Friday, 30 November 2007

ATC with Doodling

I am still collecting stuff for making ATC's, I bought a set of stamps on the theme of the ballet on Ebay; it arrived yesterday. I have also been learning and trying out some new techniques. Doodling seems to be all the rage as I mentioned in my last post. So what else but an ATC using these various elements on a watercolour background:-

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This has (the w/c background) with stamped images of the dancers and ballet shoes, more stamped images framimng the top to represent the stage curtain (don't know what it is called!) and hand written prose to bring it all together.
I may still colour in the dancers clothes to make them stand out a little more - looks fine in my hand but when I saw it on the screen I was tempted to increase the contrast as it looks washed out. but the colour seems a better idea.
There are quotations from in the text.

Thursday, 29 November 2007

ATC addicted

Just back from a short stay in Bridgnorth, Shropshire. lots of new material for paintings, and will hopefully be able to show you these in the next couple of weeks (christmas preparations and my wife permitting). I was going to spend a few hours on Tuesday night sketching from some photos when we got back to the hotel room after dinner and a night out but it didn't quite work out. On the way back to the hotel we were congratulating the council workmen putting up the Christmas lights along the main road. The problem began when we got back to the room, Bang! someone had blacked out the entire town as far as we could see. Too much of a coincidence not to have been those same workmen. Well, at least we got to bed early that night.

My latest creation I am going to post here is another ATC. I have recently joined a group dedicated to expanding our artisitic horizons ( unfortunately small, private and with a waiting list). This does however mean in the field of "crafting " rather than painting but cross-fertilisation is to be hoped for. My first new techniques were heat embossing, great watching the little crystals take on a new appearance as they melt and merge into one another. Art -doodling seems to be a growing trend amongst those doing journaling at the moment and I have also been exposed to this. Both techniques have been put to use in this card:-

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Hope you like it it was meant for a cyber-friend who I thought needed some cheering up!
See you soon with some paintings of Bridgnorth and its environs, cheers

Sunday, 18 November 2007

graphite sketch - The Inn

Hi, not been posting too frequently the past couple of weeks but I have had so much to keep me occupied. You will have seen my latest installations made during the days and weeks prior to helping my son move house - never again - and once this was completed my wife (bless her) decided that we needed to decorate the house for Christmas. So I have been doing lots and lots of painting. Unfortunately, the kind I would rather have put off.

I have however managed to at least do a sketch in graphite pencil (6 and 8B), this is from a photograph (I know) but the text sign on the gable end of the building caught my attention. Presumably, the owners thought that walkers would see it from afar. It is I believe in the peak district and probably relies on walkers for the bulk of it's trade. The animals do show however that I have been neglecting my "drawing skills" of late, I never was a natural with a drawing implement but I do try and if/when sketching regularly I can do better, see my web-site. Anyway here it is:-

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The text ,BTW, was off-centre as depicted, I wonder wether the writer made a mistake with the start position and was one of the reasons I noticed it. The trouble with photos is that it is not easy to change the composition and I wonder if I should have removed the wall and guessed at the hidden parts of the building???
Till the next time, cheers

Saturday, 10 November 2007

getting back to watercolour painting

Well ,I have done well! Starting to paint again after what seems soooo long. It's just like beginning afresh. After the watercolour skies workshop with my art group I have been worrying that I am finding it so difficult to paint what I consider a "good" picture. I am basically a landscape artist, although I have dabbled in all subjects, and this is what I want to be able to do again. I seem to have lost the knack of utilising the learned rules which help to make a painting interesting.

Here are three I finished last week, the first two are terrible and show just how much I have lost out by all this collaging. the third is passable and actually gave me a glimmer of renewed hope.

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Untitled: still trying to get a decent sky, looks like a real beginners work. Not quite sure what is supposed to be happening in the foreground.

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Untitled again. There are some things about this one which I actually quite like. BUT again what on earth is happening in the centre foreground? My only excuse is that I was still trying to paint skies and was not concentrating on the rest of the picture.

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Now this one I am begginning to like. The reference picture that I was using actually had far more trees in it but I was quite pleased with the background so decided to stop. The only problem I have is that in trying to show the texture of the two large treetrunks, I have lightened them and left the more pair of distant trees far too dark. Of course in the reference they were in heavy shade but I have not allowed for this. Of course all is not lost as I can easily take out some of the tone fro these trees. But at least I am beginning to feel that my watercolour brushes will not have to be thrown away.
On a downer, I went to an Art Materials/Craft show at the National Exhibition Center (UK) and found myself buying lots of "crafty" items as well as art materials. Battle is about to commence!
Art or Craft?

Saturday, 3 November 2007

My latest installations!

I thought I would share with you today some photographs of my latest art - this time installations.

I have recently been conned into helping my son move house and I was able to use some of the "found" objects to build a number of installations. They were I am sorry to say only temporary so there is no chance of enabling a tour of this work after the main event at his new house.

I have included four photographs from the "ground floor collection" :-

The first is entitled, "under the stairs" . Note particularly the suggested triangular composition and the references to my son's musical leaning.

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The second is called, "Living Room" . Here there is a humerous reference to the fact that there is actually no room to swing a cat. Note especially, the dining room table moved into this installation to facilitate the first (and only planned) installation in the adjacent space.

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The third photo is called "Behind the Doors" . One end of the dining room where I could actually step inside to take this picture. If I had swung round thro' 180 degrees I would have been faced with a six foot wall of cardboard boxes - not a good subject for a photograph, I think you will agree. better left out of this collection.

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Lastly in this little collection is, "In the Kitchen" . Not too much to get your teeth into here. But do note the fuit and the fridge door providing an excellent counterfoil to the cardboard boxes and the washing-up bowl.

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I feel that this little tour is probably as much as your excited state of mind can take for now, so I will leave "the first floor collection" for another time. Please come back and look out for, "The Master Bedroom, The Landing, The Office and The Smallest Room" .
have a good day. John