recent paintings and news

recent paintings and news

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Moon

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.
 Eleanor Roosevelt

Happy New Year.

And there is a full moon-how cool is that??

 January, full wolf moon, encaustic
 copyright Jan Yates, 2013 

New Moon: January 1, 2014.
Full Wolf Moon. It appeared when wolves howled in hunger outside the villages. It is also known as the Old Moon. To some Native American tribes, this was the Snow Moon, but most applied that name to the next full Moon, in February.

Monday, December 30, 2013

cold wax painting workshop & Ireland

Annaghmakkerrig, oil/cold wax on canvas, 6x6in, 2012     
copyright Jan Yates, 2013
I am excited to introduce a Cold Wax painting workshop at the Burlington Art Centre,  January 12 & 19, 1 - 4 pm.
Black 47, oil/ cold wax  on canvas, 8x10in, 2012
                         copyright Jan Yates, 2013        
This is a really fun and versatile medium and lends itself to both abstract as well as representational painting. Featured  are some cold wax mixed media works made during my Ireland residency last year-

Friday, December 27, 2013


Today was lovely, sunny, snowy-a blank canvas. I was craving  a quick fix. 

I don't know about other artists, but as much as I enjoy all that the holidays entail, I find it a wee bit disruptive when it comes to my art-making routine. i.e. there is no time to delve into sustained painting projects in the studio. 

Taking an hour a day to get outside and interact with the natural world allows for some art satisfaction until I can get back in sync when the holidays end. 

 milkweed continues to intrigue me.
I don't understand why it is considered to be a weed.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

land mark

 land mark 1, milk weed, December 26, 2013

For me there is a breathless energy in working on the land that is very different from making art in a controlled studio environment. 

land mark 2, 3, December 26, 2013

Since my residency in Ireland in 2012, I have become more and more interested in land marks and their impact on those who encounter them.

 run, 2012

 I am compelled to immerse myself in the cycle of growth and decay by making marks on the land in and from the elements. 

 field portal, December 2013

Building three dimensional work intuitively and using only materials available from natural surroundings is a current driving force and I relish the possibilities.

field portal,  December 2012

I am intrigued by the processes happening in nature over time and it’s unpredictability that affects the work. 
 limb, 2012

The uncertainty of working with the weather, the connection between land and light, uprooting and unearthing hidden things and hidden life are all catalysts for this  body of work.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

the longest night

The black moment is the moment when the real message of transformation is going to come. At the darkest moment comes the light.
  – Joseph Campbell

 Solstice plays a significant role in my personal journey and I have been 'marking' the occasions over the years. 

Tonight is the longest night-and quite a moody one-this was painted from my window;

 December 21, oil on canvas, 11x14in, 2013

And to welcome the longer light, a new field portal in the works..

Friday, December 20, 2013

with gratitude

Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.

I am having a happy month with lots of sales. A sincere thank-you to all who bid / purchased paintings via my auction, and to collectors that have invested/connected with it throughout the years.

Also, I am deeply appreciative to those that have taken the time to comment re my work. Unsure, searching, vulnerable on the best of days, I am always taken aback when someone articulates their response to it.

December, remains of the day, oil on canvas 24x40in, sold
copyright Jan Yates, 2013 

Piglet noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of Gratitude. 

Friday, December 13, 2013

Christmas lasting gift

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas-in Niagara!

A lasting gift for anyone connecting with the vineyards here in wine country...

 Aluminum pigment in this painting emphasizes the movement of light-quite evocative in low light as well.
available at special auction price until tomorrow.

oil/ aluminum on canvas, 8x10in

Value: $350

starting bid:$70

Thursday, December 12, 2013

book lover

Do you have a book or nature lover on your Christmas list?

 'Quiet Conversations' is available for auction until this Saturday, Dec 14.

Quiet Conversations,  encaustic on panels, 9x12in

You don't even need to leave the house if you win this painting -I am happy to mail it -gift wrapped!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

a spell before winter

After the red leaf and the gold have gone,
Brought down by the wind, then by hammering rain
Bruised and discolored, when October's flame
Goes blue to guttering in the cusp, this land
Sinks deeper into silence, darker into shade.

There is a knowledge in the look of things,
The old hills hunch before the north wind blows.
Now I can see certain simplicities
In the darkening rust and tarnish of the time,
And say over the certain simplicities,
The running water and the standing stone,
The yellow haze of the willow and the black
Smoke of the elm, the silver, silent light
Where suddenly, readying toward nightfall,
The sumac's candelabrum darkly flames.

And I speak to you now with the land's voice,
It is the cold, wild land that says to you
A knowledge glimmers in the sleep of things:
The old hills hunch before the north wind blows.

Howard Nemerov
A Spell before Winter

winter sumac, encaustic on panel, 6x10in, copyright Jan Yates, 2013


Sunday, December 8, 2013

The summer birds have flown away. The winter birds are here to stay.


The west was getting out of gold,
The breath of air had died of cold,
When shoeing home across the white,
I thought I saw a bird alight.

In summer when I passed the place
I had to stop and lift my face;
A bird with an angelic gift
Was singing in it sweet and swift.

No bird was singing in it now.
A single leaf was on a bough,
And that was all there was to see
In going twice around the tree.

From my advantage on a hill
I judged that such a crystal chill
Was only adding frost to snow
As gilt to gold that wouldn't show.

A brush had left a crooked stroke
Of what was either cloud or smoke
From north to south across the blue;
A piercing little star was through. 

Looking For a Sunset Bird in Winter by Robert Frost

 Murmur, oil/aluminum/cold wax on canvas, 12x40in, copyright Jan Yates, 2013

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

night moves

It is a struggle for me to paint with oil under artificial light, however  with these #/*#%!!^ shorter days and my schedule, I have no choice. I often switch over to  encaustic at night because I am working flat and don’t have an issue with glare-but upright on the easel is an altogether different story.

I have spent more time getting the right bulbs, adjusting lights, then glare, then adjusting, then glare-however I think I've finally gotten to where it is fairly even, although I might have to glaze work when I asses it in natural  daylight.

So here is a new painting in progress-30x40in. Limited pallet-again my favourite winter combination. Not sure how far I will go with it. 

I do like making art at night as my mind is empty of daily left brain jargon and open to a myriad of possibility.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Gift of Art

Last Christmas I was fortunate to have requests for gift certificates and this season I am offering the same option. They can also be individually customized.

Art resonates on an individual level so this way your loved one will be able to select what speaks to them!

Just choose any of the artworks from my website and I will incorporate it into the gift certificate design-at no charge. Or simply select one of the two designs below. The certificate can be redeemed for either a workshop (70.) or a work of art (starting at 70).

Orders and payments can be made online. Please email:

 *as well, I am shamelessly flogging my 4th annual Online Art Auction. Info is on the sidebar with a link to available works of art-thanks to those who have already made bids!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

breathing out & breathing in

It felt great to be painting again after working all week on either the computer or other art projects.

I have to say that this is a subject matter and pallet that continues to entice me. November in it’s changing motion, the warm breathing out and the cold breathing in. As I was working (looking out my studio window) there were many starling murmurations, moving in continues motion, mirroring the rolling clouds but in reverse black.

Snow is on it’s way.

 November, oil/cold wax on panel, 14x30in, 2013, sold
copyright Jan Yates

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Milkweed

Anonymous as cherubs
Over the crib of God,
White seeds are floating
Out of my burst pod.
What power had I
Before I learned to yield?
Shatter me, great wind:
I shall possess the field.

Richard Wilbur

Two Voices in a Meadow


 sway, mixed media on found panel, 7x40in, 2013

copyright Jan Yates

Wednesday, November 13, 2013


Love consists in this, that two solitudes protect and touch and greet each other.
- Rainer Maria Rilke

 November,  kindred, oil /cold wax on canvas, plein air, 20x24in, 2013
copyright Jan Yates

Sunday, November 10, 2013

The larks, still bravely singing, fly

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

 In Flanders Fields
By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918)
Canadian Army 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

fall in to you

A warm November day enticed me to break from encaustic and hike out for some plein air.

I prefer the November 'fall' (versus October) as tree structures are more exposed with most of the leaves gone, looking like drawings in the air.
Indigo pigment is my best friend. It makes beautiful grey skies and black trunks, and when mixed with yellows, reds and violets; rich russets and quiet greens.

November, fall in to you, oil/cold wax on canvas, 24x24in, 2013, available

Monday, November 4, 2013

intuitive map making

Yes I have been working out some personal direction issues via encaustic.

The medium lends itself to this type of intuitive map making. Having faith and falling into it. Without question.

The vertical image is presented in sections with the last in full view.

 its all right  to fall, encaustic on panel, 12x50in, 2013
copyright Jan Yates, 2013