I borrowed this phrase from the recently deceased Canadian painter Robert Genn who believed that there is only so much we can learn about how to paint from the many fine instructors and resources available today. The true learning comes from going off on our own and just doing it - Go to your room!

I have had the good fortune to take instruction from outstanding artists in Canada and the USA. I continue to work on my own development ( Going to MY room!) . I share, through this blog and workshops, what I have learned and what others have shared with me.

I created this blog primarily for those attending my workshops to keep in touch and to further share as we grow together. If others are interested in following that would be great.

Enjoy the journey.

Saturday 26 January 2013

Learning to Paint With One Good Eye

Last post I mentioned that I lost much of the sight in my dominant right eye. I had many inquiries asking to share more details.

I woke up New Years day a bit hung over and tired from too much partying. I noticed that one eye would not focus but blamed it on the Scotch. By the next day it was very apparent I had a worsening problem and being aware of retinal detachment and other risks I sought help. The vitreous body, the round gel-filled ball that holds the shape of the eye was liquifying a its center and collapsing inward as a result. In doing so it was pulling away from the retina causing bleeding. This resulted in a large "floater" developing and  suspended in the center of the vitreous body. Apparently these are very common with aging and normally not too serious as long as the retina does not tear. My problem is that mine is unusually large and dense and is floating right behind the pupil. So I am not blind - I just can't see. I have an obstruction blocking my vision. Its like a "Brillo Pad" floating  in a bad spot and worse, it has a tail, like a horses tail,  that swings from side to side when I move my eye ball - and that drives me nutty at times. Prognosis is variable from future retinal tears to the mass dropping below the level of sight. So basically - it's suck it up. I was told I would adjust to it with time and that is happening already. 

I expect many of you have eye floaters and are also coping nicely. 

Its worse when I look into bright light and my pupil constricts almost totally blocking sight - looking into the computer monitor or bright sunny days - has made skiing a real challenge - looking for those now-you-see-it now-you-don't moguls. 

As for painting - I am painting my brains out trying to get used to it. I have lowered the light at my easel and that helps. I have been sticking with pieces 16x20 up to 20x30 as "size seems to matter ". My biggest problem is in critiquing my work - probably as important as the making the painting itself.  

Thanks for you kind comments.  

A  few of the new one-eyed  paintings to share:

Monday 7 January 2013

New ArtByte - Acrylic Plein Air

Three Above Canmore,  Acrylic on Linen Board, 11x14 - painted from the RV parking lot

Painting plein air is one of the great joys and challenges of  landscape painting. My approach to plein air in acrylics has changed greatly over the past eight years. In my third ArtByte for Daily Paintworks I describe my progression though various set ups to what I use today. 

Visit Daily Paintworks Art Tutorials  and go to Brian Buckrell, My Acrylic Plein Air Set up. Its free. 

I hope everyone had a great Holiday Season and are off to a wonderful New Year full of painting.

I experienced a bit of a setback. I developed a vitreous body separation from my retina causing the loss of much of my sight in my right eye. Painting has become a new challenge as has  working on the computer. As a result, I probably won't be posting for a while until it improves or until  I adapt.