Thursday, September 22, 2011

Facing Hard Times International Open Exhibition

I have just had a portrait accepted for the "Facing Hard Times" International Open Exhibition in King's Lynn.
"The broad concept of the exhibition is the impact of recent global economic crises on all our lives".

A portrait from my "Homeless" series seemed appropriate.

The exhibition will be held at Greyfriars Art Space, 43 St. James St. , King's Lynn, Norfolk and will run from 1st -15th October

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Sentinels

In the Abbey Gardens in Bury St. Edmunds stand the ruins of the original abbey.

As I wandered round these, the remains of a large central arch loomed dark against a stormy sky. Suddenly, these crumbling columns appeared as two almost menacing figures. Hence the title of the drawing.

It was created using the same techniques as described in my previous blog.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Fun with mixed media

On occasions it is fun to try something completely new.

Recently, I came across the remains of this wonderfully old gnarled tree. It was tortured and twisted, and bleached by the elements. I really felt I had to draw or paint it.

What would be the best approach? In the end, I decided to just play and enjoy the process of seeing how things developed.

I primed a piece of MDF with acrylic gesso and blocked it in with charcoal. But it lacked the power and texture that I wanted. I added acrylic texture paste , modelling it with brush and palette knife to suggest the contours of the tree. When dry, I dragged charcoal across the surface. Black lava , sand, and glass bead texture gels also became part of the process. White conte chalk and black and white acrylic paint were used as well.

Below are a couple of close ups of the effects achieved.

Finally, the finished work, measuring 30" x20"

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Society of Disabled Artists

Last week, I did a one day portrait workshop for the Society of Disabled Artists at Belsey Bridge Conference Centre, near Bungay in Suffolk.

To the vast majority of students, portraiture was a completely new venture. I began, therefore, by demonstrating the basics of proportion, tone and colour mixing. After that I gave a demonstration in oils.
After we had enjoyed a hearty lunch, I set the students the task of working from the live model. There was the odd protest raised, but in the end all seemed to enjoy the challenge.

All in all, a pleasant and successful day.