I wish I was a gannet (well…. maybe for just for a little while! )
From our boat trip along the shores of Carrigaholt and around Loop Head, we were mesmerized by the gannets as they dive-bombed into the sea from up to 40 metres and hit the water with a streamlined elegance that Tom Daley and his Olympic buddies could only attempt to emulate.
Gannets are the most amazing seafaring birds to watch. They are the largest of Ireland’s sea birds and with a wingspan of just under 2m. They have snow-white plumage, are tipped with black on the wings and are crowned with a buttery almond glow.
As the boat swayed to and fro, I gazed up into the morning light and thought about my best efforts at a pencil dive, then as I watched another rapid dive, I thought …… no more cooking….. no more cleaning up…… sushi for every meal – how wonderful and simple life could be! I wish I was a gannet!
Inspiration from a trip to the west coast of Ireland and in particular to the dramatic cliff walks in Kilkee, Loop Head and boat trips from Carrigaholt, I tried to capture the memory of this special place.
The painting, Safe Haven began to evolve and become an immersive virtual environment of sedimentary rock formation that could give shelter from the elemental forces of nature.
“The spectacular scenery at the Mouth of the Shannon ranges from pastoral slopes and sand dunes to very dramatic cliffs with exposed layers of sand & mud sedimentary rock dating back 350 million years.
The ledges create ideal nesting areas for thousands of sea birds every year, including guillemots, razorbills, kittiwakes and fulmars.
Cliffs, coastal caves, sea stacks, rock folds and historic maritime features all contribute to this wealth of natural beauty to be seen from the water”. Dolphin Watch Carrigaholt
– could this be a safe haven for the weary boatman to shelter from the stormy seas?
– a safe haven for wildlife such as the grey seals that also populate this area?
Either way, it is a place to explore!
Loop Head, Co. Clare
Kilkee Coastline, Co. Clare
Kilkee Coastline, Co. Clare, West Coast of Ireland
Magnificent architectural rock formations of the peninsula trace the evolution of a large scale river delta during the Upper Carboniferous Period about 320 million years ago.
Carrigaholt and Loop Head Peninsula, Co. Clare
Lilly on Lilly pads
Oil painting, drying, varnishing and multi-tasking
Despite images flooding my mind of the untamed waters of Kilkee, Loop Head and the majestic Cliffs of Moher, my thoughts were of rock formations, flora and fauna and the onset of Autumn colour – I found myself painting abstracts in oil.
“Making hay while the sun shines” or in other words, taking full advantage of the extended period of sunshine, now that Autumn has arrived. Painting, varnishing, framing – multi-tasking en plein air and sunshine in the comfort of my garden – bliss!
These are some of the miniature 5 x 5″ oil paintings showcased in white frames that I have worked on and I hope you like them.
I look forward to more painting in my garden while this borrowed sunshine lingers and hope to post the results of my work here shortly.
A recent trip from Galway city to Clifden and on to Cleggan left me feeling much inspired.
It was a cold and wet day but the constant changing light danced around the rugged landscape, shifting its mood and tone as it contrasted with the Twelve Bens mountain range to the north. Sheep grazed in the surrounding bog-lands that were illuminated by shades of gold as time stood still.
This painting reflects my memory of the trip.
While I am speaking about the glories of Ireland and its rich countryside, may I take this opportunity to wish everyone a Happy St. Patrick’s Day
The Christmas season is upon us and there is only six weeks left to the big day.
I am getting excited about the Affordable Art Show in Dublin where I have taken a stand and here are the details of the exhibition:
Affordable Art Show 2012
Clyde Court Hotel (formerly Berkeley Court Hotel), Ballsbridge, Dublin 4
Saturday 24th Nov & Sunday 25th Nov, 2012
Opening Times: 10.00 am – 6.00 pm
Please come along and say hello. There will be some great works of art for sale from a variety of artists. This is the perfect time to pick up a unique gift for Christmas and to keep within your budget.
I have been working on a number of new oil paintings and included in this are some framed miniature oil paintings mounted on block canvas at very affordable prices – the ideal gift for Christmas!
Hope you can make it and looking forward to seeing you there.
The long bank holiday weekend in August – already thinking about school uniforms, book lists …. and all the routine “duty” that is so much a part of this time of year.
But hey, I’m still waiting for the summer to come! What is happening to our planet? Is it Global Warming? Global Freezing?
The rains came and made our gardens grow, the grass grew greener, then more rain came and flooded our fields and gave headaches to the farmers.
Quietly, I wait for the sun to announce summertime.
Well, last weekend the sun came! We made it to one of my favourite places – Magheramore Beach in County Wicklow. This small little secluded beach embraced children playing, families picnicking, people swimming, dogs prancing with delight and we even saw a seal proudly perch its head above the waves as if to say “Hi – let’s play”.
My camera phone and my sketch pad kept me peacefully engaged in quiet absorption as I stole away some time to record the scene. The sun shone and the undulating waves rippled a slow mesmerizing imprint on the shoreline.
I transferred my sketch to canvas as soon as I returned – hoping that somehow I could hold this sunshine in my heart just a bit longer.
Exhibition Space, Top Floor, Stephen’s Green Shopping Centre
Opening Times Mon-Sat 11am-7pm.Thurs 11am-9pm. Sun 11am-6pm
Heaven’s Above by Donna McGee – Instrumental Art Dublin
Don’t miss the opportunity to visit this exhibition, the world’s first Instrumental Art Exhibition featuring over 100 unique pieces. It is truly amazing to witness the diversity in creativity across this talented group of artists : (from violins converted to medicine cabinets and a “well heeled guitar” literally perched on high heels!)
This event has been organised by Soul Picnic in association with Dublin City Council and Failte Ireland. On 26th – 27th May, the 6th annual ‘Dublin City Soul Festival will take place live from the beautiful surroundings of Merrion Square Park.
The event will raise much needed funds for ‘Musical Youth Foundation’ (MYF) which provides children with access to a musical education.
The Musical Youth Foundation charity was established in 2009 as part of the Dublin City Soul Festival project. At the heart of the project is a deep wish to have a long-term positive impact on the local and wider community by providing children on the Island of Ireland with access to a musical education.
As a part of their fundraising events, an instrumental art exhibition, featuring over 100 pieces of art will open on 24th May and this violin is what I have been working on:
Thank you to those who came up with names for this violin and the name accepted is “Heavens Above”. The instruments will eventually be auctioned off to raise funds for this worthy cause.
Stay tuned or subscribe to continue the journey of Heavens Above