"The Art of realism lives by constraints and dies from freedom." (Leonardo Da Vinci)

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Misty Moonlight by Artist Michael Swanson
Misty Moonlight

43 Dufferin St. House by Artist Michael Swanson
Dufferin St. SOLD

Blue Mountain Pines Artist Michael Swanson
Blue Mountain 

Sunset Artist Michael Swanson
Fire Sky

Autumn Birch by Michael Swanson
Autumn Birch SOLD

Hida Gwaii by Michael Swanson
Muskoka Moon SOLD

Northern Sunset by Michael Swanson
Northern Sunset SOLD


Stormy Weather by Artist Michael Swanson
Stormy Weather 

Winswept by Artist Michael Swanson
Wind Swept

Winter Blues Artist Michael Swanson
Granite & Tree SOLD 

The Coming Storm by Michael Swanson
The Coming Storm

Nort Shore by Michael Swanson
North Shore

Hida Gwaii by Michael Swanson
Hida Gwaii Mist

Algoma Sunset by Michael Swanson
Algoma Sunset SOLD

Canadian Landscape Art
"The foundation of everything we are."

The Precambrian or Canadian Shield as it is often called covers about one half of Canada and was formed more than five hundred million years ago. The granite outcroppings of the northern Great Lakes region have always fascinated me. Their mostly smooth contours seem like giant sea serpents floating just below the water's surface. Canoeing through these formations gives a feeling that any moment they will come alive and shake off the windswept, gnarly overgrowth of shrubs and pine.

To paint this is to paint Canada. It speaks of a land solid and rugged yet often soft and inviting that can become more than just landscape paintings, much more. Canada's Group of Seven introduced us to the beauty of our northern lands with their small yet raw and powerful images featuring vistas, streams and woodlands. Their unique impasto style concentrated on light, shape and form without many details that earlier realism painters created but that style I feel cannot properly portray these marvelous granite details.

My choice in painting these landscapes in a more realistic style is driven by my desire to capture the rich details these granite spirits embody. Their smooth shapes, formed by the glaciers that covered this area wore down these original rugged formations exposing all manner of subtle and rich details only realism can truly do justice to.

The once molten rock created rich and free forming veins that meander throughout in colours only nature can create. From rich oranges to deep purples aptly supported by the natural contrasting forms of the once molten granite belies the awesome forces that once shaped these powerful yet beautiful features.

In contrast the Eastern White Pines that inhabit much of these parts offer a rugged free form wilderness feeling. Called The Tree of Peace by the Haudenosaunee they can be seen clinging to the most improbable windswept outcroppings one can imagine giving rise to nature's tenacity for life.

Thank you for viewing my work. I hope that you enjoy studying these images as much as I have enjoyed painting them. All work not marked sold is for sale, you may contact me for questions or more information at the email below.

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© 1995 - 2015 Michael Swanson All rights reserved.