Take me to the Island X #307


Take Me to the Island X, ©John O’Grady
12″ x 12″ x 1.75″, oil and deep edged panel, ready to hang.


The final flourish of the day illuminates the approaching weather front off the west coast.

Our eyes move down this painting.

They travel through the rich deep blue of the sky at dusk, the white clouds blasted by the westerly wind, the orange, red and violet of the mass of clouds until they reach the deep blue violet that fall into the encroaching darkness.

From the right, a light cuts across the water and through the gloom to come and shine on the rocky island.

Soon, it too will be cast in the silence and solitude of the night.

And the drama will end for another day.

I’d love to hear what you think.

The Silver Sea #306


The Silver Sea ©John O’Grady
20″ x 47.5″ x 1.75″ oil on deep edged canvas, ready to hang
(Click on the image to enlarge it.)

$2508 (approx £2058, €2310) with free shipping and handling
(please note a payment plan can be arranged with this painting, please email me for further details)

In the ‘Decay of Lying’ Oscar Wilde stated that “Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life”.

I hate to disagree with the great man but with this particular painting of the West of Ireland, the veil of tears I went through brought to mind the veils of rain that fall across the land from the Atlantic.

On these days, mist and cloud become one. The constant soft rain seeps into your skin.

And then, around 5 pm, a chink of light breaks through the cloud cover and, little by little, light and moisture mix and the landscape is transformed.

You can feel this quality in this painting.

As you have probably noticed, I often work on a square format.

The panoramic format of this piece brought its own set of troubles. I forget how many times I picked this piece up and put it down again.

Then, at some point a chink of light appeared in the shape of one of the clouds. Things took form and it all seemed to fit into place like a puzzle.

On evenings like these, the sea turns a glass-like silver blue. When I had painted this part, I was happy with the quality of reflective light and decided to name that painting ‘The Silver Sea’.


I’d love to hear what you think of this new landscape format and of course the painting.

The Starry Plough #305


The Starry Plough ©John O’Grady
20″ x 20″ x 1.75″ oil on canvas, ready to hang


To enjoy a fabulous view of Dublin city by night, drive up to Montpelier Hill in the Dublin Mountains.

The city will be spread before you in all its splendour.

On the right, Dublin Bay, the Howth peninsula behind it and if it’s a clear evening, its light house.

On the left, the city lights. They suggest a rich tapestry of life laid out before your eyes, almost as if each light flickering denotes a human presence.

In the sky, the stars echo the lights below the horizon line.

On this night, you can clearly see the ‘Starry Plough’, the ever present symbol of hope and freedom for the working people of Dublin.

I’d look forward to reading your comment.

At the End of the Day #304

JohnOGradyArt-At-the End-of-the-Day

At the End of the Day ©John O’Grady

16″ x 16″ x 1.75″ oil on canvas, ready to hang

$694 (approx. 618€, £535) free shipping.

The sky in the West of Ireland stages a display of colour at the end of this day.

In front of a backcloth of gold, blue/purple clouds drift by.

The light reflects and bounces off the water.

Across the bay, the headland shifts in and out of view as veils of light fall upon the darkened shapes.

It’s a spectacle to never tire of.

I’d love to hear what you think.

Bog Heather in the Mist #303


Bog Heather in the Mist ©John O’Grady

8″ x 16″ x 1.75″ oil on deep edged canvas, ready to hang

$353 (approx. €317, £272) with free shipping.

It’s the time of year when bog heather covers the Wicklow mountains in a swathe of colour.

I travelled through these mountains most weeks, each season bringing out its own fabulous display, the bog’s rich deep browns mingled with the blond bog grasses swaying in the wind among the pink purple heather plants.

Once, I took a group of people to go and look at the heather on Sally Gap.

The day started off perfectly.

A bright blue sky accompanied us as we drove up the mountains but as we reached the broad open expanse of bogland, the mist closed in and the rain started lashing down.

An eerie atmosphere enclosed the van with headlights on full beam, I was driving at about 30 miles an hour on a winding small road that doesn’t allow two cars to pass.

I carried on for many miles like this. Then suddenly, the light found a way through a chink in the clouds and little by little, the clouds parted.

It was still raining but now, the sunshine was illuminating the distant hills and bringing hope for a better day.

One of my passengers, an insistent character, told me he had come to take photographs of the heather and asked me when was I going to stop.

I said it was still raining and he replied, ‘not much now’.

So I stopped and as if on cue, the rain almost did too.

I leaned across, opened the sliding door and the photographer started getting ready to immortalise the veils of mist and rain falling against the beautiful sunlit backdrop.

He sat on the edge of his seat and leaned out of the van positioning himself for the shot.

As he lifted the camera, a gust of wind along with a torrential horizontal rain blew straight in on top of the poor unfortunate.

Such are the trials and tribulations of a day out in the Wicklow mountains.

This painting is a memory of this experience with the elements.I’d love to read your comment.