About Me

I'm Paul Cato, a professional New Zealand artist, and I have recently moved north from Queenstown, where my painting career began, to the Kowhai Coast near Warkworth. My specialty is painting large vistas, and my primary medium is oils.


Recent Posts




Painting in Progress

Huge Paul Cato Landscape Painting now complete

Thursday, October 11th, 2007

Paul Cato Landscape Gallery This large painting is now completed. All 46 square feet of it! It will be delivered to some new clients in the U.S. next week. I have absolutely enjoyed the process of working at this large scale and I’ll definitely be keen to do it again. I have some subjects in […]

Detail of tidal flats

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

I did some research to find out exactly what this bird is – but I have forgotten again. I think it is a type of heron but I’m really not too worried. It is strategically placed to help set the scale of the grasses.

Left-hand Foreground continued development

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

The sun is brought out a bit more with the addition of some warmer highlights and cooler shadow tones. The foreground bushes get some work, including some ‘shiny’ leaves.

Left-hand Foreground

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

Right-hand Foreground

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

Moving forward a lot of emphasis now includes the accurate placing of shadows and highlights. The establishment of the sun’s position in the landscape’s sky is an important part of creating the illusion of three dimensions. With a painting this large various parts of the painting show shadows and highlights in different positions. In this […]

Right-hand Mid-Ground

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

Some more detail is painted in: rocks and driftwood get blocked in. Scale and perspective are more important than form at this stage because everything forward of the mountains must work convincingly to make the flat canvas look like it is 3D and the water lying flat.

Middle distance left and right

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

The initial background tree colour was applied with a filbert brush.

Starting on the foreground

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

I blocked in a thin under-coat of a neutral-to-warm brown to most of the foreground of the painting .

Paul Cato is still a living artist!

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

My apologies to all those who have wondered if I had disappeared or died whilst working on this big painting. I have had several emails and even phone-calls from people who are wondering what’s happening and asking when I am going to update the website. It seems that there are a lot of people watching […]

Water almost complete

Saturday, May 26th, 2007

Water – painting reflections

Saturday, May 26th, 2007

Quite an arduous job once again, but a very pleasing outcome. This involved re-mixing and matching all the colors and blends of what I had already done and mirroring them below. On a smaller painting I would usually have done this either simultaneously or very soon after finishing the landforms, using the paint ready-mixed. However […]

Lady Bowen Falls

Saturday, May 26th, 2007

Usually known as just Bowen Falls these days, this waterfall is named after the wife of one of NZ’s earliest Governors, Lady Elizabeth Bowen. It drops 162 meters from a hanging valley.

Completing the vista

Saturday, May 26th, 2007

This completes the basic landforms as viewed from the airstrip area of Milford Sound.

The Footstool

Saturday, May 26th, 2007

Like a footstool in front of a big chair, The Footstool is the bush-clad mountain immediately in front of Mitre Peak.

A Peek at Mitre Peak

Saturday, May 26th, 2007

This is the main iconic peak in New Zealand’s Milford Sound, the most well-known fiord of the Fiordland area. This mountain is one of the highest in the world to come right out of the sea. It measures 1692 metres above sea level – about 5500 feet.

The Lion

Saturday, May 26th, 2007

This mountain is called The Lion. From some angles it can look a bit lion-like I suppose.

Big painting progress 2

Friday, May 11th, 2007

Well, I’m trying to keep up with the picture processing but I am still behind in getting them off the camera. I am using a flash on my 6 Megapixel Fuji to get the photography done quickly but the wet paint reflects like a thousand tiny mirrors from the weave and texture of the canvas. […]

Painting in Progress

Wednesday, May 9th, 2007

OK, so here’s the big painting underway. You’ll be able to follow the progression of steps that go into a typical Paul Cato landscape. (Depending on whether I remember to take the pictures – and how long it takes me to process them. I will probably not post them one at a time but I’ll […]

Coming up

Thursday, May 3rd, 2007

I’ve been working on a painting which is bigger than I have painted in a while. No pictures just yet, sorry, but I will definitely take time soon to post some images which will show the progress on this canvas. Oh yes, the size – I nearly forgot. This painting is eight feet wide by […]