of my creative comfort zone to develop this, and I'm finally starting to get results:


New undertexting piece on the easel -40x48 mixed media

Here is a work in progress where I've just finished pasting the text:

I've been asked about why I've changed my style so much, but I'll have to write a post about that later because right now I need to get more painting done for this show.

Cheers, marcel



Wednesday, October 29, 2014

autumn art update/notes on a new painting style

This is a copy of the email I just sent out to my mailing list. (My mailing list sign up page for those who are interested. )
grassy hill, mixed media, 24x32

Hi Everyone,

Wow, it's been a while since I've sent an update. It's not that I haven't been painting, it's that I've been working hard on developing a new style of painting, so I haven't really had any finished pieces to show publicly for a while. That's finally changed, as I've managed to finish some that I'm happy enough with to post online.

I've had a lot of ideas floating around in my head as far as new ways (well, new to me, at least) for quite a while, and I finally decided I was going to have to try to work through them. I've been working on trying to learn from many of the fantastic comic book artists and illustrators and painters who are posting their work online, while still maintaining a style that's really my own. It hasn't been easy, but as you can see from the detail photo of 'grassy hill' above, it's finally been starting to come together.

I'm now randomly pasting ripped up photocopies of pages from my favourite books as an underpainting layer, and I've dispensed with the really heavy blobby painting that I had been doing previously, replacing it with thinner layers that still reveal the text underneath. 

I haven't really figured out a good name for this style yet, but hopefully I come up with one before my new show, which is slated for February.

That's right, I'll be having a show at the Elaine Fleck Gallery in Toronto in February, and it will be all new paintings in this new style! (Holy crap, I sure hope some of them turn out! (eep))

I'll be sending out updates more frequently this fall with new paintings and news about the show. 

Thanks so much for reading,

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Bicycle city/neighbourhood - workinprogress

Detail photo

This one's almost finished, woo. :) hopefully I'll get it finished by the end of the day.



Friday, October 10, 2014

Thursday, October 2, 2014

iPad blogging test post

I've just purchased a new iPad, mainly for working on a new book and for blogging from the studio. I'm using Procreate for making art on this iPad, and holy crap is this program awesome!
right now I'm trying out Blogsy for my blogging editor, hopefully this makes it easier to blog from the studio than using my phone. I also hope the photos turn out better than my previous setup.
Ok, back to painting!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

This new style thing finally starting to come together

Or, the maddening process of deconstruction and reconstruction.

Here's the first result that I'm maybe a bit happy with:

Deconstructing how you imagine and compose your images and reassembling the into a new way of working is a frustratingly slow process. Actually it's not just reassembling, because it involves trying to incorporate a whole lot of new techniques and ideas, so it's a really messy maddening process. Mainly because you know you have to do it to expand your art, but you're not making any money while you're doing it, and you really don't know if you're going to end up with anything sellable at the end either. Ack.

Here are a couple of detail photos. (All taken with my phone, so photo quality might not be great)


Wednesday, September 3, 2014

New workinprogress

My latest attempt in my search to find a new painting style, at the Underpainting stage.


Saturday, July 5, 2014

warm up sketch - little red wagon

new composition for a piece I did a few years ago. Done with Corel Painter, about 45 min.


Friday, June 27, 2014

Blast from the past

I recently went rummaging through the basement looking for mini-paintings for a friend, the kind I used to sell at outdoor art shows, and here's what I found. They're all between 4" x 5" and 7" x 9"

Really interesting to see how much progress I've made as a painter, what kinds of things I no longer do and what kinds of things are still showing up in my paintings.  


Thursday, June 19, 2014

Thursday, June 12, 2014

whale balloon tree swing

This painting is a result of some style experimenting that I've been doing. I originally started with some digital sketching, and I posted one of the sketches on tumblr. The digital sketching was great for quickly working through a lot of ideas and I did a lot of them, but I eventually needed to try it out with actual paint and see how it looked in real life.

'whale balloon tree swing' is one of the first results of this experimentation. I wasn't really concerned too much about the overall composition, as I was squeezing in as many of the different things I was trying out as possible. Things like allowing some of the text to show through, or having the little panels in the background, scratching a drawing into the paint, or adding abstract elements like the rectangles.

It's 16"x20", so it's a relatively small painting. You can see I was trying to squeeze a lot into it.

This is a close up so you can see more of the texture.


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

workinprogress - robot legal trouble

Made some headway on this commission last week. Here are some detail photos. Special thanks to my client for giving me permission to post work in progress photos.


Friday, May 30, 2014

Painty painty - next phase of experimentals

Close up of my plan for world domination, er, I mean of my latest painting experiment. There are still a few additions I want to try out with this, but this layer of paint needs to dry first. There are also a bunch of little things that I'm not entirely happy with, but overall though, it's getting to where I want it, which makes it a successful experiment.


Friday, May 16, 2014

Stay tuned

Experimenting with pasting text under my oil paintings, on the way to developing a new style. I'm always trying to push my art, even if it's maybe not the smartest thing to do. That being said, I'm excited about where this path might go. Worked through a lot of ideas digitally with Corel Painter, kind of accelerated artistic evolution. Might have something to show in a few weeks. Stay tuned.

I'm also working on a commission, which is going well, but I can't show it to you yet.


Friday, May 2, 2014

experimental paintings (includes robots and blimps)

Here are some smaller painting experiments I've completed recently:


20x20 in


20x24 in

Thursday, April 17, 2014

robot blimp painting workinprogress ontheeasel

I'm currently working on a commission, and the customer has graciously allowed me to post work in progress photos. Here are some details of the pencil stage. Yes, it has blimps. As it must. ;)


Saturday, March 29, 2014

But skip that, what's this kids' book about?

I've been making a foray back into the world of comics, sort of, by working on a kids book lately. I'm working with Corel Painter 12, which is fantastic for doodling, and I'm using Trello ( ) for building the plot, which is a fantastic tool for project management, and outlining stories.

But skip that trivial stuff, what's this book about, you ask? Well, it's about climate change and kids. And them talking their daft parents into doing something about it.

It's a pretty scary subject, and although my 4 year old is still a little too young to talk about it, I can well imagine how tricky it's going to be to explain how crappy her future world will probably be. So I'm trying to write a book that will help parents engage with their kids about it. Actually, I'm really hoping that the act of reading it to their kids will motivate parents to do a bit more to solve the problem.

I should really be working on paintings so I can make some money, but this is something I've been circling around for years and I figure it's time that I just get down and do it.

As you can see in the image, it's currently at the thumbnail page, which means that it's pretty much only me who can figure out what's going on with it. Well, actually, if you could see my sketchbook you'd be able to see the plot. Then again, only I know which bits I'm going to keep out of that, so even there it doesn't make any sense yet. I'm sure I'll be posting and writing a lot more about this. Stay tuned!


Saturday, March 15, 2014

Painting experiments today

I'm trying to find a drawing style that I can glaze over with oil colour.

I'm narrowing it down to ink markers or traditional India ink.

I really like this pencil drawing though, so I'm not going to ink it or colour over it. Maybe I'll do it digitally later:


Saturday, March 8, 2014

Commissions, prints, and maybe even books

I'm currently working on some painting commissions, and I don't like to post work in progress photos of those until the pieces are all finished and the customer is happy, so unfortunately I won't be able to post many images of the next little while.

I've also been thinking a lot lately about redesigning my website so people can order prints from it. It's always hard to gauge interest to know if it's worth it, but I guess I'll never know until I set it up.

Finally, I'm also thinking about putting together a kids book, or two. I've been working on my digital illustration skills a lot and they've been coming along well. Now I'm thinking about putting together a book because I love kids books. I have no idea if it'll be good, but I'm pretty sure it'll be fun. :)

More on all of those things later.


Friday, March 7, 2014

Art show in Toronto is up, new painting arrived safely

At the Elaine Fleck Gallery on Queen St. W. , they've told me the show looks great, so I think I'll ask them to send me some photos and I can post them here.

The new painting "rain boots" made it safely, which was a big relief because the paint was still pretty soft when I shipped it. Also, the person at my local post office didn't seem to know what he was doing, so I was a little anxious that he may not have processed it correctly. And then it would get lost in a warehouse somewhere or something like that. But fortunately that didn't happen.  


Friday, February 28, 2014

March Art Show

Hi Everyone,

The Elaine Fleck Gallery in Toronto will be showing my paintings again for the month of March. The gallery's normal hours are Wednesday to Sunday, 12-5pm, and the opening will be this Saturday from 2-4pm.

Unfortunately I'll be unable to make it to the opening this time around, but hopefully I'll be able to see some of you again next time.

If you can't make it to the show, I've included the new painting "rain boots" in this email, and you can view the other pieces that will be in the show online.

"rain boots" - oil on plywood, 28"x36" -
(still on the easel in this photo) the latest painting
 that I just shipped to the gallery for the show.
So many have told me the paintings look so much better in person than they do online, so hopefully you'll be able to go have a look at them in person. One day I'll upgrade my site, but I should say hopefully I'll find time to upgrade my website because I'm usually too busy trying to finish the actual paintings. 

April Charity Auction


I've donated a painting to the Buy Art Not Kids charity auction in Toronto. The live auction take place on April 4th. Check out their site for more info and to see the great art that will be available.

Here's my donation piece:

"from the blue line"/"the shooter" - oil on plywood - 24"x24"