This past weekend I had the privilege of attending my grandparent's 60th wedding anniversary party in Port Townsend, Washington.
At the party there were sunflowers everywhere, infusing a cheery yellow hue throughout the room. After a weekend filled with sunflowers, I couldn't think of a more perfect flower to represent the special celebration of love and life.
Their love and commitment is truly an inspiration, and I've created "Piece 35" in their honor.
"Piece 35 (2008)" by Renee Coates. Oil painting on canvas. 6" x 6".
"Who would have thought it possible that a tiny little flower could preoccupy a person so completely that there simply wasn't room for any other thought..." -Sophie Scholl
"Piece 34" depicts the Golden Cup flower, and I found myself completely absorbed in the detail of each petal, and the subtle beauty of every curve. Sometimes it's nice to get lost in a painting, where your only care in the world is the brush and the canvas. When you are able to quiet the world around you and delve into something you love, there is a sense of fulfillment, both as an artist and a human being.
The month of August contains five Sundays, so the flower theme will extend an extra week. I'm glad I get to paint an additional flower because there are too many beautiful varieties to choose from...
"Piece 34 (2008) by Renee Coates. Oil painting on canvas. 6" x 6".
The Road to Hana holds a special place in my heart. Not only is the winding road to the East side of Maui a beautiful drive full of breathtaking panoramic views, sparkling waterfalls, and lush greenery... it's also a one-of-a-kind place once you get there. Hana is a source of endless inspiration and beauty, and as an artist, you can't ask for more! "Piece 33 (2008)" was inspired by Hana and the exotic Heliconia flower that's found growing wild along the roadside.
Do you have a Road to Hana story? Post your comments below or email me!
"Piece 33 (2008)" by Renee Coates. Oil painting on canvas. 6" x 6".
"Nobody sees a flower, really, it is so small. We haven't time - and to see takes time like to have a friend takes time." - Georgia O'Keeffe
This week I chose to depict the tiger lily. Examining a flower really does take time, as you appreciate every petal and the way the light hits each leaf. When I paint, I like to blend what I see in front of me with what's in my imagination. In doing so, I think I may have invented my own version of the tiger lily, channeling one of my favorite artists, Georgia O'Keeffe. I admire Ms. O'Keeffe for her abstract representations of nature, and capturing an emotion rather than a photographic likeness.
That's really the beauty of a painting... you are able to escape reality for a moment while you see an object through the artist's eyes. Enjoy "Piece 32"!
"Piece 32 (2008)" by Renee Coates. Oil painting on canvas. 6" x 6".
It's August! As promised, I'm switching themes from month to month... I've painted my last cow for July and it's finally time to reveal August's theme: Flowers!
What better way to celebrate the last month of summer than with a splash of bold color? "Piece 31" captures the angel's trumpet tree, whose flowers sometimes look like they're dancing in the wind. The Hawaiian name for the flower is "nanahonua", which means "gazing downward". You don't find many flowers that bloom towards the earth.
This piece took an unexpected turn from a realistic painting to a floral pattern of sorts. Maybe this can be attributed to my days studying textile design at FIT. I don't always know what the end result will be when I start a new painting, but I love the direction this piece took. As an artist, sometimes it's nice to surprise yourself!
"Piece 31 (2008)" by Renee Coates. Oil painting on canvas. 6" x 6".
My name is Renee Coates, and I'm an artist from Hana, Maui. Welcome to my website & blog, where you'll find original art, limited edition prints, and stories about each piece.
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