Thursday, December 31, 2015
Wednesday, December 30, 2015
|My Dad now has a halo...|
I always find the Christmas holidays such a great time to sketch... so many models around and so little need to do anything else... other than eat and drink... lovely :-)
|Drinking red wine on the sofa|
|'Listening to football on the radio'|
|Mary in the school nativity play|
|Yes that is a dog/neck warmer|
|The three graces?|
|And a reindeer|
|Talking to his grandchildren|
Tuesday, December 29, 2015
|Snow at the Roseland Inn|
I hope that you are all having a nice Christmas and New Year break. I'm loving the way that everything slows down and you can spend time relaxing with friends and family and not worry that you should be doing anything else. I love checking my emails and seeing hardly any new ones - except for all the January sale ones which I'm deleting straight away.
Wednesday, December 23, 2015
|ROI catalogue 1997|
I have had the most wonderful news to end the year with. Last week the Royal Institute of Oil painters elected me an Associate member! It is hard for me to describe to you how much this means to me but if I tell you that membership of this prestigious society has been my biggest and longest held ambition (for the last 20 years) you may begin to get the idea!
|With Adebanji in September at A Brush with the Broads|
It was a special double celebration as my friend Adebanji was promoted from Associate to full member of the ROI. Many congratulations Adebanji Alade ROI!
Monday, December 21, 2015
|Jose de Juan, Glenn Fitzpatrick, Adebanji Alade, Peter Keegan, Graeme Messer, Nur Shodaj, Edward Ofosu|
and in front Michele del Campo and me
|My 15 minute sketch of Peter Keegan|
|My sketch of Edward Ofosu|
|My sketch of Glenn Fitzpatrick|
|My sketch of Nur Shodaj|
|My sketch of Michele del Campo|
It is surprising what can be achieved in a sketch in so little time! Not all of my sketches from the evening worked out but I was happy with these ones.
Friday, December 11, 2015
|First snow, Drove allotments|
These favourite snow scenes of mine, painted this year, have all sold in the last month and are heading off to their new homes. It's so rewarding every time my passion for painting the gorgeous snowy domestic subjects is deeply loved and appreciated by somebody else.
'First snow, Drove allotments' is a complete favourite of mine. Painted entirely en plein air I haven't had a single day since where I have been quite as euphoric painting as I was on that day. Such excitement, to be at the allotments with snow. Simple pleasures eh?
This painting also felt like real progress to me, in the manner in which it was painted. It was as though I'd passed another level or grade in my pursuit of simplification.
It goes to join another of my snow scenes from the previous winter at it's lovely new home.
What can I say about 'Treading softly'? Well this photo doesn't do it justice at all. It marks another huge turning point in the development of my work and I was almost holding my breath all the while I was painting it. I was desperate to communicate that delicate softness of the icy early winter morning when your breath hangs in the air as if frozen and shapes are emerging and hidden by the morning mist. I have a tendency to be heavy handed and knew that with this one I had to approach it so delicately and softly and not like a bull in a china shop! That's why I was holding my breath the whole while!
|Out of the woods|
'Out of the woods' is a good example of the less is more and get it down quick tactic. It's a much smaller painting than the others here and it's that end of the winters day, do I have it in me to stay out for one more hour? Oh my gosh look at those long shadows and the sun going down behind the trees. Yes. I. Do.
|The thaw, Drove allotments|
Aww 'the thaw'. Well this one is the largest snow painting yet and I passionately love it also. It's a bittersweet emotion because the snow is melting and my time to paint it is running out fast but what an exciting contrast to try to capture! The warm sunlight, the cool shadows on the snow and that really fresh green of the sodden grass emerging from it's cold cloak. Added to which the structure of the sheds, the opportunity for little abstract passages. Bliss. And strong tonal contrasts which meant that for this one I could be just as gung ho as I wanted! This one is like the 'yang' if 'Treading softly' is the yin.
Tuesday, November 17, 2015
|And the coffee shop across the road delivers...|
Tuesday, November 10, 2015
|Waiting at Harriets|
The wet day in Norwich turned out to be such a blessing. In the afternoon it stopped raining but look at the incredible subject I found thanks to the wet streets! I just fell in love with the deep aubergine colours of the jewellery shop and the purple and white striped awnings, as seen with the warm cosy glow through the windows and their reflections.
Monday, November 9, 2015
|Flowers in the rain|
Last week I took part in Paint Out Norwich again, now in it's second year. It is such a fun event and so well organised. I had to miss the first of the two painting days and on the second morning it poured with rain without stopping. I stood under a tree in the market square with an umbrella but that didn't manage to stop all the rain reaching my palette and the painting. Still, there's always something fascinating to paint even on the dullest day. I looked across the road at the colourful flower stall. My big challenge was making everything dull enough so that the brightness of the fluorescent strip light within the stall would stand out on the painting as it did in reality. The trickiest part to get right without competing with the electric light was the white and yellow canopy.
Saturday, November 7, 2015
8" x 10"
Here's another new and exciting small work that features in my exhibition, one of my favourites. I love the dynamic shadows and the lines of the ropes that appear and disappear, like a dance of sunlight. It's got all the ingredients that keep me on my toes with painting - shape and suggestion, lost and found edges.
Friday, November 6, 2015
|Dusty's deckchair shack|
24 x 30cms
This is one of many lovely small works that may tempt you when you visit my exhibition this year. I painted this on the beach in Great Yarmouth at the end of September - it was such a gorgeous day! One of the last real summer days this year and what a fantastic subject :-)
Wednesday, November 4, 2015
12" x 16"
I should have posted this one for Halloween! I painted it at the end of September when I was in Norfolk for the 'Brush with the broads' plein air festival. I was delighted to find the allotments but the light was pretty flat and uninspiring that afternoon. Never-the-less I was taken with the shapes and colours of this pumpkin patch. The painting was feeling pretty flat and uninspired until I took a palette knife to it and started breaking up edges and letting colour travel around. I really liked it in the end. I'm afraid there's a bit of glare on the photo though. I used a gamblin solvent free gel to speed up the drying time. It also gives a pleasant overall sheen but makes taking a photograph more difficult!
Monday, November 2, 2015
|Evening sailing, St Mawes|
14" x 18"
This is one of my favourite painting spots so you may well recognise this view. I was particularly keen to abstract and soften the buildings to focus attention on that dazzling light on the water. The action in the harbour is represented by a few strokes of light and dark and a couple of more intense spots of colour.
Saturday, October 31, 2015
|Redwings at Looe|
14" x 18"
One of my favourite paintings of the year so far. I feel that the vigorous sketchy nature of the brush marks reflect my excitement and passion for the subject. I lay in wait for hours for the racing to finish and the boats to come ashore and then I ran around with my camera like a woman possessed, in and out of the water. Moments like this are so special and so fleeting that I didn't think I would achieve very much if I attempted a plein air piece. Instead I decided to gather as much information with my camera as I could which I could then use for a series of studio paintings. This is the first and it all came together so easily, I was right back there on the beach with wet legs and a silly grin on my face :-)
Sunday, October 18, 2015
|Warm evening waves|
6" x 12"
I was recently interviewed by my friends at New Wave Palettes in Pennsylvania. They make the best palettes, as anyone who's ever seen me demonstrate with my 'grand view confidant' will know!
Thursday, October 15, 2015
Read the full version of this post on Lori's blog by clicking here. Also tune in to Lori's blog for the whole month because she has invited to her #bestblogpartyever so many fascinating speakers and I am getting so much out of reading all the posts.
Also I have just added a gallery page of some of my favourite drawings to my website and you can see those by clicking here :-)