Monday, 16 December 2013

Sergei, mostly composed

I've been reconnecting with classical music throughout this year. I'll quickly admit that I had far more knowledge of it when I was seven, mostly thanks to one of my elementary school teachers. 

These days, it's more about feeling it in my bones when I paint. Matching up the mood of a sweet, romantic violin when I need softness and embracing the drama of an angry piano when I want the opposite. Today I finally finished painting Sergei, who has given me so much of the latter. 

Before you go there - no, I was not trying to capture him thinking, for that would be impossible. Don't you imagine? To me, it's more about expressing gratitude.

Prelude op. 23 no. 5


Thursday, 12 December 2013

she had more work done

I thought she was done a week ago, but she wasn't. It became obvious as I was about to varnish her.

 She needed more depth in low values, especially on her underbelly. Also, I had too much warmth next to her wing before, so I blued it down. I punched up the high value on her wing and added some titanium on her hind foot when I saw that part would have had sun on it. Finally, I connected a leaf that had been was floating, glazed Payne's grey throughout the little window and adorned it with jewelry. 

Now she's complete. She'll be flying to Banff next week. Good bye sweetie, you were hard to let go of. May you find someone that will cherish you.

Nikol Haskova Studio

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

let the battle begin

Here's a sneak peek into one of my projects:

Confrontations, conversations, territory defence, bodyguards, watchers, wives, wise old men & some pissed off ones too. All part of crow's lives. 

I have no experience painting gulls - I'll get it when my brushes touch the canvas. I don't need luck because, at the risk of sounding arrogant, I have confidence gained from the works I've done in the last three years.  But, if you'd like to send some good karma my way, I'll put it on the big pile of love I've been receiving in my studio. There's a piece of it in every painting. Even when I paint an angry bird, I'm observing it and guessing the story as opposed to just painting a crow gone mad. 

Some of you that enjoy my grumpy corvids tell me that they crack you up. Well, laughing your butt off is an awesome reaction, so thank you so much for letting me know. I have much gratitude for all the good stuff I hear and often use it as fuel for the piece on the easel. 

Nikol Haskova Studio

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

as everyone rushed by

He ran by. So did she. Then a whole group sped by. 
No one saw her standing there. She was fine with that though. She just watched. 
Tilting her head a little, the sweet princess just wondered: "Why are you rushing so hard? Your feet will hurt and so will your heart."


Nikol Haskova Studio



slip sliding


goofing around


I have immensely enjoyed painting crows. Yet I get it, some of you are starting to wonder if that's all I have. Well, let me tell you. In a word, nope. 

Not done. You see, for a while I painted farm houses and churches. People recognized me for that subject matter. Then uprooted trees moved me to an emotional need so desperate that I wanted to (and did) paint trees. I became known as 'the tree artist'. When I started meeting crows and trying to capture pieces of their lives on canvas, I became the crow lady. 

Well, I still am. Of course I also love to plunge into a good abstract, birds other than crows and I plan a big body of figurative work for the upcoming year (pun intended). But I still have more to learn about crows. I know some of the good stuff, but there's a huge treasure still waiting to be found. So, yep, you're gonna see more crows.

Saturday, 7 December 2013

setting intention

It wouldn't be right to write anything about this painting. It would take away your opportunity to set your own intention.