Olein Air: Shortly after sunrise (oil painting)

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Foto: (c) Marc Volquardsen 2017

Snow produces this special light even though it might not be seen directly in the painting. I painted in the sun rise at 7.30 this morning but stopped when the light had changed too much. I plan to finish that one in the studio.

After sunrise I started a second painting and the light changed again quickly and the clouds just left a tiny space for the yellow of the sky. Now one has to work quickly, setting colors and values and just leave it alone. I am quite satisfied except with the bank at the bridge. I might go back to this one in the studio and do some correcting touches. I will probably regret it.



Shortly after sunrise, 18×24cm, oil MDF board, 2017, Astrid Volquardsen


Let me introduce you to Charlie.

20170115-Hamburg-AstridVolquardsen-0008We’re playing wild dog. Fun game when you’re getting cold

By the way. You can follow me now on Instagram too.


Wintermorning (View to Lombardsbridge)

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Wintermorgen (15x30 - Öl auf MDF)

Wintermorning (View to Lambardsbridge), Oil on  MDF Board, 2017, Astrid Volquardsen

 550.- Euro

It just pays off to go to the same place again and again. Some day it just comes all together and the feeling, the color for a place emerges in a painting. love this one.

This is one of my new favorite places in Hamburg. The dogs on their morning rounds ( with their owners) know me already and when I found the time their is always a cuddle for them in store.

We Hamburger love this view which shows the silhouette across the big lake.



Plein Air: Yellow light

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After these grey days which accompanied us over the Christmas days this week is really nice with clear cold weather.

Upon arriving at the Alster in the dusk I was greeted by a blackbird which sang his heart out. Already looking for a mate! I think he got something wrong with the saying: The early bird catches the worm. Or he got way to much testosterone in his blood.


Foto: Marc Volquardsen, 2017

Anyway. I wanted to check out the light situation at the Alsterpark. What really struck me was the yellow light/ color on the lawn. How much yellow is too much yellow? I need to come back again on Thursday and start a new one.

Another form of art. Hot chocolate afterwards at the cafe.


Foto: Marc Volquardsen, 2017


Plein Air: Morning at the Alster

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Hamburg - Pier Rabenstraße

Fotografie; Marc Volquardsen, 2016

What a wonderful morning at the Alster. This a beautiful lake right in the middle of Hamburg. What you can’t hear are the hundreds of crows leaving their night trees. Kind of magic.

For me it’s always important to catch a mood of a scene. I felt confirmed by an interview which Daniel Keys gave the Plein Air Magazine. He describes his progress after he studied with Jeremy Lipkin. Lipkin painted only on a small canvas to capture the overall feeling of a place. This way he doesn’t get lost in details.

Well, this will be my motto for 2017. Anyway, no time for details when it’s this freezing cold.

Astrid Volquardsen - Plein Air at the Alster lake

Foto: Marc Volquardsen, 2016



Quo Vadis?

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Looking back this past year has brought many positive changes and many artistic changes. I`ve learned so much and I loved this experience. My personal growth resonated with my surroundings and it was quite interesting to watch their reactions. I could witness everything from rejection to enthusiasm. This offers deep insight into the human soul. My own as well as into the others. The lesson I’ve learned from another perspective this year: Never quit! Take a break but never quit.

Focus on your own artistic growth and leave behind those people who aren’t willing to understand your development. They just suck away your energy and you don’t want to spend time with them.

It shows me time and again how important it is to be open to all people and situations and to stop judging everything straight away.

Just recently somebody asked me what my life purpose is. Spontaneously I answered to help people find their authentic artistic voice. No hiding behind somebody’s else opinion. Just being yourself. With every right to follow their own artistic growth.

Two interviews show my point of view. The British actress Helen Mirren said:

»Don’t allow the people to make rules for you. Make your own rules. And basically there are no rules. And as I traveled through life I realized more and more that there are less and less rules actually. …People fall into habits so easily and that they imagine that the world is just going to fall apart if they break a habit. That is not the case. It’s a really good idea to break your own rules on a regular basis.«

Even more deeply impressed me Erik Weihenmayer the first blind person to climb the Mount Everest.

»I like to collect experiences, soak in as much as I can. When I am climbing the scariest part is when I am reaching out. I am not exactly sure of what I am going to find.I am hoping and praying and predicting of what I was going looking for. That fear to reaching out into the unknown paralyses people to the point they decide not to reach out at all. For me all the great things that had ever come to me had been had come to reaching out into the unknown. »


Never let other peoples opinion stop you of doing things. With my oil painting I reached out into the unknown and the rewards are coming back.

This past year has taught me to sharpen my focus and endure the times when it’s not going as I had hoped it would. You just need to paint crappy paintings in order to succeed.

It has brought so much joy and positive change. 2016 was a really good year.

2017 will be even better.

I am working right now on a new exhibition and this one focuses on the day time of dusk and dawn in my hometown Hamburg. So interesting and challenging motives. I just love it.


And I reserved my spot in a painting workshop with Scott Christensen next year. Oh, I am looking forward to learn so much.


Of course, I didn’t stop teaching the pastel workshop. There will be one  in 2018 in Croatia and it will be in English and German. That will be fun!


I am looking forward to my own artistic growth so much. I feel blessed and grateful that I can live the life of an artist in these times.


Last but not least thanks to all the people out there who have crossed my path this year. You’ve made it a very special one.





Preperations, Oil on board

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Ewerfüher - Öl auf Hartfaser

Preperations, 13×13cm, oil on board, Astrid Volquardsen, 2016,
180.- Euro mit Schattenfuge

A second painting going along  with the market woman from the previous post. This is one of the shipman who actually sailed the boat from the suburbs of Hamburg to the harbor in order to sell the vegetables.

The historic costumes offers so many nice motives to paint.


Market Woman: Oil on canvas (Studio)

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Market women; 13×13cm, Oil on canvas, 2016, Astrid Volquardsen

During my last show I did a demo explaining my steps. This is the finished version.

In the painting you can see a hitosrically dressed market woman. In the suburbs of Hamburg at the river we have long tratidtion of vegatable cultivation. Those farmers used to bring their products with some certain type of ship along the river, right into Hamburg.

They did rebuild one of those ships and showed it on summer festive with open ships and a traditional flair to it. The crew went on selling flowers, apples and vegetables. Just like in the »good old days.«



You can by this small oil painting now. 180.- Euro with the frame. For terms of conditions please contact me:


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