About Brian Rice:
Brian was born on May 25,1958 and his roots are in the small outport of Pilleys Island, Newfoundland, Canada. At the age of nineteen he moved to central Canada in the Sarnia, Ontario area, where he now works in the Petrochemical industry.
His interest in art began in high school, when an art teacher encouraged him. In 1979 he began to paint realistic images of Newfoundland and northern wildlife, using an acrylic medium. He has many admirers of his work and most of the paintings have been sold; many were commissions. In 1998 he did a painting of an old united church (circa 1945) for his hometown heritage society. Prints were made and sold as a fund raiser.
In 1997 he entered an art contest in Sarnia. This contest was held to select a winner to commemorate the new blue water bridge. The painting got an honourable mention and it was reproduced as a limited edition print.
Brian has no formal training in art. He is self taught and learns most from a careful observation of the order and design of the natural world . He believes that “nature is the artwork of a creator/master artist who displays a wisdom and a genius that we have only begun to understand”. His focus is to create art that will cause the soul to search for a deeper meaning in an increasingly chaotic world.
He started striving for a photo realism style in the 1990’s and achieved it to some degree, but, he found the style did not evoke much emotion and set out on a journey to find a style that was realistic but, with a much looser impressionistic approach.
Eighteen of his paintings were on display at his hometown Petrolia Library during the Summer of 2004.
The Painting “The Newfoundland Cabin” appeared in “Guest Gallery “which is a page in the downhomer magazine; www.Downhome.com is the biggest magazine on the Canadian eastcoast with 26,000 subscribers. This magazine also has a gallery and gift shop in St. John’s, Newfoundland which now carries prints of the painting “seasons of life”
“After Monet” is my copy of one of Claude Monet’s famous paintings “ Garden at Sainte Adresse “. It has never been my practice to copy another painter. But , in my progression as a student, in the fine art of painting , I felt that undertaking this course of study, of a master painter, would be beneficial.
This painting has a style that I am after in my own work ; a blend of realism and impressionism. The original painting is 38”x 50” . My version of it is aprox one third of that size, at 14” x18”. It is an acrylic painting done on a canvas covered panel. You can see an image of Monet’s original by clicking onto the link: Monet original…
The sky is done with color combinations using paynes grey , ultramarine blue, parchment white, and glazes of crimson and blue. The water base color is done with paynes grey, pthalo green, parchment white and yellow ochre.
The patio base color is a combination of parchment white , raw umber and burnt umber . The grasses on the right are done with a light yellow , yellow ochre and ultramarine blue.
The fence is a combination of raw sienna, cad red med, cad yellow deep . The shadows in the fence have a raw umber and raw sienna mixture. At this point I added all those little ships in the background using paynes grey and umber colors. I put the waves in with pthalo green and ultramarine blue. The black on the left was my first attempt at the dark shadows, I used red, blue and yellow to get black, the way Monet would have done. In his later years he abandoned black from his impressionist palette.
Below is a close up of the mid ground sail boat before the final touch ups in the finished painting. At first I wondered why Monet used these dark colored sails . But ,then I guessed that the sails were made from raw canvas and they would tend to darken over time.
One area that I struggled with was the shadow color. The darkest shadow was not a problem . It was the midtone shadows that cast from left to right across the picture plane that I found to be the biggest challenge. In Monets painting the shadows looked almost black . I wanted to get a color that was a little warmer. You will notice that I went from a burnt umber color to a purple at first . I finally got a color I wanted by mixing a little cad red with paynes grey ,raw umber and parchment white.
In the photo above I hadn’t painted in the yellow umbrella. Notice below how that yellow changed the whole look of the young lady. I was also painting the white umbrella at that point. There is more detail in that umbrella then any other object in the painting. I was left wondering why Monet wanted that much focus on the umbrella. Can you guess?
The finished painting.