Tag Archives: Landscape

Solo Exhibition 2019

It’s been busy around here for the last couple of years and now, I’ve got a whole new body of work ready to show. Please join me for my opening on May 9, between 7 and 9 pm, at Earls Court Gallery on Ottawa Street North in Hamilton Ontario. I’ll also be at the gallery for most of the day on Saturday May 11 for those who prefer daytime visits! And while you’re here, stay for a bit. There are all kinds of places where you can eat and explore in the Ottawa Street North neighbourhood.

Effects of Weather

My 2017 Solo Exhibition, Effects of Weather, opens on Thursday, May 4 at Earls Court Gallery, 215 Ottawa Street N. Hamilton, Ontario. There will be wine and cheese from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm. Please come! There is parking on the street, or in the municipal parking lot just behind Ottawa Street.

If you can’t make it for Thursday’s wine and cheese, come to Ottawa street for lunch and a gallery visit on May 5 instead. That’s the day that there will be 27 food trucks parked EVERYWHERE on Ottawa Street, cooking up a storm for the Sew Hungry rally. Yum. I’ll be there too.  The work remains in the gallery until June 8.

Earls Court  Gallery is open Tuesday – Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 pm and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4 p.m. | 905-527-6685 | robert.daniels@sympatico.ca | @earlscourt215

Atlantic Breakers 36″ x 48″

Proposal for Thoroughfare Crossing and Fishfluke Light Reconstruction

Supposing the wreckage of the Fishfluke Light, that used to mark the entrance to Grand Harbour in Grand Manan NB, were to be gathered up and reconstructed? And, what if the abandoned and disintegrating wooden lobster pounds was recycled to build a swing bridge crossing to Ross Island at the end of Thoroughfare Road? To move, the bridge would need some sort of mechanism besides the tide of course.

Proposal for Thoroughfare Crossing and Fishfluke Light Reconstruction, 18" x 24" Mixed Media on Panel, by Aleda O'Connor

Proposal for Thoroughfare Crossing and Fishfluke Light Reconstruction, Mixed Media 18″ x 24″

There may be others, but the only wooden winch that I’ve ever seen  is kept  in a smoke shed at Seal Cove, where the late Michael Zimmer preserved many historic artifacts of the Atlantic smoked-herring fishery in his Sardine Museum and Herring Hall of Fame. My drawing of it, Winch Herring Shed, is in the permanent collection at the Grand Manan Art Gallery and Proposal for Thoroughfare Crossing and Fishfluke Light Reconstruction is in the Island Art Show there from August 8 to 27 2015.

Winch, Herring Shed,  Pen and Ink on Toned Paper, 10" x 12" by Aleda O'Connor

Winch, Herring Shed, Pen and Ink on Toned Paper, 10″ x 12″


A Rocha: dedicated to environmental stewardship

Three of my paintings in Oil Pastel are included in the show On The Rock – Merging Art and Ecology, at the Carnegie Gallery, in Dundas, from March 7 to 30 2014.

Path and Apple Tree 18" x 24" Oil Pastel on Wood Panel

Path and Apple Tree 18″ x 24″ Oil Pastel on Wood Panel

The gallery is located at 10 King Street West, Dundas, Ontario. The opening is Friday March 7, from 7 to 9:30 p.m.

Tree and Saplings 18″ x 24″

This exhibition is a project sponsored by the local chapter of A Rocha  an international organization dedicated to environmental stewardship. Ten artists were invited to respond to the landscape at Cedar Haven Farm near Freelton Ontario, where A Rocha volunteers have been very active.  These images are based on the landscape at that farm. 

Fence and Barn 18″ x 24″

Exploring oil pastel with the Markham Group of Artists

Thanks very much to Maureen Thompson of the Markham Group of Artists who invited me to lead a full-day beginner workshop on how to use oil pastels.

It can be challenging to work in a new medium, but as one participant observed it is also liberating because it is easier and more fun to take risks when you’re a learner. We began by preparing masonite panels with Golden Acrylic Ground for Pastels.  While they were drying, everyone practiced applying and blending colour as well as mark-making on test sheets of tinted paper coated with pastel ground, before turning their attention to their chosen landscape images for the rest of the day.

Most of us recall working with crayons or coloured pencils as children, an experience that gives artists their starting point.  Colours can be stroked gently into the surface and feathered together to create new transparent blends, almost like tweed, or they can be scrubbed firmly into the surface to create dense opaque shapes – and everything in between. Everyone finds their own unique way to apply colour.  

 As part of today’s process we also looked at the work of two very different artists: Canada’s  A.J Casson whose paintings are notable for a strong sense of design that he used to tame complex landscapes. Later, we looked at a number of exquisite works by the American artist  Wolf Kahn, whose brilliant colour and calligraphic approach to landscape suggest a completely different way to tackle the challenge. 

And here are the results of today’s labour:

Markham Group of Artists Pastel paintings

Ireland in January

Goat Island Ardmore, by Aleda O'Connor 8 1/2" x 11" Pen and Ink

Goat Island Ardmore, by Aleda O’Connor 8 1/2″ x 11″ Pen and Ink

It would be hard not to be inspired by the light and landscape in the south of Ireland at any time of the year. 

Gate, Lismore Castle, by Aleda O'Connor 3" x 4" Pen and Ink

Gate, Lismore Castle, by Aleda O’Connor 3″ x 4″ Pen and Ink

My Irish friends and family thought I was a bit odd choosing to visit in January and urged me to come when the weather was “better,” but I haven’t regretted my timing for a moment.

Middle Glanmire Road, Cork by Aleda O'Connor 8 1/2 " x 11" Pen and Ink

Middle Glanmire Road, Cork by Aleda O’Connor 8 1/2 ” x 11″ Pen and Ink

While I was admiring the palm trees, primroses, daffodils and gorse in bloom, my family was confronting blizzards at home in Ontario.

Blackwater River Near Villierstown County Waterford, by Aleda O'Connor 8 1/2" x 11"

Blackwater River Near Villierstown County Waterford, by Aleda O’Connor 8 1/2″ x 11″

Above the Pier, Ardmore,  by Aleda O'Connor3" x 4"  Pen and Ink

Above the Pier, Ardmore, by Aleda O’Connor
3″ x 4″ Pen and Ink

This trip was a bit of a sentimental journey to say hello to family, friends and visit a landscape I hadn’t seen for a while, so I especially appreciated finding some of my old haunts in Waterford and Cork Counties empty of tourists.

Without leaves on the trees and hedges, it was much easier to see the landscape.
My sketchbook was a great companion, especially for someone travelling alone. 

Represented by Art Etc.Gallery

Split Rail Fence, Dufferin County 20″ x 28″

Some of my pastel paintings and pen and ink drawings are available to rent or purchase through the Art Etc. Gallery Shop, at the Burlington Art Centre, 1333, Lakeshore Road, Burlington. I’m pleased to be included in a collection of original works by established and emerging Canadian artists.

My subject here is a split rail or snake fence, that I found just outside Orangeville, in Dufferin County, Ontario. These picturesque and durable fences are constructed of white cedar that grows in swampy areas throughout Ontario, especially where there is limestone under the soil.

An Oil Pastel Workshop

Ten members of the Burlington Fine Arts Association (BFAA) spent the day with me
(right, above, with Gail Forbes past president)  for an Oil Pastel workshop, held in the wonderful facilities at the Burlington Art Centre. Oil Pastels are a very liberating medium to use: they’re so portable, durable and stable. They appeal especially to people who love to draw and love colour. Using them reminds me of the fun I had as a child when I first made pictures.

It is important to understand how colours work together when you’re working in pastel, because you need to blend them and know how to adjust values to get a full range from each hue. So we spent a little time at the beginning reviewing these relationships and weaving additional hues by hatching and feathering, adding black and white, and by blending complementary colours. The process gave everyone an opportunity to use their new pastels and try out different approaches to mark-making. We worked on masonite panels that were coated with Golden Acrylic Pastel Ground.

West Guilford, by A.J. Casson   McMichael Canadian Collection

The subject for the day’s work was  a simplified adaptation of this drawing by A.J. Casson. The youngest member of Canada’s famous Group of Seven painters, Casson spent some of his formative years in Guelph and Hamilton where he took art classes at the Hamilton Technical School.  This prolific artist had a particular affection for Southern Ontario villages that could be reached easily on weekend drives from Toronto.

Everyone transferred the drawing of this house on a hillside to their panel  – with some lovely results.  At the end of the day, we had a look at the pastel paintings our group produced.  It is always fascinating to see how artists express their own personality to produce unique variations on a theme. Many thanks to BFAA for this invitation and the very warm welcome the members extended. 

Art Gallery of Hamilton Super Auction

Black Spruce, by Aleda O’Connor Oil Pastel, 20″ x 28″

My oil pastel landscape painting “Black Spruce” is up for sale in the first of three online art auctions in the 2012 Art Gallery of Hamilton (AGH) Super AuctionFunds raised through this event are being used to establish an art acquisition fund for AGH .


My first presentation on oil pastels

I was the guest speaker for the Burlington Fine Arts Association this week – an exciting first for me. I am so grateful to Victoria Pearce for inviting me to talk about this rewarding medium and to the Association members for their warm response to my work. I briefly discussed the origin and history of oil pastels, the artists who have inspired and influenced my work, and demonstrated my set-up and materials. As you can see I started a new pastel painting and I’ll post the finished work when it’s done.  The event was held at the Burlington Art Centre, a wonderful facility not far from our new home in Hamilton.

« Older Entries