Friday Night with Artist Nola McConnan – April 28, 2017

{Submitted by Ingrid Mueller}

Dynamic, enthusiastic, not to mention talented, Nola McConnan shared her lifelong love of painting and drawing with the DVAC Friday Night Club, and her passion for creating art was infectious.

Although Nola works with a variety of mediums, her demonstration was with watercolours. She tends to like using watercolour and coloured pencils for detail.

Although she has produced some remarkable landscapes and florals, Nola’s favourite subject is animal portraiture, especially horses.

Visit to learn more about Nola and see a great selection of her work.


Posted in Friday Night Speaker

Friday Night with Artist Bill Burns

Bill Burns was the DVAC guest artist on Friday March 24.

Bill brought a number of his very impressive landscape paintings and talked about his technique. Bill uses a very limited palette and uses value to convey depth and a 3D image. Bill tries to paint the patterns he recognizes in a landscape scene and uses these patterns to convey a impressionist landscape that shows interest depth and a transcribing of how the light affects the scene.

Posted in Friday Night Speaker

Friday Night with Artist Dan Murphy

{submitted by Ingrid Mueller}

On March 3, artist Dan Murphy spoke to the DVAC about his contemporary realist paintings. Influenced by the likes of Magritte, Ortega and Coorte, Dan’s work combines elements of these influences using clearly defined composition and capturing realistic representations of qualities of light. His recent visit to Holland and the Rijks Museum has inspired his quest for flawless illumination in his realist paintings.

Dan provided us with a much needed reminder of the need and importance of composition. Many of us know and use the “rule of thirds”, but Dan also stressed the use of “the golden ratio”. Study of the Great Masters have also influenced Dan to use geometrical divisions of space in his composition.



Posted in Friday Night Speaker

Friday Night with Kal Honey, “Text in Art”

{Submitted by Ingrid Mueller}

On February 24, artist Kal Honey discussed the use of text in art.

A graduate of OCAD, Kal Honey has honed his skills in graphic art and has a penchant for painting, assemblage and collage. However, his eye for detail and gravitation towards graphic art has led Kal to create stunning work using typography and calligraphy.

Kal briefly covered the history of typography, stemming back to the caveman. He showed examples of text in art like ancient hieroglyphics and ancient Chinese calligraphy, explaining that the alphabet is actually a series of signs and symbols.  Classical art featured text, mostly biblical. The POP art era including Warhol, Lichtenstein and Greg Curnoe used text in their art.  Post Modern/Contemporary Art brought artists like Basquiat, Barbara Kruger and Banksy, all of whom used text in their art.

Although the use of text in modern art originated predominantly in commercial art, it has become nicely intertwined in contemporary fine art and will remain, as words carry more than literal meaning.

Posted in Friday Night Speaker

Should my Art match my Sofa?

[written by Joan Philip]

Well, the short answer is No.

Or, not necessarily.

Or, it depends!

There are designers, decorators and stagers who actually make decisions about art based on the overall design considerations of a space — including the sofa. If the furniture is contemporary, blue and green, with a touch of yellow, then voila! — an abstract with blue, green and yellow is on the wall.

This is fine when the circumstances are right.

But most people don’t live that way. Our homes evolve over a period of time, and so does our knowledge of and taste in art. As we learn more about art, and study the kinds of art and the work of various artists that we like, we develop our own “art personalities” in much the same way that every other aspect of our personality develops.

Just as we don’t pick our friends based on whether they enjoy eating Thai food with us, we don’t pick the art that we live with based on whether it matches the décor. Of course, it’s often the case that in fact our friends do share our love of Thai food. Similarly, the chances good that the art we love will suit our décor, since it was also likely chosen by us with the same kind of thought and attention as we lavished on the choice of the art.

In short, if your art suits you — if you love it — it will likely suit the way you live. If you buy a painting because you can’t stop looking at it and thinking about it, then you will find ways to incorporate it into your life, whether or not it appears to match your existing environment.

Sometimes,however, it can be worthwhile to make adjustments to the immediate surroundings of a painting to make the art more harmonious with the environment in which it lives. The matting and framing of a piece of art can dramatically affect how comfortably it settles in a space. Also, the colour and texture of the wall surface on which a painting is hung might need adjustment.

At the end of the day, sofas change. Houses change. Tastes change. But, a piece of art which has been chosen for the right reasons —- that it tells a story that speaks to you, even if only to you — will still be “right” no matter what.

Posted in Art Musings