December 06, 2015

The Waiting Game - Sold

The Waiting Game 24x18 oil
Oh Canada! was almost going to be the title for this painting, but I decided to call it The Waiting Game because at this time of year, unless you play hockey with a team in an indoor rink, you're waiting for the ponds and rivers to freeze over to get into those skates and play.  In fact, I borrowed the hockey stick from a friend who is doing exactly that...waiting.

November 23, 2015

Colour Blind

Colour Blind 12x9 oil
I love to paint!  In fact, I've been so busy painting that I've forgotten to post my work.  This was painted a couple of weeks back, inspired by the bold vibrant colours of the plates.

Now that the temperatures have dipped, and we have had our first snowfall of the season, my thoughts are changing to what lies ahead.  Time to plan get togethers with family and friends over the next month, as well as the essential baking and shopping time that goes with the season.  I will be holding my second annual 'Christmas Open Studio' on Saturday, December 12 this year, 10am to 4pm, (one day only).  If you have any special requests, please send them along, there is still time.  Besides all the original artwork that will be available, I am hoping to have a new Christmas card printed as well.

Helen Griffiths 2nd Annual


December 12, 10am-4pm
1281 Richmond Rd,
Burlington, Ontario

November 06, 2015

Colour Me Crazy - Sold

Colour Me Crazy, 24x12 oil
Since my other macaron painting sold, I just had to paint another one.  Painting macarons allows me to indulge in colour!

It's that time of year again.  The first weekend in November means The Burlington Studio Tour.  Visit to find all the artists and studios.  This year I will be in Studio #1, Dave Lawson's Studio.  Hope to see you this weekend!

October 20, 2015

Oranges and Lemons - Sold

Oranges and Lemons, 30x24 oil
As I was setting up this still life, I accidentally brushed past the table upsetting the tablecloth.  The movement it created in the composition worked beautifully!  I love the huge assortment of tablecloths that I have to choose from.  The one referred to in this painting is an April Cornell design.

October 14, 2015


Seedless, 48x24 oil
It's interesting playing with the scale of things.  Sometimes, when I paint on small canvases, I would choose small items and make them larger.  Here I've painted small items and have made them so much larger than life on this large canvas.  It has a very dramatic effect!

October 08, 2015

Shedding Skins

Shedding Skins, 36x12 oil
I found these gorgeous tomatillos at the farmer's market last week.  I was attracted to the purples and greens...what a beautiful combination.

October 01, 2015

Approaching Room Temperature - Sold

Approaching Room Temperature, 12x12 oil
I find it funny that usually, after completing a painting, I don't know what to say about it.  It's not that I have nothing to say, but more likely the contrary.  While working on a painting there is a constant conversation going on between me, my paints and the subject.  Decisions being made and directions being determined.  My goal is that when I've finished the painting, you will look at the painting and know what that conversation is about.

September 18, 2015

A Fine Day on Ferrie St

A Fine Day on Ferrie St , 12x9 oil

Warm summer days like these will be coming to a close soon.  Signs of autumn are starting to show, as some trees start to change colour, the days become shorter, and the nights are cool.  Despite the weather, I've always felt that summer is over when we hit September.  I'm guessing this probably has something to do with the school year starting in September.

This was painted on location in Hamilton, Ontario.

September 15, 2015

Miniatures - Sold

Guess what I've been up to lately?  I will be submitting three of these paintings into a Miniature Show coming up soon, the hard part is choosing which ones.

August 28, 2015

The Best Present

The Best Present, 18x24 oil
Simple things can bring so much joy, especially when we are children.  I found this old pair of roller skates, tucked away among random items in my garage.  I remember how hard it was to learn to skate with these, (no brakes).  This was before wearing a helmet was even a thought, never mind knee pads or wrist guards.  Amazingly I survived!

August 05, 2015

The Old Farm House - Sold

The Old Farm House, 12x9 oil
When I go outside to paint, half my time is spent trying to choose an appealing location.  I wander around looking for something that gives me a spark.  I always know when I find it.  It's like seeing a complete story that wants to be told.  In this case, I knew I wanted to paint the farm house.  I wandered around the house near and far until I found that story, on the far side of the herb garden.

A few people have asked me recently if I have any shows coming up.  I always try to post my shows on this blog, listed along the left side of the main page.  If you are receiving my posts by email, you probably only see today's posting.  You have to go to the main web site to see the whole page,  At the moment I'm in a show with 12 other artists from the group I paint with 'en plein air'.  Each artist has three paintings in the show which is at the Dundas Museum and Archives, in Dundas, Ontario.

July 24, 2015

The Chicken Coop

The Chicken Coop, 8x10 oil
Chickens don't stand still!  They dart about all the time, running inside the barn every few minutes.  This was mostly painted on location, but I added a few more chickens afterwards.  There is so much to paint on a farm!

July 20, 2015

Farm to Table - Sold

Farm to Table 22x22 oil

This painting was inspired by the idea of buying local organic food.  They are onions that I received as part of my weekly share, (although I wouldn't serve onions like this),  I am impressed and inspired each time I pick up my food from the market.

I spent last Saturday at Manorun Organic Farm, (the farm where I get my weekly shares from).  It was probably the hottest day of the year!!!  A couple of other artists and I were invited to show and sell our art, as well as paint.  Trying to find a spot to paint in the shade as well as being able to catch a breeze (when there was one), was a tricky thing to do.  We ended up painting under a huge willow tree, while trying to stay as cool as possible.

July 17, 2015

Around the Block

Around the Block, 9x12
Everyone at the farm is extremely hard working, even the bikes. Whether it's raining outside, or a scorching hot day, the work must still be done. Bikes are left here and there, ready for whenever they are needed again.  

July 15, 2015

In Wait

In Wait, 12x9 oil
Painting almost anywhere in the summer is an exercise in painting the colour green.  Trying to figure out the differences between them can be quite tricky!

Lately I've been painting en plein air at the organic farm that I had mentioned in my last post, (Manorun).  My next few posts will be of paintings done at this farm.  This coming Saturday, July 18, during the Farm Crawl a couple of other artists and I, will be painting and selling a few of our recent works, weather permitting,  (

July 13, 2015

Kohlrabi - Sold

Kohlrabi, 6x12 oil

I started buying shares in a local farm, Manorun Organic Farm.  Each week I head over to the market to pick up my share.  I have never seen or tried this interesting looking vegetable, but couldn't wait to set up a still life and paint it.  Luckily the farm sends out emails to let you know what they'll be harvesting and even recipes for some of the more obscure items.  I love the way this vegetable looks.  I found that the flavour is fairly mild, sort of a cross between radishes and cabbage.  I ended up making vegetable fritters with grated kohlrabi and carrots, (a recipe I found on the internet).

If you're interested in checking out this farm, there will be a farm crawl coming up on Saturday, July 18, (

July 09, 2015

Today's Pick

Today's Pick, 24x30 oil
I picked these hydrangeas the other day with the intention of putting them in a vase and setting up a still life to paint.  Well they didn't get any further than the watering can.

July 07, 2015

Farm Fresh - Sold

Farm Fresh 12x6 oil

Unless you grow your own vegetables, you can't get fresher food than from your local farmer's market.  This year I decided to buy into a local organic farm.  Once a week I go to the market and pick up my share.  It makes shopping simple, I'm supporting a local farm, and I get some pretty amazing vegetables.

July 05, 2015

Staying for Lunch - Sold

Staying for Lunch, 16x12 oil

The simple things in life seem to get overlooked when we're busy with our daily lives.  As soon as the weather warms up though, one thing that I can't resist is having my meals outside.  Momentarily forgetting about things that need to be done, and deadlines to meet, just sitting outside, listening and watching as the world does it's thing.  It's clear that this is not just me, since patios open up in all the restaurants, and are the first places to fill up on beautiful sunny days.

June 24, 2015

A Little Birdie - Sold

A Little Birdie Told Me, 6x6 oil

Thinking of You, 6x6 oil
A Penny for your Thoughts, 6x6 oil
While having lunch on a patio, this little bird and a few of his brothers and sisters decided to join me. Some being more shy than others, this one sat there watching for a while, looking his cutest, in hopes of sharing a bit of my lunch with me.  It worked on me.  We had a wonderful lunch together :)

June 12, 2015

Laundry Day

Laundry Day, 6x6 acrylic
Just over a week ago I arrived home from holidays.  My husband and I travelled to France and England, mainly to visit family, but we managed to do quite a bit of sight seeing.  We had a wonderful time; I only wish we could have stayed longer.

I brought some acrylic paints with me, but struggled to find the time to stay in one place long enough to complete a painting.  Eventually I had to just grab bits of time here and there, and hope for the best.  In the end I had 6 little acrylic paintings, with varying degrees of completeness.

It was an overcast day when I started this painting, while in the backyard of my niece's home, (in the Bretagne area of France).  The neighbour next door was hanging laundry one day, so I grabbed this painting, and managed to quickly paint her and the laundry in, adjusting the lighting to the gorgeous spring day that it was.  

May 14, 2015

Macaroon Madness - Sold

Macaroon Madness, 12x12 oil
Recently I dropped by a fairly new bakery called Molly Cake, downtown Burlington.  I usually try to buy the more nutritious items when at a bakery, like blueberry oatcakes, or low fat muffins.  I was so attracted to the colours of these cookies that I really didn't notice anything else in the shop and purchased every single colour of these magnificent macaroons.  I did ask about the flavours, just to make sure that they weren't just all about the colour, but didn't even take note of what the flavours were, only that they were different flavours.  Yes, one colour is missing, it didn't quite make it home.    

May 04, 2015

Fresh as a Daisy - Sold

Fresh as a Daisy, 12x36 oil

Happy May!
Just for the record, the flower in this painting in not a daisy, but I think the title is fitting for this painting, (plus I just couldn't get that phrase out of my head}.
The cool spring days are gradually changing to be warmer and more summer-like.  Each morning I've started to search my closet for lighter clothing; as those bulky winter sweaters become more and more unappealing.  My garden is emerging with bright greens and yellows, and I find myself looking for excuses to be outside.  

April 28, 2015

Playing with Shadows - Sold

Playing with Shadows, 20x16 oil

What do you do when there is a white sheet hanging in front of you and a bright light behind you?  You play with shadows of course!  This is yet another painting of my daughter.  There seems to be a very fine line of recognition, as to when a portrait generally looks like the person who is posing for you as opposed to capturing the person you know so well.  I didn't ask her to pose like this.  When the lights were turned on she started to play with the shadows, as she did when she was very young.  My daughter may be an adult now, but she is still that same child inside, which I am sure most of us are.  

April 15, 2015

A Few Good Eggs - Sold

A Few Good Eggs, 12x24 oil
Well so far, out of all the egg paintings I've done, only two eggs have fallen to their doom.  I'm not sure if it's their beautiful shape or just the challenge to capture their essence, but I've really enjoyed painting them.  They will certainly be back in future paintings.  

March 27, 2015

Collecting Eggs - Sold

Collecting Eggs, 8x8 oil
Eggs, besides a great food, represents so much.  Fresh starts and new beginnings, life.  I guess that's why the egg is so important at Easter, (combined with the spring season in the northern hemisphere).  Maybe that's why it's always been considered a breakfast food, a fresh start to the day, just a thought.  I think eggs are beautiful.  I don't know if it's because of what they represent but I have been a little fixated on them for the past while, or maybe I really have had enough of winter.  As I'm writing this there is snow falling outside my window, arghhh!  Any way, happy spring!

March 18, 2015

Rosehips - Sold

Rosehips, 10x5 oil

This past Monday was a damp grey day.  I went out to paint, but my time would have been better spent inside my studio.  This painting, 'Rosehips' was painted the week before.  It was a beautiful sunny day.  I could have painted all sorts of snowy scenes but I just loved the way the rosehips looked against the bright blue sky.

March 12, 2015

The Last Drop

The Last Drop, 6x12 oil

Recently I saw a bottle of Coke being sold in a store.  It reminded me of when I was a kid, (when glass bottles were the norm).  I was inspired to paint it, loving the green tinted glass with the red label.  I purchased a small case, (six bottles).  Wow!, it was probably about the same price as buying 18 cans in a case.  I just love that there is still the choice of purchasing a glass bottle of pop, but I don't even think the bottles are returnable anymore, they just get recycled.  I'm hoping that glass is coming back and plastic is on it's way out.  Since I bought a case, I think I will have to do a few more pop bottle paintings.  

March 04, 2015

Kerncliff Park, Burlington

Kerncliff Park, Burlington 8x12 oil

Spring is in the air, (or is that just wishful thinking).  The days ARE getting longer and the temperatures seem to be getting warmer.  This past Monday was the first day that I've managed to get outside to paint.  At -3 C, I thought I might be overdressed, with about four layers of clothing, (including my long down jacket), but with the wind blowing it was much colder and I felt quite comfortable.  There are a lot of wonderfully rocky views to paint at this park since it used to be a quarry.  I chose to paint this lone birch tree standing in the deep snow, with the view of Lake Ontario off in the distance, (no rocks).  I'm crossing my fingers for more beautiful days ahead!      

February 06, 2015

Counting Eggs - Sold

Counting Eggs, 24x12 oil

Happy February!  Here is the painting I've been working on all week.  I've really enjoyed working on this, (...I think I say that about all my paintings).  I thought it would be challenging painting all the eggs in their perspective shapes, but they just seemed to 'fall' into place.    

January 31, 2015

January Paintings 2015

Here is a collage of my January paintings.  I have another one on the easel, but that will have to wait until February.  It's been a busy month of painting, a good start to the year.  I feel that I am heading in a certain direction with my art and looking forward to the road ahead!  See you next month.

January 27, 2015

Sunnyside - Sold

Sunnyside 6x6 oil
Here is egg study number three.  I really enjoyed painting it, and playing with the reflections.  Since the egg is on a blue plate, it almost looks like water to me.  This egg is from a free range chicken.  The yolk is much deeper in colour than the regular eggs you can buy; guessing it has more nutrients as well.  

January 26, 2015

Prep Bowls - Sold

Prep Bowls, 6x6 oil
Here is egg study number two.  I was going to paint the egg yolk, but decided before I crack it open, I should paint it whole, so guess what my next egg study will be.  My previous egg painting took an hour to paint, this one took twice as long.  I'm trying not to spend too much time on these because I want to move on to a larger painting that will definitely take much longer.

January 23, 2015

Egg Day - Sold

Egg Day, 6x6 oil
A quick little study of eggs.  I have a canvas ready to do a larger still life with eggs, but I thought I would do a few little studies for practise.  Here is study Number one.

January 22, 2015

Learning to Fly

Learning to Fly 20x40 oil

This is the latest painting that I've been working on.  It may need a bit of tweaking here and there, but I think its mostly done.  I love painting with this limited palette, and the mood it creates.

January 12, 2015

The Graveyard by the Church - Sold

The Graveyard by the Church, 8x8 oil

Today was the first plein air painting day of the year.  It was much colder outside than I thought it would be, but I managed to stick it out for a couple of hours.  It was also the first time painting at this location, in Ancaster, Ontario.

January 10, 2015

Strength - Sold

Strength, 10x8 oil

This a quick little painting that I did of my daughter today.  I've been dying to do more paintings of people.  The other day my daughter did me the favour of posing for a photo session.  Although I prefer to paint from life, I now have an arsenal of photos to satisfy me when a live model isn't an option.

January 04, 2015

Hang in There

Hang in There, 12x18 oil

Well, I signed up for the January 30 paintings in 30 days challenge, and I am painting every day so far, but I have decided that I won't let the challenge get in the way of what I want to paint.  So here is painting number 2.

January 01, 2015

Wordless - Sold

Wordless, 12x12 oil
Happy New Year!

Here is my first posting of the year, and my last painting of 2014.  A new year makes me think of directions and choices.  What would I like to accomplish by this time next year, how can I push myself further...etc.,  (as well as, how can I lose that 5 lbs I put on over Christmas, and magical ways to keep the house and studio clean with little or no effort).  I guess some of it comes down to hard work and organization.  I would like to paint more figurative pieces, including portraits, (which I love), and also incorporate people into my painting more often.  Well that at least gives me a bit of direction.

Best wishes to you, and good luck with your new year's resolutions.  Hopefully we can all accomplish  and maybe surpass what we set out to do!  Happy 2015!