Saturday, 21 September 2013

Watercolour Workshop with Victor

Things have been pretty hectic lately and still are, really, but today was my day off from all the stresses and strains - a one day workshop with watercolourist Victor Henderson 
Victor doesn't draw anything out, he goes straight to the paper with his watercolours, sumptuous hues, letting them bleed and flow. He adds many different things, salt, alcohol, soft and oil pastels, inks and more. Making marks with not only his favourite hakes and mop brushes but whatever comes to hand, including his fingernails - still attached to his hand I may add!
His witty repartee just made the day even more enjoyable - if you are in an art group in the UK - book this artist! He supplied all the materials for the day! Considering I don't paint in watercolour normally, this was just fantastic! We held the workshop in Ringford Hall. Just before leaving for the day, Victor donated a large painting to Ringford's forthcoming fundraising event,for a cancer charity! What a gem!

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Still Life Demo - Final

As I began to work on the nastrutium, I realised the shape of the cup wasn't right

It would appear I had moved, so my viewpoint was very different! I shall have to put tape down after this!  So I had to reshape the cup and my shadows

Finally, I crisped up the petals and shadows of the nastrutium, adjusted the other shadows a little and added wee flicks of red here and there to bring the painting all together

Still Life Demo Part Two

I decided to work on the brambles, as you know they are made up of little balls of fruit juice so I had to try and made some the little highlights and tones, not too many, just a suggestion. I also felt the bottom right of the composition needed something so threw in an extra bramble - it might not stay....we will see

I toned down the markings on the brambles, they were just a bit too much

I began to work on the nastrurtium head, oranges are very difficult to mix and decided to add an extra colour to my limited palette - cadmium red light

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Still Life Demo Part 1

Earlier today I finished off 3 paintings I started for the Whitehouse Gallery, which feels great... getting there, slowly. This piece is just something I decided to show you step by step. I started this late on in the day, once the other 3 were completed.
I quickly sketched in my still life subjects with a watery grey oil mix - I know it looks like a long necked skinny tortoise who's lost his back legs! This was done on my 6" square board. It is just a simple guide.
Can I use the old phrase? Do you know what it is yet? I usually paint one part of my paintings almost completely before moving to the next but this time I covered a fair bit of the entire painting quite quickly. 
I love painting glass so that was the part I concentrated on at this point. Previously putting down the shadows also helps to get the tone right for the rest of the painting. I made a dark mix for the brambles using ultramarine, alizarin crimson and a touch of cadmium yellow light. To get it even darker, I added a tiny amount of phthalo (blue)

Part two - to follow!

Monday, 2 September 2013

Strictly Judging!

Last Sunday I went along to Gracefield Arts Centre to spend the afternoon judging the paintings entered into Dumfries and Galloway Fine Arts Summer Exhibition. There were 5 of us on the panel, Keith Brown, Clare Melinski (of Harry Potter bookcover designer fame), Nick Bass, John Threfald and me!

It was my first time and I was nervous! We had a yummy lunch then were seated in a row and given our number cards 1-4, unfortunately no 7 - I would love to have had the opportunity to say SEV-EN like good old Len on Strictly! 
Go to to see us in action - I am the one in the pink!! Don't we all look serious!

I am not posting my paintings at the minute as they are all for exhibitions, the few that I have done. I am feeling really under pressure these days. It's not about producing work, it's about producing good work. Wish me luck! Hope you like my photo of Oliver and his Nonni!