Spring Study

small acrylic painting study of pink blossoms, spring in New Zealand
a small acrylic painting study of pink blossoms, spring in New Zealand, by Anna Cull
Spring Study, acrylic on paper, 2022
  • a photo of a flowering plum tree in spring, New Zealand
  • a photo of a flowering plum tree in spring, New Zealand
  • a photo of a DIY cardboard viewfinder being used to crop a photo of spring blossoms
  • a photo of spring blossoms, New Zealand
  • a small acrylic painting study of spring blossoms by Anna Cull Art, New Zealand

The reference for this quick little painting was a photo taken using American artist Sister Corita Kent’s ‘finder’ method of using a DIY viewfinder to see the world one small piece at a time. It’s a very simple and very effective way of simplifying a scene to discover compositions that might otherwise not be obvious. And yes, once again the view outside my window (late August this year) has provided me with inspiration. 🌸 🌸 🌸

If you would like to learn more about artist, educator and activist Sister Mary Corita, I recommend starting with a visit to the Corita Art Center.

A Break in the Weather

I love the way seagulls park on street lights. What views they must have! I gave this painting the working title ‘Seagull Parking’ but I always knew that was a little too obscure to be a keeper. The inspiration was a photo I took in a carpark ~ in the golden hour before the sun sets ~ while we were waiting to collect our pizza. Yes, inspiration is everywhere : )

The original plan was to create something more like the reference photo, quite subdued and almost monotone with the seagull as the focal point, but the purple/grey underpainting took it in a different direction ~ one which was more in keeping with how spectacular the sky really looked that evening ~ and that meant rethinking the title.

‘A Break in the Weather’ acrylic on canvas, 500 x 500 mm, 2020

P.S. I’m particularly pleased with those two birds flying in the background. The simpler it is, the harder it is.


A golden evening looking out over Akaroa Harbour

I was so happy with this scene that I decided to dust off the sketchbook…

A golden evening sketch

… and even though it’s not watercolour paper, it still handles the water from my little travel brush surprisingly well.

A bird’s-eye view of Akaroa

The other quick sketch from the weekend has been enhanced digitally using Affinity Photo.

Photos from the road

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Here are a few of the photos I took while travelling to and from Dunedin last weekend. Note the snow on the Southern Alps in the middle of summer! Well done, New Zealand!

I couldn’t help myself… the rolling hills, the purple mountains, the different textures and patterns in the landscape, the shifting light, the fascinating clouds… I think I took close to 200 photographs! And now many of them are whispering (quite loudly) “paint me”…