Archive for the ‘Abstract Art’ Category

I have been having wild dreams lately. Some leave me happy and delighted and others, anxious and worried. I guess my brain is working out some stuff.


Trajectoire oblique
Oblique trajectory
©2018 Suzanne Bélair
Oil on canvas 10 X 10 in

Lately, I have been listening to Quebec singers and one of them has this song that says: “I thought when I grew up I would always know what to do, like my father” (1). What a great comment on how we view our parents. Now that I am grown up (supposed to be anyhow) I see that life is full of questions and uncertainties and that often, most of the time for some, we don’t really know what to do or in which direction to go. Of course, it all depends on which area we’re talking about but I find myself increasingly questioning my smallest decisions for some unknown reason.


We live in a world full of instability and insecurities and, especially lately, full of hate. It is sometimes difficult to navigate through all of it while keeping focus on our own life and keeping hopeful for a better future or at least a peaceful one for our children. This is what I am working on, trying to keep my mind above the bad and the ugly that is plastered all over the news, invading our daily lives.


This morning though, some wonderful news as the Thai boys from the soccer team and their coach have been brought out of the cave where they have been prisoners for over two weeks. Wonderful news! A great show of human resilience and cooperation as the world watched the courageous rescue mission and prayed for the safety of the boys and their rescuers. An event that reconciles all with hope, love and goodwill.


On another front, I am happy I found some time for painting amidst all the preparations for three exhibitions coming up this summer and other obligations and chores of everyday life.


I pretty much decided to go back to my beloved oils I so enjoy working with. Since my time is very limited these days, I have decided to work on small paintings. I still have my two large paintings of Italy that are moving forward even if they are turning out to be real puzzles and I can only work on a small section at the time but they are coming together. Here is the progress so far, obviously not finished:

Work in Progress
© Suzanne Bélair

Work in Progress
©2018 Suzanne Bélair

And here are the links to the beginning of these paintings:




This is why I don’t want to start anything too big. It just seems daunting right now with all the exhibits coming up, my new granddaughter arriving soon and my precious little grandson I want to see as often as possible.


I now consider my contemporary forests series in reds and yellows finished (except for one painting still in the works) and am going for something else all together. A complete change of palette is interesting and I’m going even more abstract with these new ones. I had explored this style last year and really enjoyed it so here it goes!


“Oblique trajectory” is the first of the series and has softer colors. The painting reminds me of all we have to go through in life and how we often have to travel in an oblique fashion to get where we want. Nothing in life is in a straight line but we get there eventually. I completed this small 10 X 10 a few weeks ago and am now working on a 12 X 12. I really enjoy the process, the colors, everything.


When I start a new painting, there is an excitement, a panicky feeling almost overtakes me until the first coat is pretty much finished and the canvas is covered in colors. Then I calm down and start relaxing while putting each touch of color where it belongs.


In a similar manner, starting a new series is exciting and scary at the same time but I love the challenge!


(1) “Tout simplement”, Album “Qu’on se lève”, Jonathan Painchaud, 2007


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This is an invitation to come and admire the works of close to 40 professional artists, members of the Lakeshore Association of Artists, on the shore of Lake St-Louis during the week-end of September 9th and 10th, 2016 during the “Art by the lake” event.

I will be happy to welcome you on the beautiful site that is Stewart Hall, where I will be exhibiting some new 2016 works as well as other favourites. My site # 31 is located on the higher part of the grounds, near the front parking area.


A portion of sales will go to On Rock Community Services and Food Bank.


The show still goes on even if it rains. The exhibit will then take place inside instead of outside.


Please forward this invitation to your family and friends.


I hope to see you there!





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Well that’s it, summer is nearing its end and for us here is Montreal, Qc, we are still waiting for it to arrive. June and July were atypically rainy and cold, August being out best month so far and the leaves are already turning in certain areas.


The last few months have been really busy with family gatherings, friends, entertaining and a short beach vacation. We also went through major renovations outside and landscaping work.

Art wise, I kept on painting but at a much reduced pace. I participated in the Estiv’Arts Symposium in Magog during the weekend of August 5th and 6th, a nice experience even if Saturday was hit by a violent storm halfway through the day which pretty much ruined it for us outdoor artists, but Sunday was glorious. Here are a few pictures from that week-end.


estivart 2017


Anyhow, for the last couple weeks, I have been working on a series of small formats 10 X 10 inches for a special exhibit coming up in November (more on that later). Pictures are needed early on for publicity. I have been exploring these semi-abstract contemporary forests in acrylic for a while now and don’t tire of it. Here is a photo of the first 6 of the series in progress.


I enjoy working with this limited pallet, strictly primary colours plus white and black or brown. I make a wonderful rich black with Ultramarine blue and Vandyke brown, but also use Oxide black on occasion. Most of the trees are worked with various palette knives.


work in progress


In approximately two weeks will be the Lakeshore Association of Artists outdoor exhibition, more on this on a later post.

For now, the focus is on painting, painting, painting, to get ready for all the exciting upcoming events.



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Forest spirit
@2017 Suzanne Bélair
Acrylic and Ink on canvas
12 X 12 in


The rabbit jumps
Behind the trees
It runs
Hidden from me
Disappearing in the hole
Creature of the earth
Down his tunnel he goes
Reaching his burrow
By another opening
He knows he can escape
If someone sees him
But quick he is
Running and jumping at dusk
When no one is watching

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Golden Watch
©2017 Suzanne Belair
Acrylic on canvas 30 X 30 in


From the corner

Golden warmth is keeping watch

Over the forest and its inhabitants

Have no fear

There is protection

For all that live within

Its boundaries

As long as you submit

To nature’s laws.


©2017 Suzanne Belair



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©2017 Suzanne Bélair
Acrylique sur toile 30 X 30 po

Man wants to subdue the forest

To his power, to his needs

Man wants to tame the forest

But the forest is fighting

Each time it resists

After each attack, it regenerates

Indomitable, secret, new

Each time it reveals itself

Despite the assaults

Every time it relives


©2017 Suzanne Belair


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Forest travels by Suzanne Belair

Forest travels
©2017Suzanne Belair
Acrylic on canvas 30 X 30 in

Today I am sharing a new painting finished in January. Forests are one of my favourite subjects and I really enjoy painting this new series.


The traveller is moving towards the other side of the trees, towards the future. So it is in life, where we are forced to move constantly and become someone new everyday of our life.
Change is constant and our travels through life are life changing. Learning something every day, being kind to others, progressing, building, changing ourselves or something.


Painting and writing are metaphors for life. We strive to do our best, we have to confront our fear of committing to color and shapes just as in life, we often fear committing to something, we fear making decisions.


A good example is related in a book I have been reading authored by Joseph T. Hallinan, “Why we make mistakes”. The author relates a scientific study that concluded that when faced with the choice, students prefer not change an answer on a test (i.e. prefer doing nothing) rather than make a decision to change their answer even when they suspected the change might end up being the right answer. In follow-up interviews, it was revealed that it is the notion of regret that influenced the students most. They were afraid of regretting taking the wrong action and they regretted less not taking action and leaving the wrong answer.


So often, we get stuck in this way in our life, being afraid to make a decision we might regret, we prefer not to do anything which in itself is a decision but is not perceived as such by the brain.


In conclusion, be bold, dare to step over the threshold into the unknown, for this is what life is all about. Travel fearlessly through your life’s forests.


Ref: Hallinan, J.T. 2009. “Why we make mistakes”. Broadway books. New York.



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