Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Strada Easel 31-day Challenge Jan 2017

I just completed a 31-day challenge in the month of January organised by Strada - an easel company. The idea of the challenge is to post a painting from life every single day and hashtag the word stradaeasel on every post. I also added day 1, day 2, day 3... to help both organisers and viewers follow and track each day's upload.

A bit about the last 31 days.  Some days were real tough. I had to balance a full day's worth of work load and that extra bit for the challenge. The last few days which coincided with the Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations were the most trying. It is a time where all businesses cease to operate. It is also important to visit and spend time with family and close friends, and along with the regular day-to-day work that I do, sleep had to suffer. But a challenge is a challenge, and that's why it's called a challenge. :)

Here on this post, I present the paintings' time lapses. Except for the days I did live figure and portraits in a shared and very tight space. 

Thank you Strada for organising this challenge. Thank you for all of you from the bottom of my heart who followed my 31-day challenge daily and made comments, it did cheer me on.  :D  Do share which one/s are your favourite/s too. 

Day 1 - Balinese Door 

Day 2 - Paddy Field, Bali

Day 3 - Cold Brew still life

Day 4 - Chin Mee Chin

Day 5a - Figure Study, Day 5b - Foot study

Day 6 - Nonya Kueh 3

Day 7 - The Ice Cream Vendor

Day 8 - Koon Seng and Tumbling Corner

Day 9 - Maguro, Ikura and Amaebi

Day 10 - Dove Playground

Day 11 - Traditional Coffee and Eggs

Day 12 - Portrait of Salvin

Day 13 - The Flower Vendor

Day 14 - Reunion 2017

Day 15 - Teong Theng Co.

Day 16 - Portrait of Mr Tan

Day 17 - Al Falah Restaurant

Day 18 - Salak, Cinnamon & Star Anise

Day 19 - The One Price Shop

Day 20 - Tong Heng Egg Tart

Day 21 - Susan Ang Flowers

Day 22 - The Glades

Day 23 - Portrait of Mr Low

Day 24 - Prosperity Cake and the Year Cake

Day 25 - The Fishmonger

Day 26 - Portrait of Beby

Day 27 - The Lee Brothers

Day 28 - Mandarins and Hong Bao (Red Packet)

Day 29 - Year of the Rooster

Day 30 - Of Love Letters and Pineapple Tarts

Day 31 - Goodbye Rochor Centre

For the original day-to-day posts, see my uploads at my Instagram page or Facebook art page.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Balinese Retreat

I was in Bali at the end of 2016 to work on some projects. More news on them in due time. It was also an opportunity for me to reflect what I did in 2016 and what I was going to do for 2017.  I had a great time being away from skyscrapers and smart phones. :)  I was surrounded by turquoise seas, paddy fields, great food, and warm friendly faces. 

I kicked off the end of the journey with a 31-day and into the new year with the #stradaeasel challenge. It's a challenge to get painters in the habit of painting from life daily for 31 days in the month of January. The story behind this is interesting.  While in Bali, my Soltek easel's tripod gave way. I couldn't prop it up anywhere unless I find a flat surface at hip level (like a table) to place it on. 

At the very last hours on New Year's Eve, a friend from L.A. told me about the Strada Challenge. It was just hours before the registration closed.  Having wifi at that moment, I entered myself to be a participant.  I will want to post throughout all 31 days and hopefully win myself a brand new easel to replace the former one that broke.  It's going to be tough with other painting projects and many other great painters from around the world.  So, here goes! 

You can follow my daily postings here: 


But for now, I leave you to the highlights of my trip. 
A Happy New 2017 to everyone! Thank you for following my posts online. 

Wake Up Juice in the mornings to greet me

Cabana at Alila Manggis

Ice Cappuccino from the Revolver Cafe

There were these ladies who were transporting rocks on their heads from one point 
of the beach to another, and were doing this to provide a secondary income for their families. 

Cappuccino with fresh coconut milk at the Sea Circus
(served in a coconut husk) 

Great December waves to cheer me on during my morning workout
(My easel tripod broke, so I have to prop it on a table to paint.)

Gateway to Petitegnet Beach

Paddy Field at Sardine #stradaeasel

Helpful staff assisting with my make shift easel stand while painting this traditional Balinese doorway

Inspired by the beautiful food I find in Bali, I create still lifes to help me remember.

–  end  –

To contact Alvin for commissions or collaborations, email him at alvinmark@gmail.com