Category: News

Un Bon Cygne at Centre Communautaire de loisir de la Côte des Neiges

Flyer de l'expo

I have a show starting at Centre Communautaire de loisir de la Côte des Neiges this Friday. I’m having a bit of opening fatigue, so this one will go openingless. Still, there will be a large selection of all original paintings on display.

J’ai une exposition qui commence au Centre Communautaire de loisir de la Côte des Neiges ce vendredi. J’ai eu un vernissage récemment alors je n’en aurai pas cette fois-ci. Il y aura quand même une grande sélection de peintures originales exposées.

Dates: From November 28th to December 18th. Du 28 novembre au 18 décembre.

Location: Centre Communautaire de loisir de la Côte-des-Neiges, 5347 ch de la Côte-des-Neiges, Montreal. http://www.cclcdn.qc.ca

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Upcoming appearance: Boreal 2014

Next weekend is Congrès Boréal, it’s a small literary sci-fi/fantasy convention that’s been around since 1979. It’s in Québec City and I will attend for the first time. I will bring two paintings: SteelButt Jack, the cover I did for Solaris, and Un Bon Cygne, a new one that I’m going to show in public for the first time.

Un Bon Cygne, acrylic and copper leaf on mdf.

Un Bon Cygne, acrylic and copper leaf on mdf.Acrylique et feuille de cuivre sur mdf.

But I’m not just going to hang art and hang out there. I’m part of 3 round tables, 2 in French, 1 in English. So on Friday night, I will be in the “Fantasy et science-fiction dans les médias audio-visuels” panel from 9p.m. to 10 p.m.
On Saturday I will be on the “Fantasy et autres cultures” panel from 11a.m. to 12a.m. and on Sunday I will take part in the “To Speak and Be Heard: Geek Culture and Misogyny” panel from 10a.m. to 11a.m. I hope that my years in the video game industry and my experience as a genre illustrator will give me a perspective that attendees find interesting. I will also be found sitting on other panels, hanging out with my peers and can even be convinced to give a few portfolio critiques if you bring your work for review.

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Le Congrès Boréal aura lieu en fin de semaine prochaine, c’est un petit congrès littéraire sur la science-fiction et le fantastique et c’est en existence depuis 1979. C’est a Québec et j’y participerai pour la première fois. J’amènerai 2 peintures: Steelbutt Jack, la couverture que j’ai faite pour Solaris, et Un Bon Cygne, ma dernière oeuvre que je montrerai en public pour la première fois.

Mais je n’y serai pas que pour montrer de l’art et me divertir. Je prendrai part à 3 tables rondes, 2 en français et une en anglais. Vendredi soir, je serai à la table ronde “Fantasy et science-fiction dans les médias audio-visuels” de 21:00 à 22:00. Samedi, je serai à la table ronde “Fantasy et autres cultures” de 11:00 à 12:00 et dimanche, je participerai à celle intitulée “To Speak and Be Heard: Geek Culture and Misogyny” de 10:00 à 11:00. J’espère que mes années dans l’industrie du jeu vidéo et mon expérience comme illustratrice me donneront une perspective que les spectateurs trouveront intéressante. On me trouvera aussi dans l’auditoire d’autres tables rondes, à me mêler à mes pairs et je pourrais même être convaincue de donner quelques critiques de portfolio, si vous amenez vos œuvres avec vous.

My new Etsy store!

The reflections on the Jade Lion.

The reflections on the Jade Lion.

I have done it. I have considered starting an Etsy store for a long time, but it’s on now! One of my problems is that sometimes I have trouble having enough paintings in stock at the same time. So I’ll have to paint more.

You can see it here: Qitsune’s painterly meditations on Etsy

Right now I have a few paintings but I will also make it possible to commission custom art and to buy prints.

I’m very late on updating this blog, so I  decided to use the occasion to feature some art that’s in the Etsy store that I never talked about here. Like the Jade Lion, based on the Lion of Belfort statue that’s in Dorchester Square.

This tiny 5"x7" painting features green metal leaf details.

This tiny 5″x7″ painting features green metal leaf details.

I found this photograph on Pinterest and  I loved it. I wanted to paint it, but I don’t use other people’s pictures, at least, not directly, I need to transform them enough to make them my own.

The birth of Oversight

The birth of Oversight

So I dug around my photographs of angels, found a photo of a niche that worked with it, composited both together, painted on top to change the lighting and added the leaves in Photoshop. The result was the black, white and yellow image which I then transferred to my varnished MDF. For that, I used a sheet of tracing paper covered in compressed charcoal. So it’s like handmade artsy carbon paper. The result is often messy, but then I lightly wipe it with a dry rag and only the lines that I wanted there remain. I then painted using raw umber and unbleached titanium acrylic paints. When most of the painting was done, I started applying the imitation gold and (real) copper leaf to the painting. I added a bit of acrylic on some of the leaves, to push them back in the shade, then put even more gold leaves on top.

I finished the painting with several coats of spray on acrylic varnish.

Now it glows and shimmers in the light, I’m very happy with it.

You can see it here on Etsy

 

 

Access to MBAM’s permanent collections is no longer free

Header of Hornestein pavillion of MBAM

Access to MBAM’s permanent collections is no longer free if you are over 30 (why 30? Beats me), and that makes me sad. I know that the MBAM is a fantastic museum and that we have been lucky to have free had access for so long. But I am still sad.

Fine art intimidates many people, they are afraid they aren’t going to get it, they are afraid that others will know they aren’t going to get it. Free entry was a risk free way for me to initiate neophytes to art and it’s a resource that will be harder to access.

There will still be time for free access. Here is the information:

The Collections and Discovery Exhibitions

Ticket grants access to the whole Museum, except for the Major Exhibitions

Ages 31 and up: $12
Ages 30 and under: Free
VIP members: Free

Access to the Collections and Discovery Exhibitions is free for:

• All those who purchase a ticket to a Major Exhibitions
• People aged 30 and under
• Ages 65 and up every Thursday
• The General public: the last Sunday of every month
• The General public during the Holiday season – December 26 to January 2 and Spring Break.
• Art teachers and their students (upon presentation of their school card)
• All holders of membership cards from our cultural partners will enjoy the same discounts as applicable to admission to Major Exhibitions.

As always, you can find more on the Musée des Beaux Arts de Montréal’s website.

Time piece

I finished this piece yesterday and I don’t have a clever name for it yet. But it was my first foray into metal leaf patterns and I thought some of my readers might be curious. I previously tested the metal leaf by covering a whole mdf with it and painting on top, and while it was interesting, I decided that I’d rather paint on the mdf and use the metal leaf as accent.

This watch has quite a history, it used to belong to my boyfriend’s grand-father who worked on a railroad. The highlights on the glass are all speckled because the glass face has been worn so much, by being in pockets with change and keys and all kind of stuff. It’s broken now, but kept as a souvenir. A few months ago, I did a photo shoot with this watch, a more recent pocket watch of mine and other objects. This photo is one of those I took.

I also took many pictures of the painting process so I could walk you through it step by step.

Here is the prepared surface. It's just mdf from the lumberyard covered with two coats of acrylic gloss medium/varnish. The mdf is smooth but somewhat soft, like suede and the paint does not glide on it. The varnish helps.

Here is the prepared surface. It’s just mdf from the lumberyard covered with two coats of acrylic gloss medium/varnish. The mdf is smooth but somewhat soft, like suede and the paint does not glide on it. The varnish helps.

Here is my prepared photo clipped to the board. I covered the back with sienna colored Conté crayon and I will trace on the front to transfer the drawing.

Here is my prepared photo clipped to the board. I covered the back with sienna colored Conté crayon and I will trace on the front to transfer the drawing.

This is the transfered drawing.

This is the transferred drawing.

After the first pass of red paint. It was my first time using alizarin crimson in a painting like that. It's not as dark as other colors I use, but I like it. Notice that the printed file  clipped next to it is not the same one I used while tracing. This one takes into account the darker background. I treated it to make more of the image the same gray as the background, that way, I can use the color of the mdf as midtone.

After the first pass of red paint. It was my first time using alizarin crimson in a painting like that. It’s not as dark as other colors I use, but I like it. Notice that the printed file clipped next to it is not the same one I used while tracing. This one takes into account the darker background. I treated it to make more of the image the same gray as the background, that way, I can use the color of the mdf as midtone.

After the first pass of unbleached titanium.

After the first pass of unbleached titanium.

The rendering of the clock is done. Now I took a picture of the piece, put it in photoshop and painted ideas for the flourishes around it.

The rendering of the clock is done. Now I took a picture of the piece, put it in photoshop and painted ideas for the flourishes around it.

Here is the outline of the flourishes painted. You can see some of the white Conté on the red of the paint. This is wiped clean once the paint is dry.

Here is the outline of the flourishes painted. You can see some of the white Conté on the red of the paint. This is wiped clean once the paint is dry.

Here I glued most of the metal leaf and started brushing the extra bits away. I use regular metal leaf, not gold, so it's a bit thicker and sturdier to work with (not to mention cheaper.) THe way it works is I put some gilding glue in the spots where I want gold and I wait for it to get tacky. Then I place bits of metal leaf on top and burnish with a soft brush or my white cotton gloves. Then I use a stiff brush to remove the bits that are not glued in place.

Here I glued most of the metal leaf and started brushing the extra bits away. I use regular metal leaf, not gold, so it’s a bit thicker and sturdier to work with (not to mention cheaper.) The way it works is I put some gilding glue in the spots where I want gold and I wait for it to get tacky. Then I place bits of metal leaf on top and burnish with a soft brush or my white cotton gloves. Then I use a stiff brush to remove the bits that are not glued in place.

With the extra bits all brushed away. I was pretty rough with the brush to give a distressed look to the metal. Next step was to give 3 coats of varnish.

With the extra bits all brushed away. I was pretty rough with the brush to give a distressed look to the metal. Next step was to give 3 coats of varnish.

There it is. All done.

There it is. All done.

Like many of the paintings I post here, this one is for sale. It’s 115$ (+ shipping) and it’s 12″x12″. You can see other paintings for sale in my catalogue. If you are interested or if you have any questions about the blog, you can contact me at chantal (at) chantalfournier.com

Post Illuxcon Post

Illuxcon has been over for a few many weeks now and I have yet to write anything about it. Not because it wasn’t great, but I came back completely exhausted and overwhelmed. So here I am, making a very late attempt at a summary.

There were many firsts at Illuxcon this year. It was the first time the show lasted 5 days (Wednesday to Sunday,) it was the first time it was held in Allentown (before it was in Altoona, PA,) it was the first time I had a travel companion (I went with my buddy Sybiline, whom I met at a different convention – see? conventions are important,) first time there were other french speakers I got to hang out with.

Sybiline and me in front of the main venue.

Sybiline and me in front of the main venue.

The whole lasting 5 days thing came with its lot of changes as well. There is now two parts to the main show, one that lasts the whole five days and a weekend salon that was also juried but was only held on Saturday and Sunday. The life drawing and live music events were merged together and held on Thursday night. The showcase which used to last 4 hours was now twice as long, Friday and Saturday evenings.

Showcase

I was on the waiting list for the showcase and only learned that I had a table less than two weeks before the show so I had a lot to prepare. Traveling across the border with paintings is a problem because while there is no duty on art, I’m not allowed to work in the U.S. and selling art would be working (weirdly enough, I’m allowed to have a booth and to take orders for sales, but not to actually give the art to the buyer, even if it’s already painted.) So I only brought Pink! as a display piece, and some prints as “promotional material.” Had I had more time to prepare, I could have shipped the originals to the show in advance. I’ll know for the next year. Two nights of showcase is a lot, the artists in the main show have to man their table for much longer, but finishing at midnight twice in a row takes its toll. And after 11p.m. there aren’t that many visitors doing the rounds.

Will Dudla was nice enough to send me the picture the picture he took when he visited my table.

Will Dudla was nice enough to send me the picture he took when he visited my table.

Main show

As usual, the art in the main show was stunning. The new venue offers much higher walls than the old venue and some of the artists really took advantage of it. Michael Whelan and Donato Giancola had massive pieces that would have never fit in Altoona. I’m always overwhelmed by how nice almost everyone is at such events. I have a problem recognising faces and I’m often embarrassed to be recognized by people whose face I don’t remember (wear your name badge people!) The embarrassment is compounded by how much some artists get out of their ways to explain their techniques, answer question, review portfolio and offer precious advice even when you are obviously not in the market for their paintings.

Weekend salon

When youhad the weekend salon to the main show, you get a gigantic event. A lot of new faces there and also artists who had been in the main show in the past. The weekend salon is a lot less work, the artists only have to be present at their tables for two days instead of 5. The down side is that it was very hard to hang around the weekend salon because the space was smaller than planned (apparently the museum floor plans were not very accurate!) and everyone was there at the same time, since there was only two days to see everything and there were still lectures and demos going on. I was very glad to see friend of mine have tables i the salon, it was a great way to introduce new artists to Illuxcon.

Lectures and demos

As usual, there is so much good programming that I had to make very difficult choices. I mostly went to demos and practical lectures: Nonie Nelson on anatomy, Jason Cheeseman-Meyer on perspective, painting demos by Jeremy Wilson (I found his way of working very alien, I guess that’s a good thing) and Armand Cabrera. I also went to the Schindehette/Ruppel talk about concept art vs illustration and the M:tG panel, and the Hildebrand talk about colors (which turned out to be about anecdotes and Michael Jackson and not so much about color theory.) Overall, I felt more rushed than other years, like everything was crammed together and I never had enough time to see what I wanted to see but I really enjoyed what I got to see.

More

Of course, there is even more to Illuxcon. Meeting new friends, catching up with old friends, meeting people I had known online for a long long time for the first time, seeing some I had not seen in years. Talking to heroes and discovering new inspirations. Of course, no convention is complete without swag and this one is no exception. Aside from a crapton of business cards, I bought two great sketchbooks. I really like books that have process pictures, either just drawings or drawings with finished pieces.

Sketchbooks by Randy Gallegos and Allen Douglas along with interior shots for the respective books.

Sketchbooks by Randy Gallegos and Allen Douglas along with interior shots for the respective books.

Here lie links.

The only upside to being so slow is that a ton of other people have already posted about Illuxcon and I can make a list of posts. Ha!

Armand Cabrera’s painting demo

Recap by Eric Super Villain on Massive Fantastic , with a video

Review by Juan Carlos Barquet, IlluXCon Student Scholarship winner

Mike Burns’s notes from the lectures and panels.

Jane Frank’s superlative and glowing review. Jane is an art dealer specialised in speculative art and has given very interesting lectures on business at Illuxcon over the years.

A lecture by Jane Frank at Illuxcon, posted by Drawn Today podcast.

Jon Schindehette, art director extraordinaire’s Illuxcon review.

Entrevues sur Drink And Draw Montreal

J’ai déjà mentionné ici que je suis maintenant une collaboratrice du webzine Drink And Draw Montréal. J’ai commencé une série d’entrevues avec des illustrateurs québecois, mes deux premiers invités sont Nicolas Francoeur et Donald Caron. Vous pouvez les lire ici:
Entrevue avec Donald Caron, maître de l’horreur
Entrevue: Nicolas Francoeur

J’ai aussi fait une entrevue avec François Vaillancourt, peintre de trompe-l’oeil: Entrevue: François Vaillancourt

Je vous prépare plein d’autres surprises pour les prochains mois.

I already mentioned here that I am now a collaborator on the  Drink And Draw Montréal webzine. I started a series of interviews (in French) with quebecois illustrators, my first two guests are Nicolas Francoeur and Donald Caron. you can read them here:
Entrevue avec Donald Caron, maître de l’horreur
Entrevue: Nicolas Francoeur

I also interviewed François Vaillancourt,  trompe-l’oeil painter: Entrevue: François Vaillancourt

I’m preparing a lot of other surprises for the upcoming months.

Drink&DrawMtl

artist_anteaterss

Back in January I started writing a series of articles for DrinkAndDrawMTL.com titled Petit guide de Survie pour Artiste (Small Survival Guide for Artists) because I thought resources about art were not as plentiful in French as they were in English, and there wasn’t that much specifically about Québec. D&DMtl was derived from the loose networks of artist gatherings around the world where artists meet to socialize and draw. It so happens that in Montreal, people don’t gather to draw anymore, but the blog survived and has a sort of webzine format. I thought it was a great platform for me to work on informing artists and art hopefuls.

You can find my first 3 articles here:

And the Google translate versions here (it’s not perfect but it’s better than nothing):

Also, D&DMtl has plenty of English or bilingual articles!