Friday, 11 March 2016

Let's start again....."

"Snow in the Lairig Ghru" By Jenny McLaren 2016

I haven't visited this blog for a long time, I was thinking of deleting it, but having a look through it's interesting for me to see the different stages in my work over the last few years. I took part in two artist residencies in 2014/15 that really changed the way I approached painting and in a roundabout way led me to the work that I'm making now. I so very nearly gave up making art altogether at a couple of points but I realised that I needed to work much harder and just make things happen. Perseverance has got me here and I'm satisfied with how my work is developing. It feels like a good place to pick up this blog again and continue charting my progress. Tomorrow I'm planning on opening a new on-line place to sell  my work, it feels like a new beginning.........

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Road to the West

"Take the road to the West" 10 x 20" old map on wood board/acrylic ink/acryl gouache JJ McLaren 2015

It's good to be settled in the new house, I'm producing a fair amount of new work which is selling remarkably well. Three more should be arriving at the Castle Gallery in Inverness today, including the one above. The Lake District paintings will be coming soon but at the moment the West Coast is still the main focus of my attention. I feel another painting trip to Assynt will be needed soon........

Monday, 3 August 2015

Moving on.........

"Waternish, Isle of Sky" Jenny McLaren 2015
It's almost a year since I posted on here and so much has happened. Last September I set off on a months residency in the North York Moors National Park- it was a fantastic experience, a whole new place to explore and time to concentrate on sketching and just working and thinking. Over the next 5 months I produced a large body of work in response to my time in Yorkshire.  In the middle of this time my partner was offered a new job in Cumbria and we moved south in January. I managed to maintain a steady pace of production and the work was exhibited in May at the North York Moors National Park Centre in Danby. You can find a photo diary of  the residency on my instagram page. We moved house once again 6 weeks ago- this will be the last time for a good while. For nearly a year I've lived a very itinerant life and it's been hard going sometimes, but the important thing is that it has gifted us the potential for growth. Change can be scary but I'm finding it can also be very good for you.

"Shine and showers above Danby" Jenny Mclaren 2015  SOLD 

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Explorations and meanderings....

A bit of a catch up is in order. There's been a lot of painting, walking and camping going on. It's been a great summer..............

Rain has stopped play for the moment though, so now I'm spending some quality time in the studio. 
It would be nice if the sun came back for just a little while longer......

Thursday, 31 July 2014

Snowy Owl sketches

Snowy owl sketches done today, the youngsters have really grown up since I last saw them, just some downy grey feathers left on their heads and chest now.  As I was posting this in the new Oystercatcher coffee shop, a young stoat did a swift circuit of the childrens play are outside before it found sanctuary in the long grass. Good to know that there is wild wildlife to be seen here at the Highland Wildlife Park.

Friday, 27 June 2014

Sketches on a sunny day.

"Bob finds a shady spot" by Jenny McLaren 2014

I had a nice afternoons sketching in the Highland Wildlife Park yesterday, I did some very quick studies of the musk ox and the tigers at feeding time then went to the "drive through" where the red deer calves and the bull elk "Bob" were looking very relaxed and I managed to do a couple of watercolour studies of them. The elk are really interesting to draw, their proportions are a little bizarre, the head is massive and the legs are long and spindly, they are often difficult to see and tend to hide in the trees so I was happy to find Bob lying in the tall grass in the shade. His antlers are still covered in velvet but I saw him thrashing some shrubs with them later so they might be getting near to shedding. The red deer calves were dozing in the sun and look very appealing with their huge eyes,ears and spotty hides. As part of my residency at the wildlife park I exhibit a selection of framed works for sale in the Visitors Centre. When paintings sell I replace them with a new ones and give a percentage of the sale price to the HWP. I also have a pin board where I display "Sketch of the day", smaller, unframed works like these two which will be pinned up next time I am in the park. 

"Red deer calves on a warm day" by Jenny McLaren 2014

Monday, 16 June 2014

Bird Collection

I recently completed this bird illustration -all breeding birds in the Epping Forest area. Left to right from top- sparrow hawk, green woodpecker, sky lark, Egyptian goose, blackcap, blue tit, chiffchaff, greater spotted woodpecker, wood pigeon, goldfinch, jay, ring necked parakeet, great crested grebe, chaffinch, kestrel, tawny owl.
 I'm thinking of doing my Top 10 UK birds and a Top 10 worldwide birds for myself when I have the time, it may take me a while to decide which birds to include.....  and if they turn out well I may start to take commissions. What birds would you choose as your Top 10?