Categories
Contest

Critiques & Comments Honorable Mentions


Artist: Elise Erasmus – Skipper (Watercolor)

“I was particularly in awe of this painting , a style which is difficult to master especially for a portrait, working wet into wet, and at the same time preventing the colours from becoming ‘muddy’. This is a good example of where every brush-stroke counts, adding texture and character to the face. The artist has managed to maintain detail using tonal values, colour combinations to give the face life and expression.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


Artist: Andre Olwage – Blacksmith Lapwing

(Watercolor, Gouache & Process White)

“Turning an achromatic subject into a colourful painting without changing the emphasis can be a challenge. Andre has done it with contrast, placement in the picture plane, by flagging the head, and with skillful use of a limited palette. The colours and textures of the sky and rocks become almost abstract to support the lapwing and make it appear even more realistic.”

(judge Christopher Reid)

“A beautiful life study with exceptional ability to portray the details of the feathers and anatomical structure of the bird. It was the structure and textures of the rocks that drew me to this painting, often difficult to paint in watercolor. The painting has good tonal values and the plain background is good contrast to the details of the subject”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


Artist: Chrysoula Argyros – Resting in Tranquility

(Watercolor)

“One is immediately transfixed by the amount of work and the attention to detail in this painting, especially for a watercolor. The limited palette, almost bordering on monochromatic, does have a calming effect on the viewer however, on what could be a  ‘busy’ painting. The positioning of the figure right in the foreground does help to add perspective. The capture of light on the figure, using sharp contrasting tonal values, darks against  whites, and the explicit detail in the hair and beard, the lines of the face and hands are indications this artist spends a lot of time creating perfection, a master in her style.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


Artist: Penny Steynor – Fynbos Path (Acrylic)

“A lovely inviting and calm acrylic painting that draws the viewer down the path into the painting. Lovely perspective and a very clever capture of light, using shadows and contrasting light on the rocks to give life and interest in the natural surrounds. The incidental detail to the foreground plants and the use of complimentary colours,  adds interest and freshness to the scene.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


“A magnificent play of lights and shadows plus a great sense of depth. Very colorful and a very pleasant atmosphere. It makes you want to walk the path.

On another hand maybe adding a person at the very end of the path would have added more value to the painting. A great painting.” (judge : Riaz Auladin)


Artist: Samantha Lee – Form/Nest (Watercolor)

“This painting has a very illustrative quality with its use of line and vignetting against the white of the paper. The earth pigment palette keeps the emphasis on forms rather than color and the selective cast shadow emphasizes the human figure. I found it strikingly original and very creative – almost dreamlike. The soft fur of the bunnies and the fetal position of the main figure, who appears to be pregnant, reinforce the concept of nesting from the title.”

(judge Christopher Reid)


“This is one of those ‘wondrous’ paintings, the more you look at it, the more magic you see, and the story may be different every time. It’s a very gentle painting, the use of a limited palette is very calming, but at the same time the hidden details add adventure and interest. The detail in the application of the fauna and flora contrasting with the delicacy of the figure make up an interesting composition.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


Artist: Jeremy Day – K(No)wn Name Brands (Acrylic)

“An unusual subject, even with a touch of humour. The artist has managed to turn something very ordinary into something quite spectacular.  One can’t help but be mesmerised by the realism of the painting, the attention to detail, the precision of colours,  the capture of lights and reflection on the objects are exceptional. The management and application of the plastic bag is particularly masterful.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)

“Jeremy’s cheeky humour shows through in this hyperrealist painting. The products are instantly recognizable to anyone living in southern Africa, but, as the title hints, they have become so ubiquitous as to almost be generic. It is a skillfully painted and clever take on a still life.”

(judge Christopher Reid)


Artist: Leonora De Lange – Relaxing (Watercolor)

“Always hard to paint a close up especially with a fur animal and even more so if with patterns and the artist has masterfully done it.

Good light and shadow. Nice composition. Great blurry effects in the background which work to emphasize the subject. This artist has shown great dexterity in depicting such a complex painting”

(judge Riaz Auladin)


“A beautiful depiction of a leopard, and a clever use of a combination of detail and washes to give a three dimensional aspect. The shadow on the chest is very well done and the texture of the rocks adds more interest, a very pleasing composition all round. The muted abstract background with a slight texture forms a good substrate without detracting from the subject.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


Artist: Shelley Mattinson – Woman of Africa (Acrylic)

“A lovely modern contemporary acrylic. A very good play on shadows and lights and the blending of colours on the face is beautifully done. With the figure being positioned so low in the painting, it could have created a feeling of imbalance, which the artist has very cleverly rectified with the detailed red backdrop. The repetition of the pattern also helps draw the viewer into the bigger painting. It’s a strong painting, has impact,  the colours are bold and typically African.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)

“Between the dominant red, expression of the woman, spotlighting, contrast of pattern in the background and form on the figure, and the use of the branches to bring it all together, this composition packs a visual punch.”

(judge Christopher Reid)


Artist: Arie Swanepoel – Zebras (Watercolor)

“A lovely loose watercolour, with a good use of white of the paper as the light source. The looseness together with certain definitions and wet into wet shapes and forms, gives a lovely suggestion of motion and speed. A very confident painting.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


Artist: Madelein Bronn – I do, I do (Watercolor)

“Not an easy painting and a complicated flower to paint, however the artist has accomplished a beautiful composition, using clever blending and grading hues to give the individual petal form and shape. Maintaining the white of the paper for the lightest petals is wonderful, giving depth to each bloom. “

(judge Barbi Cunningham)

“Madelein makes good use of the wet-into-wet effects that watercolour excels at but maintained some hard edges and definition on the edges of petals to avoid a washed out painting. The background washes add interest and the close up composition creates visual impact.”

(judge Christopher Reid)


Artist: Bronwen Schalkwyk – Tidal Twirl – South African Turban Shell

(Watercolor)

“I love how the stark contrasts and textures of this painting paired with the variety of subtle colours. Form is created with pattern rather than value and the cast shadow is anchored by the large dark area in the corner. As someone who lives on the coast and frequently walks along the tidal pools, I instantly identify with the subject matter.”

(judge Christopher Reid)

“A lovely delicate painting and the artist’s ability to maintain the translucency and shine of the shell is masterful. The attention to detail and symmetry in the shell is very well done. The painting is covered in texture and the overall colours are similar but the addition of the strong contrasting colour in the shell, and the dark shadow behind give the shell impact and recognition.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


Artist: Coleen Williams – Dawn Dust Dance (Watercolor)

“Drama, movement, atmosphere, Africa are words that come to mind in this painting. Beautifully executed, using a limited palette and contrasts. The wild dogs, in their detail and composition are wonderful depicting motion and excitement, while in contrast the dust is  cleverly blended and undefined, creating atmosphere and support for the subject”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


Artist: Simone Dee Russel – Bee on Purple Background (Acrylic & silver leaf)

“The choice of a vertical scroll format is an unexpected fit with the very well rendered bee and flower. The abstraction of the background keeps it from competing with the subject for interest and ties the top and bottom half of the composition together. The choice of the complementary color of the subject creates drama and emphasis.”

(judge Christopher Reid)


“The appeal for this painting is it is striking, simple and unusual. It’s all about the bee, it’s an evocative painting, and the bee is painted in explicate detail,  the artist has managed to capture the light, and the transparency of the wings. This artist loves bees. The flower on the edge of the painting and the contrasting complimentary colour purple of the background are incidental, simple and a great support for the subject.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)


Artist: Ros Brown Corrish – Fields of Gold (Watercolor)

“A beautiful and fine example of using a limited palette and complimentary colours. A very relaxing painting,  simple washes and a very clever use of the white paper to define the highlights and composition of the cows. The application of the long grass is beautiful, gentle washes with a little texture. A good example of ‘less is more’.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)

“Simplicity at its best!

Right dosage of details in the background and foreground and the harmony of colours make the cattle pop out.

Great composition and atmosphere as well.”

(judge: Riaz Auladin)


Artist: Wendy Baumgarten – Richard (Acrylic)

“A very well executed acrylic portrait and the artist has made good use of the light source. The different flesh tones and accompanying brush strokes, together with the gentle shadows help define the facial features without the use of any hard lines. One feels that this is a gentle man. The depiction of light and reflection of the spectacles is very well done.”

(judge Barbi Cunningham)